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Origin of Lilith as Lunar Apogee?

 
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Jeffrey Kotyk



Joined: 03 Jan 2017
Posts: 3
Location: Netherlands

Posted: Thu Jul 20, 2017 2:47 pm    Post subject: Origin of Lilith as Lunar Apogee? Reply with quote

Hello everyone, I would like to ask a basic question, as I've been searching high and low, and have yet to come to a conclusive answer.

Where exactly does Lilith as the lunar apogee come from in modern astrology? Is this based on any earlier system?

The reason I ask is that, in a nutshell, the lunar apogee in ancient Chinese horoscopy is associated with an icon that matches all the traditional depictions of Lilith. If you're interested, please see my paper (pages 60-64):

http://chinesebuddhiststudies.org/current_issue.html

This planet, as well as its icon and lore, were introduced into China around the year 800 CE from an Iranian source. I know that Lilith is a figure in Jewish traditions as well, which makes me suspect that the modern understanding of Lilith is somehow derived from a Jewish astrology source.

Any pointers would be appreciated!
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Tom
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Posted: Thu Aug 03, 2017 1:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Since the question concerns itself with astrology's history, I suppose this Forum is somewhat appropriate. Lilith isn't exactly a hot topic around here. Did you try the General Astrology Forum? Also Kim Farnell might know this. If anyone does, please help out.
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Mark
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Posted: Fri Aug 04, 2017 12:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jeffrey Kotyk wrote:
Quote:
Hello everyone, I would like to ask a basic question, as I've been searching high and low, and have yet to come to a conclusive answer.

Where exactly does Lilith as the lunar apogee come from in modern astrology? Is this based on any earlier system?

The reason I ask is that, in a nutshell, the lunar apogee in ancient Chinese horoscopy is associated with an icon that matches all the traditional depictions of Lilith. If you're interested, please see my paper (pages 60-64):

http://chinesebuddhiststudies.org/current_issue.html

This planet, as well as its icon and lore, were introduced into China around the year 800 CE from an Iranian source. I know that Lilith is a figure in Jewish traditions as well, which makes me suspect that the modern understanding of Lilith is somehow derived from a Jewish astrology source.

Any pointers would be appreciated!



Tom wrote:
Quote:
Since the question concerns itself with astrology's history, I suppose this Forum is somewhat appropriate. Lilith isn't exactly a hot topic around here. Did you try the General Astrology Forum? Also Kim Farnell might know this. If anyone does, please help out.


I was wondering what line you would on this question Tom. I agree as the question is historical Jeffrey's question has a valid place here. Not least as he is suggesting a possible medieval link to the idea in Chinese via Iranian astrology. I did a little digging on this topic. Here is a link explaining the three separate uses of the term Lilith in western astrology.

https://wiki.astro.com/astrowiki/en/Lilith

Jan Revilla states that the use of the lunar apogee first originates in the early 1930s.

http://expreso.co.cr/centaurs/blackmoon/barycentric.html

Revilla writes:
Quote:
The "Mean Apogee" is the most popular of the alternative "Black Moons", mainly because it has been used for a much longer time than all the others, and also because often astrologers are not aware of the alternatives. It seems to have been introduced into astrological practice in France by Don Neroman (Pierre Rougié, 1884-1953) in the early or mid 1930's. He apparently was also the first to call it "Black Moon".


I dont read French but Don Neroman (Pierre Rougié, 1884-1953) and his writings seem a logical starting point. Has anyone heard of an older reference to the idea than this?

There might be an antecedent for Rougié ideas in the French Rosicrucian tradition.

I cant really see such a concept being given such an astrological association like this any medieval Christian or Islamic sources for theological reasons.

It also seems quite a stretch that orthodox Judaism would consider it too. But
I suppose more mystical Kabbalah writings are a possibility. Lilith is certainly referred to in medieval Jewish Kabbalistic texts. But she tends to be a symbol for cosmic evil. For example take a look at this link:

https://jwa.org/encyclopedia/article/lilith

Quote:
In the thirteenth-century “Treatise on the Left Emanation,” she became the female consort of Samael (Scholem, 1927; Dan). The “Great Demon” of the Alphabet of Ben Sira was given the name of Samael. According to earlier midrashim he had seduced the serpent to evil in the Garden of Eden and he was long identified as the angel of death and the guardian angel of Rome. In the “Treatise on the Left Emanation,” Samael and Lilith emanated together from beneath the Throne of Glory as a result of the sin of the first humans in the Garden of Eden. Their mythological characteristics were further developed in the Zohar (Tishby; Scholem 1974). There, Lilith and Samael emanated together from one of the divine powers, the sefirah of Gevurah (Strength). On the side of evil, the Sitra Ahra (the “Other Side”), they correspond to the holy divine female and male: “Just as on the side of holiness so on ‘the other side’ there are male and female, included one with the other” (Tishby, II: 461). Lilith attempted intercourse with Adam before the creation of Eve, and after the creation of Eve she fled and ever after has plotted to kill newborn children. She dwells in the “cities of the sea” and at the end of days God will make her dwell in the ruins of Rome (Tishby).

In the Zohar Lilith’s demonic sexuality comes especially to the fore. She attempts to seduce men and use their seed to create bodies for her demonic children. The Zohar recommends the performance of a special ritual before sexual intercourse between husband and wife, in which the husband should turn his mind to God and say, “Veiled in velvet, are you here?/Loosened, loosened (be your spell)!/Go not in and go not out!/Let there be none of you and nothing of your part!” (Scholem 1965: 157). She is the seductive harlot who leads men astray, but when they turn to her, she transforms into the angel of death and kills them (Tishby).


No explicit references to Jewish astrology in any of this though.

There are of course important Jewish medieval astrologers. Most famously, Rabbi Abraham ben Meir Ibn Ezra (Usually called as Ibn Ezra by astrologers) (1089–1167).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abraham_ibn_Ezra

http://cura.free.fr/cura2/901meira.html

I have not seen anything in his work that would suggest such an idea. However, you could consider contacting Meira Epstein who is an American astrologer who has translated several of his works from Hebrew.

http://bear-star.com/

Currently, there is a project to translate all of Ibn Ezra's astrological work by the Israeli academic Shlomo Sela. Five volumes have already been translated. Sela is undoubtably the foremost academic authority on the astrology of Ibn Ezra today. He might be your best contact for an answer to this question.

http://www.brill.com/products/book/abraham-ibn-ezras-introductions-astrology

http://www.brill.com/abraham-ibn-ezra-nativities-and-continuous-horoscopy

http://www.brill.com/abraham-ibn-ezra-book-world

http://www.brill.com/abraham-ibn-ezra-nativities-and-continuous-horoscopy

http://www.brill.com/abraham-ibn-ezra-book-reasons

Mark
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‘’As thou conversest with the heavens, so instruct and inform thy minde according to the image of Divinity…’’ William Lilly


Last edited by Mark on Fri Aug 04, 2017 3:28 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Jeffrey Kotyk



Joined: 03 Jan 2017
Posts: 3
Location: Netherlands

Posted: Fri Aug 04, 2017 1:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you Tom and Mark. Much appreciated.

As it presently stands, it appears, based on my research, that Sepharial (1864–1929), an English astrologer, was actually the first to introduce Lilith into European astrology. However, this initially was connected to a purported second satellite of the Earth that was "discovered" by Dr. Waltemath.

His work is here:

The Science of Foreknowledge

On page 51, he writes, "The influence of Lilith is undoubtedly obstructive and fatal, productive of various forms of catastrophes and accidents, sudden upsets, changes, and states of confusion."

Interestingly, in the medieval Chinese tradition, the lunar apogee (called Yuebei) is quite malefic. I plan to write a paper on this topic with a full translation of the relevant section from a mid-16th century horoscopy manual.

I think Yuebei is, in fact, connected to the original Lilith or Iranian Āl:

http://www.iranicaonline.org/articles/al-folkloric-being-that-personifies-puerperal-fever

However, it appears to just be a coincidence that in the 20th century, Western astrologers connected Lilith with the lunar apogee, unless there is some source indicating otherwise. Quite a remarkable coincidence, indeed, but perhaps just that.
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Mark
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Joined: 30 Sep 2005
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Posted: Fri Aug 04, 2017 2:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jeffrey Kotyk wrote:

Quote:
As it presently stands, it appears, based on my research, that Sepharial (1864–1929), an English astrologer, was actually the first to introduce Lilith into European astrology. However, this initially was connected to a purported second satellite of the Earth that was "discovered" by Dr. Waltemath.


Hi Jeffrey,

Yes I knew about that idea of Sepharial. I thought it was is cited in the first link I provided but I see now it isn't. However, since, Sepharial was discussing neither the Moon or its apogee I assumed you would regard that as irrelevant to your question. That is why I gave it no attention myself.

Sepharial's ideas are certainly well known by astrologers that work with the idea of Lilith today.

http://darkstarastrology.com/triple-moon-goddess-lilith-astrology/

Sepharial's thoughts seems to have been pulled together in this 16 page text on Lilith.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Astrology-Lilith-Sepharial/dp/1163054976

Leaving the issue of Sepharial aside the first reference to the Lunar apogee being used astrologically seems to be the early 1930s unless anyone can find anything further back here?

I guess weird coincidences do happen sometimes although as astrologers we love to find hidden connections!

Mark
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‘’As thou conversest with the heavens, so instruct and inform thy minde according to the image of Divinity…’’ William Lilly
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