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Re: [ANE-2] Parpola & the Assyrian Tree

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  • Ariel L. Szczupak
    ... Thank you. I had Parpola s tree in my to check list because I kept seeing it referenced in serious publications even though the claim seemed
    Message 1 of 19 , Apr 1, 2006
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      At 00:17 01/04/2006, Trudy Kawami wrote:
      >[...] I had trouble with his first sentence: "A stylized tree with
      >obvious religious significance already occurs as an art motif in
      >fourth-millennium Mesopotamia..." No image is provided and no
      >explanation, however brief, of what is "obvious" -ly religious about
      >the image. [...] But Parpola is not interested in the specific trees
      >or cultures or their ideas about the tree images, but only the ideal
      >forms that can fit into his abstract system. [...] He does not care
      >about the individual works of art, the very basis of art historical
      >research. [...]

      Thank you.

      I had Parpola's tree in my "to check" list because I kept seeing it
      referenced in serious publications even though the claim seemed preposterous.

      In signal detection theory (important to the pattern recognition
      aspects of cognition) there are four possible outcomes - hit, miss
      (false negative), false alarm (false positive) and correct rejection.
      What you describe is not just bad "art historical research", it's
      symptomatic of false pattern recognition, which means that the
      reasoning used to support the falsely recognized pattern will be flawed.

      Myths will have similar symbols (trees, fishes, the sun and moon,
      genitalia, etc etc). It's something you can bet on, because of the
      similarities in the human experience. The tellers of the myths are
      the causal factor, the definers of patterns. And there will be
      similarities not only in the choice of symbols but also in the
      characteristics of what what they represent because each symbol has
      certain characteristics (e.g. the sun will be used to symbolize
      something cyclical, not a fish).

      But what you describe implies that Parpola defines his pattern by the
      symbols, not by the symbol creators, and that's a false alarm, unless
      he can support his claim by linking the creators of the symbols in some way.

      The basic reasoning for the necessity of binding patterns to the
      pattern creators and not to the creations is that the creations are
      not self-generating. The 6 ft and 1" trees didn't just appear, they
      were created by a volitional, cognitive processes.

      If Parpola can link the acts of creation of those symbols in some
      way, show that they're the result of similar cognitive processes,
      then he may have a viable theory, but otherwise what he's doing is
      fiction, not science - he's creating a pattern where there isn't one.

      Example of similar creations without an otherwise established link
      between the creators (false positive) - the Egyptian and American pyramids.

      Example of similar creations with an otherwise established link
      between the creators (hit) - the Greek and Phoenician alphabets. The
      link is not in us knowing that there were contacts between the Greeks
      and Phoenicians (though it helps), but in our knowledge of what the
      creators intended the symbols to represent, the similarity in the
      phonetic value of the symbols.

      So Parpola has to show that the creators of the Assyrian trees and
      the Kabbalah tree meant them to mean something very similar
      (something vaguely similar won't do because the inherent
      characteristics of trees already limit the possible symbolisms) or a
      step by step evolution from one to the other with every step
      supported with evidence of the intent of the symbol creators.

      [...]

      >Parpola's theories clearly resonate in this New Age when even pop stars
      >study the Kabbalah. However, this tells us more about ourselves than the
      >ancient Assyrians.

      Parpola will stay in my "to check" list, but not as a scientific
      theory but as something that seems to affect and captivate people - a
      fictional creation (which, if good enough, could be art).



      Ariel.

      [100% bona fide dilettante ... delecto ergo sum!]

      ---
      Ariel L. Szczupak
      AMIS-JLM (Ricercar Ltd.)
      POB 4707, Jerusalem, Israel 91401
      Phone: +972-2-5619660 Fax: +972-2-5634203
      ane.als@...
    • Cynthia Edenburg
      ... the ... about ... resonate in this New Age when even pop stars ... than the ... This reminds of a comment Jonas Greenfield made, that Jacobsen s
      Message 2 of 19 , Apr 1, 2006
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        --- In ANE-2@yahoogroups.com, "Trudy Kawami" <tkawami@...> wrote:
        > The explication of Parpola's theory of the tree does not explain
        > anything about the Assyrian image; it just cloaks it in mystery,
        the
        > very opposite of the goal of scholarship. The result tells us more
        about
        > Parpola than the Assyrians.<snip> Parpola's theories clearly
        resonate in this New Age when even pop stars
        > study the Kabbalah. However, this tells us more about ourselves
        than the
        > ancient Assyrians.

        This reminds of a comment Jonas Greenfield made, that Jacobsen's
        description of Mesopotamian religion was more likely a reflection of
        J's own pantheistic tendencies.
        How well have Jacobsen's views on Mesopotamian religion actually
        stood the test of time?

        Cynthia Edenburg
        The Open University of Israel, Ra'anana
      • Sabina_Franke@T-Online.de
        For those who read German there might also be of interest the review of Parpola s Assyrian Prophecies (SAA 9) by Eckart Frahm in WO 31 (2000/2001), 31-45 Wie
        Message 3 of 19 , Apr 1, 2006
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          For those who read German there might also be of interest the review of
          Parpola's Assyrian Prophecies (SAA 9) by Eckart Frahm in WO 31
          (2000/2001), 31-45 "Wie "christlich" war die assyrische Religion?


          Dr. Sabina Franke (Universität Hamburg)
          Obotritenring 149
          19053 Schwerin
          Germany
          Sabina_Franke@...
        • Tomas Marik
          The tree of life is (among others) a technical term and belongs to the structural theory of religion. This theory is based on archetypes, i.e. models that help
          Message 4 of 19 , Apr 4, 2006
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            The tree of life is (among others) a technical term and belongs to the structural theory of religion. This theory is based on archetypes, i.e. models that help to explain common features in the symbolism of various religions. To get an idea of what is meant, you may want to start with Mircea Eliade (it's repeated and explained in almost any of his publications, on the tree in particular see the relevant chapters in his Traité d'histoire des religions).
            One of the most frequent assyriological arguments against a "tree of life" in Mesopotamian religion has always been the absence of an expression for it in Sumerian and Akkadian. If we bear in mind the theoretical nature of the term "tree of life" then it is much the same as saying there was no status constructus in Akkadian, since we don't have a genuine term for it.
            Though the structural view of religion can be criticized, it offers a useful tool for interpretation. Yet nobody has tried
            to apply it fully on Mesopotamian stuff.
            Parpola's Ishtars and esoteric trees remind one of P. Jensen's monstrous Gilgamesch-Epos in der Weltliteratur, but the other side (philologists building up religion on attested words, rationalistic and naturalistic horse-sense interpretations) is stuck deep in the 19th century, if not deeper.

            Tomas Marik
            tomas.marik@...
          • Victor Hurowitz
            Dear Thomas, Just to clarify things, may I point out that although Parpola s first article is called The Assyrian Tree of Life , he states at the end of the
            Message 5 of 19 , Apr 4, 2006
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              Dear Thomas,
              Just to clarify things, may I point out that although Parpola's first
              article is called "The Assyrian Tree of Life", he states at the end of the
              first paragraph "many scholars today prefer the more neutral term "sacred
              tree" when referring to the Mesopotamian Tree". (JNES 52 p. 161). In the
              rest of his article he refers to the Tree (capital T) or the Assyrian, or
              the Mesopotamian Tree. In his article about Gilgamesh's name he speaks of
              the "sacred tree". In any case, Parpola seems to steer clear of the "Tree of
              Life" which, of course, is a biblical concept designating one of the two
              trees in the Garden of Eden and serving metaphorically in some passages in
              Proverbs, and should not be transferred outside the Bible and its
              derivatives without specific warrant to do so.
              I doubt that Parpola would claim that someone who ate from the
              (Mesopotamian/Assyrian [Sacred]) Tree would live forever or be rejuvenated
              or become young in his or her old age.

              Victor Hurowitz
              Dept. of Bible, Archaeology and ANE Studies
              Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
              Beer-Sheva, Israel

              -----Original Message-----
              From: ANE-2@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ANE-2@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
              Tomas Marik
              Sent: Tuesday, April 04, 2006 2:27 PM
              To: ANE-2@yahoogroups.com
              Subject: Re: [ANE-2] Parpola & the Assyrian Tree

              The tree of life is (among others) a technical term and belongs to the
              structural theory of religion. This theory is based on archetypes, i.e.
              models that help to explain common features in the symbolism of various
              religions. To get an idea of what is meant, you may want to start with
              Mircea Eliade (it's repeated and explained in almost any of his
              publications, on the tree in particular see the relevant chapters in his
              Traité d'histoire des religions).
              One of the most frequent assyriological arguments against a "tree of life"
              in Mesopotamian religion has always been the absence of an expression for it
              in Sumerian and Akkadian. If we bear in mind the theoretical nature of the
              term "tree of life" then it is much the same as saying there was no status
              constructus in Akkadian, since we don't have a genuine term for it.
              Though the structural view of religion can be criticized, it offers a useful
              tool for interpretation. Yet nobody has tried
              to apply it fully on Mesopotamian stuff.
              Parpola's Ishtars and esoteric trees remind one of P. Jensen's monstrous
              Gilgamesch-Epos in der Weltliteratur, but the other side (philologists
              building up religion on attested words, rationalistic and naturalistic
              horse-sense interpretations) is stuck deep in the 19th century, if not
              deeper.

              Tomas Marik
              tomas.marik@...







              Yahoo! Groups Links
            • Tomas Marik
              ... Dear Victor, I don t see any reason, why not borrow from the Bible, which actually has been done since long ago. Tree of Life sounds very good, Sacred
              Message 6 of 19 , Apr 4, 2006
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                Victor Hurowitz wrote:

                >Dear Thomas,
                >Just to clarify things, may I point out that although Parpola's first
                >article is called "The Assyrian Tree of Life", he states at the end of the
                >first paragraph "many scholars today prefer the more neutral term "sacred
                >tree" when referring to the Mesopotamian Tree". (JNES 52 p. 161). In the
                >rest of his article he refers to the Tree (capital T) or the Assyrian, or
                >the Mesopotamian Tree. In his article about Gilgamesh's name he speaks of
                >the "sacred tree". In any case, Parpola seems to steer clear of the "Tree of
                >Life" which, of course, is a biblical concept designating one of the two
                >trees in the Garden of Eden and serving metaphorically in some passages in
                >Proverbs, and should not be transferred outside the Bible and its
                >derivatives without specific warrant to do so.
                >
                Dear Victor,

                I don't see any reason, why not borrow from the Bible, which actually
                has been done since long ago. "Tree of Life" sounds very good, "Sacred
                Tree" a little bit empty. What more, the Eden story is a nice example of
                demythologization, it destroys the common plot by explaining what the
                trees are good for, fresh from the beginning. This fits well into the
                terminology of the study of religions. On the other hand, at least in
                Akkadian and in Ugaritic we have trees that are qd$, quddu$u
                respectively, which is often being translated as "sacred". So I don't
                know, why "sacred tree" should be better.

                >I doubt that Parpola would claim that someone who ate from the
                >(Mesopotamian/Assyrian [Sacred]) Tree would live forever or be rejuvenated
                >or become young in his or her old age.
                >
                >
                I don't think it is impossible. By all means, the antithetical
                composition, their artificial composite nature, interchangebility with
                the king etc. clearly point to a comparable concept as the trees in the
                Garden of Eden. While we can doubt, whether the Assyrian artistic motiv
                was connected with any narrative at all, a connection with fertility,
                life and abundance can safely be proven.

                >Victor Hurowitz
                >Dept. of Bible, Archaeology and ANE Studies
                >Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
                >Beer-Sheva, Israel
                >
                >
                Tomas Marik
                tomas.marik@...
              • victor avigdor hurowitz
                ... The problem is that unless there is explicit evidence showing that the stylized trees from outside of the Bible some how give life, there is no reason to
                Message 7 of 19 , Apr 4, 2006
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                  On Tue, 4 Apr 2006, Tomas Marik wrote:

                  >
                  >
                  > Victor Hurowitz wrote:
                  >
                  > >Dear Thomas,
                  > >Just to clarify things, may I point out that although Parpola's first
                  > >article is called "The Assyrian Tree of Life", he states at the end of the
                  > >first paragraph "many scholars today prefer the more neutral term "sacred
                  > >tree" when referring to the Mesopotamian Tree". (JNES 52 p. 161). In the
                  > >rest of his article he refers to the Tree (capital T) or the Assyrian, or
                  > >the Mesopotamian Tree. In his article about Gilgamesh's name he speaks of
                  > >the "sacred tree". In any case, Parpola seems to steer clear of the "Tree of
                  > >Life" which, of course, is a biblical concept designating one of the two
                  > >trees in the Garden of Eden and serving metaphorically in some passages in
                  > >Proverbs, and should not be transferred outside the Bible and its
                  > >derivatives without specific warrant to do so.
                  > >
                  > Dear Victor,
                  >
                  > I don't see any reason, why not borrow from the Bible, which actually
                  > has been done since long ago. "Tree of Life" sounds very good, "Sacred
                  > Tree" a little bit empty. What more, the Eden story is a nice example of
                  > demythologization, it destroys the common plot by explaining what the
                  > trees are good for, fresh from the beginning.
                  The problem is that unless there is explicit evidence showing that the
                  stylized trees from outside of the Bible some how give life, there is no
                  reason to impose this function on them. That having been said, I can think
                  of two basic types of stylized trees: 1) trees which are being tended by
                  genies or divine creatures either with or with out the well known bucket
                  and cone; 2) trees which seem to be being eaten by animals. The later type
                  of representation would be the type of evidence I look for so that I can
                  call the trees "tree of life", although in any case I would proceed
                  cautiously.


                  This fits well into the
                  > terminology of the study of religions. On the other hand, at least in
                  > Akkadian and in Ugaritic we have trees that are qd$, quddu$u
                  > respectively, which is often being translated as "sacred". So I don't
                  > know, why "sacred tree" should be better.
                  I think you made a mistake here and mean to say that "at least in Akkadian
                  and Ugaritic we DON'T have trees that are qd$, quddu$u". That being the
                  case, then the term "sacred tree" is used only because they seem to be
                  objects of rituals or associated with recognizably divine creatures.

                  > >
                  >I doubt that Parpola would claim that someone who ate from the
                  > >(Mesopotamian/Assyrian [Sacred]) Tree would live forever or be rejuvenated
                  > >or become young in his or her old age.
                  > >
                  > >
                  > I don't think it is impossible. By all means, the antithetical
                  > composition, their artificial composite nature, interchangebility with
                  > the king etc. clearly point to a comparable concept as the trees in the
                  > Garden of Eden. While we can doubt, whether the Assyrian artistic motiv
                  > was connected with any narrative at all, a connection with fertility,
                  > life and abundance can safely be proven.
                  Yes, I agree with that. And with all this, I still prefer to err on the
                  side of caution and refrain from "biblifying" fro the time being.
                  >
                  > >Victor Hurowitz
                  > >Dept. of Bible, Archaeology and ANE Studies
                  > >Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
                  > >Beer-Sheva, Israel
                  > >
                  > >
                  > Tomas Marik
                  > tomas.marik@...
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > Yahoo! Groups Links
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                • Tomas Marik
                  ... Appart from its name, how does the Tree of Life in Genesis some how give life ? ... Obviously not a pine cone, since they seem to have always a regular
                  Message 8 of 19 , Apr 5, 2006
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                    >
                    >
                    > Victor Hurowitz wrote:
                    >
                    >

                    >>...
                    >>
                    >>Dear Victor,
                    >>
                    >>I don't see any reason, why not borrow from the Bible, which actually
                    >>has been done since long ago. "Tree of Life" sounds very good, "Sacred
                    >>Tree" a little bit empty. What more, the Eden story is a nice example of
                    >>demythologization, it destroys the common plot by explaining what the
                    >>trees are good for, fresh from the beginning.
                    >>
                    >>
                    >The problem is that unless there is explicit evidence showing that the
                    >stylized trees from outside of the Bible some how give life, there is no
                    >reason to impose this function on them.
                    >
                    >

                    Appart from its name, how does the "Tree of Life" in Genesis "some how give
                    life"?

                    >That having been said, I can think
                    >of two basic types of stylized trees: 1) trees which are being tended by
                    >genies or divine creatures either with or with out the well known bucket
                    >and cone;
                    >
                    >

                    Obviously not a pine cone, since they seem to have always a regular grid on the
                    reliefs. Rather the flower clusters of a male date palm, which has been pointed
                    out already by Felix von Luschan in 1912 (Entstehung der Ionischen Säule,
                    Leipzig == Der Alte Orient 4, esp. p. 27) and reinvented by B. Neveling Porter
                    in her JNES article (no. 52 from 1993). So the reliefs would show a way of
                    pollinating date palms that is still being used. BTW, the Akkadian verb for
                    this is raka:bu.

                    >2) trees which seem to be being eaten by animals. The later type
                    >of representation would be the type of evidence I look for so that I can
                    >call the trees "tree of life", although in any case I would proceed
                    >cautiously.
                    >
                    >

                    I would be even more cautious. As I said, "tree of life", if used as a
                    technical term does not need to be connected with life at all. I've opened
                    Eliade's Traité, the reprinted 1949 edition, the relevant chapter is "La
                    végétation. Symboles et rites de renouvellement" on pp. 229-309. There he has
                    an "Essai de classification" with seven groups: arbre microcosme, arbre image
                    du Cosmos, arbre-théophanie cosmique, arbre symbole de la vie, arbre centre du
                    monde, liens mystique entres arbres et hommes, arbre symbole de resurrection.
                    There are no clear borders between the various types.

                    >>This fits well into the
                    >>terminology of the study of religions. On the other hand, at least in
                    >>Akkadian and in Ugaritic we have trees that are qd$, quddu$u
                    >>respectively, which is often being translated as "sacred". So I don't
                    >>know, why "sacred tree" should be better.
                    >>
                    >>
                    >I think you made a mistake here and mean to say that "at least in Akkadian
                    >and Ugaritic we DON'T have trees that are qd$, quddu$u".
                    >
                    And what about `s. qd$ in the incantation RS 92.2014 and in Akkadian at
                    least $e:p lemutti, 81-82.

                    >That being the
                    >case, then the term "sacred tree" is used only because they seem to be
                    >objects of rituals or associated with recognizably divine creatures.
                    >
                    >

                    And what about discussing the "tree of death" instead?

                    Tomas Marik
                    tomas.marik@...




                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • Victor Hurowitz
                    Appart from its name, how does the Tree of Life in Genesis some how give life ? Well according to Genesis 2:22 YHWH God says to whoever was listening
                    Message 9 of 19 , Apr 5, 2006
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                      Appart from its name, how does the "Tree of Life" in Genesis "some how give
                      life"?
                      Well according to Genesis 2:22 YHWH God says to whoever was listening
                      "behold the Man has become like one of us, knowing good and evil, and now
                      let him not put out his hand and take as well from the Tree of Life and
                      eat and thereby live forever." I don't think things can be more
                      explicit. One eats from the Tree of Life and gains immortality, or at least
                      longevity long enough to eat again and again.

                      I'll get back to your other questions later, but I must go teach now.
                      Victor Hurowitz
                      Dept. of Bible, BGU, Beer-Sheva, Israel

                      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]







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                    • Victor Hurowitz
                      ... I would be even more cautious. As I said, tree of life , if used as a technical term does not need to be connected with life at all. I ve opened Eliade s
                      Message 10 of 19 , Apr 5, 2006
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                        >2) trees which seem to be being eaten by animals. The later type
                        >of representation would be the type of evidence I look for so that I can
                        >call the trees "tree of life", although in any case I would proceed
                        >cautiously.
                        >
                        >

                        I would be even more cautious. As I said, "tree of life", if used as a
                        technical term does not need to be connected with life at all. I've opened
                        Eliade's Traité, the reprinted 1949 edition, the relevant chapter is "La
                        végétation. Symboles et rites de renouvellement" on pp. 229-309. There he
                        has
                        an "Essai de classification" with seven groups: arbre microcosme, arbre
                        image
                        du Cosmos, arbre-théophanie cosmique, arbre symbole de la vie, arbre centre
                        du
                        monde, liens mystique entres arbres et hommes, arbre symbole de
                        resurrection.
                        There are no clear borders between the various types.

                        I can see that all or most of these characteristics might be wrapped up in a
                        single tree. A cosmic tree, a Weltbaum, which is a microcosm of the
                        universe, divine and divinely omnipresent stands at the center of the
                        universe, binding together heaven, earth, the underworld and the
                        subterranean sea, and offering life, rejuvenation and resurrection to all
                        who "partake" of its fruit or its shade. Nice! Wow! Sounds great, but how
                        can we know?


                        >>This fits well into the
                        >>terminology of the study of religions. On the other hand, at least in
                        >>Akkadian and in Ugaritic we have trees that are qd$, quddu$u
                        >>respectively, which is often being translated as "sacred". So I don't
                        >>know, why "sacred tree" should be better.
                        >>
                        >>
                        >I think you made a mistake here and mean to say that "at least in Akkadian
                        >and Ugaritic we DON'T have trees that are qd$, quddu$u".
                        >
                        And what about `s. qd$ in the incantation RS 92.2014 and in Akkadian at
                        least $e:p lemutti, 81-82.

                        I'm afraid I don't have these texts in front of me, but I'd like to see the
                        terms in context.

                        >That being the
                        >case, then the term "sacred tree" is used only because they seem to be
                        >objects of rituals or associated with recognizably divine creatures.
                        >
                        >

                        And what about discussing the "tree of death" instead?
                        Excuse my ignorance, but is there such a creature?

                        Victor Hurowitz
                        Dept. of Bible, Archaeology, and Ancient Near Eastern Studies
                        Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
                        Beer-Sheva, Israel

                        Tomas Marik
                        tomas.marik@...




                        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]







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                      • walter mattfeld
                        Dear Victor, Playing the role of the Devil s advocate here, I can see why one _might_ want to argue that a tree of death exists. Yahweh told Adam and Eve
                        Message 11 of 19 , Apr 5, 2006
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                          Dear Victor,

                          Playing the role of "the Devil's advocate" here, I can see why one _might_ want to argue that a "tree of death" exists. Yahweh told Adam and Eve not to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, for "in the day that you eat of it you shall die" (Ge 2:17). So, I guess some _could_ extrapolate this tree into the "tree of death."

                          Regards, Walter
                          Walter Reinhold Warttig Mattfeld y de la Torre, M.A. Ed.
                          mattfeld12@...
                          www.bibleorigins.net




                          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                        • victor avigdor hurowitz
                          quite frankly, I would mention the Adapa legend in which Adapa is told not to eat or drink water of death or food of death, and then he is offerred water of
                          Message 12 of 19 , Apr 5, 2006
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                            quite frankly, I would mention the Adapa legend in which Adapa is told not
                            to eat or drink water of death or food of death, and then he is offerred
                            water of life and food of life and he turns it down and thereby loses his
                            chance for eternal life.
                            Victor Hurowitz
                            BGU Israel



                            On Wed, 5 Apr 2006, walter mattfeld wrote:

                            > Dear Victor,
                            >
                            > Playing the role of "the Devil's advocate" here, I can see why one _might_ want to argue that a "tree of death" exists. Yahweh told Adam and Eve not to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, for "in the day that you eat of it you shall die" (Ge 2:17). So, I guess some _could_ extrapolate this tree into the "tree of death."
                            >
                            > Regards, Walter
                            > Walter Reinhold Warttig Mattfeld y de la Torre, M.A. Ed.
                            > mattfeld12@...
                            > www.bibleorigins.net
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > Yahoo! Groups Links
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                          • walter mattfeld
                            Dear Victor, But where is there any mention of a _tree_ in the Adapa myth ? Adapa is offered bread of life by Anu, but Enki lead Adapa into believing he
                            Message 13 of 19 , Apr 5, 2006
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                              Dear Victor,

                              But "where" is there any mention of a _tree_ in the Adapa myth ? Adapa is offered "bread of life" by Anu, but Enki lead Adapa into believing he would be offered the "bread of death".

                              Your mention of the Adapa Legend is relevent. As many on this list are aware the Myth of Adapa and the South Wind is understood to be a Mesopotamian explanation of how, _once upon a time_, man had a chance to obtain immortality by eating the "bread of life" and drinking the "water of life" offered by Anu. Some scholars have suggested the notion that man can obtain immortality _via eating something_, resonates "somewhat" with the Eden scenario, a fruit if eaten bestowing immortality. I am in agreement with these scholars that Genesis is recasting the Mesopotamian myths about how man came to be made and why his demise was sought in a universal flood. This recasting being understood as a "challenge" or "_disavowal_" of the Mesopotamian concepts.

                              If, as some have suggested, Adapa and the South Wind myth has been recast in Genesis, Adapa being understood to be a prototype of Adam, where is the serpent, the two trees, and the woman ? My research suggests several different Mesopotamian myths lie behind the Eden story. I understand Adam is a recast of Adapa, Enkidu, Enki, and Utnapishtim. Eve is a recast of Nin-ti ("Lady of the rib"), Ninhursag, Utnapishtim's wife, and Shamhat. The Edenic serpent is a recast of Dumuzi (Tammuz), Ningishzida, and Enki. The Garden of Eden is a recast of Dilmun, Eridu, Nippur, Humbaba's Cedar mountain, and the Eridu Genesis Myth (naked man wandering a wilderness steppe with animals for companions instead of gods and knowing no fear from these beasts).

                              For me, Genesis is _denying_ the Mesopotamian myths' explanation of how and why man came to made, what his purpose on earth is, and why his demise was sought in a flood. This "_denial_" -is for me- accomplished by taking the Mesopotamian motifs from a varety of myths and giving them a number of "new twists" by changing the names of the characters, the locations, and sequences of events. If interested in this Secular Humanist approach cf. the following urls:

                              The Tree of Knowledge (Its Mesopotamian Prototypes)
                              http://www.bibleorigins.net/EdensTreeofKnowledgeLife.html

                              Why a Naked Adam in Eden ? (Eden is Eridu & Nippur & Edin)
                              http://www.bibleorigins.net/EdenDatePalmGardenIraqHrouda.html

                              Genesis' Genesis (The Hebrews' Recasting of Mesopotamian Creation Myths on Man)
                              http://www.bibleorigins.net/genesisgenesis.html

                              The Mesopotamian Prototypes behind Eden's Serpent
                              http://www.bibleorigins.net/ningishzida.html

                              The Sabbath's Origins (The sebittu day, 7th day, when ALL the Mesopotamian gods rested)
                              http://www.bibleorigins.net/sabbathorigins.html

                              Regards, Walter
                              Walter Reinhold arttig Mattfeld y de la Torre, M.A. Ed.
                              mattfeld12@...
                              www.bibleorigins.net




                              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                            • victor@bgumail.bgu.ac.il
                              There is no tree in Adapa. That is clear. I didn t say there was. I was just pointing out what might be a parallel motif, and especially because Thomas asked
                              Message 14 of 19 , Apr 5, 2006
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                                There is no tree in Adapa. That is clear. I didn't say there was. I was just pointing out what might be a parallel motif, and especially because Thomas asked about a Tree of Death.
                                Victor Hurowitz
                                Dept. of Bible Archaeology and Ancient Near Eastern Studies
                                Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
                                Beer-Sheva, Israel
                                >
                                > From: walter mattfeld <mattfeld12@...>
                                > Date: 2006/04/05 ד PM 10:08:10 GMT+05:30
                                > To: ANE-2@yahoogroups.com
                                > Subject: Re: [ANE-2] Parpola & the Assyrian Tree
                                >
                                > Dear Victor,
                                >
                                > But "where" is there any mention of a _tree_ in the Adapa myth ? Adapa is offered "bread of life" by Anu, but Enki lead Adapa into believing he would be offered the "bread of death".
                                >
                                > Your mention of the Adapa Legend is relevent. As many on this list are aware the Myth of Adapa and the South Wind is understood to be a Mesopotamian explanation of how, _once upon a time_, man had a chance to obtain immortality by eating the "bread of life" and drinking the "water of life" offered by Anu. Some scholars have suggested the notion that man can obtain immortality _via eating something_, resonates "somewhat" with the Eden scenario, a fruit if eaten bestowing immortality. I am in agreement with these scholars that Genesis is recasting the Mesopotamian myths about how man came to be made and why his demise was sought in a universal flood. This recasting being understood as a "challenge" or "_disavowal_" of the Mesopotamian concepts.
                                >
                                > If, as some have suggested, Adapa and the South Wind myth has been recast in Genesis, Adapa being understood to be a prototype of Adam, where is the serpent, the two trees, and the woman ? My research suggests several different Mesopotamian myths lie behind the Eden story. I understand Adam is a recast of Adapa, Enkidu, Enki, and Utnapishtim. Eve is a recast of Nin-ti ("Lady of the rib"), Ninhursag, Utnapishtim's wife, and Shamhat. The Edenic serpent is a recast of Dumuzi (Tammuz), Ningishzida, and Enki. The Garden of Eden is a recast of Dilmun, Eridu, Nippur, Humbaba's Cedar mountain, and the Eridu Genesis Myth (naked man wandering a wilderness steppe with animals for companions instead of gods and knowing no fear from these beasts).
                                >
                                > For me, Genesis is _denying_ the Mesopotamian myths' explanation of how and why man came to made, what his purpose on earth is, and why his demise was sought in a flood. This "_denial_" -is for me- accomplished by taking the Mesopotamian motifs from a varety of myths and giving them a number of "new twists" by changing the names of the characters, the locations, and sequences of events. If interested in this Secular Humanist approach cf. the following urls:
                                >
                                > The Tree of Knowledge (Its Mesopotamian Prototypes)
                                > http://www.bibleorigins.net/EdensTreeofKnowledgeLife.html
                                >
                                > Why a Naked Adam in Eden ? (Eden is Eridu & Nippur & Edin)
                                > http://www.bibleorigins.net/EdenDatePalmGardenIraqHrouda.html
                                >
                                > Genesis' Genesis (The Hebrews' Recasting of Mesopotamian Creation Myths on Man)
                                > http://www.bibleorigins.net/genesisgenesis.html
                                >
                                > The Mesopotamian Prototypes behind Eden's Serpent
                                > http://www.bibleorigins.net/ningishzida.html
                                >
                                > The Sabbath's Origins (The sebittu day, 7th day, when ALL the Mesopotamian gods rested)
                                > http://www.bibleorigins.net/sabbathorigins.html
                                >
                                > Regards, Walter
                                > Walter Reinhold arttig Mattfeld y de la Torre, M.A. Ed.
                                > mattfeld12@...
                                > www.bibleorigins.net
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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