Years ago I went on a journey of deep self discovery

I trekked into the jungle to find a medicine man that held a key to the secrets of the universe. I drank a cup of his medicine and let my visions take me on a journey into my soul.

All my ancestors lined in a circle around me, I saw in this moment every life that had contributed to bring me to this place. Both their blessings and sins all attached to me with strings of light and heavy chains. And I saw with great clarity the attachments that created and affected who I was in this Lifetime. 

As I looked around in amazement I saw there was an owl of great wisdom that had been a companion to my family since time immemorial. As I gazed upon the owl with great love and affection I saw, to my dismay, that it had been chained and was no longer free. Dark chains linked my mind to its feet and I saw that over time my family had become boastful of its connection to the owl spirit. Praising ourselves for the wisdom and intelligence we carried, my family had lost sight that owl was a gift and not to be taken for granted. Somewhere in my history my ancestors had become fearful of losing its connection and power and so had chained the owl to our lineage. Our intellect was now chained with Pride and Deception. 
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Horrified at what I saw I apologized with sincerity to the owl and broke the chains with all my might. The moment they broke the owl flew away and I felt with great intensity a sadness of losing something so dear. With heaviness in my heart I sat with my sadness and began forgiving every member of my family for the sins they did not recognize.

It was then that I looked up and saw the owl had returned. It sat on a branch at a distance and began to speak to me without words.

It thanked me for its freedom and then shared with me it's deep love for my family. The owl forgave us of our trespasses against it and told me that, of its own freewill it had choose to return and work with me.

My heart burst with gratitude and honor. I thanked it for its generosity and promised that through me it shall always remain free.

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The owl led me to a tree that was so large I could not fathom
The sun, bright orange and red encircled the tree and I recognized a feeling I had not experienced since childhood.


"This is the Tree of Mother Africa and she would like to gift you with healing."

In that moment the branches of the tree plucked me up and placed me among her branches. She greeted me with a love so intense I began to cry.

She spoke softly into my heart.
"Though you are not born a child of Africa you were raised among my children. Your affection and love for my land has blessed my people and I consider you as my own. My adopted daughter." Her branches hugged me and I felt such love that I can not describe. 

"You have suffered greatly by men who have not honored your worth and so I wish to take the poison from your body and soul."

One by one branches came and pulled poison from my heart. Each man who had hurt me was pulled out like a seed which she cocooned and placed among her branches.

"Let me take these from you and I will nurture and transform them. They will be my adopted children as you are and I will care for them as you have cared for me."

In the arms of mother Africa I cried and thanked her for her gift of love.

Then I asked her, "Mother, what can I do for you?" She smiled and began telling me of her children.

"They suffer greatly from beliefs that do not belong to them. They carry the burdens of men that came to steal their worth. Will you help me chase away the sins of men that do not honor my children?"

In an instant wings spread from my back and I leaped into the air and flew into the sky. I circled the earth many times calling the birds of every tribe to come help my cause.

So many birds came forth that the sky turned dark and cast a shadow over the continent of Africa. Then with a warriors scream we soared down over the land chasing the demons from the shadows of Africa's heart.

- copyright Lori Fast

 
 
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artist unknown but damn... so beautiful. found via pinterest
The legend of Lilith goes that she was the first women created by God, even before Eve. Lilith was made of the same essence as Adam and so was considered his equal. But why don't we ever hear of this first lady? 

She seems to have disappeared from history and is given little reference but for a few mentions in the bible and in ancient texts or in astrology. But, she is slowly beginning to re-appear and I'd say it's about time. First, let's remember that stories are just that, fictional truth wrapped in metaphor so we can find lessons.

It's quite evident the patriarchal systems are crumbling as Women all over the world are beginning to stand up and make themselves relevant again. But don't get this confused with Feminism, which is an exaggerated swing towards a justice that seems to be more concerned with revenge than actual healing and balancing the masculine and feminine. I'm not here to condemn or blame men. To heal we must look at the root of where the imbalances are so we can adjust them, so I'd rather contemplate why and how this came about. 

Did it begin with Adam? 

The Story goes that, somehow, Adam got the idea that he was either greater than his female counterpart or he believed he was above her. It's uncertain why and nearly impossible to give a good explanation for Adams way of thinking, especially if he was made in Gods image, but, the story goes that he wanted Lilith "lay beneath him". This can mean a whole lot of things and can be perceived many different ways, but the response Lilith gave to Adam suggests she'd have none of that. Proclaiming her equality to him she denies him his right "over her" and actually leaves Eden. 

Whether Adam actually thought he was better than Lilith or simply wanted to play a fun game and asked Lilith to take the bottom this time round, Lilith was not a chick who took shit. Instead of playing Adam's game, she reminded him she was his equal and then took off, leaving the safety of the garden and instead choose to walk among the shadows. 
Pictureartist unknown - found on pinterest
This part of Lilith's Story fascinates me. 

She chooses to meander through the wilderness and finds that there is more to life than simply what exists in the Garden of Eden. Most references to Lilith thereafter condemn her, speaking instead of her "betrayal" and calling her a monster. It is suggested that while she walked the shadow lands she became acquainted with demons and monsters and in many references to Lilith they say she mothered their children. It is this part of her story that is remembered and she is thereafter deemed a demon herself.

Does she sleep with demons out of Love? Revenge? Or was she perhaps raped and taken prisoner by these monsters? Some part of me wants to believe that she knew what she was doing and perhaps, also being made in the image of God, could find within herself the capacity see the demons and monsters for what they were, just another aspect of Creation. What if she had the capacity within her to love even that which is ugly? But then again, why wouldn't she do that for Adam? 

The story continues that Adam was devastated and upset. He quarrels with God that she should return. So God sends a team of angels to go fetch Lilith from the "darkness" so to speak. The angels find her and ask her to return but again she refuses and chooses her freedom over and against returning to be beneath Adam. She is the first women who claimed her liberation and choose a different path than what was given. She knew it was her God given right. 

So what happens next? Well, we don't know much about Lilith after this, except for more stories that condemn her and call her a dark queen that haunts our dreams and steals your babies in the night. She becomes the things we are fearful of in the dark and likely what men are frighten of when they see that glimmer in women's eyes. How could someone choose darkness over light? 

But I don't know if it's fair to condemn Lilith's choice. "Damned if you do, damned if you don't." Would it have been self betrayal to accept Adam's dominion over her? If she recognized her equality to man, then why didn't man also see his equality to women? If both were made in God's image than how did this perspective get so skewed throughout history?  

PictureArtOdyssey by Gail Potocki
Eve, on the the other hand, was created out of Adam. 

The story goes that God took a piece of Adam's rib and essentially duplicated him to create a "double". The first clone so to speak. Perhaps Eve was made to be more cooperative to Adam. But if she came from his DNA, did she carry the same corrupt belief that he was to be above her?  Is this how history turned women to be submissive to men?

But even Eve was rebellious and wild in her nature. She did not listen to God or Adam and once again Women choose her own path, which ultimately forced Adam to come along for the ride.  

Who came to visit Eve and offer the temptation to avert her from their destiny in the Garden of Eden? It was a serpent... We condemn the serpent as much as we condemn Lilith, but that serpent simply whisper the truth.

"And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: for God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as God, knowing good and evil." — Genesis 3:4–5[2]

In my fantasy fill mind, I wonder sometimes if the serpent was actually Lilith. Imagine she returns to Eden only to find another women has replaced her. She's still human so she probably experienced some human emotions. Maybe she saw Eve and became jealous or maybe she saw that Adam had created a women who would lay beneath him and this upset her for she knew the truth of their equality. What if Lilith offered Eve the forbidden fruit, in order to set Eve free? Or perhaps Lilith was in fact conniving and jealous of Eve and wanted her to suffer and experience what she had. What's to say she hadn't been corrupted by the dark and knew how to destroy her ex's little fairy tale?  

We will never truly know, but it's fascinating to consider. **see notes below**

So what does this story teach us? That women betray god? They stray from the path? Or is it that they prefer to live in truth and hold a deep knowing that they too are made in the image of God and therefore know the truth of their equality. The history of Women have endured millennia of men subjecting their superiority over them. A fiction in itself and why women have endured it for so long, boggles my mind. But probably it's because we actually truly love men and will endure anything to roll out this existence with them.  

"Forgive them father, for they know not what they do" is what I know in my heart. So instead I'd like to offer an alternative perspective and let you decide for yourself. 

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History is just that... his story. 
But now it is time for another story. 

Ladies you are equal. To understand this at your core does not mean condemning men for how they may have wronged women in the past. Women have done as much wrong as they. Forgive them and forgive yourself. For in our forgiveness we empower ourselves and can change the story. 

The pendulum swings from one side to the other, until it finds balance and sits somewhere between both. This is harmony and universal law. Time will always bring the truth and the archetype of Lilith is merely the act of what happens when this equality isn't honored or recognized. We may have been born like Eve and adopted the belief of women being subservient to men, but we ate the forbidden fruit and that was our gift to ourselves. Now that we can see the truth, what are we going to do about it?  We are made in gods image and so have the capacity within us to choose what we want to create. 

Is this rebellious? I guess, but it's also empowering to stop telling a story that doesn't belong to us or serve our highest good. Yes, there is darkness, but like Lilith, she took a stance and found a way to survive even with the demons and monsters. Love is an endless well, and when we drink from this cup we may just find a way to love even in the darkness. 

-by Lori Fast

**NOTES**
Now, I suspect Lilith was already aware of the serpents message. She knew she was made in God's image and she choose to walk into the shadow lands which is apparently where evil dwells. Lilith had already made "friends" with the demons and monsters. Eve on the other hand was quite naive, but still she choose to see for herself. She ate the forbidden fruit and though it may sound awful, the truth was revealed. That light is not alone. There is more to existence than what God let on. Both darkness and light exist and though perhaps God was trying to protect us from the darkness, why did god create a tree in the garden of Eden that would offer such insight? Why tempt that which you don't want revealed? Even the serpent was a creation of God.