Legend of Lilith: Athena and the Amazonians
Athena, the Greek Goddess of Wisdom, stared into the eyes of the young woman in front of her. Athena carefully studied this glowing woman before she spoke.
“Who are you?” she said , finally. Her voice was steady, but cautious.
“I am Lilith,” replied the glowing woman. Her eyes radiated a bright shade of silver. “I have traveled from across the great ocean to your home here on Mt. Olympus. I have come here to meet you, wise Athena.”
“And why so?”
Lilith’s silk cloak seeming to hover above the cold marble she stood on. “Word has traveled far that you have been tasked with the creation of women in your land. Is this so?”
Athena glared back. “This is not so. Hephaestus has been placed in charge. I have only been able to offer him my humble advice.” She began to pace in front of Lilith, “Not everything is as simple as it seems, Lilith.”
“And why is that?”
“The Almighty Zeus has already decided on the creation of women in Greece, but…”
Athena’s expression dimmed. Her shoulders faltered, “…but his vision has been to create women as a punishment to men disguised as a gift.” Her face fell.
“But can you not reason with Zeus?”
“I cannot, for it has already been done.” Athena knocked her staff against the marble floor. Suddenly, the marble floor parted between the two women, exposing thick, bubbly-red lava underneath. A figure rose out of the heated lava and it cooled as soon as it was out of the lava. In a matter of seconds, a life-sized rock stood between the two women.
“Pandora, awaken!” Athena proclaimed as she unbuckled a golden rope from her belt and whipped the cooled stone with it. The stone broke in half, proving to only be a covering that exposed a young woman underneath. The woman had jet-black hair, smooth skin, and a curved shape that resembled that of Aphrodite. But this woman was only human, mortal. Her eyes were closed but in her arms she held a jar—it was a very special jar, one that held all the evils of the universe. It would be the perfect gift from the gods of Olympus to forever forsake Greek men for all eternity.
Athena turned away from Pandora, disgusted, yet Lilith did not. She looked at Pandora more closely and smiled softly.
“You are wrong, Athena,” said Lilith, “You have just created a free woman, one who in unbound in her love of the world around us. She just does not know it yet.”
Athena studied the sleeping Pandora thoroughly. After several moments, her expression lightened a little. “My dear Lilith, perhaps you are right…still, the will of man will be her undoing. There is no escaping that.”
“What if there is a way…” said Lilith.
“Do tell, my dear…”
“You have the power to create women—through one way or another—yes? Then why not create a race of women in the image that you intended. These women would live separately from the men of the world. They would thrive in their own environment and be uninhibited by the laws of men.”
Athena’s eyes shone as if struck by lightning! “You are right! I shall…and I will make them as strong and as noble as I see fit. They will be warriors—a race of Amazons, of Amazonian warriors! “
Lilith turned back to the immobile Pandora and her own smile faded. “In time, she, too, will be free. This race of warrior-women will eventually teach the mortal women of their freedom, and that they are not only the creations of the revenge-seeking Greek Gods, but have their own free-will, as well.”
At this Athena turned to Lilith. Now she understood why Lilith had journeyed so far and for so long. “Will you be the one to lead these Amazonian warrior-women? Will you instill in them the strength and greatness which they would then pass on to the mortal women of the world?”
“I will,” said Lilith, “I will with all my heart and everything I believe true.”
“Then you shall be their queen, their leader and their teacher. And when the time comes you will pass on your role to the next queen. You will also have this…” Athena took off the golden rope—as thin as a lasso—from her belt and placed it into a simple, brown box that appeared out of thin air. “Take this. Let it be a guide to the mortal women of the world. Let it be a symbol of the Amazonian woman’s strength, freedom, and unyielding willpower in the world of men. In time, you will present it to the women of the world when they are ready.”
Continue to “Gift of the Amazonian”
The Legend of Lilith is a series of short stories, its publication spanning FEM and Ha’Am Newsmagazines., depicting a fictional representation of Lilith, a female demon mentioned in Jewish texts, as the First Wife of Adam, and how she interacts with figures in history and various creation myths of different cultures.
Be sure to check out the rest of the “Legend of Lilith” short stories:
Legend of Lilith, Part 1: The Moonlight Artemis
Legend of Lilith, Part 2: Vision of Golem
Legend of Lilith: Grandmother Spider’s Gift
Graves, Robert. (1955) 1960. The Greek Myths revised edition.
Kerenyi, Karl, 1951. The Gods of the Greeks (Thames and Hudson)