Adam & Eve
Adam's Multiple Wives
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When all of the animals came to Adam to be named, they
came in pairs. Seeing that they all had mates, Adam decided
that it was only proper that he should have a mate as well.
Adam's First Wife (Lilith)
To help soothe his loneliness, God created Lilith (Adam's
first wife). Unfortunately, God made her out of the same
clay he had used to create Adam (that is, out of Adamah).
Lilith stayed with Adam only a short time, insisting
on full equality with him. She was, I guess, the world's
Why should she be subservient to him, she wondered,
when she had been created in exactly the same way as he
As just one example, one day she refused to lie beneath
him when they had sex, preferring instead to be on top
once in a while. Adam was furious at her presumption of
Fed up with his ego, Lilith uttered God's Ineffable
Name and vanished into thin air (see the Yahweh parchment for details
about the Ineffable Name).
Mother of Demons
She chose to become the mother of demons rather than
to spend another night with the chauvinistic Adam.
Cause of Crib Deaths
Later Jewish folktales make Lilith responsible for crib
deaths among infants. The stories tell how, if the parents
ever let down their guard, Lilith will sneak into a child's
bedroom by night and smother the poor baby.
Adam's Second Wife
On his second attempt to create a helpmate for Adam,
God forgot to put Adam to sleep. And since Adam knew how
wife number 2 (we're not told her name) had been made,
he wasn't able to look her in the eye.
Adam's Weak Stomach
I guess Adam had a queasy stomach, and couldn't stand
the sight of blood ... especially from the woman with whom
he was supposed to be in love.
Trouble Finding Suitable Mate
It didn't look like it was going to be easy to find
a suitable woman for Adam.
Adam's Final Wife (Eve)
Finally God decided to take a different approach. Some
sources say Eve was Adam's eighth wife.
Why a Rib
God didn't want to make Eve out of Adamah (earthen clay).
And He didn't want Adam to get all queasy again. So God
caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam and He took one of
Adam's ribs, from which He fashioned Eve (which is the
familiar story from Genesis).
A Hasty Wedding
When Adam awoke, he thought Eve was the most beautiful
woman he'd ever seen. And God realized he had finally
succeeded in giving Adam a woman he could live with.
So God quickly performed the wedding ceremony, personally
pronouncing them husband and wife. I imagine there must
have been a very big, god-like sigh of relief. Phew!
Now that both male and female had been created, many
Jewish rabbis felt compelled to say something about the
differences between the sexes.
The Jews explained many of the differences based on
the fact that Adam was formed from soft clay and Eve from
flesh and bone. I'm not kidding ... the following are
actually things they used to believe.
- Women need perfumes while men don't — dust and
clay remain the same no matter how long they're stored,
but flesh and bones require salt to keep them fresh.
- A woman's voice is shrill, but not the man's [that
must have been before the pop singer, Prince, had been
created] — when soft food (representing the soft
dust) is placed in a pot, it doesn't make much noise,
but bones (representing the rib) tend to crackle when
put in a boiling pot.
- A man is easily satisfied, but not a woman —
a few drops of water softens a clod of dirt, but a rib
stays firm no matter how long it soaks in water. Hey,
wait a minute, is that a slur against us men, calling
us clods of dirt?
- The man must ask for a woman's hand in marriage, not
the other way around (not a very modern way of thinking)
— that's because the man is constantly looking
to make good his loss of a rib. Until he finds his wife
(his missing "rib"), he's not completely whole.
Ish and Ishah
After Eve had been created, Adam changed his name to
Ish, and he called his wife Ishah. This was to honor God.
The I (Yod) and the H
(He) from God's Ineffable Name acted as a shield against
all harm as long as Ish and Ishah walked in the ways of
I'll continue to call them Adam and Eve, however, since
those names are far better known than Ish and Ishah.
Meat and Vegetables
Although Adam and Eve were forbidden to slaughter any
animals and use them as food, they weren't vegetarians.
You see, God had earlier asked the angels to bring them
meat, though it's not clear just where or how the angels
acquired the meat in the first place.
It wasn't until Noah's time that man was allowed to
slaughter animals for his own food.
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