Lilith, Adam's FIRST wife, was a handful. Yes, indeed. She was created, as was Adam, from the dust of the earth, according to legend. She was not created at the same time, however, and that was the basis of the brew-haha between them from her first breath.
Adam had already been created and had been given total domain over all the living things God had created before him; he got to name them and he even found himself jealous of their coupling and affection for each other (this was Eden, after all). He tried mating with the females of various animals but felt no deep connection or bond. So he did what any red blooded male would do when he's not satisfied; he whined to God about feeling rejected and lonely. So, God, wanting everything to go as smoothly as possible, took of the same dust of the earth and made Lilith. What a looker! She was curvy AND capable. Oh, and she liked sex. Adam was in paradise, literally. And she fit him perfectly and was, he thought, just as he fantasized his perfect mate would be, until she wasn't.
Seems Lilith was also very smart. She KNEW God had already told Adam he was the boss over all the living things. And Adam took that to mean he was boss over her, too. He even ordered her to lay beneath him for sex! She wasn't having it. She was equal to Adam in almost every way; she was equal to Adam in sex appeal and drive. And before long she decided the only area they were not equal was intelligence because he wasn't getting it....she was NOT his slave. She rebelled. Adam whined. She ignored him. Adam whined even louder. She stopped giving him her cookie. Adam stomped his foot and cried out to God.
God ordered Lilith back into Adam's arms. Lilith took off. God told her that until she returned to Adam AND submitted to his authority, for every day she refused, one of her children would die. Her motherly instinct did not over ride her hatred of being told what to do, period. If God had made her to be a belt, she was determined not to buckle under him! The carnage did not move her to submission. The accounts vary as to where she went but one account has her vacationing near the Red Sea....an area known for the worst of the worst demons, and she got busy. Busy having lilim, that is. Seems for every child of Adam's that was killed, she popped out a lilim. She went on to produce 100 of the little suckers. So God struck a deal with her; He put her in charge of newborn children. And she countered with an agreement that unless they were protected by an amulet bearing the three names of God, she would take their lives.
Eventually God took a rib from Adam as he slept and created a docile and submissive mate for him and they lived happily ever after, until she shared an apple with him and Adam whined about her being too cute to resist and they were kicked out of Eden. Life became hard but from the number of children they reportedly added to the planet, doesn't sound like Adam had any trouble getting it up for Eve.
Lilith went on to become the NIGHT TERROR according to Hebrew mythology.
Okay, so how do I propose to link this with today's busy woman? So many ways to go here. I could tap into the idea that in any relationship based on respect and equality, there still has to be a measure of submission going on. Do women want a man totally submissive to them. I didn't think so. So that means the other person in this relationship has to acquiesce some of the control. How is this done in harmony? Someone just accepts the reality that they can be right or they can be happy. They understand this is in no way taking away from their ability to take control, they just accept that the more important issue for their continued success as partners is the harmony that only happiness can bring. What actually happens in long term relationships, any way is a shifting of roles from time to time. It can occur out of necessity or through a trial period of time. People together for decades share that over time they just fell into a natural role that worked for the relationship. That's one way to learn from Lilith.
The other interpretation is one of stubbornness, or ego. Lilith was right to be upset over the degrading set up she was given without benefit of negotiation. Ordered to be at his beck and call. Ordered to be on the bottom during sex. She was as perfect a creation as Adam. She was created in God's image, as was Adam. So why all the second class citizen stuff? To God's credit, He created a mate with spunk and wit and determination. Adam needed a woman like that because, apparently he was a whiner. God wanted what any parent wants when disharmony breaks out between offspring. He wanted peace and quiet. He wasn't concerned with how this would affect the one he was telling to shut up and stop causing trouble. Had God used more mediation between the two, He, no doubt, could have avoided the mess Lilith created. But he didn't and with every, 'Lilith, shut up and do as Adam says!' her anger grew and grew to the point she was cutting off her own nose to spite her face. Her reasoning was reduced to a crumb and she wasn't giving in regardless the consequences. But there are always consequences to our actions.
Lilith cost innocent children their lives. She created turmoil and unrest that continues today because she went totally off the rails. Did she initially have grounds for her rebellion. Yes. However, any time our actions cause injury to someone else, we have a bigger debt to pay.
I guess the lesson I take from Lilith is this; make sure you are operating from an earnest conviction and not just to get your own way. Intention is everything. If your intention is just to force someone's hand to bend to you, you might have a bigger debt to pay before it's all said and done.
Bullying is a trendy word right now and it's used when it has no place in a situation. If you tell someone the color red is not working for them, this is not an example of bullying, but in so many situations this is how absurd the argument is laid out. We've reached a place where if someone disagrees with us we feel obligated to call them a bully. Bullying is serious and it causes long term damage, both physically and emotionally.
Lilith bordered on being a bully, in my interpretation of the legend. She not only refused to submit, she wasn't phased by the loss of life her rebellion caused. She wasn't moved to stop until she got her very own title of authority; Night Terror Over the Newborn. Her 'if I was a belt I wouldn't buckle' attitude ended badly for her and the consequences of her insubordination were life altering for her own children.
How many times do we catch ourselves playing the same game? We see it play out in toddlers going through their 'terrible twos' and in teens driven by hormonal urges to break free of parental authority. These are dangerous times for both ages because we know now that brains have not developed sufficiently at these ages to be making sound decisions based on hissy fits. But what excuse does the twenty-something, thirty-something, or forty-something have for decisions based on just wanting the upper hand in a relationship? Before deciding to take that grand stand for equality make sure the consequences don't involve a cosmic debt that begs for payment in full plus interest, like...tomorrow!