First, Who am I?
I will probably spend my life answering that question, but in simple, straightforward terms, I am sole author of Lilith Rebellion content. I have an MA degree in Social Anthropology and a MSc degree in a health profession. I am currently working toward achieving astrologer certification through NCGR. I am engaged in professional development training in both more traditional, as well as somatic, psychotherapeutic approaches. I am also returning to my love of writing and creating art. Mental health and trauma healing are key interests for me and I have recently become fascinated with archetypal and soul-based approaches to psychotherapy, which I intend to explore further through this website platform.
This website was launched in 2017 on the eve of my 31st birthday, as I entered into the final 10 months of a particularly brutal Saturn Return in Sagittarius, that happened simultaneously with transiting Chiron conjunct my Sun and Mercury.
During the 2.5 years when Saturn asks you to examine the foundations of your life and throws you an identity crisis, it is helpful to return to your roots, to your earliest conscious self (especially when your Saturn return is happening in your 4th house, as it is for me). When you were young – say, around 10 years old or so, and perhaps into your early teens – what did you love to do? What did you find most meaningful? What made you excited about life? What were your earliest ambitions and dreams? What were you doing, and where were you, when you felt most authentically yourself?
Here are a few of my answers to the above questions:
Writing (plays, poetry, fiction, non-fiction); reading and researching; exploring and endlessly discussing new ideas and different cultural perspectives; philosophizing about existential life questions; creating art and designing (e.g. textiles, clothing, interiors); acting, dancing, publicly performing; and always trying to figure out how I could make the world a better place.
One of my favourite astrologers, Dana Gerhardt, tells her clients: “Do your planets or they’ll do you”. In other words, rather than resisting difficult transits, lean into the lessons of the planets and archetypes, and make the energy work for you. For me, creating Lilith Rebellion is a conscious act of leaning in to Saturn’s transit and returning to my roots. This would be clear if you were to read my chart, but at the very least, this website will provide me with a platform for writing about the ideas I am exploring and researching, as well as a platform for sharing my artistic endeavours.
I have tried to make this website accessible for both astrology nerds and novices. I will try to embed links and footnotes throughout my writing so you can follow up on something if you don’t understand what I’m talking about.
For those who understand astrologese: I have an 8th house Pisces Sun and Mercury cazimi, and thus you could say I experience life as a watery Pisces-Scorpio blend (so many feels!). I have a 10th house Gemini Moon exactly conjunct the true Black Moon Lilith, and a hesitant Leo rising, quincunx my Sun and Mercury.
And, Who is Lilith?
Lilith is most commonly known as Adam’s rebellious first wife in Jewish literature, but scholars believe the origins of her myth date may back further. A similar figure can be found in the literature of several other traditions and cultures, such as ancient Mesopotamia (see plaque photo). According to Jewish tradition, Lilith refused to be subjugated to Adam’s dominance and so she defied him and left the Garden of Eden. It is at this point that she traditionally becomes personified as a demon-type character living in exile. Full of revengeful rage, she is depicted as an evil temptress who ate babies and drove men to insanity. In recent times, feminist scholars have rescued this maligned archetype from its demonization and have instead portrayed Lilith as an independent woman in touch with her wild, instinctual power, who will accept nothing less than equality.
History has demonstrated that portraying powerful women as being evil and/or crazy can unfortunately be an effective method for enforcing and pressuring women to toe the line in a patriarchal society; to maintain their reputations as good, polite, pretty, nice, smiling members of society. Lilith represents the raw, instinctual feminine energy in the astrological charts of both men and women (or other gender identification), that struggles against the forces in our lives that try to dis-empower and oppress us.
In astrology, Lilith refers to several astronomical points in our solar system that were named after this rebellious woman, and thus these points are seen to embody her energy in an astrological chart.
Lilith in astrology, can refer to…
- Black Moon Lilith (BML), both mean and true/osculating (h13) calculations (the furthest point in the moon’s orbit from the Earth – ‘the moon’s apogee’)
- Lilith, the asteroid (#1181)
- Waldemath Dark Moon (Lilith – h58), an unsubstantiated ‘second moon’ hypothetically circling the earth, which has been sighted periodically by astronomers since 1618 without being confirmed
Some astrologers see these different points in a chart as indicating different points of evolution for this Lilith energy. I am most interested in the Black Moon Lilith, which is not a physical body, but rather a point in the sky.
Lilith in My Life; Perigee to Apogee
In December 2016, while studying astrology, I realized that Black Moon Lilith is featured quite prominently in my astrological natal chart. I was born when the moon was furthest from Earth – at its apogee, so the actual moon in my natal chart is exactly conjunct (true/osculating) BML. Since the moon’s orbit wobbles, this point of apogee is difficult to predict and its calculation (related to the moon’s current position and speed) acts a type of future ghost or potentiality of the moon. However, when the moon is conjunct or opposite BML, the apogee is no longer an intangible potentiality and mere mathematical calculation. When the moon is conjunct BML, one could say that Lilith becomes fully manifest and visible.
However, were you to meet me, you would not say I was a typical ‘Lilith-type’. In my blog I will profile different people with strong BMLs who strongly embody the archetype; who are apt examples of ‘Lilith-types’. My BML is prominently placed in my chart conjunct my moon, in a very public house, but… she’s complicated! In astrospeak, one would say my Black Moon Lilith is ‘afflicted’, due to the aspects she forms with other planetary bodies. Therefore, the launch of this website, Lilith Rebellion, several months after I discovered her in my chart, symbolizes her nonconformity and defiant uprising in my own life. ⚸
Ironically, the last public blog I maintained online (circa 2011/12), was titled ‘Perigee-Syzygy’. This was before I was really into astrology or had any idea what Black Moon Lilith was. Perigee is the opposite of apogee. If the lunar apogee is when the moon is furthest from the Earth in its orbit, then the lunar perigee is when the moon is at its closest point to Earth in its orbit. Therefore, you can look for the moon’s perigee in an astrological natal chart by finding the point that is opposite Black Moon Lilith’s position.
Perhaps you have noticed the rather overblown ‘supermoon’ fuss that has emerged frequently online since 2011? A supermoon is a sensationalist term used to describe a full moon at perigee, which therefore may appear slightly brighter and bigger from our perspective on Earth. Syzygy simply means that the Moon-Earth-Sun are arranged in a straight line, which is what happens at a full and new moon. So perigee-syzygy is the more technical term for a ‘supermoon’; a particularly bright full moon that is close to Earth.
When I chose Lilith Rebellion as a website name, I did not think to contrast it with the name of my previous blogging platform from 6 years ago. Only upon later reflection, I realized the titles themselves represented a transition from perigee to apogee; from the close brightness of familiar and comfortable safety, to the exiled, but powerful Lilith in the distant shadows.
What else should you know about the Lilith Archetype?
Hopefully now, you have a good sense of what the type of energy this Lilith archetype embodies. Here are some more key words and phrases that are often connected with Lilith, and Black Moon Lilith in particular:
|Wild. Animalistic. Raw. Primal. Erratic. Instinctual. In sync with the natural world. Passion. Grief. Rejected. Living in exile. An outsider. An outcast. Pushing boundaries and being humiliated for doing so. Vengeful. Rage and fury. Free sexual expression. Defying oppression, defying the patriarchy. Female empowerment. Shadows. Magnetism. The dark goddess archetype and the anti-mother archetype. Seeking liberation of the authentic self. Freedom from inhibitions. Intense and extreme. Power and power struggles. Inner strength and determination. Manipulation. Aggression. Compulsion. Obsession. Forbidden. Ravenous. Independent. Fierce. Rebellious. Direct and to the point. Blunt. No filters. Speaking one's mind. Strong feelings of unfairness or injustice. Traumas. Body-based, somatic. "A Nasty Woman" 😉|
Remember, Lilith is present in everyone’s astrological natal chart, but her energy will express differently depending on her placement in the chart. For those familiar with astrology, you will likely have recognized some Scorpio themes in the list of keywords above. Lilith has a strong affiliation with Scorpio energy, as well as Aries (or Pluto and Mars). Not all the key phrases are inherently positive or beneficial. I will continue to unpack this archetype and explore her astrological significance in my blog.
Other Appearances of Lilith in Modern Culture
The three examples I provide below are just a sampling. The Lilith archetype has appeared in many shapes and forms in modern times. She has appeared in movies, TV shows (e.g. HBO’s True Blood), music, comic books, etc. You will see similar themes emerging across her different cultural manifestations.
- Lilith Fair was a music festival that was founded and spearheaded primarily by Canadian musician Sarah McLachlan, and took place between the summers of 1997 to 1999. True to a feminist analysis of the Lilith myth, Lilith Fair empowered women by featuring only female solo artists and female-led bands. (Wikipedia)
- I am enraptured with the photos and descriptions of the Lilith sculpture on display at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art. I hope to view it in person someday! She was crafted by Kiki Smith in 1994. Dana Newkirk, writing for Roadtrippers, refers to Lilith as “one of the spookiest sculptures in America” and has posted some great up-close photos of her. Erin Williams Hyman has written my favourite review of the sculpture (so well written!). She closes with the following:
“Out of a textual absence, Smith creates a potent physical presence. The most pronounced tension in the sculpture as I perceive it is in the way it is so human and so inhuman at once. Smith’s technique of body-casting ensures that this is a deeply inhabited, lifelike, and not idealized female form. The roughness of the bronze, with many unfinished, unrefined patches, heightens this sense of tactile materiality, and points back to Lilith’s earthy origin. Illuminated, the bronze exhibits a rich tonal range, a chiaroscuro effect: bright glare along the S curve of her spine, dark obscurity of her underbelly. And multiple shadows cast on the wall create their own visual effect.
Then there are the eyes. Their icy blue, alert vigilance makes it seem she is tracking you in her peripheral vision — it’s an unsettling, uncanny sensation. Or is she looking back at Adam? At intended prey? Is she menacing or beseeching? Victim or predator? The sculpture of Lilith, like the morphing stories that have evolved around her name, remains wild, suspended, resisting any attempt to pin her down.” – Erin Williams Hyman
I believe Kiki Smith and Erin Williams Hyman have skillfully captured Lilith’s unnerving presence and mysterious history!
- Clarissa Pinkola Estes did not use the name ‘Lilith’ when she wrote her million-seller titled Women Who Run With the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype, but I see strong similarities between Estes’ Wild Woman and the archetype of Lilith. I would argue that they are based on the same archetypal template (see the Archetypes & Psychology section for more on this). Estes uses myths, metaphors and folklore to bring the wild woman archetype to life. Every mythic story is followed by her careful analysis where she explains how people can draw wisdom from the story in order to embody the energy of the Wild Woman archetype in their own lives. I will conclude this section with a classic quote from her book:
“We are all filled with a longing for the wild. There are few culturally sanctioned antidotes for this yearning. We were taught to feel shame for such a desire. We grew our hair long and used it to hide our feelings. But the shadow of Wild Woman still lurks behind us during our days and in our nights. No matter where we are, the shadow that trots behind us is definitely four-footed.” – Clarissa Estes
Learn more about Lilith through these Resources
- The Three Lilith Points @ Darkstar Astrology
- Lilith – The Shadow @ Black & the Moon
- Mean & True Black Moon Lilith @ Serennu
- Lilith in the Houses @ Astro Concept
- Palpable Power: Lilith’s Role in Relationship Dynamics @ Sasstrology
- Black Moon Lilith in Synastry @ Sasstrology
- The Book of Lilith, by Barbara Black Koltuv
- Living Lilith: Four Dimensions of the Cosmic Feminine, by M. Kelley Hunter
- Lilith: Healing the Wild, by Tom Jacobs
- Women Who Run With the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype, by Clarissa Pinkola Estes