Lambert On A Divine Ambiguity

Related to an issue I discussed a few weeks ago, here is a quotation from a paper by Wilfred George Lambert on ancient Mesopotamian gods. Lambert’s paper is online.

. . . these ancients were surrounded by forces of nature, real and imagined, which they identified as persons of superhuman power. There was always some ambiguity about the precise relationship of the deity to the aspect of nature, whether, for example, the sun god was in very fact the actual fiery ball moving across the sky, or whether he was not of human form, living in a palace and directing the actual solar body in its dally motions from a distance. Probably they were not so conscious of such a problems as we are. [120]


Wilfred George Lambert, “Ancient Mesopotamian Gods. Superstition, philosophy, theology,” Revue de l’histoire des religions, 207-2 (1990), 115-130

One thought on “Lambert On A Divine Ambiguity”

  1. This is awesome. Thanks for alerting us to this article. I hadn’t seen this! I have an interest in the idea of deity in the ancient Near East. I think someone needs to sit down and really figure this thing out.

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