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Otz Chaiim/Samael Questions

To: alt.magick
From: Yogin 
Subject: Otz Chaiim/Samael Questions
Date: Sun, 15 Jun 1997 15:54:14 -0700

Been doing some work/research on Samael, which has led me to some very
basic questions regarding the "tree of life" in QBL.  Having found no
answers to these questions in other sources, I'm posting them here in
order to see if there's something I'm missing.

1)  Otz chaiim means "tree of lives".  Why the singular in the English
1a) Is there any evidence that "tree of lives" as a term might be linked
to some idea of reincarnation between worlds, as in the lokas of Eastern
(ie, could the sephiroth be abstractions of lokas?)

2) Modern QBL places the serpent and the sword upon the tree itself.  In
the OT, however, the serpent is in the Tree of Knowledge of Good and
Evil, not the tree of life.  Also in the OT, the "fiery sword" is not
upon either tree,
but was placed as a guard "to the East of Eden."  These seem like
juxtapositions in
this light.  Has this question been addressed by anyone previously, and
if so, how
is the seeming contradiction resolved?  Any sources which answer this
question would also be appreciated.

3) In the Book of Baruch (pseudoepigraphia) it's stated that the Tree of
Life is not planted in Eden by Elohim, but by Samael.  Baruch even goes
so far as
to refer to the tree as a "poisonous vine", but Elohim doesn't remove
it.  The
Targum, too, seems to allude to this.  In my mind, it seems that the
cults of Elohim and
Samael may have been competitors for the faithful, but I can't find any
mention of a Samael/Semyaza cult.  Does anyone know if there was a
rivalry between
two cults, and anything about an ancient Samael cult?  Note that Samael
means "poisoner of god", and the apellation seems to be fulfilled in
Baruch, but not

As an aside to question 3, I've noticed that every mention of Samael by
name was expunged from the Jewish Canon.  Every book that mentions
Samael (Enoch, Baruch, Sirach) was left out of the recognized scripture.

4) Samael, in later works, is repeatedly refered to as the consort of
Lilith, but there    doesn't seem to be anything to back up this idea
before a single 13th century rabbi mentions it.  Does anyone know of an
older tradition that maintains this relationship?

Any info would be much appreciated.

                                Tzimon Yliaster       
                           Tools of CHAOS Maintainer  
                                 PO Box 26362         
                           San Francisco, CA  94126   

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