Ok, my wonderful Supernatural family...
Here it is. My sample chapter (edited slightly for use on the blog) from my recently-rejected proposal for The Mythology of Supernatural, Vol. 2: The Road Since Then
. This chapter examines the character of Eve in detail, similarly to how I did an entire chapter on Lilith in the first book. Once again, I am sorry that this project didn't pan out. I know a lot of you were really looking forward to it.
But, like I mentioned in my last post... you never know. The answer might be "no" today, but I have come to understand that a "no" at first can end up being a "yes" later on. Only time will tell.
Please forgive me if you see any typos in the below sample... it hasn't had a proper editing run, obviously (Also, I'm sorry about the weird line spacing. The text didn't transfer over from the word document quite right... and trying to fix it in blogger only made it worse).
Anyway... for now, I have to start writing a new proposal for a different project.
As always, thank you all so much for reading what I write and for your amazing support! I will do my best not to let this blog gather so much dust... and I will keep everyone posted once I find out what my next book project will be.
Until then.... enjoy this little snippet of what I'd hoped would be my next book--The Mythology of Supernatural, Volume 2: The Road Since Then
All my best! Please help me tell the others where to find this!
The below material is copyright Nathan Robert Brown (c) 2015 and any unauthorized duplication or distribution (outside of links to this blog post) is prohibited.
call her ‘mother.’ She was here about ten thousand years ago. Every freak that
walks the face of the earth can be traced back to her. And she’s back.”
“And Then There Were None” (6-16)
may have been “one scary bitch”… but Eve is one scary mother. Trying to choose
the scarier between the two is tough. Seriously. There isn’t really a lesser of two evils when
the choice is between a demon queen who eats babies and a wrathful female from
Purgatory who births monsters (some of which also probably eat babies) like a
demonic version of “octo-mom.” When this “mother of all monsters” jumped the
fence from Purgatory back in Season 6 of Supernatural,
the writers didn’t bother telling viewers who she was… at first. This, of
course, led to a ton of speculative buzz among the fandom. Some thought she might be Echidna (which
makes sense, as she’s the mother of monsters in Greek mythology). Others thought she might be the wrathful
spirit of a “Mother Earth” type of entity, pointing to her unbridled powers for
creating life. In the end, just about
everyone was proven wrong when she was finally revealed to be Eve. This revelation, however, left a lot of folks
scratching their heads in confusion. And who could blame them? After all, none of the canonical
Judeo-Christian works that feature Eve mention anything about her birthing
beasties (if anything, Lilith usually gets the blame/credit for that in Judaic
lore). How could Eve, best known as the
wife of Adam in Genesis, be a monster
mommy from the bowels of Purgatory? I
imagine some viewers probably started to wonder if they’d missed a day in Hebrew
school or bible study or something.
Well, wonder no more. Because we
are about to decode the origins of Supernatural’s
as it is used here, this refers to a set list of sacred texts that are
considered authentic or authorized by a religion (in this case, the Christian
as it is used here, this term refers to texts with questionable authenticity,
or that are not accepted or authorized by a religion.
writers of Supernatural (as they seem
fond of doing) did not use any of the more well-known canonical myths to create
the character of Eve. Instead, they went
with something for more obscure (but way
more interesting). I had to comb through
a large amount of the Judeo-Christian lore I have on my shelf, both canonical
and apocryphal, before I finally found an account of Eve that fit with her
version on the show. I did, however,
find one. The writers of Supernatural, almost without question,
forged the character of Eve from the pages of an apocryphal, Gnostic essay
that’s commonly known as “On the Origin of the World.” This essay is actually but one small piece of
a much larger body of work called the Nag
Hammadi Scriptures (or Nag Hammadi
as it is used here, this refers to an adherent of Gnosticism, an esoteric
school of religious thought and mysticism that reveres knowledge. In fact, it
come from the Greek root word gnosis,
meaning “knowledge” (or, more specifically, knowledge of spiritual mysteries).
the Origin of the World” proposes a very
different version of the events written in Genesis,
especially when it comes to the nature of God and the creation of
humankind. For example, whereas Eve is
depicted as the source of original sin in Genesis,
she is credited as the mother of all in “On the Origin of the World.” Not just the mother of all monsters, mind you… the mother of all living beings (humans
included). But we’re getting a bit ahead
of ourselves. You’ll need a bit of
background on this essay before we can start our investigation on the origins
of Eve in Supernatural.
you might want to brace your mind.
is likely about to be blown by some of what you read in this chapter.
The Nag Hammadi Scriptures
“Who is she, this Eve bitch?”
-Dean Winchester, “Mommy Dearest”
“Nag Hammadi” part of the title actually has nothing to do with the contents of
the stories and essays in this collection of texts. Nag Hammadi is just the name of the city near
where these texts were discovered (though it is likely also the place in which
they were transcribed, but we’ll get to that soon enough). Let me break it down for you with a short
in December of 1945, in Egypt, a small group of Fellahin (an Egyptian term that means something like “peasant
worker” or “farmer”) traveled by camel to the base of Jabar al-Tarif, a
prominent cliff near the banks of the Nile River and a roughly a few miles
outside the city of Nag Hammadi. They
stopped at this spot to dig, hoping to collect sabakh (a naturally occurring fertilizer in the Nile region). As they dug, the men unexpectedly uncovered a
large earthen storage jar. It had been
well sealed and appeared to be very old.
At first they were hesitant to disturb it any further, fearing it might
contain the wrathful spirits of Jinn
(and we all know how troublesome those things can be). Then someone brought up the possibility that
it might contain gold. Egypt was once the
land of the famously-bling-obsessed pharaohs, after all, and more than a few
people had come into wealth with such discoveries over the years. Like many humans, their lust for riches turned
out to be stronger than their fear of old superstitions. They busted the jar open (sadly, damaging some
of the contents in the process).
gold (and, perhaps more importantly… no Jinn).
the storage jar contained a rather large collection of very old books, written
on papyrus and bound in leather. Its
words were in Coptic (one of the last ancient Egyptian dialects, which is now
used only by the Coptic Church), so the men couldn’t read it and did not know
what they’d found. Over time, the texts
were luckily brought to the attention of collectors and scholars, and they have
been the subject of much analysis, commentary, and controversy ever since.
formally known as the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria, this is the largest
Christian church in Egypt and various parts of the Middle East.
an exact date for when the Nag Hammadi
Scriptures were written down is difficult.
However, it is generally agreed that this must have occurred sometime
before 367 CE (this is the year they were likely buried, for reasons we will
discuss later). Those who transcribed
these texts were likely Coptic monks from one of the early Christian
monasteries that existed in Nag Hammadi at the time. And these monks, based on the contents of the
books, may have been members of the Gnostic tradition of Christian mysticism, a
sect of religious thought that the main body of Christianity would eventually
do its best to eradicate. It is
doubtful, however, that the Nag Hammadi monks were the authors of most of these
texts (preexisting versions of many of these books have been found, though
written in Greek). If anything, they
were likely the translators of most of them.
The one striking exception to this is “On the Origin of the World,”
which contains a number of hints at an Egyptian author (as will become apparent
as we go through the actual text).
are also of the opinion that the texts in the Nag Hammadi Scriptures were considered important, even sacred, by
at least some of the Coptic monks who transcribed, translated, and/or maintained
them. They obviously took measures to
preserve them. People don’t use sealed
storage jars for things unless they want them to endure the passage of time,
after all. If history tells us anything,
it’s that people often burn books when they want to get rid
of them… they don’t bury them in sealed containers. Which brings us to the question of why
they were buried.
see, around Easter of 367 CE, Athanius the Archbishop of Alexandria (a very
high ranking official of the early Coptic Church) had a letter circulated among
the Christian churches and monasteries of Egypt. In this letter was a list of twenty-seven
books that he decreed would be, from that day forward, the only acceptable
Christian religious texts (interestingly enough, these same books now make up
the canonical New Testament).
it or not, only certain books made it into what Christians now call “The Holy
Bible.” When the canon was set down, a lot of things got cut. For example, have you ever wondered why Jesus
goes from being 8 years old to 30 with no mention of what happened in between?
Well, there are apocryphal books that tell more about his childhood. They just
didn’t make the final cut.
letter also ordered the monks and other clergy to denounce, discard, and/or
destroy any of these, as he put it, “illegitimate or secret books”—by which he
meant any that were not on his list. The
Gnostic adherents among the Coptic monks, however, would have prized knowledge
above nearly all things. The written
word, in their view, was both the product and the cause of knowledge, and
decree from Athanius likely put the monks of Nag Hammadi between a rock and a
hard place. They were no longer allowed
to house these books in any monastery library.
At the same time, they were unwilling to destroy them. So, it is assumed at least one monk (or a
group of Gnostic/Coptic monks) must have sealed these “unauthorized” books in a
storage jar and buried it at the base of Jabar al-Tarif. Whether the monks intended to come back for
them, no one can say for certain. We can
assume they did not come back for them, of course, since they stayed buried for
the next 1600 years or so. Centuries
passed, and those who knew of the jar’s secret location must’ve died (or were
killed) without passing the knowledge along.
And there the jar remained until its accidental discovery in 1945. While the Nag
Hammadi Scriptures contain roughly 50 unique texts, only one of them needs
to be examined in our discussion of Eve—“On the Origin of the World.”
speaking, this essay on creation was never given a title by its author. For this reason, some have referred to it as
“The Untitled Work” (which, one must admit, is about as vague as it gets). The more specific “On the Origin” title was
applied to it later on, and is preferred by most scholars (probably because it
makes more sense than just calling it the equivalent of “That Thing That Unknown
Person Wrote Without Giving It a Title”).
few things before we move on—the following sections are going to cover some
material that is EXTREMELY different from the version of creation you may know
from the canonical bible. What follows
is not meant to offend anyone’s belief systems.
I’m only the messenger of information, here (pretty please don’t lynch
me). Also, this next section is not
going to cover everything that happens in “On the Origin of the World.” This chapter is about Eve, after all, and
some things had to be omitted or condensed for the sake of staying on
point. However, if you’re interested in
learning more about “On the Origin of the World” or the Nag Hammadi Scriptures, here is a link to at least one translation
(however, please keep in mind this is not the version I used when I wrote
this chapter): http://khazarzar.skeptik.net/books/nhl.pdf.
you should know that there are multiple versions, translations, and
interpretations of this text. This means
that you may find some sources that don’t match up perfectly with what you read
here. Unfortunately, I don’t have enough
room in this book to cover all of them.
So, as Dean might tell you, “Suck it up, buttercup.” I can’t spend the entire book going through
every possible interesting nook and noteworthy cranny of one Gnostic
essay. This book isn’t the Men of
Letters bunker… no matter how much any of us want it to be.
A (VERY) Different
Version of Eve
“I’m building the perfect beast.”
-Eve, “Mommy Dearest” (6-19)
already mentioned, “On the Origin of the World” depicts the events of Genesis in a very different light. One of its
most notable differences has to do with sexual roles and gender types. The “one God” that exists before existence,
for example, has neither sex nor gender in this text. This supreme divine being has no need to be
male or female. However, this “one God”
does create powerful, god-like beings who do have genders. It creates scores of heavenly beings—gods,
angels, and the like—not with “the Word,” as it says in the Judeo-Christian
texts, but instead with thought alone.
Of the many heavenly beings the “one God” creates, there are two of
particular importance when it comes to Eve: a male (and rather douchebag-ish)
demiurge, called Yaldabaoth; and a feminine being endowed with the divine light
of creation, called Sophia Pistis.
in Gnostic thought, this term refers to a powerful god-like being that controls
the physical realm and believes it is supreme. Such a being is the enemy of
true spirituality and divine knowledge.
This name’s most common translation is “Come here, child” or “Child, come
hither.” However, some translations associate it with a similar ancient Hebrew
title that means “Son of Chaos.” As it often is with such things, this could be
argued either way.
This name means “Wisdom” (Sophia) and “Faith” (Pistis).
Pistis, in her wisdom, becomes aware and immediately understands that there is
a being in the cosmos greater than even she, and which has existed always. Yaldabaoth, on the other hand, comes into
existence like a frat boy who just chugged an entire pint of beer without
coming up for air. He hastily decides
there is nothing greater than him, and that nothing could have existed before
him. He declares himself god and demands
to be worshipped by all the heavenly beings (including Sophia Pistis, but she
will not be ruled and rebels against his ignorance).
Pistis is named so for a reason, though, and she remains faithful to the “one God”
and uses her wisdom. She takes one
look at Yaldabaoth and, like a girl at a club who meets a guy with a face
tattoo, immediately knows he’s going to be trouble. So she takes a number of steps to counteract
the damage he is going to cause in the near future, and to fulfill the ultimate
will of the “one God.”
begins by using her powers of creation to bring a heavenly daughter into
being—Sophia Zoe (Sophia = “Wisdom”; Zoe = “Life”). As this daughter’s name suggests, she is
endowed with her mother’s wisdom, as well as with the very same divine light of
creation with which she was brought into existence. Shortly thereafter, Sophia Zoe (we’ll just
call her Zoe from now on) produces a physical female form that, eventually,
will serve as her vessel and come to be the one called “Eve.” In fact, Zoe and Eve are (in all the ways
that matter) one and the same being (I know it sounds confusing, but I promise
it will make more sense later). The story
of the creation of this form is written of in “On the Origin of the World” as
follows [brackets added for clarity]:
When Sophia [Zoe] let fall a droplet of light, it flowed into
the water, and immediately a human being appeared, being androgynous. [Then she] after, using the body … molded it into the likeness of the mother …
whom the Hebrews called “Eve of Life” [Life = Zoe], namely, the female instructor of all life.
after creating a physical vessel for herself, Zoe creates another being, a creature
called “The Instructor” (sometimes, “The Teacher”)—knowing in her wisdom that
such a being will be needed to serve as an aid to her later on. You might be surprised to find out that this
creature is known in the canonical bible as the Serpent of Eden. In multiple Gnostic texts, this being is
often depicted as a benevolent and wise teacher, as opposed to a troublesome
and sinful tempter of ruin. This is made
obvious in the following excerpt from “On the Origin of the World”:
Her [Zoe’s] offspring [The Instructor] is the creature that is lord. Afterwards, the powers [meaning Yaldabaoth
and his evil angelic servants, such as the “seven rulers of chaos” that will
come into play later in the story] called
it “The Beast,” so as to lead astray their modeled creatures. The [true] interpretation of “The Beast” is “The Instructor.” For it was found to be wisest of all
“She died to protect you, didn’t
she? See? You understand a mother’s love. I’m no different.”
-Eve, “Mommy Dearest” (6-19)
this point, Zoe’s done about all she can to preemptively counteract the future
actions of Yaldabaoth. So she enters her
vessel and is thereby transformed into a new being—called “Eve.” From this point forward, in fact, Zoe is
referred to in the text as “Zoe, who is called Eve.” The author of “On the Origin of the World”
tells of this transformation in the following segment of the story, which many
have come to call “The Song of Eve”:
Now Eve is the first virgin, the one
who without a husband bore her offspring.
She served as her own midwife.
For this reason, she is held to have said:
I am part of the mother, and I am
I am the wife; I am the virgin.
I am pregnant; I am the midwife.
I am the comforter of birth pains.
But I have given birth to a lordly
there you have it. Eve is the first
virgin… and the first human… and her own mother. Everything is all unicorns and
roses, at this point. So now, of course,
all that’s left is for some ignorant male gods and jerk angels to come along
and mess the whole thing up. And here
“Call it ‘Beta testing.’”
-Eve, “Mommy Dearest” (6-19)
the same time that Zoe comes into being as Eve, Yaldabaoth begins to consider (much
like the repentant Cass) that he’d been wrong when he assumed he was the one
supreme god. Now you’d think
this would make him change his dick-ish ways… and you’d be wrong. Blinded by his own arrogance, and unwilling
to give up the power he enjoys over the others, he decides to keep up his
charade (even after his own son, Saboath, denounces him and goes to serve
Sophia Pistis). Yaldabaoth starts to
view the “one God” and Sophia Pistis (along with Zoe and all others created by
and/or associated with her) as his enemies.
Because of this, the “one God” gives Yaldabaoth a new title—Samael
(“Blind God”)—branding him with a moniker that shows how his arrogance and
ignorance have blinded him to the truth, even when it is right in front of his
to prove to the other heavenly beings that he is, indeed, the supreme god of
all, Yaldabaoth/Samael orders his most powerful followers—a group of archangels
called “the seven rulers of chaos”—to mold a physical form for him as
well. This form, called Adam, is put
together a piece at a time by the seven rulers, as written in “On the Origin of
The modeled body came into being,
part by part, from each of the rulers, and the leader of the rulers created the
brain and marrow. … He became like a person with a soul, and he was called
Adam, which means “father,” after the one who was before him.
fully formed, Adam is imperfect. He is but
a lifeless form. Not having been endowed
with the divine light of creation (which Yaldabaoth/Samael and the seven rulers,
unlike Sophia Pistis and Zoe, do not possess), the form of Adam is nothing but
an inanimate “meat-suit.” Yaldabaoth/Samael
to breathe life into Adam at this point.
However, the Blind God is powerless to do so, and so he abandons Adam in
After Adam was made, he [Yaldabaoth/Samael] abandoned him as a lifeless vessel, since
Adam was formed like an aborted fetus, with no soul (or spirit). … So he left
his modeled form forty days without a soul, and withdrew and left him.
the fortieth day, Zoe/Eve comes down from her home in the First Heaven and
approaches the form of Adam. She
breathes life into the form and Adam starts to move for the first time. However, he is still like an infant and
cannot stand up or walk. The seven
rulers of chaos, who’ve been keeping watch over him (please do not ask why
they felt they needed to do this, because I have no idea), see that he is
moving and… well… they freak the hell out.
As the seven rulers swoop down they see Zoe/Eve for but an instant, but
she disappears in a flash of light and returns to the First Heaven. The rulers don’t even chase her, they are so
weirded out by the sight of Adam:
seven rulers of chaos] approached him and
grabbed him, and the chief ruler said to the breath [of Zoe/Eve] within him, “Who are you? Where have you
come from?” He answered [with the breath of Zoe/Eve in him] and said, “I have come through the power of
the human for the destruction your work…”
happens next is sort of… confusing. For
some reason, the seven rulers of chaos turn out to be relieved when they hear
him say this. Some scholars believe this
must be due to a fragmentation of the original text. Others have interpreted it as an indication
that these beings were living under the thumb of a dictatorial jerk of a god
and were glad to see that someone had come to knock him down a peg or two. Either explanation could account for the
seemingly unusual tone of their reaction.
In any case, here’s what “On the Origin of the World” has to say about
it (brackets added for clarity):
When they [the
seven rulers of chaos] heard this, they
glorified him, because he gave them rest from their fear and concern. They called that day the Day of Rest, because
they rested themselves from their troubles.
seven rulers of chaos (perhaps not sure what to do with him) decide to take
Adam to a place called Paradise, which had been created before them by the will
of the “one God” for this exact purpose and was full of fruitful trees. Adam, however, is still like an infant,
lacking any knowledge and unable to stand.
Once the rulers leave Adam in Paradise and return to their respective
heavenly abodes, Zoe/Eve returns to him and completes his creation. As it is written in “On the Origin of the
World” (brackets added):
Sophia [Pistis] sent her daughter Zoe, who is called Eve,
as an instructor to raise Adam, in whom there was no spirit, so that the
children he would engender might be vessels of light. When Eve saw her male partner on the ground,
she felt sorry for him and said, “Adam, live! Get up from the ground!” At once, her word became an accomplished
deed. When Adam got up, at once he
opened his eyes, and he saw her and said, “You will be called the Mother
[Eve] of All Living, because you have
given me life.”
Soooo… Eve is actually
the one who created Adam, in this version of the story, which also would make
her the mother of all humanity. I’ll
give you a moment to process that.
“I’m older than you, Castiel. I know what makes angels tick. Long as I’m around, you’re unplugged.”
-Eve, “Mommy Dearest” (6-19)
fair warning… as the title of this section suggests, things are about to get a
little… “rapey.” Samael, having been informed
by the rulers that Adam is up and moving about, and completely boggled by how
this can be possible, wants to know what the hell is going on. In fact, the more he thinks about it, the
more it starts to worry him. So he sends
the seven rulers of chaos back to Paradise to investigate. They arrive to discover Adam is now standing,
and see him talking to Eve. So they hide
themselves and watch. Realizing she must
be the one responsible for giving Adam his miraculous spark of life, they hatch
a cruel (and pretty disgusting) plan:
…when they saw Eve speaking with him [Adam], they said to each other, “Who is this
enlightened woman? She looks like what
appeared to us in the light. Come, let
us seize her and ejaculate our semen into her, so that she may be unclean and
unable to ascend to her light, and her children will serve us. But let us not tell Adam, because he is not
one of us. Instead, let us put him to
sleep and suggest to him in his sleep [dreams, in some translations] the Eve comes from his rib, so that the
woman may serve and he may rule over her.”
give you a moment to let that last part sink in.
come back when you’ve recovered from the shock.
right, boys and girls! According to “On
the Origin of the World,” that whole “rib thing” in Genesis is a total fabrication, nothing more than a lie cooked up
by a group of evil, misogynistic, rapist archangels who serve a lying, sadistic
demiurge that fancies himself a god.
Speaking of which, this is the moment when the seven rulers of chaos
come out from their hiding spot to rape Zoe/Eve.
Zoe/Eve sees this coming. In her wisdom,
she knows exactly what they’re planning to do to her. To prevent herself from being completely
defiled (which would have prevented her from being able to “return to her
light” in the First Heaven), she separates the divine part of herself (Sophia
Zoe) from her physical self (Eve) and places her divine part into a tree in
Paradise—The Tree of Knowledge. Yep… that
Tree of Knowledge. And the seven rulers
of chaos see her do it. However,
this doesn’t stop them from attacking the “likeness of her” (Eve) that she
(Zoe) leaves behind.
Winchester boys have their final showdown with Eve at a roadside diner in the
town of Grant’s Pass, Oregon. There is
an “Eden Drive” in Grant’s Pass, and one must wonder if this was the location
of the diner (though the show never tells us).
Then again, there’s also an entire town called Eden, Oregon… but maybe
the writers of Supernatural thought
that’d be too obvious.
female human being left behind by Zoe is captured and raped repeatedly by the
seven rulers of chaos. I don’t really
want to go into all the gross details, except to tell you that the story claims
“They defiled her in ways both natural and obscene.” You can use your imagination as to what is
meant by that. The act of rape so
utterly defiles and traumatizes Eve that she enters a kind of stupor. She grows pregnant and births seven children,
one for each rape she endured. Among
these children is Abel, (of Genesis)
who is said in this text to be the offspring of the chief ruler’s rape. These evil angels then inflict Adam with the
same kind of mental stupor, thus robbing both he and Eve of the wisdom they’d
been given as children of Zoe.
mentioned earlier, however, the seven rulers of chaos saw Zoe place her divine
wisdom and light into the Tree of Knowledge.
They report this to Yaldabaoth/Samael, who fears what might happen if
either of these humans were to eat its fruit.
Hoping to prevent this from happening, he sends the rulers back to
Paradise to tell the children of Zoe a new lie; as written in “On the Origin of
the World” (brackets added):
They approached Adam and Eve
carefully and said to him, “You may eat the fruit of every tree created for you
in Paradise, but be careful not to eat from the Tree of Knowledge. If you eat [from
that tree] you will die.
do Yaldabaoth/Samael and his rulers know, however, that Zoe has already created
a creature, the wisest of all creatures, in fact, for the very purpose of
revealing the truth to her children.
The Return of the Beast-Instructor
“So I dusted off some of
the old classics. I needed help.”
-Eve, “Mommy Dearest”
already mentioned, after creating the form of Eve as her vessel, Sophia Zoe
created another being, a wise creature that she called “The Instructor,” and
whom Yaldabaoth /Samael and his rulers would come to call “The Beast.” She created this being for a specific
purpose—to guide her children back to her once Samael and his rulers had
finished with their dirty work. The
Instructor/Beast comes to Paradise and discovers poor Eve and Adam in their
ignorant stupors. Fulfilling its
purpose, the creature springs into action.
“On the Origin of the World” tells what happens next as follows:
The Beast, the wisest of all
creatures, came by. When it saw the
likeness of their mother, Eve, it said to her, “What did that god [Yaldabaoth/Samael]
say to you? [Did he say] Do not eat from the Tree of Knowledge?”
explains that yes, they were told not to eat from tree. And that they were told if they did, they
would die from it. The Instructor/Beast
lays the truth on her, and in doing so rescues the children of Zoe (brackets
The Beast said to her, “Do not be
afraid. You will certainly not die. He [Yaldabaoth/Samael] knows that when you eat from it your minds
will become sober and you will be like the gods, knowing the difference between
evil and good people. He said this to
you because he is jealous, so that you would not eat from it.”
eats from the Tree of Knowledge and regains the wisdom from Zoe, shattering the
stupor caused by the rulers’ defilement.
She then convinces Adam to do the same, and the wisdom of Zoe returns to
him as well. They both then realize they
are naked and cover their bodies. They
also see the seven rulers of chaos for the ugly creatures they truly are, and
are disgusted by them.
news of this gets back to Samael, he is pissed beyond measure. No longer able to keep Eve and Adam as a pair
of stupid pets in Paradise, he tosses them out and places his cherubim servants
around it to keep them out. He and the
rulers then curse the humans and the earth (in fact, this part pretty much goes
the same way as in Genesis). When the Blind God and his rulers attempt to
harm the Instructor/Beast, however, they are unable to do so. The brilliant light of Sophia Zoe within this
creature blinds them as they approach and they can’t do a damn thing (no
serpents losing legs in this version, though, unlike in Genesis).
because Yaldabaoth/Samael and his cronies don’t get everything they want
doesn’t mean Zoe/Eve is just going to let dead dogs lie. She’s not done… not by a longshot.
“After all… a mother defends her
-Eve, “Mommy Dearest” (6-19)
that her work is done, Sophia Zoe, “who is called Eve,” leaves the Tree of
Knowledge and returns to the First Heaven.
However, when she looks down and sees how her children have been treated
by Samael and his followers, she goes from zero to wrathful faster than Cass makes
a visit to Israel. Much like the Eve of Supernatural, she gets scary when folks
mess with her children. Zoe/Eve goes on
the warpath, and now puts her creative light to a new use:
When Sophia Zoe saw that the archons
of darkness cursed her friends who were like her, she was angry [understatement
of the year, but okay]. She came from the First Heaven with all her
power and chased the rulers from their heavens, and she cast them down into the
sinful world so that they might dwell there as evil demons upon the earth.
She sent a bird that was in Paradise
so that, until the end of the age, it might spend a thousand years in the
rulers’ world. The bird, a living
creature endowed with soul, is called “Phoenix,” and it kills itself and
revives itself as an image of judgment against the rulers, because they dealt
unjustly with Adam and his generation, until the end of the age.
she doesn’t stop with cursing the rulers and unleashing the Phoenix. For every
wrong, it seems, she unleashes a new monster upon the earth that Samael and his
minions so arrogantly and unjustly cursed:
As the image of the Phoenix appears
with reference to the angels, so do the water serpents of Egypt indicate those
who go down for the baptism of a true human being.
The two bulls of Egypt indicate a
mystery, the sun and moon … because Sophia … has been exalted above the sun and
moon from the time she created them and sealed her heaven until the end of the
The worm that is born from the
Phoenix also represents humanity.
“Phoenix ash. I’m impressed. I bet you had to go a long way for that.”
-Eve, “Mommy Dearest” (6-19)
that we’ve looked at Eve in “On the Origin of the World,” let’s compare her to
the Eve of Supernatural. To be honest, I suspect that most readers
have probably already figured out at least some of the things we are going to
discuss in this chapter. However, let’s
take a look at them anyway… just to be thorough. We’ve covered Eve’s beginnings. So let’s look at where she ends up in Supernatural.
first point of comparison would be how “On the Origin of the World” refers to
Eve as “the first virgin.” This would
seem to explain why Supernatural’s
Eve required a very specific vessel in order for her to escape from Purgatory—a
virgin. After all, if the virgin form of Eve was
Zoe’s first vessel in transition to the physical world, then it would stand to
reason that she would need a virgin vessel to enter the physical realm from
of Eve’s escape from Purgatory, it is interesting to note that the creatures
who busted her out were dragons—or serpents, one could say. It’s possible this is a reference to The
Instructor/Beast in “On the Origin of the World.” After all, it is written that she created
such a being to come to her aid back in the day. Perhaps the Instructor/Beast was the “alpha”
of all dragons, which would explain why his offspring came to the aid of the
original mother. By this rationale, a
dragon would have been the first monster created by Zoe/Eve.
again, it’s possible that perhaps the “Khan Worm” is meant to be the Supernatural version of the
Instructor/Beast. After all, when Dean
mentions this creature to Eve, she says, “So I dusted off some of the old
classics. I needed help.” On the other
hand, the “Khan Worm” might be a reference to the Phoenix worm that, according
to “On the Origin of the World,” is “born from the Phoenix” and “represents
humanity.” This makes sense, in a matter
of speaking, considering how the “Khan Worm” is able to move from one human to
another, taking over their bodies as well as acquiring their memories and
brings us to the most obvious, and perhaps most important, element of
comparison—the Phoenix (I imagine most readers who know the show noticed that
one right away). As you’ve read in “On
the Origin of the World,” the Phoenix was created to be “an image of judgment …
until the end of the age.” Well… the
“end of the age” part refers to the apocalypse.
This may explain why Eve is so impressed when she realizes Dean
possesses Phoenix ashes. Since the
apocalypse has already come and gone, it is likely Eve assumed there’d be no
more Phoenixes left on the planet. And
there weren’t, not at that time… but back in the 1800s, on the other hand. This could explain why Dean had to travel
back in time in order to get the ashes (not that he minded, since it also gave
him a chance to live out his own personal “Frontierland” fantasy). Even if a few Phoenixes had been around when the
apocalypse went down in season 5, they would have (based on what’s written in
“On the Origin of the World”) been wiped out then, since the apocalypse marks
the “end of the age.” However… this
still leaves us with one question—why are Phoenix ashes Eve’s kryptonite?
are a number of possible explanations for this.
The simplest reason would be that the Supernatural writers just figured it sounded cool and sort of made
sense with their “On the Origin of the World” source text. Of course, since when have the Supernatural writers been known to go
with simple? Another (far more
complicated) theory would be that the Phoenix represents all of the different
types of human beings in creation… of which, according to “On the Origin of the
World,” there are three—spiritual, physical, and earthly. Eve became the mother of all three types, in
her time. She birthed herself and Adam
and other being in the spiritual realm, and the descendants of her original
form would be spiritual humans. She was
raped by the seven rulers, and thus gave birth to a brood of physical
humans. Lastly, there are the offspring
of the children her human likeness birthed with Adam. These last are the earthly humans. The Phoenix, in its cycle of life, death, and
rebirth, encompasses the essence of all three of these. In fact, “On the Origin of the World” even
comments that Eve’s rape (as sad and gross as this may seem) was part of a
larger plan, as was the will of the “one God”:
All this happened in accordance with the
chief creator’s forethought, so that the first mother might bear within herself
every seed, every one mixed and joined with the fate of the world and its
configurations, and justice.
as an “image of justice,” the Phoenix would be the one creature in all of
existence that matches Eve’s essence at this level. It is an icon of justice, and is endowed with
the creative spirit of all three types of humans in creation. The ashes of a Phoenix that does not rise,
one could assume, would be like kryptonite to a being like the Eve of Supernatural, who is the embodiment of
unbridled and unchecked life. Whereas as
Eve represents life without boundaries, a Phoenix represents death without end.
hard part, of course, was getting the ashes into Eve. Luckily, Dean found a way around that by
drinking them and going guinea pig on his own ass to become a Trojan horse of
me,” he said (and a collective squeal was heard ‘round the world)… and that was
all she wrote.
closing, I think it’s important to mention a few things. Like the Lilith of myth, examined in the
first volume of The Mythology of
Supernatural, Eve has experienced a similar fall. The power of the feminine, it seems, is often
undermined by those who feel they must possess and control it. The Christian church did its best to wipe
texts like “On the Origin of the World” from the library of human knowledge,
just as many ancient male-dominated cultures tried to destroy any record of
Lilith. One has to wonder how different
the world might be if Christianity had gone with this version of creation, with
Eve as our mother and the “one God” as her divine creator… and outing the
jerky, wrathful, wannabe god of the Old
Testament as really just a lying ass-butt throwing a temper tantrum.
not trying to tell you that “On the Origin of the World” should be viewed as
literal fact (any more than I would of any myth).
I told you from the beginning… I’m just the messenger. Only you can choose what you believe.