Siduri

October 19th, 2007 by sabrina

Today’s Goddess is a merry one, intent on reminding us to live in the moment.  Her advice reminds me of the lyrics of a song by Trooper:  “We’re here for a good time, not a long time, so have a good time, the sun can’t shine every day.”

Siduri is the Babylonian Goddess of wine and beer, merry-making, and wisdom. She lives in a tavern on the shore of the sea, beyond which is the Land of Life. Also called Siduri Sabitu (the innkeeper), she is referred to in the The Epic of Gilgamesh as “the Refresher” or “the girl whose drinks refresh the soul“. She advises Gilgamesh to give up his quest for immortality in the wake of the death of his companion, Enkidu. On first seeing him coming towards her tavern, Siduri barred the door to Gilgamesh, because of his unkempt appearance. When he told her his identity and of his travels to find the immortal human Utnapishtim, she invited him in and shared her wisdom:

“You shall not find the life you seek,
For at the creation of mankind
The gods allotted Death to men.
They retained life in their own hands.
Gilgamesh, let your belly be full,
Make you merry by day and by night.
Make everyday a day of feasting and of rejoicing
Dance and play, by day, by night,
Let your clothes be sparkling and fresh
Wash your hair
Bathe your body
Attend to the babe who holds you by the hand
Take your wife and let her rejoice in you.
For this is the lot of mankind to enjoy
But immortal life is not for men.”
                  from The Epic of Gilgamesh, Tablet X

This entry was posted on Friday, October 19th, 2007 at 6:35 pm and is filed under Middle Eastern. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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