Lilith in the Library (Jan/Feb 2003)

“Lilith,” pictured with her maker Norman B. LeClair, now graces the office library of the Freedom From Religion Foundation in Madison, Wis.

“Lilith, as you know, was Adam’s first wife,” Norm notes. “But she was strong and independent with a mind of her own. Legend tells us that ‘she refused to lie under him and obey his commands.’ So Adam complained to God who in turn made him a new and more compliant female named Eve.

“To punish Lilith for her willfulness, God turned her into the first female devil, and the mother of all illegitimate children. She was condemned to spend her nights hovering above the bedchamber waiting for the male to spill his seed from which she created demons and all the illegitimate children of the world. As the Church Lady would probably say, ‘Now isn’t that special?’ “

Lilith was carved from a 3-foot high laminated piece of red oak. Norm adds: “This piece is a good example of why abstract sculpturing is so much fun. You can really push the envelope. Lilith has no hands, no feet, no face and only one breast, but because the lines are smooth and free-flowing, the female form is easily discernible. I gave her a sassy ponytail but it can only be seen if viewed from the side.”

A Foundation Life Member from Florida, Norm is retired from the military. As an artist he has created many “thinking pieces” of art, too. One such sculpture which he also recently donated to the Foundation has the Pogo-derived title: “We have met the enemy and he is us.” (See June/June 1998 article.) It depicts a human skull staring at three reflections: a skull respectively overlaid with a Star of David, a cross and crescent and star.

Freedom From Religion Foundation