One of the major causes of divorce today is adultery. In puritan days, adulterers were marked with a scarlet A on their forehead. If I had a shirt with the letter A on it for every time I fucked a married man, I could suit up the Oaklands and Anaheim Angels for the rest of their existence. I've personally had sex with over 2,979 different men, many of them many times, and most of them have been married. However, since I am a priestess of The Goddess of The Most High, sex with me is not considered adultery or fornication, even if the man is married. So just what is adultery anyway? Where did the concept come from? And why is it considered such a damning activity?
Originally, adultery had nothing to do with morals, little to do with religion and everything to do with property. The word "adultery" comes from the Latin phrase, "ad alterum se conferre" (to another is conferred), which meant to confer property on another. In the early Roman Empire, husbands had no legal claim on their wife's property if the wife spent three consecutive nights each year away from the home. I have no details on what the wife was required to do on those three nights away from home, but I'm sure the incentive for keeping all her property to herself lead her to enjoy herself fully. However, the concept was around long before the Latin language and the Romans. Under ancient law, a woman could confer her material wealth on any man with whom she had sex. Likewise a man who fucked a woman (for her first time) could make a claim on her property. If the woman were a priestess the man had no claim as he did not have sex with the woman, but with The Goddess. Back then, almost every woman was a priestess to The Goddess. She would enter the temple as a virgin (the term then meant any unmarried woman) and undergo what is now called ritualistic defloration. In more common terms, she would fuck a lot of men. Aside from the religious significance of her temple activities, life in the temple gave the priestess considerable wealth. It also allowed her to keep her money and property; no man could lay claim to having taken her virginity; and the money and property were given by The Goddess. Additionally, as a priestess she was free to have sex with any man she chose even after she got married. It was, therefore, not sexual morality or the male ego which was hurt by the adulterous wife. It was the man's pocket book - his inability to take what belonged to his wife.
This is not the common concept of the treatment of women anciently. But then, most modern concepts on the role of women comes to us from the Bible which presents women as having always been treated as chattel, (property) to be bought and sold by men, like cattle. However, the biblical pseudo-myth of male domination is giving way in light of recent archeological discoveries. Among the most striking of which has been the royal seals of the Queens and Princesses of Israel. According to the Bible, women had no authority. They were queens in name only tolerated for the pleasure of the king and to produce male offspring who would become king; the only value of a princesses was in trading her to foreign kings as part of peace treaties. If this biblical concept is true, why did the queens and princesses of Israel have royal seals of their power and authority? But more importantly, not one royal seal of a king or prince of Israel has been found. Why? If males were in fact the rulers, where are the symbols of their authority? The answer lies in a Jewish lie. A pious fraud perpetrated to advance a god-given right of male superiority. The fact is the kings of Israel were not the true rulers.
Studi Studies by anthropologists suggest that early societies were either matriarchal (ruled by women) or matrilineal (with the right of the king or ruler passing from mother to son). Women were the original land owners. Women cultivated the land while men went off to hunt and make war - if they were not excluded from the community completely. Women built the tents and houses in which they lived. They made the pottery for cooking and preparing food, so the land, the house and the utensils were the woman's. Up until the advent of Christianity, pottery making and the use of clay was under the exclusive control of women. The potter's fields were usually located near the temples where animals were sacrificed. There the blood of the sacrificed animals was mixed with clay, called adamah (from which biblical name Adam is derived). This was the sacred clay of women's pottery. It was the potters field which was purchased with the thirty pieces of silver Judas is supposed to have been paid for betraying Jesus. But this is probably more a political statement than it was factual - blood money used to buy the land owned by women.
In ancient Babylonia women had great freedom. The mother was represented by a sign that meant "goddess of the house". It was not until about 1700 B.C. that women began to loose those rights. But never to the extent the Bible claims. In Egypt, women always held authority and control over property and sexual rights. Whereas other nations gave royal princesses to foreign kings as wives to assure good relations between the nations, under the native Pharaohs, there was never an Egyptian princess given as a wife to a foreign ruler. It is interesting to note that both Nefertiti and her mother were foreign princesses given to the Egyptian Pharaoh to consummate peace treaties. However, no Egyptian princess was given in exchange. The foreign kings appears to have been happy with the payment of gold instead.
The passing of property and position from mother to daughter was the general rule throughout the ancient mid east, but not to the extent which we find in Egypt. All that ended with the Moslem conquest in 642 of the present era.
Even the Bible gives evidence of ancient matrilineal inheritance in its statement from Genesis 2:24, "therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother and shall cleave unto his wife." In other words the man left his tribe, his clan, his household, his whatever and went to live in the wife's territory. In Israel today, one can not claim to be a Jew unless his mother was a Jew. The male passes no right of citizenship.
It was the Greek domination of the western world in 325 B.C. that changed women's rights. The Greeks had already made the transition from matrilineal to patrilineal succession. In sex vernacular to do Greek means to fuck in the ass. The ancient Greeks had very little use for women (actually wives). Sexually, they often preferred little boys and introduced pedophilia wherever they went. Then, as now, changes in the treatment of women and their property rights are reflected by the changes in sexual treatment of women.
As Christianity and Islam became the dominant religions, the Jewish concept of women conferring their property by adultery took on religious furor. However, punishment for adultery was very one sided. There is the New Testament story of the woman taken in adultery (John 8:3-8), "And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst, they say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act. Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned; but what sayest thou?... (he) said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her." Where was the man? Adultery could not have been committed by the woman alone. But the man was not even considered for punishment. Christ, as the model for all true Christians, did not judge the women, but it is the self-righteous Christians who consider themselves to be better than Christ.
As male priests put on long robes in an attempt to act the roles of the priestess, women became more and more deprived of their legal rights and sexual freedom. The Inquisition was the most brutal assault on women. It was not restricted to just Spain, where it was the most infamous, but engulfed all of Europe. One common belief is that the Inquisition was the persecution of the Jews, (a concept perpetuated by the Jewish historians). But women who owned property or held position were the real victims. More women were killed in one year of the Inquisition than all the Jews in the 500 years of its official reign and nearly 1400 years of its practice. It was not the elimination of heresy which the church was attempting to stamp out through the inquisition, but the greed for property which perpetuated it. According to a decree of Orvieto in 1350, if a man and woman became involved in a love affair and one was a Christian and the other a Jew, the woman, whatever her faith, was beheaded or burned alive. The same fate only applied to the man if he was a Jew.
But the Christian church was not alone. The cry of Moslems was not, "Islam or the sword" but rather, "Tribute, Islam or the Sword." When conversion to Islam became too widespread, Islamic leaders forbade conversion to the religion because converts were exempted from paying tribute. As for women, to confer property on another by the sexual act meant immediate death. This was graphically demonstrated with the beheading of a royal princess in Saudi Arabia several years ago and the brutal killing of adulteresses in Iran today.
The cry may be one of morality, but that morality is motivated by money. Up until the 10th century, Catholic priests were permitted to marry. This is a big issue with the present Catholic Church which requires celibacy for its priests, but that was not always the case. Celibacy does not mean forgoing sex, that is chastity - celibacy refers to not being married. Between 1040 and 1051 the Pope issued a series of papal decrees (rightfully called "Bulls") which ordered priests to abandon their wives and sell their children into slavery so that the property acquired by the priests would belong to the church.
In England, if a man kidnaped and raped an unmarried girl, the law acknowledged him as her lawful husband and rewarded him with all her property. That inequity in the law was changed in 1653. After that time the man was punished most severely (by male standards). He was still considered the husband, but only received half of the girls property. The other half went to the Crown.
It is from that perverted historical perspective that religionists try to make adultery a moral issue. There is no other claim they can make in a supposedly equal society. But when put to close scrutiny, adultery has little to do with morals. That is what makes adultery enigmatic. Sex in marriage is permitted. Extra marital sex is adultery and forbidden. No other commandment of the Jews, Christians or Moslems permits the law to be broken through a marriage vow. Stealing is still stealing, murder is still murder, false witness is still false witness. But sex is sometimes good, sometimes bad -- depending on whether the woman's property is going to another person.
This is reflected in the attitude men have towards sex and women. If his concern is money, then he is probably too selfish to be a real good lover. A man who won't give of his wealth certainly couldn't give of himself. Possession to such men is the same as wealth. They must possess their wife - they can't satisfy her but they must possess her. For her to have sex with another man is an affront - a taking of his masculinity. But his very concept of masculinity is derived from a perverse Judaeo/Christian view of women as property, property possessed and kept by the "real man". That concept is a repudiation of the reality that sex can be enjoyed just for the physical act itself. Sex is not love, though religion has attempted to make sex love. Modern religions perpetuate the myth that a woman must be in love with a man in order to have sex with him. In doing this they sow the seeds of disharmony. Physiologically, a woman can enjoy sex with any caring man - many caring men. Because of this, when a married women finds herself sexually attracted to another man she too often equates this with love. Her religious training rejects the physical, sexual attraction and she falls out of love with her husband so she can be in love with the new man. It is not having extra marital sex which destroys marriages. It is the emotional attachment the "adulterer" develops with the new sex partner. Women can forgive a man who pays a prostitute for sex, but few forgive a man who has fallen in love with another women, even if he never had sex with her.
When women and men strip themselves of the envy and stigma of Judaeo\Christian adultery there is usually no reason why a healthy relationship cannot continue. The most important issue in adultery is to understand the problem and communicate with your partner. If your wife tells you that she has had sex with another man you should feel hurt and rejected. Not because she had sex with another man, but because you weren't invited to participate and enjoy watching her enjoy herself.
However, to develop this wholesome, enlightened attitude of participation requires a belief system which is not restricted by the intolerant, sex-negative doctrines of patriarchal religions which control men by controlling their natural enjoyment of sex. When a theology promotes sex as a divine gift, most if not all of the hurt and guilt over sexual "infidelity" vanish.