I know that there are sources in the Gemara Aggaditah on Samal and Lilit (לילית & ס"מ) as well as in the Zohar. I have seen her mentioned in Shabbat, Eruvin, and Niddah. Still, not a clear depiction of what Lilit represents, and I believe that there are more sources.

Any reference would be appreciated along with a cited explanation on the gist of what ס"מ and לילית actually depict independently as well as their relationship to one another.

One unanswered question is the source for Lilit being Adam HaRishon's wife and then becoming Samal's wife? Is that true? If so, where is it mentioned?

Thanks in advance for your answers with sources.


2 Answers 2


Aside from my comment above where I list a number of source that answer your question as to what Lilis represents, to answer your final question about where we know that she was first Adam's wife and then went to becomes Samael/Satan's wife:

The Otzar Meforshim brings down the midrash of Ben Sira here

It says that when Hashem states that it is not good for man to be alone, he created Lilis. However, almost immediately they began to quarrel over who would be the dominant figure in the act of intimacy (i.e. who would be the one to lie on top). When Lilis saw that she was not going to win, she uttered the name of Hashem and flew off into the air.

Having left Adam she 'teamed up' with Samael to wreak spiritual devastation.

The Shelah HaKodosh in Torah Shebichsav, Ki Seitzei writes expressly:

The reason the categories of Mamzer, the Moabite, and Ammonite may not intermarry with Jewish girls is that inasmuch as their place in the scheme of things prior to their becoming converted was in an unholy domain, they are considered to remain under the influence of the forces governing that domain. It is they who symbolize the unholy union between Samael and Lilith. They produce children who do not grow up to embrace G–d's teachings...

Indeed, several sources point to the fact that Lilis and Samael work together in a partnership to make people fall in their ruchniyus (spirituality).

The Ohr HaChaim on Bereishis 49:11 writes expressly about the power of the domain of the סטרא אחרא and specifically the two-pronged attack of both the male and female side:

According to the Zohar the word כבד does not merely mean liver but is a hyperbole for the male with whom Lilith consorts. The spiritually negative forces in this world are sometimes referred to as Samael sometimes as the serpent. Samael is the male part of that team, Lilith, is the female. When adultery is committed, the female partner is released from the כבד, i.e. מן הכבד.

In Kol HaTor 3:23 it writes that the Vilna Gaon taught:

At times a great righteous person who carries out many deeds has within his name one of the numbers similar to the number of the impure forces from the aspect of “God made one in contrast to the other.” Our Sages explained that this was done so that the force of holiness would overpower the contrasting force of impurity, just like the number of counters the number of Samael and his partner, Lilith [and [611], or like counters [376]. There are other such examples, as is known.


The biblical book of Isaiah 34:14 possibly describes lilith as a demon:

“And the wild-cats shall meet with the jackals, and the satyr [the Hebrew is sei’ir, which means “goat”] shall cry to his fellow; yea, the lilith shall repose there, and find her a place of rest.”

In the Dead Sea Scrolls (Qumran, 67 C.E.), the Seductress says:

“I, the sage, declare the grandeur of His radiance in order to frighten and terrify all the spirits of the ravaging angels and the bastard spirits, demons, liliths, owls….”

The Talmud suggests she is a demon ( Babylonian Talmud, Shabbat 151b, states she “takes hold of whoever sleeps alone in a house.”

The second Alphabet of Ben Sira seems to say that in Genesis 1:27, Adam and Eve were simultaneously created “male and female created He them.” In 2:21–25, states that Eve was formed from Adam’s tzeila, “side” or “rib.” Ben Sira suggests that Genesis 2:21–25 was referring to Eve while Genesis 1:27 is referring to Lilith.

Ben Sira then recounts a graphic story where Lilith, Adam's equal, requests to be on top during intercourse. When Adam rejects her request she says the Ineffable name of G-d and flies away. Many say she is responsible for the many demons who plague Eve's descendants. Since Eve was a part of Adam, she is submissive to him.

In Rabbi Isaac Hakohen's book The Emanation of the Left Side, he explains that good is derived from the ten emanations, sefirot, flowing from the right side of G-d (this is the feminine aspect of G-d ending with the shekhinah and malkhut); and evil from ten foul sefirot of the left side. Samael, Satan, is from the left.1 According to Rabbi Isaac, Lilith is the wife of Ashmedai, the prince of demons. Also, the tenth emanation of the left is Lilith.

The Zohar relates that Lilith had an adulterous 130-year relationship with Adam. This accounts for the many demons in existence.

Lastly, some scholars think that Lilith's origins are derived from Assyrian-Babylonian myth.

[1] To see a different approach to the concept of Satan, demons, and evil, please see this answer here.

  • "The Zohar relates that Lilith..." - where in the zohar?
    – user813801
    Commented Jul 21, 2021 at 20:56
  • @user813801 I forget the source but the idea is there.
    – Jonathan
    Commented Aug 27, 2021 at 15:43

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