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By Don Nardo
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Additional resources for Life in Ancient Mesopotamia
I am Inanna! Which god compares with me? [The chief god] Enlil gave me the heavens and he gave me the Earth. I am Inanna! He gave me lordship, and he gave me queenship. He gave me battles and he gave me fighting. He gave me the storm-wind and he gave me the dust cloud. He placed the heavens on my head as a crown. He put the Earth at my feet as sandals. He wrapped [a] holy [robe] around my body. He put the holy scepter in my hand. The [other] gods are [like] small birds, but I am the falcon. . When I enter the Ekur, the house of Enlil, the gate-keeper does not lift his hand against my breast.
They needed to believe that the universe and all its parts, once created, would continue to operate in an orderly and effective manner, not subject to disintegration and deterioration. The me, devised by Enlil, governed everyone and everything in the universe. And mortal men could take comfort in the knowledge that the blue sky, the teeming earth, the dark Underworld, the wild sea, were all acting in accordance with the rules of the gods. There were more than a hundred me, one for each of the aspects of the world and its civilization.
Moreover, any person who managed to acquire the tablet would suddenly possess superhuman powers. This explains why a number of Mesopotamian myths featured people trying to steal the tablet. 64 Looking Back Taking Comfort in a Troubled World The me ( parsu to the Babylonians and Assyrians) defined how devout individuals should properly conduct themselves during religious rituals as well as in everyday life. The late, noted scholar of ancient Mesopotamia Samuel N. Kramer adds that the me were a response to their yearning for reassurance in a troubling world.