Is a question I can't answer.
I can tell you what I do
I can tell you my intention
I can invite you to come along with me
As to that last one - the invite - I'm serious.
What I'm doing is
Taking the literal English translation of Sumerian from ETCSL
Comparing it with Kramer's Descent.
Asking myself if the Kramer translation is the only way to understand what is recorded.
Writing the Descent as I understand it
I want this to be a play.
Scene opens with a ritual
Offerings and chanting.
Inana speaks to the audience, behind those who have brought offerings.
The Great above she opened Her ear to the Great Below becomes:
You know me as queen of heaven
You taste me in the beauty of this earth.
Beautiful people, you love me!
You honor me in passion, in glory, in sex.
You know that I am worth dying for.
When desire fills your heart, when murderous intent is your reply, I hear you rejoice. You shout "Let it come! let's go watch how the temples burn and the town hall falling. Give us more truth, tell us the stories of honest men turning into traitors.
Only Dystopia is honest' you shout. 'It's all in the open now'.
And then the enemy tears apart the corpses of the population and your city is pulverized as with a pestle. The best of you scattered like dust, blown away by hot winds. Those who remain are massacred, they finish off young and old alike.
You die, you all fade away, all passion spent.
Doesn't that seem. well, just so sad?
That you will go so far from me?
It is time that I honored your love!
It is time for me to bring the miserable city of the Underworld, Irkalla, under my control. It is time for me to restore lust, desire and glory!
To the dead...
The Descent is a story of hubris, it tells of consequences.
The Descent addresses a far more 'Babylonian' concern than accepting the unacceptable. It is a story about order, and the restoration of order. It arose through a wholly sensible distrust of rulers who bring disorder to the state through acquisitive ambitions.
I respect the Jungian tradition; but this story just plain isn't about individuation - Ereshkigal is not Inana's shadow. The closing lines are not Holy Inana, sweet is your praise.
The Descent honors and glorifies the queen of the dead.
Holy Ereshkigal, sweet is your praise