EL
The Chief Canaanite Deity

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El - (also called Latipan, and possibly Dagon) He is known as the Father of the gods, 'the father of mankind', the 'Bull', and 'the creator of creatures'. He is grey haired and bearded and lives at Mt. Lel. He is a heavy drinker and has gotten extremly drunk at his banquets.
 
Mt. Lel is where the assembly of the gods meet. It is El's abode and the source of the rivers and two oceans, as well as where those waters meet those of the firmament. It lies 'two layers beneath the wells of the earth, three spans beneath its marshes.' It had been thought to be a field and not a mountain. The mansion there has eight entrances and seven chambers.
 
Source: Canaanite/Ugaritic Mythology FAQ, ver. 1.2

EL is the supreme creator god of the Canaanites who lives with the other gods on Mount Zaphon (similar to Mount Olympus of the Greeks but located at the mouth of the Orontes river near the border between Turkey and Syria). He is the father of all the gods and men and is often addressed as such by the Canaanite gods. He is the god of the earth and the air who is represented by a bull. He is derived from the Sumerian god AN. In the Bible EL is translated as God. Elohim is the plural form of EL yet in most places in the Bible it is used in the singular sense so it is also translated as God instead of gods. Strict monotheism was not fully developed in Israelite thought until their exile to Babylon. Before then Yahweh (translated as Lord in the Bible) was the god of Israel and Judah (officially their only god) whose principle power and characteristic was that of justice and righteousness. Because he judged other peoples and gods he soon came to be seen as the supreme God (the equivalent of EL), and finally as the only God for all people. Echoes of Israel's earlier stages of understanding are found in some old psalms as follows:.

  • Psalm 82:1: Elohim has taken his place in the assembly of EL, in the midst of the elohim He holds judgment.
  • Psalm 29:1: Ascribe to Yahweh, O sons of EL, ascribe to Yahweh glory and strength.
  • Psalm 89:6: For who in the skies can be compared to Yahweh, who among the sons of EL is like Yahweh,

Source: Gods of Canaan as Described by the Ugarit Tablets

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