“Psyche is a beautiful, innocent young girl. Cupid falls in love with her and sends messengers asking her to come to him in his hill-top palace at night. She is to make love to a god! But there is one condition. Their love-making must take place in total darkness. Psyche must take it on trust that she is enjoying the love of a god.
Her elder sister is envious, though. She taunts her and tells her that it is not a beautiful boy-god she is making love to, but a hideous giant serpent. One night Psyche can resist no longer, and while Cupid is in post- coital slumber, she holds an oil lamp over him. She is delighted to discover the gloriously beautiful young god, but at that moment a drop of burning oil falls on him and wakes him. Psyche is banished from his presence for ever.
The double meaning in this story is this: the god is really a hideous serpent. This is the history of the Nephilim, of the entry into the human condition of the serpent of animal desire – but told from the human point of view.”
“The secret history of the world” by Jonathan Black
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