During one of my periodic forays into current Asherah lore on the web, I discovered a new breed of cat. Well, actually, I didn’t discover it, I just became aware of it. Because of a misspelling on a website I learned that the Ashera (trademarked name!) is the most expensive cat in the world, retailing for $22,000. A blend of three species (the mind boggles), the African Serval, Asian Leopard, and domestic cat, this feline comes in at least three varieties, including the especially appropriate Royal Ashera. If you’ve come into an inheritance and want to waste a few grand, take a look at Lifestyle Pets to see the wonder.
Curious, I searched to find if anyone would tip a hand as to where the name of the cat was derived. Choosing the name of the queen of the Ugaritic divine world seemed a little too much coincidence for me, but then again, homophones happen. When the Prince of Egypt, Dreamworks’ answer to The Ten Commandments, was released, I had several people ask me why the Israelites were singing about “Asherah” after they crossed the Red Sea. I had to watch the movie very closely, but I figured out that they were singing “I will sing,” which, in Hebrew, sounds suspiciously like “Asherah.” I never did discover Ashera’s origins.
Cats, however often maligned as associated with witches and vampires and other creatures of the night, are certainly among the most divine of domesticated pets. If I were free to purchase an animal companion the Ashera would be in the ranking (after I’d won the lottery, of course). Whether intentional or not, who would not want to own a cat named after the only goddess to be mentioned in connubial relations both to El and perhaps even to Yahweh? (The latter association, like the naming of the cat, is entirely open to question!)