07 January 2010
Delilah was beautiful and sexy, and Samson fell for her. But Delilah was a Philistine – and Samson was an Israelite, a terrorist and a murderer.
The Philistines bullied Delilah to discover the secret of Samson’s strength. Eventually, Samson admitted to her that the secret lies in his hair, and she cut his locks. His power curtailed, Samson was captured by the Philistines, who stabbed out his eyes with their swords.
The bible holds Delilah accountable for Samson’s defeat. The bible brands Delilah as 'evil'.
Here are some thoughts:
Samson didn’t have to tell her his secret. He chose to tell her.
Perhaps Samson wanted to tell her – perhaps he was tired of a brutal existence. Perhaps he was over-confident in his strength.
Perhaps she loved him, and he didn’t love her enough in return.
Perhaps he was abusive towards her.
Perhaps the pressure on Delilah from the Philistines was unbearable.
Perhaps Delilah was desperate. Perhaps she was unhappy. Perhaps she lost control for just one moment.
And some questions:
Why is it that a woman with hardly any rights – and who is oppressed, perhaps beaten and raped, denied options – is expected to demonstrate the same level of responsibility, integrity and rationality – if not more – than her male counterparts?
Why is it that we like women to be beautiful, but we judge them more harshly when men fall for their beauty?
If you like poetry...
Carol Ann Duffy's poem 'Delilah' in 'The World's Wife' is a beautiful interpretation of Delilah's story.