A Pillar of Salt that was once Lot’s Wife in Bible
Salt plays a very important role in our lives and in India it played a very significant role in the freedom movement also, when Mahatma Gandhi led the freedom fighters on Dandi March to oppose the tax on Salt. But salt stories are almost as old as civilization. I am not sure when I first read about Lot’s Wife, but my guess is it was a story about an archaeologist finding a beautiful statue of women in the desert. The archaeologist carries the statue in the back of a truck and starts for the city to make some money by selling the statue. It starts raining on the way and when they reach the destination he can not find the statue in the back of his open truck. Now the statue is initially believed by the archaeologist to be made of some smooth stone. Throughout the journey, the archaeologist had not stopped the truck anywhere. So the question came where did the statue vanish? Finally, the archaeologist reaches a conclusion that the statue must have been of ” Lot’s Wife”. I was a boy when I read this story in Reader’s Digest but decided to dig further ( pun unintended), and the search led to Holy Bible and the story of Lot’s wife and how she became a pillar of Salt as she disobeyed the instruction from Angels. Anywhere you go in Jordan you are never far from the history and religion and often they are together like conjoined twins.
As Lot and family were fleeing the city of Sodom, they were instructed by the angels to not look back but Lot’s wife did look back and was converted in a pillar of Salt. Now our today’s travel Tuesday picture is of that Pillar of Salt believed to be originally Lot’s Wife ( she is not referred by her name in Holy Bible, only some Jewish references mention her as Ado or Edith ). This Salt Pillar is on a small hill opposite the Jordanian side of Dead Sea. We stopped there on our way to the Dead Sea. As the landscape was very barren with not even a blade of grass visible, so I waited for this truck to pass below to add some contrast and color to the picture. This also gives some idea of scale to the height of the hill and the pillar. I was standing on the other side of road next to the Dead Sea Bank when I clicked this picture during my visit to Jordan
What was Lot’s wife’s name?
Surprisingly for all the myths surrounding her, I could not find her name and everywhere she is referred only as Lot’s wife in Bible. Even when Jesus refers to her he also calls her only by the same reference – “Remember Lot’s wife” (Luke 17:32, NKJV). So I have no idea what was the name of the unfortunate woman who was converted to a pillar of Salt as she was fleeing the doomed city of Sodom with her husband Lot and 2 daughters. The story of Lot has further refrence in Bible but his Wife’s refrence ends with her becoming a pillar of salt. If any of the Bible expert is reading it may I request you to share the name of Lot’s wife in comments ?
But this pillar and story of Lot’s wife are not the only reason for the importance of Lot in Christianity. It is believed that Jesus is a descendant of Lot through David’s great-grandmother Ruth, who is descended from Moab, Lot’s son through one of his daughters. When I started my journey to Jordan, I had no idea I will be visiting the pillar of salt that was once Lot’s Wife, but when our guide was narrating the story to me it kind of took me to the flashback and I remembered the story I have read as a child. But reading about a pillar of salt is one thing, standing in front of that very pillar that is believed to be once a living person is absolutely magical feeling. Like I always say. Traveling is good. Try it.
Next Travel Tuesday – Another picture and my take on fellow desi Travelers 🙂 Till then Happy Travels.
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