Analysis of the “Garden of Eden,” Story
The Garden of Eden story is principally a creation story fashioned in the same style that the Greek story of “Pandora’s Box,” was written. Curiously, both these stories indict the female and her strong inquisitiveness as being the sole reason for the fall of humanity. Due to this mistranslation, The Garden of Eden story has become one of the most dangerous stories in existence. If it was viewed primarily as a harmless story filled to the brim with allegorical language, the story would have been bereft of any dangerous consequences.
Yet, Christianity has besmirched the story with their own arrogance. The Jews had never meant for the story to be handled as some literal account of creation. Either way, Christianity historically misconstrued the old testament, the Torah and forced it to be filled with underlying secret messages that tell of their place of supremacy among all the major world religions. If one of the noted writers of the Bible who were neither Moses or Abraham were even to have heard of Biblical literalism, they would have greeted this absurd idea as something that is not just purely idiotic but sacrilegious as well.
In Sunday School, kids are indoctrinated into the literary falsehood of reading text literally and superficially. We are supposed to discredit the rational idea of imaginative constructs and denounce those in favor of deluding our mind into the idea that Adam and Eve had Godiva hair, insatiable lust issues, and God was both tyrannical and petty.
My main scruple with the creation account was the loony idea that an apple literally represented the unacknowledged existence of the polar opposite forces of good and evil. Even at the age of six, the idea of an apple literally representing those things was pure idiocy. I was accustomed to the force of imagination and it was proven to be something worthwhile. It could create some very alluring tapestries and stories which promised deeper meaning underneath the surface.
In literary terms, delving below the surface is finding the anagogical meaning. Some could interpret this as finding the subtext: What is the true significance of this story below the magnetic facade? Many religious individuals misread the Bible with an intent to read without the inclusion of their analytical lens. Perhaps, the child’s mind that has not been naturally worked to utilize this cognitive power of seeking true comprehension through questions is a wiser method of understanding cryptic Biblical texts.
When we plunge below the surface, we sense that this story was never meant to be a literal, scientific account of creation. Instead, it elaborates upon the ineffable place of being in spiritual communion with some benign, enigmatic God. The “God,” figure within the Creation story is not meant to be a literal God just like “Aslan” within Narnia was never meant to be a real deity within the imaginary world of Narnia. He’s not something our mind can synthesize and even constrain with gender specific nouns. He, She, or it might easily be a profound supreme being that can only be seen through the human lens of being nonexistent in our terms of existence.
Maybe, our artistic powers endow us with the power to envisage a relational God. We feel disconsolate by the unapproachable God, the agnostic God. Therefore, we must place him within the framework of a story and then extrapolate the way in which he reacts to our vices and mistakes. Whenever God commands something, he is the indistinguishable voice of reason or superego within our minds. Sometimes, like in Noah’s Ark story, God instead could be shaped into someone as vengeful and conceited as Noah who never expended any mental energy to empathize with all the people who died in this great deluge. Another post of mine will show the faults of Noah rather then the benevolent “Noah” who receives so much adulation that many Christians have forgotten about the elements of Greek tragedy that persist in the Noah tale.
What can we learn from the “Garden of Eden,” story? Perhaps our efforts to understand God are thwarted whenever we sought to impose our will on his. The true underlying purpose of the “Garden of Eden,” myth lies with the subversiveness of fettering God to our obstinate will. Whenever we do something “in the name of God,” we could be doing something definably immoral. But, we still beseech our psychological preferred God construct to support us even if we are engaging in malicious activities. Is God commonly used as the “ends that justified the means,” which is the root source of encouragement for our actions? Within this Machiavellian equation, God is nothing but a motivator for our selfish actions.
Is this the fall of humanity then? It is not a literal fall as vividly described in this myth. Rather, it is a psychological pull towards our selfish cortex that resides in our brain. We depart from the enigmatic, wondrous God who is rightly higher than our futile systems of languages and constructs. Soon enough, our Freudian egos conceptualize a smaller God. When Eve and Adam are consuming the apple, they are satiating their egos with a God that will do their will only. This apple can allow us to hate, maim, and ignore the victims of humanity’s selfish actions. Instead, our new sovereign “ego” God will allow us to be sanctimonious and control those of a lower hierarchy with stringent dogmatic rules that are never truly God ordained.
In my next post, I want to explore this issue in more depth. One of the main points I want to bring up is an exploration of sexism and how many of the Bible stories were manipulated to promote the neurotic belief that women should be subservient to the will of man rather than God. Then again, within Christianity, God does become nothing but the epitome of masculinity.