Brett and Kate McKay | February 20, 2017
A Man’s Life
You Can’t Return to Eden
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Unlike in the traditional Christian interpretation of the story in which God wishes to keep Adam and Eve from the tree of knowledge indefinitely, however, in looking at it as a metaphor for maturation, the father knows that his children will eventually partake of its fruit, and he both dreads that day, and yet understands its necessity in their future happiness.
Like all parents, he wrestles with dueling impulses: on the one hand, he wants his kids to stay innocent, safe, and close to him forever; but on the other, he knows that they can’t grow or progress unless they separate from him, gain knowledge, and learn to exercise moral agency on their own. Hence his conflicting commandments: he tells Adam and Eve not to eat the fruit from the tree of knowledge of good and evil…but he also tells them to multiply. Some readers have felt that this latter commandment could not have been fulfilled by Adam and Eve without their first breaking the former, and thus becoming awakened to their nakedness, their sexuality — their desire for each other. Here then is a father who doesn’t want his kids to get older, but knows they must to fulfill their potential, and to follow his pattern in having children themselves. It’s a fractured feeling every parent has experienced: “Don’t grow up!” “Please grow up!”
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Nor should you want to … …
Honestly, I had never heard or read about this interpretation before today.
It makes perfect sense.
Now first you have to believe in “God”, “a God”, or such. But bear in mind the early humans were seeking “Eden”.
Even the Dead Old White Guys were some form of Deists.
Not sure that I share the same starting point. But us fat old white guy injineers have to leave that to the Physicists and the Theologians.
Even Mortimer Adler, Great Books of the Western World https://prodigalnomore.wordpress.com/great-books-of-the-western-world-as-free-ebooks/, couldn’t make the “leap of faith”.
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