Sunday, February 10, 2008

The Lesson they Failed to Learn


The Story of Adam and Eve

The Lord made a beautiful garden in Eden, which had numerous fruit trees in addition to countless flower plants. It also had several different kinds of animals living peacefully. The garden was watered by four streams.
The Lord appointed two human beings—a couple—to take care of the garden. They were called Adam and Eve. They named all the plants and animals and took care of their well-being. In return for doing their job, they could stay in the garden and eat from there. They had the freedom to eat from any fruit tree in the garden except one – a special fruit tree at the center of the garden. It was called The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, and the Lord reserved it for himself. The fruit of this special tree had magical power to provide extraordinary knowledge and vision to those who ate it. The Lord enjoyed such knowledge and vision, and did not intend the human beings to obtain such extraordinary knowledge and vision.
There was also another kind of magical tree in the garden called The Tree of Life, which had fruit that imparted immortality to those who ate it. The Lord, having eaten them, was immortal. However, unlike the other tree, there was no restriction about this one. But the human beings didn’t know about it, and so they didn’t bother to eat from it.
Adam and Eve did not worry much about the fruit they were forbidden. They had already got enough fruit in the garden, and they thought that this one fruit was not going to make any difference in their lives. They were not aware of the magical power of this tree. They continued in good terms with the Lord, and they waited eagerly to receive the Lord daily when he visited the garden in the evenings.
As time passed, Eve got friendly with a snake in the garden. From the snake, Eve learned that it was a very special tree, and its fruit would give them extraordinary knowledge and vision. Eve shared the information with Adam. Considering the advantages of eating the fruit, they forgot all about their agreement with the Lord.
They ate the fruit, and immediately they saw its effects. They realized that they obtained the power to see what they couldn’t see before. They also miraculously acquired the knowledge of what was good and what was evil. Because of this knowledge, right away they felt ashamed of their nakedness, and they tried to cover their body with leaves.
In the evening, as usual, the Lord came to the garden. When they heard the Lord’s footsteps, they hid themselves behind the bush. The Lord had to call aloud to get them out into the open.
The Lord rightly guessed the reason for such behavior from them. When the Lord asked, “Did you eat the fruit?” Adam had the option to take the responsibility for his action and to say sorry. However, he didn’t have such knowledge. Although they gained the knowledge of good and evil, they didn’t know how to mend the broken relationship with the Lord. Lacking that essential knowledge, their newfound knowledge turned to be a curse rather than a blessing to them. Adam placed the blame on Eve, and thereby on the Lord for letting her be in the garden as his mate. Following Adam’s example, Eve also placed the blame on the snake.
Adam and Eve proved irresponsible. They were unfit for the job. How could they be trusted with bigger things if they couldn’t be trusted with such a little thing?
Thus they had to learn the basic lessons of life in the hard way. Adam and Eve and their descendents have been out of the garden since then, suffering the consequences of their actions. They have the ability to distinguish between good and evil, but still they haven’t learned how to maintain healthy relationships. They haven’t learned the importance of being responsible either.
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