Issues with the Garden of Eden

Discussion in 'Off Topic Area' started by CKava, May 6, 2007.

  1. angacam

    angacam Mare Est Vita Mea

    What about Adams first wife Lilith? :eek:
  2. CanuckMA

    CanuckMA Valued Member

    Midrash. Essentially Rabbinic stories used to fill in, or try to explain gap in Torah. They are not taken as anything but what they are, stories.
  3. Johnno

    Johnno Valued Member

    i.e. stories used to fill in the gaps in the other stories.
  4. Strafio

    Strafio Trying again...

    A bit like that...
    Except the stories aren't supposed to be taken to be historical truth, more folklore and stories based on characters and themes from real events. You could say that the many versions and spin-offs of the Robin Hood story are midrash...

    (that's my understanding of Midrash anyway.)
  5. CanuckMA

    CanuckMA Valued Member

    That's a pretty good way to put it. Midrash is usually used to fill gaps in time, i.e., what happened to Moses in Midian.
  6. Zandorv1037

    Zandorv1037 Valued Member

    You don't have to UNDERSTAND evil to do it. God SAID it was evil, and that should have been enough. It's like your mother telling you it's not a good idea to play in traffic when you're two. you don't have to UNDERSTAND why to do it. You should just trust your mother that it's wrong because when you're two she understands more than you do.
    Thinking for ourselves isn't wrong, but trying to play God and decide what is and isn't wrong is. You can try to come to conclusions if you don't know, but if God's SAID something is wrong, then it's wrong, no questions asked. Otherwise you can logically think about it and try to decide.
    I'm not sure if any of this made sense to anyone else, I have a tendency to not explain my mind sometimes... XD

    well, we broke perfection, now he has to go fix it, and we can't play in the dangerous broken perfection ;). Or rather, that's how I'd say it if I was talking to a small child. But I'll leave it that way because I'm not sure how to express what I'm thinking on this right now :(. I'll edit this later if I can figure out how to say this properly.

    He knew it was all going to happen, but what kind of Father would he be if he just kept his children from ever having to make a descision? Just kept us in a little bubble for eternity? Sure, it'd make us happy, but happy doesn't mean good. He let us make our own descisions and then let us pay the consequences. No good father shelters his children too much. It's all part of that free will thing.

    Once again, if some of this didn't make any sense, it's probably because I didn't fully explain myself... and I apologize for that.
  7. SiAiS

    SiAiS Moved on

    Makes sense to me... is that [ XD ] an Iqthys (sp?)
  8. Zandorv1037

    Zandorv1037 Valued Member

    The XD was a smiley face. like :] or :[ or (T_T)
  9. tekkengod

    tekkengod the MAP MP

    where the hell do these people come from?!
  10. WatchfulAbyss

    WatchfulAbyss Active Member

    God silly....
  11. flashlock

    flashlock Banned Banned

    I'm an atheist (buddhist), but I like the bible as a literary work, especially Genesis.

    "Eating the forbidden fruit" is just a masking for sex.

    The serpent has always been a symbol of wisdom (see Egyptian mythology).

    I read the story as a parable about growing up, realizing you're a sexual being, and there is a dangerous world outside the happy childhood garden.

    It's a powerful story about growing up and going out into the world.
  12. CKava

    CKava Just one more thing... Supporter

    Your analogy does not hold up... there is an age before which children are believed to be unable to be held legally accountable for their actions because they don't know right from wrong. If a baby shot someone I doubt the baby is going to receive much of a punishment because 1. it likely didn't know what it was doing was wrong and 2. it will in theory have had someone who should have been responsible for allowing the action to occur. From a very early age your parents will also try to get you not to do things because they are BAD. Bad things generally lead to punishments and thats how you learn that they are bad. As such an analogy suitable for the garden of eden story would be that a mother told a baby of say two years old not to play with the big toy in the middle of the room. Then she went out of the room and waited for the baby to play with the toy. Then when the baby did play with the toy the mother came in and chucked it out of the house for disobeying her order.

    Your whole argument is still missing the KEY issue i.e. without a concept of Good/Bad nothing can be WRONG. You wouldn't be able to understand that there are bad consequences to disobeying an order heck you wouldn't even know that disobeying an order was 'bad' because you don't have the concept of good/bad! The whole thing does not make sense...

    Er... but he knew that was going to happen, he set it up that way. In the analogy of the baby and the mother above, who is really to blame for the baby playing with the toy? The baby who doesn't know right from wrong and just likes toys or the mother who put the forbidden toy in the middle of the room and left the baby alone with it?

    Errr... again the free will thing doesn't really help. If I was a father and I had a baby and there was a fire in the room I wouldn't think 'Well I can't control the baby forever, better let him make his own choices in life' as said baby toddles into the fire. Any responsible parent would prevent terrible, terrible things happening to their child- if they could, and God not only COULD but he actually KNEW it was going to happen and SET IT UP that way. The equivalent analogy again would be me as the father again setting up the room with my baby and a large roaring fire, knowing that my baby has always been fascinated with fire and watching while my baby inevitably crawls into the fire. Wow... If that is God's character then I'm damn glad God was not my father!
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2007
  13. CKava

    CKava Just one more thing... Supporter

    That's great and all but the point of the thread was that the story of eden doesn't make sense if you believe in an omnipotent and omniscent God as many Christians do being an atheist this isn't going to be a problem for you.
  14. flashlock

    flashlock Banned Banned

    So they should become atheists. No God, no problem! :D
  15. Strafio

    Strafio Trying again...

    **Massages Ckava's shoulders**

    You go get 'em tiger! ;)
  16. Zandorv1037

    Zandorv1037 Valued Member

    ...So people are the equivalent of babies before they have the ability to know what's wrong and what's not? Not knowing that difference doesn't make you stupid. If someone's father tells a nine year old not to touch his gun, which is in the house, is it the father's fault if the kid accidentally shoots himself because he wouldn't listen? If a mother tells an eight year old not to play in traffic, and he does it anyway, is it the mother's fault the kid gets hit by a car? The parents can't hold their childs hand and keep up with their every movement forever. The kids both should have known to listen to their parents. Anyway, adam and Eve KNEW what they were doing is wrong, they just didn't know WHY. Your analogies don't even work because Adam and Eve weren't retarded, they didn't have the intelligence of an infant, they were adults.
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2007
  17. mike-IHF

    mike-IHF Valued Member


    Actually, Zandorv1037 has a good point.

    However I would make some corrections. The snake is actually an old Hindu symbol for the male erection. It was actually called "the rising serpent". However at this time the bible said nothing about humans being able to create. Hence why the punishment had to be written. I am of the belief that the knowledge the Adam and Eve discovered was not only of sex, but to create a child. Well this could not be because, god is the only one that has the power to create.
  18. CKava

    CKava Just one more thing... Supporter

    Where is Zandorov's point? All he is highlighting is that he cannot conceive of someone who could have intelligence and not have a concept of right and wrong. But that is what the bible tells us Adam and Eve were! The examples I used deliberately included a very young infant because that is the only equivalent in modern humans of a human who does not have any concept of right and wrong. By the age of 6 and definitely by 8 or 9 most children at very least have developed a rudimentary understanding of right and wrong. Hence the analogies Zandarov used wont hold up.

    Zandarov is basically making my argument for me... He cannot seem to coherently bring together the two ideas that:

    A) Adam and Eve had no concept of right and wrong before they ate the fruit.
    B) Adam and Eve knew they were doing something they shouldn't have when they ate the fruit.

    He has not explained at all how Adam and Eve could have had any conception of something being bad without possesing knowledge of the concept he is simply arguing incredulously that they must have understood because they can't have been morons.

    How can Adam and Eve have known what they were about to do was WRONG if the fruit they ate supposedly gave them the very knowledge of RIGHT AND WRONG.

    On top of this even if he had demonstrated his point coherently and completely blown away my criticism I'm still missing his rebuttals to the other salient points namely:

    1. An omnipotent God has the power to set up the Garden anyway he liked and he chose to include a tree of temptation and a rather convincing talking snake.
    2. An omniscent God knows everything so evenb before setting this Garden up he knew exactly what would happen if he set it up the way he did and yet he still chose to and he still chose to punish all of mankind for something he knew was going to happen and he had the power to change.
  19. mike-IHF

    mike-IHF Valued Member


    Obviously your missing the point as well. You said.

    The interpretation of the story , is the answer to your question. The story is a mis-interpretation of the symbolic meaning of the story.
  20. CKava

    CKava Just one more thing... Supporter

    To clarify again... the point of this thread was how someone who believes in a literal interpretation of the story and conceives of an omnipotent and omniscent God can make sense of it. Zandarov above believes in Creationism so the chances are he's not arguing for a metaphorical interpetation.

    I do agree that if you interpret the story as simply a story with no real basis in reality and no coherent philosophy in relation to God then you can make some sense of it. However, I don't ever recall saying that anyone could or should not do this.

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