The Metaphor of Adam and Eve

A lot has happened this week…..in my mind anyways. A few things have challenged me – firstly I seen a facebook post of the Gosford churches welcome sign which said “God bless the Burqa”. I did a double look because I respect a lot of what goes onto these billboards (if I ever go that way I want to visit this church) Anyways, as much as I believe in the freedom of religion, the burqa has become a symbol that evokes a lot of feeling, and it is not all good. Could or would God “bless” a domination technique of  “alpha males” ? I really had to fight myself to think about this billboard.

Secondly a post on facebook also said that the Pope has now said that he believes evolution to be true, and not conflicting with a “creator” view. Without going into a lot of detail I will just say that this post and the one on the burqa both challenged me to look for God’s blessing. “Creation Ministries” and the word “burqa” invoke a very similar feeling in me. How on earth can God bless man’s attempts at control? Anyways, I have to try and quieten down my own prejudices and hear…..it might be a while before I write more on this one.Anyways, I will try and be quick and add a thought about creation. I will make one statement to challenge the reader in the same way these billboards challenged me.

Adam and Eve never existed, and the creation story is just that – a story.

I was warned that if I ever believed this I would be on a sure highway to hell and I would be undermining the entire Bible as an authoritive “Word of God”. What I have found is that this is to the contrary – I find more value in the creation story now than I ever did. As Richard Rohr once said somewhere – “A literal meaning is always at the lowest level”.  Although I haven’t actually thought in great detail about the story I have been thinking about “original sin” and how we as modern western Christians think – it led to this thought: (drum roll)

The metaphorical Adam and Eve wanted to be like God – discerning good from evil – Wanting to be like God. Could it be that Mankind didn’t want to be “human” – the temptation was to be able to divide good from evil….and not be human. This not being human strikes a chord. Psychologist Richard Beck talks about “animal reminders”, and how much we hate them. Just a few quick examples of what animal reminders might be – When Martin Luther had a spiritual insight he was on the “privy”, he was having a crap. This created a huge stir, an uproar if you like. We don’t like the fact that we have and engage in stinky poo. It reminds us of our animalness. When Darwin first proposed his theories of natural selection and evolution the church responded in defense and fear – we continue the original sin as we deny our origins and our animalness. I’ll say it again, we continue the sin of the metaphorical Adam as we fight against the reality of evolution – we did not come from apes we are not animals!!! The reality is that Evolution did happen, we are animals.

The point is, human bodily fluids are strong animal reminders – reminders we do not like and we hide in our subconscious. Is it just a coincidence that Jesus came in the “flesh” and when he spoke of eating his flesh and drinking his blood he created an uproar? Is it a co-incidence that the offensiveness of Jesus is his “communion” with flesh? I have many thoughts I could add onto these but I invite you to have your own – a real Adam and Eve or a metaphorical Adam and Eve? I choose the latter. It is unfortunate that Creation Ministries chooses the literal view and then divides between good and evil, telling me that I am a false prophet and anti-Christ.

 

 

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