The tree of what knowledge?

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posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 04:04 PM
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What was the “fatal fruit” consumed by Adam and Eve?

In the first place, it certainly wasn’t an apple.
It’s an apple in the art of western Europe, partly because the apple is such a popular tree, and partly because of the wordplay using the Latin text of Genesis. MALUM- “evil” or “apple” depending on the context.

Nor was it the discovery of sex.
When Adam and Eve were introduced into the story, we were told that God made them man and wife.
That implies the procreation of children, which is the Biblical purpose of marriage.
The idea that there is something evil and unspiritual about sex, as such, is more mediaeval than Biblical.
The Old Testament ideal of a perfect life is marriage with lots and lots of children.

We need to look at what the text itself says about the effect of the fruit;
“You will be like God, knowing good and evil”.

Knowing; the Hebrew word translated as “know” is not just about knowledge in the mind.
It includes what people can do and experience, as when a man “knows” his wife.

Good and evil; if they know good AND evil, side by side, that implies that they know them as distinct.
Their “knowledge” relates to the boundary line between them.
In fact it comes close to knowing good FROM evil.
So this will be the kind of knowledge that makes judgements on the rightness and wrongness of things, though it need not be limited to moral judgements.

That explains what is meant by the previous phrase, “You will be like God”.
They will be like God in that they “know good and evil”.
So this points to God as the one who determines what is right or wrong.
If they do this for themselves, they are imitating one of his features, and putting themselves in his place.

So that will be the point.
If they’re claiming a “knowledge of good and evil”, that means making their own decisions about these things, instead of depending on God’s judgement.
In fact they were already doing this when they took the fruit in the first place.
They were making their own assessment of the fruit as “good for food, a delight to the eyes, and to be desired to make one wise”.
Therefore they were already disregarding God’s judgement on the fruit as “not-to-be-touched”.
That makes the taking of the fruit a very fitting symbol of the act of claiming independent judgement.

We were told at the beginning of the story that Adam and Eve were naked and not ashamed of the fact.
But one of the first effects of eating the fruit is the arrival of shame, symbolised by the arrival of clothing.
“They sewed figge leaves together, and made themselves breeches”, as one of the old translations puts it.
They did this because they recognised that they were naked.
The state of nakedness becomes something to be feared and avoided.
To be naked is to be vulnerable, and this is one of the undertones in the other Biblical references.
We might think of Noah, lying drunken and exposed.
While the disguised Joseph claims to believe that his brothers have come to Egypt “to spy out the nakedness of the land”, that is, to identify the points of weakness.

But the real point in the Eden story is their newly discovered unwillingness to expose themselves to God and experience his judgement.
Therefore they hide themselves from the presence of the Lord among the trees of the garden.
“I was afraid because I was naked”, and this was a kind of nakedness which could not be concealed by clothing alone.
So the act of hiding and the act of clothing themselves appear to be two different symbols of the same thing, namely their awareness of something about themselves which they would prefer to keep concealed.
This is what we might call “consciousness of sin”.
They know that they have rejected God’s judgement in preferring their own, and they may be already conscious of the flaws in their own judgement.

This independence is what constitutes the “falling away” from God’s will, which takes them away from God and isolates them from him.
So the best way to understand “Sin” would be to regard the word as a label for the state of being alienated from God.
And “Original Sin” would refer to the fact that all of us are born into that state of alienation and detachment from God’s will, prone to making wrong decisions based on our private understanding of the difference between good and evil.
Then part of the evidence for Original Sin would be the current state of the world, which is clearly the result of a long succession of wrong human choices.

The whole of the rest of the Bible revolves around the problem of bringing our lives back into accordance with God’s will, and the question is not finally resolved until the last chapters of Revelation.




posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 04:05 PM
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The tree of knowledge and evolution.

I’m offering an understanding of the “fruit of the tree of knowledge in terms of men making their own decisions, assessing the difference between good and evil by their own judgement, instead of relying upon God’s judgement.
But this facility for making our own decisions seems to be inseparable from our understanding of what it means to be human.
At least we can’t imagine ourselves without it.
In effect, I’ve identified “knowing good and evil” with human consciousness.

This opens up the possibility of fitting the “tree of knowledge” story into the more modern understanding of human origins as a gradual process of development.
The difference between “knowing” and “not knowing” good and evil could be identified with the difference between acting upon conscious will and acting upon instinct.
In other words, “eating from the tree of knowledge” represents the arrival of human consciousness.
It represents the fact that humanity detached itself from the world of acting upon instinct and struck out along its own path of conscious decision-making.
(One of the symptoms of this transition to self-consciousness being the adoption of clothes).

The central theme of the Bible is that this is when things began going wrong.
There was a misalignment between our newly independent decision making and the will of God.
Would it have been better, then, for us to have remained as instinctive animals?
Would that have been more in keeping with God’s plans?
Or should the development of our conscious will be seen as a stage in our progress towards a future state in which our conscious decision-making has been re-aligned with God’s will? (Another version of the FELIX CULPA idea).



posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 06:26 PM
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The tree of knowledge, and the onset of death

As I’ve already observed, the effect of the explanation I’m putting forward is to identify “knowing good and evil” with human consciousness.
One of the most important features of human consciousness is our ability to project our thoughts into the future, based partly on our ability to remember what has happened in the past.
But one of the side-effects of this ability is our growing awareness that life comes to an end.

The first consequence of eating from the fruit of this tree, according to Genesis, was that humanity began to experience death.
This would mean, in terms of my explanation, that the effect of the development of human consciousness was the emergence of awareness of death, as one of the elements of human life.



posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 06:50 PM
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reply to post by DISRAELI
 


the full title is (tree of "knowledge of" life and death and of good and evil)

I don't think it has much to do with scientific advancement or the restriction thereof.

good posts thx
edit on th553413p06u34R55 by SisyphusRide because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 06:55 PM
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reply to post by SisyphusRide
 

Thank you.
Er, where do you get that full title from?
I don't find it in the text.



posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 07:00 PM
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reply to post by DISRAELI
 


I think it is quoted that way in the KJV of the bible, specially when comparing the old and new testament... In some parts you'll read stuff like "that old serpent" it is an addition to the description of the object or being.

I've read it somewhere all in one like I posted it, I'll have to dig it up... everytime I hear it though or it's referenced my noggin always interprets the full title.

edit on th033913p0700000039R03 by SisyphusRide because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 07:04 PM
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reply to post by SisyphusRide
 

I'll wait for you to dig it up, then.
I've just checked the AV, and it's not there either- though of course there is a reference to the separate "tree of life".
(I've also done a thread on that one)



posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 07:19 PM
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reply to post by DISRAELI
 


I'm searching


but good is life and evil is death (soul/spiritual)



posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 07:21 PM
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reply to post by SisyphusRide
 

Yes, I think it's fair to treat them as equivalent, anyway.



posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 07:36 PM
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reply to post by DISRAELI
 


it's interesting also to see Judaism's take on it... it reads as a mixing together of the two.

which leads me to think of Isaiah 5

---
20
Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!

21
Woe unto them that are wise in their own eyes, and prudent in their own sight!

22
Woe unto them that are mighty to drink wine, and men of strength to mingle strong drink:

23
Which justify the wicked for reward, and take away the righteousness of the righteous from him!
---

mixing would be a corruption...
edit on th401813p07u18R40 by SisyphusRide because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 07:41 PM
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reply to post by SisyphusRide
 

That phrase "wise in their own eyes" attracts my attention.
I'm just working on some material in Proverbs, and the "man who is wise in his own eyes" comes into it several times.
Either there is more hope for a fool than for a man who is wise in his own eyes or the other way round- I can't remember without checking.



posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 07:49 PM
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reply to post by DISRAELI
 


I read it pretty much as God is giving a clear line in the sand and a distinction between good and evil... foundations for morals or ethics if you will.

we know well it is not good to be sacrificed to an Aztec god, but teachers/priests in the Aztec culture had it backwards and that was their moral code... they seen nothing wrong with it although I am sure the victims did.



posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 07:53 PM
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reply to post by SisyphusRide
 

Exactly so.
So the claim to "know" good and evil can then be pictured as scuffing over that line in the sand and drawing slightly different ones according to taste.
(E.g. adding a kink that places human sacrifice on the "good" side of the line)





edit on 24-11-2013 by DISRAELI because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 07:59 PM
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reply to post by DISRAELI
 


Matthew 7

24 “Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: 25 and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock.

26 “But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand: 27 and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall.”

28 And so it was, when Jesus had ended these sayings, that the people were astonished at His teaching, 29 for He taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.



posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 08:10 PM
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When you don't pay attention to what your parents are saying, if they are wise and honest, and choose to seek other fruit, you wind up burying yourself in deceit.

God told Adam and Eve they could eat of any tree in the garden except one tree. They chose to make the wrong decision and this led to their having to leave paradise. If they would have stayed they would have destroyed half the garden to plant more of this tasty fruit. After all, they discovered they were naked, what were they trying to cover up...a rash, bee stings.

God sent them out to till the earth elsewhere instead of eating what nature could provide in the garden. Why was god so harsh? He knew that this desire to eat foods other than what were meant to eat by humans would shorten the lifespans of these two. This is about the time the hunter/gatherers disappeared and farming was starting to take hold in the world. A transition where people ate what tasted good, not what they needed to live a long and healthy life. Some did know the secrets to this but most died thousands of years ago. I think there are some who know these secrets today.

All this is about is setting the goal post to high. When you get over the goal you want to raise it more and it always leads to getting hurt eventually. Sooner or later it kills you. I ate too much ice cream and got allergic to milk because it was free and good. All my offspring have problems with milk also. I think that maybe I messed up bad but I learned from my mistake, I did not blame it on others. I took the poison and I was warned beforehand. it is my own fault.

So the fruit of the tree of knowledge should be to learn from your mistakes. People take on more than they can comfortably chew all the time and the stress, either physical or mental, leads them to an earlier death. We get a feeling of entitlement from having too much treats. We set the perpetual goal post raiser in action.



posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 08:10 PM
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Part of my feeling for a while now is that when we took the knowledge of good and evil for ourselves, we lost the innocence that animals have when they do the things they do.

Mother nature is really quite ugly when you get right down to it, but the animals cannot be held accountable because they have no knowledge of good and evil. They cannot be held accountable for the things they do according to their instincts and in all innocence.

There is a part of me that also wonders if the taking of that knowledge (or gaining of it) was what freed us from our instincts. Animals don't tend to act against instinct, but we do and look where it's gotten us because we can't adequately rule ourselves and our impulses. We may know right and wrong like God, but we certainly aren't Him.



posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 08:14 PM
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reply to post by ketsuko
 

Thank you for those comments.
Perhaps that is a better way of saying what I was trying to put across in the second post.



posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 08:15 PM
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DISRAELI
reply to post by SisyphusRide
 

Exactly so.
So the claim to "know" good and evil can then be pictured as scuffing over that line in the sand and drawing slightly different ones according to taste.
(E.g. adding a kink that places human sacrifice on the "good" side of the line)


I would try not to judge, but I don't think that limits me from speaking my mind...?

concerning one of our three branches of monotheism...

Islam needs a Martin Luther, their foundations are on sand... and the quicksand would appear to be a military conquesting prophet.

this is bad news... and you can clearly see what they did with the texts the got from the conquest of the Greek.



posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 08:18 PM
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reply to post by rickymouse
 

Thank for for those comments.
That remark about "setting the goal-posts too high"- of course that fault leads ultimately to Babel and "trying to reach as far as heaven".
Another side-effect of making themselves the centre of their world instead of God.



posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 08:21 PM
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ketsuko
Part of my feeling for a while now is that when we took the knowledge of good and evil for ourselves, we lost the innocence that animals have when they do the things they do.

Mother nature is really quite ugly when you get right down to it, but the animals cannot be held accountable because they have no knowledge of good and evil. They cannot be held accountable for the things they do according to their instincts and in all innocence.


but the creator does, so I don't think he would be hanging out just to see us acting in the wild...

our home pets have that innocence you speak of, we teach our dog to be friendly and snuggle with the feline.

I think it is a gift given... for acceptance or rejection but the freewill of choice is present.





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