|Book of Genesis: The Fall from Paradise:
Adam and Eve sent out of the Garden of Eden
|The following excerpt from THE WAY OF WONDER: a return to the mystery of ourselves, by Jack Haas, offers an alternative interpretation of the Biblical allegory of The Fall, from the Book of Genesis.|
| In order to understand the basis of much of the West's metaphysics, we must go back to the cosmological beginning, where occurred a very important event- mankind's fall from the Heavens. That is, the historic allegory of 'The Fall', which divided mankind from the heavens, occurred for the eating of a very specific variety of fruit- the Fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Note, it was not the Fruit of the Tree of the Doing of Good and Evil. Thus the 'Fall' was not, as the morally minded priests and theologians would urge us to believe, an ethical event, but was, and is, instead wholly epistemological; that is, in trying to 'know', or claiming to 'know', we divorce ourselves from the Great Unknowable, and then we suffer all the horrors which this unnecessary separation produces in us.
As such, in his book The Last Temptation of Christ, Nikos Kazantzakis has Jesus say to a man who is questioning the ways of God: “Don't ask brother: it's a sin. Until a few days ago I too asked. But now I understand. This was the serpent which corrupted the first creatures and made God banish us from Paradise.” The 'fruit' which was eaten is the profane fruition of our separated questionings and understandings, which causes the whole to be divided into fragments, each of which then dwells in the hell of its own separate judging of right and wrong.
Osho states: “This is the meaning behind the biblical story. Adam is turned out of the garden of Eden because he has eaten the fruit of the tree of knowledge. It is a very significant parable. Because of knowledge Adam is turned out of heaven, loses all his blessedness, loses all his innocence, happiness, loses immortality, becomes a mortal, becomes miserable. ...There is no other parable so significant in the whole history of religion. ...Adam's sin is knowledge.”
Through the loss of 'innocent looking' we lost unity with the undifferentiated whole, and thus have we come to create a world of opinion, perspective, categorization, and separation. Sin occurs every time that through our separated perspective we think we understand, and through this false understanding and judgement about right and wrong we separate ourselves further and further from the Great Unknowable source of ourselves.
It is for this reason, and this reason alone, that we are not allowed to eat from the Tree of Life.
When we have purged ourselves of this ancestral folly, however, we shall return to the Garden through the gate of our knowledgeless Oneness.
“…the 'tree of life', with its fruit of genuine love,
spring[s] up as the 'tree of the knowledge of good and evil'
falls into the ground and dies and is known no more.”
Eom Ida Mingle
Until then we continue to live with the profane vision, of profane things, caused by profane understanding- all because of this 'fall'.
Adam and Eve 'fell' from the space of 'unseparate watching'; they fell into mental separation from the source; for when we particularize what we see, when we seek to label, measure, understand and modify the gratuity of our miraculous beings- because we judge what is 'Good' and what is 'Evil'- that is when we unwittingly set up a false division between the one Source of ourselves, and ourselves; we create a rift between heaven and earth that is not only unnecessary, it is perilous. Judgement, any judgement, is how we separate ourselves from the One. For judgement implies two- right and wrong- and in that duality we lose our singular union. In short, morality is mortality.
It is our cognitive division of the One into the erroneous duality of right and wrong, which exiles us from the eternal union. To return to the Garden then- to regain our innocence- is to stop eating from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, and begin again to eat from the Tree of Life; which is to say, it is to lose the mind and the way it separates and particularizes, and instead to open up our hearts and feel the One unknowable life living in and as us.
If we would only live softly, resolute in strangeness, accepting that our limited perspectives cannot do justice to the all, our false way of seeing would cease to shudder through us, and in the movement of that purity all our solemn angst would unavoidably turn to awe.
“The true knowledge and the true vision of what we seek
consists precisely in this- in not seeing.”
St. Gregory of Nyssa
Knowledge is, in fact, epistemological blasphemy; we insult the majesty of 'God', so to speak, when we claim, with our little minds, to understand what God is all about. And we return to faith by giving ourselves over to the fact that we exist without knowing how or why- this is when we are 'redeemed' back to the one great mystery itself. And this we accomplish by accomplishing nothing except the annihilation of any separating thoughts or ideas from our minds, and therefore returning again to ignorant innocence. ...
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