Thursday, 25 May 2017
Unraveling Adam and Eve (We All Have One Common Ancestor)
Adam and Eve, according to the creation myth of the Abrahamic religions, were the first man and woman and the ancestors of all humans. The story of Adam and Eve is central to the belief that God created human beings in a Garden of Eden, although they fell away from that state into the present world full of death, evil, pain and suffering. It provides the basis for the belief that humanity is in essence a single family, with everyone descended from a single pair of original ancestors. It also provides much of the scriptural basis for the doctrines of the fall of man and original sin that are important beliefs in Christianity, but which are not generally held in Judaism or Islam.
In the Book of Genesis of the Hebrew Bible, chapters one through five, there are two creation narratives with two distinct perspectives. In the first, Adam and Eve are not mentioned (at least not mentioned by name). Instead, God created humankind in God's image and instructed them to multiply and to be stewards over everything else that God had made. In the second narrative, God fashions Adam from dust and places him in the Garden of Eden. Adam is told that he can till the ground and eat freely of all the trees in the garden, except for a tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Subsequently, Eve is created from one of Adam's ribs to be Adam's companion. They are innocent and unashamed about their nakedness. However, a serpent deceives Eve into eating fruit from the forbidden tree, and she gives some of the fruit to Adam. These acts give them additional knowledge, but it gives them the ability to conjure negative and destructive concepts such as shame and evil. God later curses the serpent and the ground. God prophetically tells the woman and the man what will be the consequences of their sin of disobeying God. Then he banishes them from the Garden of Eden.
The story underwent extensive elaboration in later Abrahamic traditions, and it has been extensively analyzed by modern biblical scholars. Interpretations and beliefs regarding Adam and Eve and the story revolving around them vary across religions and sects; for example, the Islamic version of the story holds that Adam and Eve were equally responsible for their sins of hubris, instead of Eve being the first one to be unfaithful. The story of Adam and Eve is often depicted in art, and it has had an important influence in literature and poetry. The story of the fall of Adam is often understood to be an allegory.
There is no physical evidence that Adam and Eve ever literally existed, and their literal existence is incompatible with human evolutionary genetics. However, there is in some countries a large discrepancy between the scientific consensus and popular opinion; a 2014 poll reports that 56% of Americans believe that "Adam and Eve were real people", and 44% believe so with strong or absolute certainty.
Credit for pre-text Wikipedia