Dualities – the Original Sin?

In the midst of the Garden of Eden were placed two trees: the Tree of Life and the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.

God did not mention eating from the Tree of Life but when they ate from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, the party was over.

But why that tree? Certainly God has commanded since that time that His people follow the path of good rather than the path of evil. How would they have any clue which was which unless they had all eaten from that tree?

Perhaps, some say, the first couple did not know of evil until they ate of that fruit. But why then was the tree not called the Knowledge of Evil?

From this instance, we get the concept of Original Sin, which we are all paying for even if we are not a descendant of Adam (and, yes, there are those who may not be – didn’t Cain leave to marry someone from one of the towns nearby?) although by this day and age I should imagine we all would be his descendants. And we also get the concept that women are weak and inherently evil, which is wrong on so many levels – but that’s not the topic this time. I will address that later.

Though the result of the eating of that Tree has gotten all the attention, let’s get back to the fruit of the Tree: the knowledge of good and evil. What could be wrong about that knowledge and how could that make the first couple damned?

Genesis 2:17
But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.

Apparently, risking death to eat of that Tree was not dire enough to stop the couple. They, not knowing of evil, did not know the serpent was misleading them.

Genesis 3:22
And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever.

Here we see that God was really worried that Adam and Eve would eat of the Tree of Life. Why didn’t God forbid that? Was He more worried they would learn the difference between good and evil or that they should live forever? It’s all a bit confusing.

And even more confusing when you note that in Gen.3:22, God says by eating the fruit they had become “one of us”. Us? You mean there is more than one God?

I have heard a lot of explanations for this over the years but, as this theme is repeated over and over in Genesis, there is no getting around the notion that Jehovah was only one of a group of gods.

So much for the “one god” scenario.

But back to the knowledge of good and evil… it seems funny that it should carry more weight than immortality. Why is this?

Perhaps – and this is only a wild (very wild!) theory – the entire framework of the dualities we are accustomed to… good and evil, right and wrong… are nothing more than considerations and do not have any firm bearing in reality. God’s actions in the Old Testament show a little disregard to the notions of right and wrong. One primary example is the rule against killing… and then He orders His people to go out and kill, kill, kill.

Where’s the logic in that?

Perhaps it was a bit more than just the knowledge of good and evil. Perhaps it was the power to judge or determine what was good or evil. That would be quite a power.

But getting back to the good and evil duality. The concept of opposites are at the very core of the universe: positive and negative. Some theorize that it is the very thing that keeps the universe in existence. If the opposite points were able to rejoin, the universe would collapse.

There is also the concept of people trying to find their other half, their “soul-mate”. In an early use of the computer, Art Linkletter (on his “House Party” TV show) used the Univac computer to try and match people. This was decades before the modern dating sites that match people on twenty-seven flavors and such, and all Linkletter had to go on was a handful of likes and dislikes. The people most alike were matched up and sent out on a series of dates. I don’t recall any of them actually getting to a second date. After several weeks and several attempts, Linkletter got the brainy idea of matching people as opposite as possible. The first attempt did not make it to the second date either – they got married instead! A couple of years later the whirlwind couple was still together and raising a child.

Perhaps this duality was what the Tree in Eden was all about, and it could be that it was one of the most powerful secrets in the universe.

More important than immortality, even.

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