Liquid Gardens, on 07 January 2013 - 06:10 PM, said:
I don't think the whole 'God created everything in 7 days' part of the Genesis creation is accurately called allegory. Allegory usually is a symbolic representation of something else; CS Lewis's Narnia stories are by many considered allegories of Christianity for example. It's difficult to see Genesis as an allegory also since for the vast majority of Christian history, and I believe Jewish history, this was held by almost all of those believers to be literal. I'm not sure what the Genesis Creation account is purported to be an allegory for exactly either.
THE DOUBLE ALLEGORY OF CREATION
There are three stages for the account of Creation in Genesis: Two allegories and the Reality which the allegories point to: Man as the theme of Creation.
The first allegory in the Genesis account of Creation is in the letter of the account, and here abide the masses of religious people for taking the account at its face value. I mean, Adam and Eve in the Garden being provided for by God with all their needs, being told what's allowed and forbidden in the Garden, being misled by the serpent into eating of a forbidden tree, and eventually being punished with different kinds of punishments respectively on all three of them, etc. Just literally as it is written.
The second allegory has still the same elements and God is still figured anthropomorphically, but the meaning of the actions and behaviour depicts a more logical version of what happened in the Garden. And here abide those who can think more logically, abbeit not in the archtype level of Reality. In this phase of the account of Creation in Genesis, after God created Adam and Eve, He granted them with free will and expected to be served and sought after by them, but the thing was not working. God would have to search for them and that was not the right method. They would have to become proficient and leave the Garden in order to seek for God in terms of growing in knowledge out in the greater world.
Then, among the many fruit trees in the Garden, God planted a most beautiful of all the trees with fruits much more alluring, and right in the middle of the Garden, so that it would easily call their attention. It was the tree of knowledge. But it was not working. Then, God told them that the fruit of that tree was forbidden under penalty of death, but just in the hope that the warning would make them curious and go for it. It was not working either.
Next, God doubled in Eve the emotion of curiosity so that she would go for it and entice Adam into eating of that tree. However, God had underestimated Eve's emotion of love. She had fallen in love with her man and she would never risk loosing him for no stupid fruit even if it looked the most appetitizing of all. Obviously, it didn't work.
The next step was to use the services of the serpent to persuade Eve that she had misunderstood the prohibition. That what would die in them was not themselves but their stupid innocence and naivete. Then, the serpent showed up on the very tree and somehow called for Eve's attention. As she approached, the dialogue started. To instigate the conversation, the serpent started with a question which surely would require an explanation. "Is it that you guys cannot eat from the trees in the Garden?" Bingo! Eve was locked in. The serpent got Eve to talk by explaining that only from the tree of knowledge, they were forbidden. "Why?" the serpent retortted. "Because we would die," she said. "Nonsense!" said the serpent. "You have misunderstood the whole thing. God meant to say that you two will become like gods, knowing good from evil."
Now, imagine, Eve must have thought, her man like a god! Without much ado, Eve reached for the fruit, ate it and told Adam that it was okay. Adam thought for a second and came to the conclusion that even if it were not okay, he would rather die with her beloved who had just enjoyed half of a fruit. Then he ate the other half and went on eating more. The serpent was right. They did not die. And the first knowledge they acquired was of how much they did not know. I mean, that they were naked, completely destitute of knowledge.
It didn't take too long for God to appear in the Garden to collect the fruit of His enterprise. It had finally happened what He wanted without His having to do anything against man's free will. Then, He formally defined some punishments to everyone according to their nature anyway, and got them out of the Garden into the greater world out there, so that they would grow in knowledge by seeking for God, which would be the right method.
Now, the third phase or Reality, the account of Creation is supposed to point to. I mean, the Humanistic approach, which is the purpose of the double allegory. The riddle points to the three phases in the development of man: Childhood, adulthood, and old age. Here, only the enlightened with Philosophical training dwells. I mean, the Theist who is big enough not to let him or herself be intoxicated by blind faith. In this class we can find also Atheists and Agnostics but under the subclass of sarchasm for not being able to harmonize enlightenment with the conception of God free of anthropomorphism.
Childhood is understood by that phase in the Garden when God would have to provide man with everything. That's the phase when we are dependent on our parents or on others for all our needs. That's the phase of walking on our four legs.
Adulthood is applied to that time when man ate of the tree of knowledge and became conscious of himself. That's when we actually become an adult and responsible for our own actions. I mean, when we can stand on our own two legs, so to speak.
Regarding the phase of old age, the allegory of Creation does not go into details, but it's when we become dependent again on others, especailly our children to take care of us. I mean, the phase of walking on two legs and a cane.
You could be right but... take a look in my post prior to this about the "Double Allegory of Creation" and tell me what you think. That's my opinion about Creation. All about man on earth. Creation with man as the central theme.