The legacy of Adam and Eve.

Nebuchadnezzar

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The story of Adam and Eve is shared by the three great monotheistic faiths. Taken to be our common ancestors, symbolic, mythic or actual as you may wish, the influence of their story has shaped our notions of humanity for many centuries. Yet, their story takes up but a very small portion of the sacred books; of the Christian Bible’s one thousand pages or so it comprises a mere page and a half. The primeval couple have long been a subject of fascination for theologians of course but also for artists and poets. A host of interpretations.......a misogynistic origin story that legitimised male dominance or a depiction of two people, male and female, as equal partners in a heroic struggle against their fate? Do you consider their story to have been a positive or negative inspiration?



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Nebuchadnezzar

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This is perhaps one of the most significant portrayals of Adam and Eve; Albrecht Dürer’s engraving of 1504. The first time they had been produced in mass print, this brought them to life and accessible to many, that previous representations could not. The meaning of their creation, lives and deaths could now be contemplated in a new intimate way.... away from remote painted images in churches. Adam and Eve idealised as Apollo and Venus, innocent but in the moment before their fall. However, paradise is depicted as a realistic forrest, rather than in many previous depictions as a garden. Note the goat poised on the edge of a precipice in the top right corner.

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Lumpy Talbot

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Interesting imagery in that work. Durer's work is gorgeous of course. A decent subject for History/special interest.

I've always found it fascinating about imagery and political or religious imagery that it can have such a profound effect.

Everything from Roman Emperors on the reverse side of a coin from a symbolic depiction of Minerva, to the staggering realisation that the image of mr jesus so accepted as actual by xtians worlwide was only invented in Constantinople a full six centuries after the death of said composite figure.

Some of the earlier images of the same figure feature mr jesus as a roman boy with curled at the fringe in the Roman style, and wearing a toga.

Completely different symbolism and image.
 

Lumpy Talbot

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A painting that has fascinated me is of Elizabeth I. This is the 'Armada' portrait

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There are a number of portraits of Elizabeth, and all of them are loaded with small almost subliminal symbols. The pearls in her ruff and dress symbolise prosperity, there is in many portraits the sword of state, either full size or in miniature. There was a sophisticated PR system at play in such portraits using imagery and associations- even quite pagan symbolism at times.
 

Lumpy Talbot

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I gather Emperors, dictators and tyrants were more flexible than most in their sexual orientation and gender identification down the centuries.

Probably something to do with them being above convention.
 

Nebuchadnezzar

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A painting that has fascinated me is of Elizabeth I. This is the 'Armada' portrait

1568445226437.png


There are a number of portraits of Elizabeth, and all of them are loaded with small almost subliminal symbols. The pearls in her ruff and dress symbolise prosperity, there is in many portraits the sword of state, either full size or in miniature. There was a sophisticated PR system at play in such portraits using imagery and associations- even quite pagan symbolism at times.
Thanks Lumpy that’s an interesting counter image to Dürer’s...

...queen as an almighty goddess, heavily stylised and lavish in colour and dress versus Adam and Eve in black and white, idealised as the perfect humans created directly by God, unadorned, beautiful in the raw.

It also provides a connection with the age of discovery and a point I wanted to highlight.

Elizabeth’s right hand rests on a globe, on America’s I think? Dürer’s image was created a mere 12 years after the Columbus’ landing on Hispaniola. Writing to Isabella and Ferdinand about the natives he described them thus....

The people of this island and of all the other islands which I have found and of which I have information, all go naked, men and women, as their mothers bore them, although some of the women cover a single place with the leaf of a plant or with a net of cotton which they make for the purpose.
Compare that with Genesis 3:7....

And the eyes of them were both opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.
Who was closer to the human form that God had intended? Native Americans or Columbus or Elizabeth? Images such as Dürer’s helped those who argued that these newly discovered people were indeed true humans in their arguments against those who wished to exploit and or destroy them.
 
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McTell

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The story of Adam and Eve is shared by the three great monotheistic faiths. Taken //
Do you consider their story to have been a positive or negative inspiration?

You can see their belly buttons in the pic.

Don't need belly buttons without a natural birth, so the lie is exposed right there.
 

Lumpy Talbot

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I place no special significance on the 'adam and eve' version of a creation myth, than I would over any creation myth of the aboriginal peoples of the southern hemisphere, the tribes of the Amazon or Great Bear of the North American natives.
 

McTell

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My fave genesis - the first genesis I "read" - is by the cartoonist Robert Crumb



Check it out on google images. That god fella was up to no good.


 

Nebuchadnezzar

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I place no special significance on the 'adam and eve' version of a creation myth, than I would over any creation myth of the aboriginal peoples of the southern hemisphere, the tribes of the Amazon or Great Bear of the North American natives.

They have a special significance, whether you like it or not, as the reputed original parents of all within the cultures of most of the world. They are important figures in framing our beliefs of what it means to be human and how we relate to each other and they framed those beliefs for at least 2000 years +
 
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Lumpy Talbot

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They have a special significance, whether you like it or not, as the reputed original parents of all within the cultures of most of the world. They are important figures in framing our beliefs of what it means to be human and how we relate to each other.
Sorry, that may be your view but most, even those taught it as semi-factual in school would be well aware it is a fictional story and abrahamic. There are far older creation myths, and frankly far better stories, in creation myths from Scandinavia to the South Pole.
 

Nebuchadnezzar

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Sorry, that may be your view but most, even those taught it as semi-factual in school would be well aware it is a fictional story and abrahamic. There are far older creation myths, and frankly far better stories, in creation myths from Scandinavia to the South Pole.
It’s irrelevant what what you think its relative literary merit is versus Scandinavian (or South Polean? ) creation myths. What lasting influence have your examples had upon our cultures and beliefs?
 

Lumpy Talbot

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Maunday, Tuesday, Wodin's Day, Thor's Day, Freya's Day, Saturnalia and Sun-Day.
 

Lumpy Talbot

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Dublin was made a city by pagan Vikings. It is still around, I gather, and serving decent Guinness at 'The Thing Mote', a sheltered establishment of some repute in that city.

The ThingMote is a reference to a mound where Vikings would gather to hold their judicial proceedings and debate issues of their day.
 

parentheses

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They have a special significance, whether you like it or not, as the reputed original parents of all within the cultures of most of the world. They are important figures in framing our beliefs of what it means to be human and how we relate to each other and they framed those beliefs for at least 2000 years +
Not now, though!
 

McTell

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Science may have caught up with the Bible, which says that Adam and Eve are the ancestors of all humans alive today.

But in the scientists' version, based on DNA analysis, "Adam," the genetic ancestor of all men living today, and "Eve," the genetic ancestor of all living women, seem to have lived tens of thousands of years apart.
 

Baron von Biffo

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Science may have caught up with the Bible, which says that Adam and Eve are the ancestors of all humans alive today.

But in the scientists' version, based on DNA analysis, "Adam," the genetic ancestor of all men living today, and "Eve," the genetic ancestor of all living women, seem to have lived tens of thousands of years apart.
The History Channel probably has a documentary about how time-travelling aliens facilitated their romance.
 

Enoch Root

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It's a great story, and a great origin myth.

Only a tiny percentage of believers of one of the "religions of the book" take Genesis as "fact" - even the Vatican has said that it is allegorical in nature.

In other words, it may be "true" but it's not "real".

And there's the problem for it's legacy. The story is allegorical, so it's meaning is subjective.

It could mean very different things to very different people.

It could be seen as meaning women are naturally a product of, and subservient to men.

It could be seen as showing women are less trustworthy than men.

It could say that women are more proactive and are better at taking charge.

The serpent could be evil, but also could be free choice.

It could show that god is fallable.

Or that god was infallible, it was all in the plan and so free will is an illusion.

It could be a tragedy for humanity. It could have been a victory for humanity.

The story doesn't have a fixed legacy. The interpretations provide the legacy, but the interpretations are subjective and selected by the interpreter based on the interpreter's preconceptions.

Was it the King James bible that turned pomegranates into apples?
 
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