Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Genesis: Does the bible depict the origin of patriarchy?

I've had this theory in my head for a while now, so I thought I'd try writing it down to see how it looks. This will probably be too brief to make sense but I'm too lazy to make an essay out of it.

In Genesis, the garden of Eden is depicted as a perfect world (apart from Adam getting to name everything) where Woman and Man ate fruit and were nice to each other and didn't eat their furry friends.

My theory is that this is an allegory for the world before patriarchy. There are various other representations in Greek mythology where women were revered because of their capacity to create life and men and women didn't know about how sexual intercourse actually worked. Intercourse was probably just one of the many fun things they found they could do with their bodies when they got stange urges.

In the garden of Eden was 'The Tree of Knowledge' and Eve goes against God's wishes and eats from it. The snake tells her to.* Eve then shares the apple with Adam. This could allude to the discovery of how babies are made. Women probably did know before men and shared that knowledge with them.

Men, I believe, were a bit put out by it all, what with their previous reverence for women's amazing gift. They were producing life too and wanted some sort of credit for it. This could be what is meant by the 'Fall of Man', and the Original Sin was rape. Wars and all sorts would follow, with men trying to prove their fertility to other men and stealing their women.

God tells Adam and Eve that they will suffer for their knowledge. He tells Eve that Adam now rules over her and she will have pain in childbirth. All children will be born 'in sin'. In my interpretation, this means all children will be born into patriarchy, into a system characterized by domination and ownership instead of peace and respect. All children are now a product of the original sin and are all affected by it, as they are to be a part of this system from birth.

Adam and Eve are thrown out of Eden and that was that. They no longer lived the life God had intented. And it was all Eve's fault for opening her big mouth. No wait, it was the snake's fault. Well, whoever's fault it was, Adam was the victim. OK?

If you are a Christian, you will believe that Jesus came and tried to sort this shit out, to teach everyone about freedom from sin. He certainly preached against hierarchy of any sort, and appeared to be some kind of pro-feminist. So it should be obvious to you that the Second Coming will be in the form of a Radical Feminist Lesbian.

You heard it here first.

*I'm not sure how the snake fits into my theory; maybe it's some phallic symbol regarding the new understanding of penile function. This whole story was most likely concocted my men and they clearly thought a snake was the creature that most resembled their man bits. As opposed to, say, an earthworm.


Anonymous witchy-woo said...

" So it should be obvious to you that the Second Coming will be in the form of a Radical Feminist Lesbian."

That's just given me all the hope I needed to keep on going. I can't wait!

"men [....] clearly thought a snake was the creature that most resembled their man bits. As opposed to, say, an earthworm."



8:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Have you read Beyond God the Father, or Gyn/Ecology or anything else by Mary Daly? Because if not, you should. This is basically what she says in her books, except with more words, and quotes and stuff. :) She's great.

1:02 AM  
Blogger jo22 said...

The theory is already out there? Well then, that proves it!

I am planning to read Beyond God the Father; I read Mary Daly's most recent book (can't remember the name), but the stuff about her cat choosing books from the shelf for her to read put me off. Not least because I tried getting my cat to pick out a book for me and she didn't seem interested.

1:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Quintesence? Yeah, I wasn't really a fan of that book. But Daly's earlier work is definitely worth reading. But yes. The theory does make sense.

5:13 AM  
Anonymous wiggles said...

The story of Lilith is a pretty blatant little patriarchal fable. You probably know about her, being a feminist, but just in case:
She was Adam's first wife, and she was created from the same dirt and magic he was and therefore was his equal. When she demanded to be treated as an equal, she was cast out of Eden and the more submissive Eve was created as a "helpmate" (read "sidekick" or "peripheral afterthought") from Adam's rib. Then there were legends and superstitions about Lilith causing miscarriages and barren crops and all that jazz.

What kind of mental gymnastics must the patriarchy have to do to come up with a scenario in which women come from the body of man anyway? That's some desperate grasping.

Pandora's also a sort of (Pagan?) predecessor to Eve. She opened the magic box and released all the world's troubles.

If it's a bad thing, the P's got to blame a woman for it somehow.

1:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This was a wonderful theory, and one I completely agree with.

Mary Daly is of course the originator of this great thealogical musings on the origins of patriarchy, and should be must reading for ANY radical feminist on the planet!

Beyond God the Father was just her second book. "Pure Lust" and "Gynecology" really lay the incredible ground work. And everyone here should read her autobiography "Outercourse" because she is THE perfect radical lesbian feminist, and using her lessons I have gone very very far in life.

She may be a little over the heads of the texting iPod generation, but all great books require work.

I'd love some young ambitious amazon filmmaker to make her life story -- she's turning 80 this year and won't be around forever!

6:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I really like when people are expressing their opinion and thought. So I like the way you are writing

12:26 AM  

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