One Bite from the Apple

Somewhere between “a long time ago” and “just the other day” I was trying to explain true love to a close friend.  Specifically, how to know if love is “true love” when you don’t trust your own heart to tell the difference.

Now, this conversation was within the context of faith and shared values and I was intentionally using an example that would be familiar to her in that context.  I don’t typically use Biblical examples to make my points, so bear with me.

The Book of Genesis has many important object lessons in it.  It lays the foundation for concepts like sacrifice, honor, faith, trust, the will of God, the nature of God, the nature of man, and the ultimate relationship of the creator to his creations.  But I believe it’s very significant that the very first lesson illustrated in the Bible is the nature of true love.

While the story of Adam and Eve is significant for many reasons, it’s central theme of true, utter and total love is often forgotten in the debates over belly buttons, the nature of knowledge and the role of an external force in personal temptation.

Adam was created as a perfect and wondrous being by God. Ultimately intelligent, ultimately passionate, ultimately aware of his God, his environment and his role in the universe.  And ultimately lonely.

God could have created another being just as he created Adam, made from the very elements of the new Earth, infused with the breath of life straight from God’s own lips…but he didn’t.

God created Eve from the very material of Adam.  Flesh of his flesh, bone of his bone.  A soul made from his own soul.  Eve was the pinnacle of beauty, grace, intelligence, passion and companionship.

We know that Eve chose to eat the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil.  Not because she was sinful, but because she was striving to know as God knew.  The nature and cause of her decision is a subject of much debate.  The nature and cause of Adam’s is not.

Adam knew that Eve had gone against God’s wishes.  Adam also knew God perfectly.  he knew that God could create a new partner for him, just as perfect as Eve, if he refused to do as she had done.  But man wasn’t made to love that way.  Man was made to love utterly, completely and totally.

Adam didn’t have to eat the apple.  Adam chose to eat the apple.  Adam didn’t eat the apple because he wanted to have knowledge of good and evil as God did…Adam ate the apple because he wanted to be one with Eve.  Adam chose Eve over everything else in the universe.

The very first lesson in the Bible isn’t about sin, it’s about true love.  Utter, complete, total love that would sacrifice anything and everything for the soul meant to complete the other.

I believe that is the very nature of Love as God created it.  So deep, so powerful, so all encompassing that the bond between soul and soul trumped all other hands that a universe of possibilities could deal out.

I believe that the test of true love is “would he eat the apple to be with me?”

Or stated differently, “would another soul give up paradise, perfection and eternal life to be with mine?”

Adam didn’t give up a lot by biting the apple, he gave up EVERYTHING but Eve.  By choice.

No matter how you feel about the Bible, wether you believe in it literally, metaphorically or only mythically; the example is powerful.

I believe that there is a heart, a soul, that is worth biting the apple for…that is worth giving all, utterly and completely, to be with.

I believe in True Love, and that’s how I define it.