Dr. Ziva S Piltch
Reading in the Humanities
9 October 2016
Temptation narrative: Genesis vs Paradise Lost
The episode of the Fall of the Man is viewed with different perspectives from people to people and encounters several variances in literary pieces. John Milton’s “Paradise Lost”, which can be considered as a detailed version of the Genesis, provides a more in-depth and illustrative look of the process and the purpose of the temptation. Milton has provided the audience with sufficient details on the activities undertaken by Adam, Eve and the Satan in comparison to the similar account in the Genesis. Likewise, being a renaissance writer, Milton, despite sharing the same storyline and outcomes to that of an acclaimed Biblical …show more content…
The serpent’s approach is seen to be less personal as it quickly dives into the topic of the Tree of Knowledge and Eve is convinced to eat the forbidden fruit because the Tree is “good for eating and lovely to look at” (Genesis Chapter 3). In Paradise Lost, Satan’s approach is more complex than the Biblical version. Satan uses charm and flattery, extolls Eve above all other Creatures in the garden and woes her trust towards him. When Eve gets cautious of his words, the Satan, disguised in the body of a snake, refers her figure to that of a “goddess” and continues to exemplify her beauty until finally warding off her doubts. The Satan persuades Eve that she will not die of eating the fruit. This flattery, as a consequence, encourages Eve to eat the fruit. Hence, the Genesis puts an emphasis on the lust to the eyes as the factor responsible for the temptation while Paradise Lost forces a reconsideration of the classical epic by Eve’s yielding to her desire to be equal to God, a …show more content…
It can be inferred from both the texts that Eve, despite being raised from Adam, had a desire to be equal to the creator. Since the beginning of her creation, Eve understands that she is somewhat inferior to Adam. She realizes that she was made from his flesh and that he was created first. This is not fair to Eve, as she believes that she ought to have the same authority as Adam. Provided that they are so called "partners" by God himself, they should collaborate equally on decisions. Thus, she initiates the division of labors in the garden of Eden. Eve craves not only independence but also respect from Adam and God (Vogel 21). In the long run, she desires to achieve Godhead. Similarly, Adam is seen yielding to female charms in both the texts. Despite showing initial concerns on Eve eating the forbidden Fruit, he gets overwhelmed with lust. Adam, learning that Eve has sinned, knowingly commits the same sin. This is because he wants to stay together with Eve, who was made from his flesh, and Adam is so overcome with love for Eve that he defies the order of the God and eats from the Tree of Knowledge.
A primary theme of Milton 's rewriting of Genesis is, therefore, this aspect of free will demonstrated by Adam and Eve. Doing their free lead them to be disobedient to God. As a consequence, they had to face unprecedented trouble and hardships. Hence, the main purpose of Milton