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Whether or not you believe the Bible was divinely inspired, the Book of Genesis has served as the primary source in the West for definitions of gender and morality. Although much of the story of Adam and Eve can be explained within the context of Hebrew culture, and its patriarchal bias shown to be historical rather than divine in origin, it is nonetheless perceived as containing fundamental, and largely negative, “truths” about the nature of women.
For the last two thousand years or so, Eve has represented the fundamental character and identity of all women. Through Eve’s words and actions, the true nature of women was revealed; her story tells men what women are really like. Eve represents everything about a woman a man should guard against. In both form and symbol, the prevalent belief in the West has been that all women are by nature to blame for the downfall of humanity. “Women are the devil’s gateway and tempt men into bad decisions” (Tertullian 202).
Eve is the one that enticed Adam into disobeying God, creating humanity to sin. Women are characterized as disobedient, guileless, weak-willed, prone to temptation and evil, disloyal, untrustworthy, deceitful, seductive, and motivated in their thoughts and behaviour purely by self-interest. No matter what women might achieve in the world, the message of Genesis warns men not to trust them, and women not to trust themselves or each other. Whoever she might be and whatever her accomplishments, no woman can escape being identified with Eve, or being identified as her. Another interpretation of the Adam and Eve story that is influential to society today is the Quran scripture.
In the Quran, the woman is never presented as particularly culpable for humanity’s downfall. Islam preaches that every person is responsible for their own actions. In the Quran, Allah holds both Adam and Hawwa (Eve) equally responsible for the sin of eating fruit from the tree that He had commanded them to stay away from. They cannot blame one another, as they are both as much responsible human beings as each other. In Islam all will be made accountable for their own sins, without casting blame on anyone who did not act in a sinful way.
They are forced to make choices for themselves and think upon the choices they have made by the actions they have created. They will be responsible for the bad consequences if they made a bad choice and the positive rewards when making the right correct decision.
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