There is a common saying that “God created man and man created religion.” Many people have viewed this as the theme for why religions are so tangled and often times non-sensical. The theory being that 1) there is a God; 2) god created man; 3) man was not given any direct guidance to the proper worship of God; therefore 4) man created rules; 5) man is fallible and the rules are stupid. There was a Gnostic Christian who lived around 140 C.E. who was follower of Valentinus who believed that humans ‘fell’ into error of projecting their own divinity into external objects or being, thereby creating gods and religion. He also took the above concept a little further. This writer stated:
In the beginning, God created humanity. But now humanity creates God. This is the way it is in the world – human beings invent gods and worship their creation. It would be more fitting for the gods to worship human beings!
[The above extracted from “Adam, Eve and the Serpent”, by Elaine Pagels; Random House, 1988; pages 65-66]
I am willing to go even further. If man created god(s) and then raised religions in which to worship these invented god(s), then it would be normal for man to have created these gods in mans own image. If you review any and all gods that you can think of, you may see certain human characteristics in these so called all-powerful, all-knowing, incomprehensible super beings. But they are all fallible in some way. Even the Christian god is often depicted with human emotions. The Christian god even wonders whether he made a mistake creating man to begin with (Genesis). This does not sound like a divine being, powerful and eternal as to baffle the human mind. That is because we, as humans, have created and defined a god we can comprehend. If all of that make some sort of sense, then, please, continue my mental trip…:
In the Christian Bible, Book of Genesis, Chapter 1, Verse 26 states: “Then God said, “Let us make man in our own image, after our likeness….” Then god set rules (see my previous entry “Did God Create Sin?”), thereby establishing a condition for abeyance - - or ‘religion’. If this is ‘true’ and it is also ‘true’ that man created god and religion in his own image, then could the following also be ‘true’. Man, full of inherent Divinity projected this divinity to external objects and created gods in his own image. Man established rules based on his own understanding of the known world and his own intentions. Could god have externalized his/her own inherent Divinity into external beings created in his/her own image and then established rules/religion? Whether you choose to perceive this information as possibly ‘biblical’ or allegorically, Adam and Eve would represent the Divine Reflection of God. God’s externalization of Divinity has imbued us with the ‘Divine Spark’ effectively connecting each and everyone spiritually to god. Our goal then is the realization of this through self knowledge…. But that is a completely different discussion. At hand is what I currently understand as a new theory of the Adam and Eve story (to toss on the mountain of other theories…) where god is not the perfect being most fear or find comfort in. Read, digest, tell me what you think.