The Origin of Pets

- a wedding story adapted from the story of Adam and Eve
(Told by Eldrbarry at the wedding of his daughter in Kaposvar, Hungary)


The Story of Adam and Eve is an important part of the Bible - from it we are taught much about the relationship of man and wife. It is also a story that lends itself to some creative imaginings, with perhaps a little reading between the lines.

Adam was created in the image of God - a bridge between the creation and its creator - capable of fellowship with Him. When Adam was first created and placed in the Garden of Eden, he was like a wide-eyed innocent child. There was so much to see and discover. Once a day, he would meet with God and chatter on and on about the wonders he'd seen. But after a while, as the newness left off, he started feeling lonely. All the other creatures had mates.

Adam's guardian angel came to God and said. "Adam, the man you made, is lonely." And God said, "Maybe what Adam needs is a pet."

Now the LORD God had formed out of the ground all the beasts of the field and all the birds of the air. He brought them to the man to see what he would name them; and whatever the man called each living creature, that was its name. So the man gave names to all the livestock, the birds of the air and all the beasts of the field.

So God began to bring the Animals one by one to Adam. "Hey, Adam, how about the Elephant - he's so big and has that neat trunk swinging back and forth?" But when Adam thought of shoveling out the litter box, he hesitated about the Elephant. "Adam, how about a Giraffe - He's sooooo tall!!" Adam thought he was too tall to pet - isn't that what pets are for? "When, maybe a pet bird - how about an Ostrich?" She sure can run, but boy is she stupid! This went on and on, God brought all the animals to Adam to be named. But none were found suitable as companions. While all the amimals had mates, there was none for him.

Then God said: "I will select a companion for him that will be with him and who will be a reflection of my love for him, so that he will know I love him, even when he cannot see me. Regardless of how selfish and childish and unlovable he may be, this new companion will accept him as he is and will love him as I do, in spite of himself."

And God brought a new animal to be a companion for Adam - and it was a good animal. And God was pleased. And the new animal was pleased to be with Adam and he wagged his tail. God said "What will you name him?" And Adam said, "Lord, I have already named all the animals in the Kingdom and all the good names are taken and I cannot think of a name for this new animal."

God said, "Because I have created this new animal to be a reflection of my love for you, his name will be a reflection of my own name, and you will can him DOG." And Dog lived with Adam and was a companion to him and loved him. And Adam was comforted. And God was pleased. And Dog was content and wagged his tail.

But after a while, it came to pass that Adam's guardian angel came to the Lord and said, "Lord, since you gave the dog to Adam, he has become filled with pride. He struts and preens like a peacock and he believes he is worthy of adoration. Dog has indeed ~ taught him that he is loved, but no one has taught him humility."

And the Lord said, "So I will give him another companion who will be with him and who will see him as he is. This companion will remind him of his limitations, so he will know that he is not worthy of adoration."

And God gave CAT to be a companion to Adam. And Cat would not obey Adam. And when Adam gazed into Cat's eyes, he was reminded that he was not a supreme being. And Adam learned humility. And God was pleased. And Adam was greatly improved. And Cat did not care one way or the other.

But even with Dog and Cat for companions, Adam was still lonely. Dog wagged his tail and played fetch, and Cat was indifferent even when he brought home a mouse or bird - they were nice to have around. But for Adam no suitable helper was found.

So the LORD God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man's ribs and closed up the place with flesh. Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.

And the Lord said, "I have made for him a companion who will be with him forever and who will love him and share his dreams. She will see him as he is and companion will remind him of his limitations, so he will know that he is not worthy of adoration." And God created WOMAN to be a companion to Adam...

God created the Woman
Not from the dust of the earth to be a competitor with him*, but from his own rib - that he should love her as his own body.
Not from his Feet, that he should walk over her,
Nor from his head, that she should rule over him,
Nor from his hand, that she should be his servant, waiting on him hand and foot,
But from his rib** - that she should be beside and held close to his heart.
God did not make him a pet, but a mate, to share life with together.
When Adam awoke, God brought the woman to him. Adam's mouth dropped open. "WOW!! Lord, She is beautiful! This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called woman, for she was taken out of man." Adam was very pleased.

Like dog - she was loyal and affectionate, with eyes that adored him and filled with joy and excitement at his coming home from the Garden. But like Cat - she could be moody and given to whims. She saw man as he actually was and not as he thought he was. Her smile or laughter filled him with joy - made him excited to begin each new day. Her tears could move his heart and rouse him to heroic action. But he couldm't play rough with her like with the dog, and unlike cat she seemed to always want his attention. For Eve was no pet!

After a time, Adam came to God - "About this woman you made?" "Yes?"
"Why did you make her beautiful?" "So you will always want to look at her."
"Why so soft?" "So you will always want to touch her, and be gentle with her."
"Why does she smells so good?" "So you will always want to be near her."

"Then why does she sometimes cry for no reason? And why does she laugh at my foolishness? I can't begin to understand how she thinks. Why can't she be just like me?" "I made her a compliment to you - a helper suitable for you. Not a copy of you, but your opposite to complete you."
" Why can't she be just like me?" "She is everything that you aren't."
"No wonder I just can't seem live with her? She cries sometimes for no reason." "I made her emotional on purpose."
"She laughs at my foolishness." "I gave her intuition"
"Her moods change like the moon." "She will need these things to be the mother of your children."
Sometimes when I reach out to touch her she just pushes me away. I can't live with her?" "She wasn't meant to be a pet. But perhaps I could find you another pet . . . a fish perhaps, they are interesting creatures? A creature you could be happier with."

But then Adam thought of Eve's sparkling eyes and musical laughter. Her soft curves and her graceful walk. Of their quiet moments watching the sunset and sharing the day's work and the night's dreams together. "I can't live without her either?" He decided to keep the woman.

And God saw that it was very good. Man and woman became united as husband and wife. Elephant swung his trunk and Giraffe stretched his neck. Ostrich hid her head in the sand. Dog wagged his tail and stretched out at Adam's feet. And Cat, of course, could care less.


Some Notes: My story is intended to illustrate the Biblical portrait of the natures and relationship of man and wife, if in a somewhat frivolous manner. It is not intended to belittle or deny the historical account of our first parents. Nor does it take in account the affects of the fall on humanity. One key teaching of the Bible is that the woman was created as a "helpmeet" not just as a servant or pet to be used as man pleases.

It is striking how much the account of Adam and Eve teaches. The spiritual nature of man - created in God's image. The account of "Adam's rib" - stressing the unity of the human race, as well as its significant gender distinctions. The foundation of the marriage relationship is placed here. They were naked and not ashamed - Adam "knowing" his wife - human sexuality. Paradise lost - the fall of mankind and its divisive impact between man and wife"Your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you"; (the battle of the sexes), and of sin's violent afftects between brothers, Cain and Abel and upon the entire human race.

The story of Adam and Eve has inspired a variety of art and literature - from apocryphal medieval accounts to John Milton to Mark Twain and modern feminists - and many stories from humorous jokes to attempts to support many "isms." -- there are many resources online.

* Based on the two creation accounts in Genesis One and Two, medieval Jewish legend said Adam's first wife was Lilith, also created from the dust of the earth like him. Lilith insisted from the outset on equal treatment, a fact which caused constant friction between the couple. Eventually the frustrated Lilith used her magical powers to fly away from her spouse. She became the mother of many demons. Other folktales describe of how Lilith captured Jewish babies in the night and ate them, and how she led young girls and young husbands astray. Although Lilith was demonized by early Jewish culture as a symbol of promiscuity and obedience, many modern Jewish feminists see Lilith as a positive figure, a model of woman as equal to man in the creation story. More on Lilith, the medieval legend, and myth

** "God chose neither the head nor the foot, but the rib, implying that man and woman are to be equal in their partnership and are to walk side by side through life. The creation of woman also implies the importance of the distinction of the roles between man and woman. While they are made of the same substance, flesh and bone, their form is different. Man and woman form a partnership with distinct roles and characteristics. A mother is called to be a mother and a father is called to be a father. While in this day and age, many women and men are forced to function in the dual roles of mother and father, the roles are different. Our genders cause us to view the world from different perspectives. To blur this difference is only to minimize our view of the world. "See Father Moreau's remarks

"The Hebrew word K'negdo is charged with meaning as well. It means more than just suitable. It carries the meaning of opposite. She was an opposite to him. This is literally what you would expect since she was formed from his other half or side. Perhaps it would be better to say she was his complement. The two were made to work and fit together. She was opposite in gender, but opposite in many other ways as well. No man can be married for any length of time without realizing that his wife thinks and behaves in a very different way than he does. She views things very differently, her concerns are quite unlike his. Eve was made to be everything Adam was not. She was his complement. Now Adam was faced with the realization that he was not unique and he was not alone. To find completeness and wholeness he would want to take a wife." See Wayne Simpson's remarks


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