Modern Christian Mythology: The Garden of Eden
Modern Christian Mythology: the Garden of Eden
Like other parts of the book of Genesis, the Eden story is paralleled in Sumerian mythology, specifically the Epic of Gilgamesh, which predates the compilation of the Hebrew sources by over a thousand years:
The Sumerian poem “Enki and Ninhursag: A Paradise Myth” begins with a eulogy of Dilmun, describing it as a place that is pure, clean, and bright, where there is neither sickness nor death. Similarly, the characterization of the serpent, the eating of the fruit of the tree, and the deprivation of human immortality, are all paralleled in the Babylonian “Epic of Gilgamesh”, in which the legendary hero succeeds in obtaining the “plant of life” only to have it stolen by a serpent, thus depriving him of immortality.
–“From Ancient Writings to Sacred Texts: the Old Testament and Apocrypha” By Solomon Alexander Nigosian