The Tree of Animals
Elsewhere the “Tree of Knowledge” becomes a symbol of humanity’s tragic, fallen status – talking apes hypnotized by language and alienated from their own divinity:
“There are two trees growing in Paradise. One bears animals, the other bears men. Adam ate from the tree which bore animals. He became an animal and he brought forth animals. For this reason the children of Adam worship animals. The tree whose fruit Adam ate is the Tree of Knowledge. That is why sins increased.
If he ate the fruit of the other tree, that is to say, the fruit of the Tree of Life, the one which bears men, then the gods would worship man. For in the beginning God created man. But now men create God. That is the way it is in the world – men make gods and worship their creation. It would be fitting for the gods to worship men!”1
- ”The Gospel of Philip.” The Other Bible. Ed. Willis Barnstone. Harper San Francisco, 1984. 95. [↩]