We all do it – blaming others or circumstances.

‘I didn’t mean it’.  ‘It’s not my fault’. ‘The devil made me do it’.

It’s an age-old story originating in the Garden of Eden.

We know this story or the myth whether or not we take it literally. Somewhere it’s lodged in our brain.

That one forbidden Tree of The Knowledge of Good and Evil had been standing in the middle of the Garden tempting Eve for a long, long time. Those apples, bright, shiny, plump, lustrous, tantalizing in the extreme, were there, every moment of every day.

Come a day, or was it the night? –  the serpent offered Eve the apple. Take it, he said, and your eyes will be opened.

We can see Eve prevaricating – I cannot, she said. But, she does accept it, bites and chews and swallows the pips. It tastes good.

In good faith she offers it to Adam who also bites, chews and swallows.

G.d then appeared giving them a little time to hide, covering themselves and cowering in the bushes, for they knew they had done wrong. He addressed Adam for it was to him that the prohibition was initially given. Adam said that Eve was to blame and Eve of course blames the serpent.  We know that they were then banished from the Garden and sadly, woman has been blamed forever after for their fall from grace.

(I will write about the above in a later post to illustrate another way of viewing this with psychological and contemporary eyes – i.e. that it was necessary for Adam and Eve to get out of the Garden and out of unconsciousness, but for the moment I want to look at this issue of blame).

I sense that G.d was not necessarily angry with his children for disobeying His orders. For after all, we all need to break free of adult prescriptions at some stage of our lives in order to live authentically. And the attainment of knowledge and free will is no bad thing.

What was reprehensible to Him was their act of denial and each of them denied responsibility and blamed the other. Their individual acts did not belong to them – it was in ‘the other’.

Denial is the first human instinct. They declare themselves ‘victims’ – not perpetrators.

Is this pattern of blaming the other so deeply ingrained that it seems almost impossible to discard? We start doing it at an early age. Maybe it requires an absence of fear and punishment – and shaming – for a person to openly admit the part they played in their action. We all want to stay in our loved ones ‘good books’.

Adam and Eve denied that they acted freely.

This is the exile from Eden – to learn of the gift of free will, and yet also bear the fear of freedom, with the knowledge that when laws are breached and broken, guilt is your partner.

Blaming serves no one; least of all, one’s self.

23 Comments on B : Blame

  1. A very thought provoking post. I could probably be better about not trying to find blame whenever something goes wrong and start taking responsibility for my own mistakes. It’s difficult being a human. Maybe that’s why I enjoy observing wildlife so much. Thanks for visiting my gator and watch out for those crocs!

  2. We always told the kids if you can’t do the time, don’t do the crime. (Yes it came from the show – Baretta.) Along with, Just ‘ fess up and we will deal with it. It holds up for many stances of living. Acountability is foremost.
    Good post!

    • Thanks Liz for commenting. yes that’s what we said to our kids and their schools re-inforced this. Accountability – the name of the game.

  3. Thanks for commenting Cindy – yes it is human nature – part of the darker aspect of human nature. But, as Patricia above says, taking responsibility can set you free! I so like how she puts that! I love people’s comments – I learn so much from them!

  4. I think it’s human nature to not want to be wrong, so one method is to resort to blaming someone else for the mistake. Of course, that’s not the right thing to do.

    • Thanks Cindy for commenting! Yup, no-one likes to be in ‘bad books’ with other. But I like so much what Patricia says in earlier comment, that taking responsibility sets you free!

    • Thanks Mike! Right from the beginning! – (according to the creation story – which, like Alice, can teach us a thing or three).

    • Hi Sandy, thanks for commenting.
      Sometimes, G.d is not fully spelled out – I am happy with using God in full.
      I reckon that we often don’t want to take responsibility for wrong doing because someone will be mad at us … and we want to stay in others’ good books. But as Patricia says in an above post, responsibility for own actions can set us free!

  5. Yes, Susan, an excellent post as it is so easy to deny our responsibility in actions and blame another person. Accepting our own faults and mistakes seems to be a growing problem. I love your wise words. Thank you.

    • Thank you dear Gwynn as always!
      Do you think that it is growing? I do – on all levels of society and the individual level which is why each individual needs to be aware and see the machinations from the inner to the outer.
      Thank you again! 🙂

  6. I have a bit of a different view on what made God upset about the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, but I definitely get what you’re saying.

    As you read on my blog today, blame is a big problem, much bigger than people think. They think it shifts their problems away, but instead, it just keeps people smack bang in the middle of them.

    • Thanks Misha for commenting!
      Yes, there are so many ways of viewing ‘the story’ each illuminating in their way as was yours!

  7. Yet another lovely lesson on life 🙂 Very relatable as we all do it. It’s easier to blame than to live in guilt.

    • Thank you Melissa. Yes we do all do it … who wants to ‘fess up and face up? We’ll get there though .. 🙂

  8. Adam, the world’s first blame shifter though sadly not the last.

    I like how you pick out that it’s their denial that really upsets God.

    Bless you


  9. Hi,
    Beautiful post. It is astonishing when an individual discovers that he or she was born to be a victor and not victim. That he or she was born to make mistakes and to accept the responsibility behind them and not blame others for his or her bad choices.

    It is really difficult to see this principle, because we some how or other think that we have to be perfect. Therefore to discover that you don’t have to blame anyone else, and that it is okay to accept responsibility for your decisions in life is setting yourself free. You have freedom because you know that you know who is responsible, yourself.

    Great post, Lady.

    • I love how you say that accepting responsibility sets you free Patricia! This is so true! And who wants to be perfect anyway? No room for movement then … a fixed position.
      We learn from our errors … Jung said ‘truth is often born of error’ … or words to that effect.
      Thank you again, and Shalom!

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