The Reason for Adam’s Creation
After this lesson about freedom Adam learned another lesson, one about knowledge. Adam realized that Iblis was the symbol of evil in the universe and that the angels were the symbol of good. However he did not yet know anything about himself. Then Allah made him perceive his true identity and the reason for his creation, and the secret of his glorification. Allah the Exalted said:
– سورة البقرة –
“He taught Adam all the names of everything”. (Chapter 2:31 Quran).
Almighty Allah granted Adam the power to know the natures of all things and to summarize them by names; that is a bird, that is a star, that is a tree, etc. Allah implanted in Adam an insatiable need for and love of knowledge and a desire to bequeath knowledge to his children. This was the reason for his creation and the secret of his glorification.
After Adam had learned the names of all things, along with their properties and uses, Allah presented them to the angels and said:
– سورة البقرة –
“Tell Me the names of these if you are truthful.”(Chapter 2:31 Quran)
The angels admitted their inability:
– سورة البقرة –
“Glory be to You, we have knowledge except what You have taught us. Verily it is You the All Knower, the All Wise.” (Chapter 2:32)
Allah Almighty then turned to Adam:
– سورة البقرة –
“O Adam! Inform them of their names,” and when he had informed them of their names, He said: ‘Did I not tell you that I know the unseen in the heavens and the earth, and I know what you reveal and what you have been hiding?'” (Chapter 2:33).
Allah wanted the angels to know that He knew of their astonishment when He had told them about the creation of Adam and that He also knew of their confusion which they had not revealed, as well as what Iblis had concealed of his disobedience and ingratitude. The angels realized that Adam was the creature who knew what they did not know and that his capacity to learn was his noblest quality. His knowledge included knowledge of the Creator which we call faith or Islam, as well as the knowledge he would need to inhabit and master the earth. All kinds of worldly knowledge which are included in this.
Adam knew the names of everything. Sometimes he talked to the angels, but they were preoccupied with worshipping Almighty Allah. Therefore Adam,
felt lonely. One day he slept and when he awoke he found near his head, a woman gazing at his face with beautiful tender eyes. The angels asked him her name he replied: “Eve (Hawa).” (means living things). They asked: “Why did you call her Eve?” Adam said: “Because she was created of me and I am a living being.”
Adam Sees Eve
Ibn Abbas and a group of companions of the Prophet (alayhis salatu was salam) narrated that when Iblis was sent out of Paradise and Adam was accommodated therein, Adam was alone in Paradise and did not have a partner from whom he could get tranquillity. He slept for some time and when he woke up, he saw a woman whom Allah had created from his ribs. So he asked her, “Who are you? She replied, “A woman” He asked: “Why have you been created?” She said :”So that you could find tranquillity in me.” The angels, trying to find out the extent of his knowledge, asked him: “What is her name, O Adam?” He replied, “Eve“. They asked: “Why was she so named?” He replied, ” Because she was created from something living.”
Muhammad Ibn Ishaaq and Ibn Abbas related that Eve was created from the shortest left rib of Adam while he was sleeping and after a while she was clothed with flesh. That is why Allah the Exalted said:
– سورة النساء –
“O Mankind! Be dutiful to your Lord, Who created you from a single person (Adam) and from Him (Adam) He created his wife (Eve), and from them both He created many men and women. (Chapter 4:1)
Allah also said:
– سورة الأعراف –“It is he Who has created you from a single person (Adam) and then He created from him his wife (Eve), in order that he might enjoy the pleasure of living with her.”(Chapter 7:189).
Establishing the Islamic Greeting
Abu Hurairah narrated that the Prophet Muhammad (alayhis salatu was salam) said: “O Muslims! I advise you to be gentle with women, for they are created from a rib, and the most crooked portion of the rib is its upper part. If you try to straighten it, it will break and if you leave it, it will remain crooked, so I urge you to take care of the women.” (Sahih Bukhari). Allah commanded Adam to dwell in Paradise:
– سورة البقرة –
“O Adam! Dwell you and your wife in the Paradise and eat both of you freely with pleasure and delight of things therein as wherever you will, but come not near this tree or you both will be of the Zalimeen (wrong doers).“(Chapter 2:35)
The Location of Adam and Eve’s Paradise
The location of this Paradise is unknown to us. The Quran did not reveal it, and the commentators had five different opinions. Some said that it was the paradise of our refuge and that its place was heaven. Others regretted that statement because if it was the paradise of refuge Iblis would have been forbidden admission and disobedience would have been forbidden as well. Still others said that it was another paradise that was created by Allah for Adam and Eve. A fourth group said it was a paradise on the earth located in a high place. Another group of commentators accept what was in the Quran without questioning where this paradise was located. We agree with this last opinion as the lesson we learn from its location is immaterial compared to the lesson we learn from the events that took place there.
Allah’s Warning to Adam and Eve
Adam and eve were admitted to Paradise and there they lived the dream of all human beings. Allah permitted them to approach and enjoy everything except one tree, that might have been the Tree of Pain or the Tree of Knowledge. Allah forbade them they were give abode in Paradise.
وَلَا تَقۡرَبَا هَـٰذِهِ ٱلشَّجَرَةَ فَتَكُونَا مِنَ ٱلظَّـٰلِمِينَ
“But come not near this tree or you both will be of the wrong doers.” (Chapter 2:35)
Adam and Eve understood that they were forbidden to eat the fruit of that tree. Adam was however a human being and man tend to forget. His heart changes and his will weakens. Iblis summoned all the envy within him and took advantage of Adam’s humanity to exploit him. He started to whisper to him day after day, coaxing him: “Shall I guide you to the Tree of Immortality and the Eternal Kingdom?” He said to them:
– سورة الأعراف –“Your Lord did not forbid you this tree save you should become angels or become of the immortals.” He (Satan) swore by Allah to them both saying: “Verily I am one of the sincere well wishes for you both.” (Chapter 7:20-21)
Adam asked himself: “What will happen if I eat from this tree? It might truly be the Tree of Immortality.” His dream was to live forever in the pure innocence of Paradise.” Years went by, and Adam and Eve were preoccupied with thoughts of that tree. Then one day they decided to eat of its fruit. They forgot that Allah had warned them not to approach it and that Iblis was their sworn enemy. Adam stretched out his hand, picked one of the fruits and offered it to Eve. They both ate of the forbidden tree. Allah Almighty told us:
– سورة الأعراف –“So he (Satan) misled them with deception.” (Chapter 7:22)
– سورة طه –
“Thus did Adam disobey his Lord so he went astray.” (Chapter 20:121).
According to the old Testament, Eve was tempted by the serpent to eat of the forbidden tree. She ate because of the words of the serpent and fed Adam some of it. At that moment, their eyes were opened to the fact that they were naked, and they took the leaves of the fig tree to cover themselves. Wahb Ibn Munabah said that their clothing (before their sin) was made of light on the private parts of both of them. This story in the Old Testament is a falsification and deception. Allah the Almighty revealed:
– سورة الأعراف –
“O Children of Adam! Let not Satan deceive you, as he got your parents (Adam and Eve) out of Paradise stripping them of their ordainments; to show them their private parts. Verily he and Qabiluhu (his soldiers from the jinn or his tribe) see you from where you cannot see them. Verily, We made the devils (protectors and helpers) for those who believe not.” (Chapter 7:27)
Adam had hardly finished eating when he felt his heart contract, and he as filled with pain, sadness and shame. The surrounding atmosphere had changed and the internal music had stopped. He discovered that he and his wife were naked, so they both started cutting tree leaves with which to cover themselves.