The Garden of Eden and Recent Excavations

Turkish RuinsThe site of the mythical ancient garden of Eden has long held fascination, particularly since it is referred to beyond the Genesis source. Now, as Tom Knox writes, a remarkable archaeological site in eastern Turkey may support earlier theories on Edens location and how a semi-religious meeting place dating to 13,000 BC may have led to the stories of Gods Garden or Paradise.

Gobekli Tepe in the Plains of Harran

Knox, whose book The Genesis Secret explores the connections to Gobekli Tepe, states that the hundreds of T-shaped megaliths covered with images of different animals may be the most important discovery in centuries. The carbon dating makes Gobekli the oldest such site in the world, by a mind-numbing margin. At the time early man inhabited the site, it was a place filled with herds of game, rivers of fish, and rencontre femme pour plan cul flocks of wildfowl; lush green meadows were ringed by woods and wild orchards. In a bizarre twist, the site was covered over in 8,000 BC.

George Frederick Wright states that to be in accordance with all existing ancient literature about Eden, its location had to be adapted to the production of fruit trees and animals capable of domestication The Genesis Eden was well-watered by the four branches of rivers Josephus identified as the Ganges, Tigris, Eurphrates, and Nile. The prophet Ezekiel (31.16) refers to the well-watered trees of Eden.

Wright examined the various theories as to Edens possible location and concludes that the greatest amount sites rencontres s gratuits of evidences places it in eastern Turkey Wrights conclusions came at the early part of the 20th century, long before Gobekli Tepe was discovered. The very name Eden was derived from an site rencontre tchatch gratuit Assyrian term, idinu, which has been traced to the Accadian (Sumerian) edin. Finally, tablets found at the site of the ancient city of Eridu (Mesopotamia) contain images of a sacred tree, a tree of life, guarded by two spirits at either end.

The Biblical Flood and Other Considerations

Critics point out that there is solid evidence suggesting mankinds diffusion in Neolithic times can be linked to Central Asia. Other theories place the Garden of Eden at the North Pole or perhaps on a land mass now covered by one of the oceans. If, however, the Gobekli Tepe site predated a regional inundation (the Noah story also found in Gilgamesh), it is possible that both the eastern Turkey theory and the Central Asian theory, referring then to a later period, might hold true.

In Ezekiel 28.13, the prophet refers to Eden, the garden of God, and enumerates the riches therein, including the statement that, every precious stone was your covering. The list of precious stones includes lapis lazuli, a stone found only in the region of Afghanistan in abundance and quality. This reference alone supports the Gobekli contentions. Later, in 31.18, Ezekiel, warns yet you will be brought down with the trees of Eden to the earth beneath you Could this have been a reference to the covering up of Gobekli, lost to the ancients in all but memory?

Eden, in the collective consciousness and oral traditions of ancient peoples, was a reminder of a time when climate and geography afforded abundance. At some point, all of that changed. Tom Knox mentions the discovery of skulls at Cayonu, sixty miles from Gobekli, that point to human sacrifice. Does the story of Cain and Abel apply, Cain rencontre gratuit cougar looked upon with displeasure because of his offering of the fruit of the ground? Knox quotes archaeologists that believe it was ancient mans turn to agriculture that doomed Gobekli.

As the site is further excavated, more answers may be provided. Ultimately, however, the Eden story, a part of ancient myth and legend, may find its most promising source in eastern Turkey.

Sources:

Tom Knox, Do These Mysterious Stones Mark the Site of the Garden of Eden? Daily Mail (on-line edition) March 5, 2009. Tom Knoxs book, The Genesis Secret is published by Harper Collins, March, 2009).

George Frederick Wright, Eden, The International Standard Bible Encyclopaedia Vol. II, James Orr, Gen. Ed. (Wm. B. Eerdmans Pub. Co., 1939) p. 807.

Alfred M. Rehwinkel, The Flood In the Light of the Bible, Geology, and Archaeology (Concordia Publishing House, 1972).

New American Standard Bible Moody Press, 1973).