Write a note on Eve's versus Adam's free will in Paradise Lost.

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In Paradise Lost both Adam and Eve have free will. According to orthodox Christian belief, this ability to make choices freely is a gift from God given to every human being. And yet our original ancestors chose to abuse this gift by defying God and eating of the Tree of...

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In Paradise Lost both Adam and Eve have free will. According to orthodox Christian belief, this ability to make choices freely is a gift from God given to every human being. And yet our original ancestors chose to abuse this gift by defying God and eating of the Tree of Knowledge. Although God foresaw the fall of man, he didn't influence the exercise of Adam and Eve's free will. Doing so would've constituted an enormous contradiction of his choice to bestow free will on them. Having given humankind the gift of free will, God was hardly going to determine how it should be exercised.

Eve is the first to succumb to temptation, the first human to abuse the God-given gift of free will. After listening to Satan's persuasive arguments she eats of the Tree of Knowledge, thus bringing death and sin into the world. Eventually, Adam follows suit, eating of the Tree of Knowledge in open defiance of God's strict command.

In doing so, he uses, or rather, abuses, his free will and copies what Eve has done. Adam didn't have to do what Eve did; he didn't have to follow her example. He could've admonished Eve and left her to her fate. But he didn't. He chose to exercise his free will in the same way that she did, with fateful consequences for the history of humankind.

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