Adam and Eve: balancing duty and desire

In cliche interpretations of Genesis, Adam and Eve is a story that narrates mankind’s fall from grace. But I think it’s a story that describes choice. We can do as we are told – or we can follow our desires. But either decision is a conscious choice. Since the days of Genesis – mankind has struggled to bridge the gap between duty and desire. On the surface, duty seems logical – even permissible. But underneath it all – the desire to follow our passion persists. The heart wants what it wants.


Dearest Jennifer,

The first card I drew for you is the Page of Pentacles. We live in a world where most of us are told growing up that we need to get a job that pays the bills. The more money we have and make, the better. Most of us get fed the lie that money is going to make us happy. Whilst money is important – it isn’t everything.

For instance – just take a look at the Page. The trees behind him are lush. The mountains behind him represent how high his achievements can be. The ground beneath him is fertile. The sky above him is yellow, almost golden. But still – all he does is focus on the coin in his hand – missing out on everything else that life has to offer. 

The Page is almost bewitched by the coin. But true abundance is not just about money – it is also about happiness and that elusive sense of fulfilment. 

The second card I drew for you is the Knight of Cups in Reverse. Like the Page of Pentacles, the Knight of Cups is incredibly focused. But instead of a coin – he has a cup in his hand. He is so focused on not spilling the contents in his cup that he doesn’t notice the journey he’s on. He’s made it through deserts and rivers and rough terrains. He’s should have seen more than most people. 

But instead, all he sees is his precious cup. He is afraid of spilling what’s in it. The unknown contents of the cup represent our fear of getting hurt and losing everything we have if we truly do what we desire. It’s far easier to do what is expected of us than to follow our own path. 

The last card I drew for you is The Lovers. This card represents the crossroads between duty and desire. Sometimes we have no choice but to choose desire. If we keep choosing duty – we never grow, we never learn, we never discover who we truly are, we never take chances and we never live.

When we spend our lives existing by someone else’s rules, we eventually end up blaming them if things don’t turn out the way we wanted. Choosing desire over duty is never easy. There are consequences. But since we already know what it’s like to live a life of duty – sometimes the only option left is to choose desire. 

The last card I drew for you is a message card from the Wildwood Tarot Deck. A raging fire emanates from the Six of Bows, representing the fire that drives us when we root our actions from desire instead of duty. We radiate light and heat. Life feels good. When we do things out of duty – the fire that once raged inside us gets weaker and weaker day by day. When we work from desire – the fire grows stronger each day. We endure and overcome challenges. Even if things are stressful, we know that after a period of stress and struggle – we will ultimately reap what we sow. We live. We learn. We grow. 

Good luck and all the best on this crazy adventure called life.

Your reader,

5 thoughts on “Adam and Eve: balancing duty and desire

  1. Wish more people would get that it’s about choice. Would make their life (and that of others) so much easier. I wasn’t raised by religious fanatics, thank goodness, but was exposed to them frequently enough, which in today’s world is too easy. Pity is they don’t realize Genesis could be taught much better with that element in place, duty vs. desire via choice. Instead of Evil Woman Tricked Innocent Man Because She was Greedy And Stupid.


    1. This particular line from Genesis 3:12:

      The man said, “The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me fruit of the tree, and I ate.”

      It cracks me up each time. Not only does Adam blame Eve – he also blames God! Adam really needs to grow up and take responsibility for his actions…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I actually see God more as a father of teenagers in this. “Kids, you think this is bad? Here, try the real world. Learn some responsibility.”

        Jokes aside, why not also teach it as taking on responsibility before you’re ready?


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