The Meaning of Being Human
Different people view human beings with different perspectives. It all depends with the person, his/ her life setting, how he or she was brought up, among other aspects of life. There are various ways of describing human. For example, human can be defined using the biblical perspective e.g. in the story of creation, where Adam portrays a good example of what it means to be human. This paper discusses the nature of human in regards to the creation story, Joseph’s story, and Noah’s story.
In the creation story, man is the greatest of all creations. He was created after all other creatures, as he was more superior to them; he was created in the image of God. He took time to mold the body of human from soil, contrary to the other creations that he created through the word of mouth. God created the first man; Adam, and gave him the responsibility of naming all the animals. This shows that human beings are intellectually better than all other creatures. Adam had to differentiate all the animals created from each other by naming each of them according to the sounds they made, or their sizes or characters.
When God created Adam, he placed him in a very productive garden; the Garden of Eden, where he provided him with everything he needed. The garden had many fruits he ate. God also provided him with food, which depicts that human beings need food for their survival. Though God provided Adam with everything he needed, Adam was not entirely happy. God thought it would have been better for Him to make Adam a companion, and so made him fall asleep. God took one of Adam’s ribs and created Eve. When man rose from his sleep, he found the woman; Eve, and he was overjoyed. This depicts the social nature of human beings. They all need each other for survival, and no person can stand-alone. God ordered Adam and Eve to procreate and fill the earth.
God placed man and woman in the Garden of Aden and allowed them to eat fruits from all the trees, except one tree. They obeyed and lived happily until one day the devil, in the form of a serpent visited Eve. He told her that eating fruits from the forbidden tree would make her wise and be like God. The devil’s aim was to confuse Eve, so that she would disobey God. Eve fell into the trap, and this shows that humans are easily driven into wrongdoing by curiosity. It also shows that a human being has the urge of wanting to know more than they already know. Eve ate the fruit and later when Adam came, she gave him the fruit, which he agreed to eat. After eating the fruit, they realized that they were unclothed and were embarrassed of it, and so they hid. This symbolizes that humans are always afraid of being naked. When God appeared and called Adam, he could not come before God as he had already realized he was naked. Once God asked him why he had eaten the fruit, Adam placed the censure on Eve, who in turn blamed the serpent. This symbolized that humans are quick to deny their mistakes as portrayed by both Adam and Eve. God punished them for this; Adam was made to work hard to get food for himself and his family, while Eve would have pain when giving birth. This shows that it is an order from God that humans should work and toil in order to get all they need in life.
Being human can also be viewed in the story of Joseph. Joseph’s brothers sold him to Egypt, as they were afraid of him, once he told them of his dreams. They thought they would come to be ruled by him, which explains the human nature of fear of the uncertain. Reuben; one of Joseph’s brothers, and the eldest of them was not there when the other brothers sold Joseph and was very disturbed. This explains another human nature of love and compassion for the family. When the brothers reported the case to their father, the father moaned for his ‘dead’ son, depicting human nature of compassion.
Once Joseph went to Egypt, he was sold to Potiphar, an official in Pharaoh’s kingdom, as a servant. Potiphar’s wife had an eye on him and she wanted to sin with him. Potiphar’s wife portrays a human nature of being greedy, as she wanted a young man whereas she already had a husband. Joseph refused as he was a good person, and this led to his being thrown into prison. Potiphar’s wife wanted to settle scores on Joseph. This portrays the human nature of being vengeful. However, God was with Joseph, and once in prison, Pharaoh had a dream where he saw seven fat cows and seven thin ones. The thin cows swallowed the fat cows. Joseph expounded the king’s dream as a drought that would befall Egypt. He saved Egypt from the drought, and thus he was promoted to be second in command in Egypt. The drought had also hit his father’s land, and so his siblings came to Egypt to look for food. On recognizing him, they were filled with tears. This demonstrates the human nature of compassion. Joseph forgave them and invited them to live with him in Egypt until the drought was over, showing that human beings are forgiving.
During Noah’s time, human beings were so wicked that they used to marry the sons of God. God was angry and He decided to wipe out the whole race of humans. Noah was good in the eyes of God. God told Noah to build an ark and gather each species of animals; birds and all living creatures that move on the ground, female and male. Noah trusted in God. Human beings were very wicked, and they were ignorant when Noah was building the ark. The earth and its people were corrupt in the eyes of the Lord. The earth was also full of brutality. The people laughed at Noah as he built the ark. They went on with their corrupt ways, which symbolizes the human nature of not taking into account what is happening at the present. God punished the wicked people with floods, saved Noah, and his family, thus saving the human race.
Some people can rely on the biblical description of what it means to be human. Joseph was a faithful man, as well as Noah. They obeyed God and were different from the rest of the populace during the times they lived. Human beings can be portrayed as being ambitious and wanting to get everything they want. All different people portray their humanity in various forms.