Askmoses-A Jews Resource
What are the laws and customs pertaining to the day before Yom Kippur?
Browse our archives

The Scholar is ready to answer your question. Click the button below to chat now.


Scholar Online:

Type in your question here:

Click the button below to either CHAT LIVE with an AskMoses Scholar now - or - leave a message if no Scholar is currently online.

CHAT or LEAVE A MESSAGE

Why was Adam not allowed to eat meat?

by Mrs. Nechamah Dina Kumer

  

Library » History » Early Years | Subscribe | What is RSS?


PRINT EMAIL COMMENT

Adam was prohibited to kill any animal, fish, or living creature to satisfy his carnivorous cravings. Incidentally, there is an opinion that Adam was permitted to eat meat from a creature that “bit the dust” all on its own.

So why from Adam until after the flood (over 1600 years!) weren't there any saber-tooth steakhouses?

During those first ten generations, people served no significant benefit to the animals. Humanity was justly herbivorous since the creatures of the world owed them nothing. All that changed with Noah, who saved the animals from the flood. From then on, the animals owed their entire existence to Noah. For this reason, G-d then permitted Noah and his descendents to eat meat, in return for humanity’s favor of saving the animal kingdom.

Also, after the flood, things took a downward turn. The world became less supernatural and more earthly, not many more multi-century life-spans or creatures of monolithic proportions. That is when G-d gave humanity the option of eating meat. From Adam until Noah, the peoples of the world could fully subsist on a vegetarian diet, but since the flood, most human beings actually need meat for the different nutrients and proteins it provides.

Jewish mysticism explains that as materialistic as it appears, food is really a great hiding place for G-dliness. When we eat in a holy manner, then the G-dliness comes out of hiding, thereby elevating both us and the food up a good few notches.

The antediluvian generations had enough spiritual nourishment eating the fruit of the earth. Meat was added to the diet when humanity became spiritually weaker and needed the extra “protein.”

And though meat was added to the menu due to our weakness, the post-deluge peoples were thus granted spiritual possibilities that Adam never had. We have an opportunity that Adam did not: to transform an animal’s flesh into G-dliness itself.

So, you can have your steak and eat it too.


ADD A COMMENT

Please email me when new comments are posted (you must be  logged in).

COMMENTS

Is it a sin to eat meat or not?

Posted by: Anonymous on Aug 25, 2006

If it good to eat meat, why do we ask forgiveness for the sin of eating, on Yom Kippur?

Editor's Comment

For eating forbidden foods and for overeating.

RELATED CATEGORIES

Miscellaneous » Animals/Pets
Mitzvot » Kosher » Kosher Creatures

Noah
Tenth generation from Adam. Of all humankind, only he and his family survived the Flood which destroyed all civilization in the year 2106 BCE.
Adam
The first man, created by G-d on the sixth day of creation. He was banished from the Garden of Eden after eating from the forbidden fruit of the forbidden knowledge. Died in 2830 BCE.
G-d
It is forbidden to erase or deface the name of G-d. It is therefore customary to insert a dash in middle of G-d's name, allowing us to erase or discard the paper it is written on if necessary.