I’m going to start this by saying that The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, for the Nintendo 64, is one of my favorite games of all time. It is without a doubt one of the all-time classics. However, the game is responsible for giving us Navi the Fairy, but I digress.
Anyways, two days ago, as of the time this was being written, I began another playthrough of it for fun. As I played through the first 30 minutes of the game I had a thought. I believe that the opening area of the game, the Kokiri Forest, is an allusion to the Garden of Eden.
Even though Nintendo has always been known for being religiously neutral in its games, meaning it doesn’t directly mention any kind of pro or anti-religious messages, it has been known for indirectly alluding to various religions, including Christianity, even though the allusion may not be intentional.
As you start the game off you take control of Link and wonder around the Kokiri Forest and talk to the native people called the Kokiri. These adorable little people are children who never grow up. They remain as children for the entire length of their lives. They are also not allowed to leave the forest. It is said that if a Kokiri should leave the forest, then they will die. Therefore, the forest Is the only place in the world that the Kokiri will ever know.
I believe that the Kokiri forest is, in a way, much like the Garden of Eden in Genesis. The Garden was to be where Adam and Eve were to live before they royally screwed up (I’ll touch on this a bit later on). I believe that the Garden was to be the only place that Adam and Eve was to ever know.
I believe there is another allusion that is very important to all of this: the Great Deku Tree. The Great Deku Tree lived at the heart of the Kokiri Forest. He was a talking tree that told the Kokiri how to live. He was also the one that told the Kokiri that they would die if they were to leave the forest. The Great Deku Tree also was all-knowing. He was extremely knowledgeable and, after a certain sequence of events (which I will not mention because I don’t want to leave any major spoilers for anyone who hasn’t played this game), reveals to Link the great evil that the world faced and what he should do to start his quest to save the world. With this, we see that the Great Deku Tree is essentially a Tree of Knowledge of good and evil.
In Genesis, the Tree of Knowledge contained all the knowledge of good and evil within its fruit. Adam and Eve was forbidden by Yahweh to eat of its fruit. But, thanks to the serpent, that didn’t stop them. Once Adam and Eve ate of the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge they became aware of what was good and evil to the Lord. While the Great Deku Tree didn’t have any fruit, he did give Link the knowledge to know what was good and evil so he would have a successful quest.
Nintendo probably never meant for an allusion like this to happen, otherwise they would have made it a lot more obvious. But, if you play through the game for a bit and think about it, I believe that you’ll find that the Kokiri Forest and the Great Deku Tree have a great resemblance to the Garden of Eden and the Tree of Knowledge.