Genesis 3:8 - Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as He was walking ...

Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as He was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden. (Genesis 3:8)
This verse confirms that the Eden being discussed in Genesis is not a physical place on planet Earth: Eden symbolizes the spiritual world.

Is God a personal God?

This verse also indicates that the Supreme Being is not some kind of vague force or amalgamation: Rather, God is a Person. He is an individual being, complete with a personality, desires, wishes, intentions and relationships. This is why each of us also has an individual personality, desires, wishes, intentions and relationships.

Why would God create something that He Himself doesn't have? If we can have personal relationships, certainly God can too. If we can have our own individuality, so can God. In fact, the reason why each of us has these unique personalities and relationships is because God has them.

This was communicated clearly by God:
"Let Us make man in Our image... (Genesis 1:26-27)
The spiritual world is that location where the Supreme Being is present personally. The Supreme Being walks the spiritual world surrounded by His associates and His loving servants who care for Him and play with Him.

The Supreme Being enjoys the various relationships of the spiritual world. Here He enjoys so many pastimes involving His loving relationships with His associates and loving servants. In fact, within the depths of the spiritual world, God's associates and loving servants do not realize that God is the Supreme Being: They simply love Him as their dear-most friend, companion, beloved and so on - whatever their unique relationship with Him may be.

Many have stated that "God is love" but what does this actually mean?

The fact is, God loves. God loves to love and loves being loved. God is absorbed in love because love is wrapped around caring for those He loves - each of us.

Didn't God have a relationship with Adam and Eve?

So in this verse of Genesis, God is walking through the symbolic garden. Why? This verse assumes that God would normally meet up with the symbolic Adam and Eve as He was walking through the garden. How do we know this?
they hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden
This indicates that normally God would meet up with them. What would they do once they met up? Naturally, they would exchange some type of relationship. This confirms that the living beings and the Supreme Being exchange loving relationships within the spiritual world.

Remember that this event discussed in Genesis is an allegorical tale rich in symbolism - discussed with earlier verses. Adam symbolizes each individual person created by God, Eve symbolizes the community of the spiritual world, the serpent symbolizes our potential to desire to be like God, the fruit represents self-centeredness, the tree of life represents love for God, and the tree of knowledge of pleasure and pain (correct translation - not 'good and evil') represents our freedom to not love God - after all, love requires freedom.

Then there are the other trees of the symbolic garden of Eden:

And the LORD God made all kinds of trees grow out of the ground--trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food. (Genesis 2:9)

As discussed earlier, these various other trees represent the various relationships that occur within the spiritual dimension.

Now we find that the symbolic Adam and Eve are hiding from God by hiding in these trees. What does this mean? Could someone really hide from someone like God behind some trees?

What is being communicated here is that once the symbolic Adam and Eve became self-centered - they ate the 'forbidden fruit - they then felt self-conscious about their nakedness. This represents them being uncomfortable with their pure state of being God's loving servants. Once they became self-centered, they had to cover themselves up - by assuming false identities.

Why did they hide from God?

Think about this. Once they became self-centered, they were no longer comfortable with their pure state of being loving servants. Then they hid from God.

This is what we are all doing as we seek the false enjoyment of the physical world within these temporary physical bodies and false identities: We are each hiding from God.

It is not as though God cannot see us, however. God is the Supreme Being, and He knows each of us intimately. We cannot really hide from Him.

But we can hide from Him virtually by trying to ignore Him.

This is what we do in the physical world. We wrap ourselves up in our temporary physical identities and the relationships related to them - first as babies, then as children, then as teenagers, then as college kids, then as a young married family, then as middle-aged professional parents, then as elderly grandparents. In each stage, we identify with the physical body and those relationships around us in such a way that allows us to ignore God. This is God's design, and this is equivalent to hiding behind some of the other trees - hiding behind other types of relationships, in other words.

Isn't this story is about each of us?

The symbolism involved in Adam and Eve hiding from God describes both our past and our current state, along with our future choices. The depth of this symbolic story is well beyond the ability of our minds to completely grasp. It is a spiritual lesson - a lesson that we can continue to learn from as it awakens from within our hearts.

The lesson of Eden discusses our past because it shows us how each of us fell from the spiritual world and our loving relationship with the Supreme Being. It shows how we had the choice between loving and caring for Him or becoming self-centered. And once we became self-centered, we began our journey out - we fell, in other words - from the spiritual world into this physical dimension.

And at the same time, every day, each of us makes the choice made by the symbolic Adam and Eve. Over and over, we choose between our self-centered desires and what we know is right - what God communicates to us deep from within: The Supreme Being wants us back. He wants us to return to His loving arms. But we have to choose to return to Him. That choice, by His design, is put in front of us each and every day and at every moment.

Consider another translation of this verse in Chapter Three of the New Book of Genesis.