Biblical Passages

Shock and Awe

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Can we rise above it?

Just turn on the news and you will hear of cases involving corruption. It is done every where and often is considered acceptable. What is corruption? We consider it a dishonest or fraudulent conduct by those in power, typically involving bribery. But why do we consider something dishonest? What is honesty? It is about being fair and truthful. However what is often fair in the eyes of one person may not be fair and honest to another.
If we consider one of the oldest stories from the Bible of the twins, Jacob and Esua, we can learn that what is seen as fair can also be seen in another way. Before we look back in time, let’s consider this. Often times companies will shower with “gifts” certain people who are both influential and have the ability to make decisions. Is there anything inherently wrong with that? What about when these gifts are in the form of cash or special benefits such as preferential treatment at hotels, events or even escort services? What is the difference between giving someone a gift bag full of products or a free meal? Is this corrupt behavior? Are we not allowed to try and influence someone to favor us over someone else?
Now let’s jump back in time: Jacob did treat his brother Esau to a fancy restaurant but he was using the power of persuasion to get something he wanted. Did he bribe his brother with the meal? And Jacob said: ‘Sell me first the birthright.’Only then would he be willing to hand over the stew. And what about later? Were the actions of Jacob and his mother not wrong by preparing a meal, dressing Jacob up and essentially deceiving […]

Humanitarianism knows No Borders

From the Ethics of our Fathers

The ancient text in the book Ethics of our Fathers (chapter 2:5) it says; “In a place where there are no men, strive to be a man.”

In the post I, Ariel Dagan, wanted to bring your attention to a group of Israelis who have gone out of their way, and have even put their own lives in danger, to help others. Often they do these good will actions in places where you would not think to find Israelis.

Why do they this? Perhaps it is partly to do with their Ancient Ties. Their moral connections to lessons learned from values discussed in the Mishnah ( oral tradition of Jewish law) Avot aka Pirkei Avot.

In this Hebrew/English subtitle clipyou can see first hand how this Israeli organization helps refugees around the world.

You can learn more about this Non Governmental Organization on their website and see on their media page how they are also trying to do their part in helping the more than 2 million refugees that had to flee their homes in Syria because of the current situation.

The values  demonstrated by this organization have  a direct link to the same values displayed by Abraham and passed on to his decedents who are the children of the Jewish, Islamic and Christian religions that have their origins in the Middle East.

Genesis 21:2 בְּרֵאשִׁית The Birth of Isaac

Joy of new life

“And Sarah conceived, and bore Abraham a son in his old age, at the set time of which God had spoken to him.”
” וַתַּהַר וַתֵּלֶד שָׂרָה לְאַבְרָהָם בֵּן, לִזְקֻנָיו, לַמּוֹעֵד, אֲשֶׁר-דִּבֶּר אֹתוֹ אֱלֹהִים”
The is no greater joy in the world than becoming a parent. As of yet at Ancient Ties we have not started designing a piece based on this passage. Why did I, Ariel Dagan, choose this passage? In our our world today 92% of children under the age of 2 have a digital shadow. This reinforces the fact that parents are eager to share their joy with those who are in their circles.
Unfortunately this reality is not a given fact. According to information by The Center for Disease Control and Prevention infertility is defined as not being able to get pregnant (conceive) after one year of unprotected sex. About 6% of married women 15–44 years of age in the United States are unable to get pregnant after one year of unprotected sex (infertility). Also, about 11% of women 15–44 years of age in the United States have difficulty getting pregnant or carrying a pregnancy to term, regardless of marital status (impaired fecundity).

The Binding of Isaac as interpreted by the Dutch painter Rembrandt.

For those who know the biblical story, Sarai ( her name at the time prior to being pregnant) could not conceive. One year prior to this passage G-d informs Abraham ( through the messengers who visit him)  that his wife will bear a child. Since she laughed on that occasion, which the Biblical Hebrew text from Genesis 18 said: VTIZHAK SARA BKIRBA וַתִּצְחַק שָׂרָה בְּקִרְבָּהּ his name in Hebrew is YITZHAK or in English Isaac.
Each day there are medical advancement […]