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Showing posts from July, 2015

Human Survival

Art that falsifies biblical history and reinforce the divide between Christians and Jews

I discovered, with Renaissance images of Jesus, his family and followers. In one respect a vast trove of Renaissance artworks inspire devotion and intensify faith in Christianity. On another level, though, they falsify biblical history and reinforce the divide between Christians and Jews, which has had lethal consequences for Jews over many centuries. The falsifications were all the more compelling because they were made subtly, by omission. What has been omitted is Jesus' Jewish identity. You can walk through gallery after gallery in museums around the world, as I have, and you will rarely see any evidence that Jesus was a Jew or had any connection to Judaism or to the Middle East where he was born and where he preached. Indeed, he is typically pictured as Northern European in appearance, with fair skin, blond hair, and blue eyes. And you will likely find him and his family and followers in regal attire, in palatial Renaissance settings, surrounded by symbols of a religion -- Chr…

How Beliefs Paved the Way for the Holocaust

In The Holocaust, The Church, and the Law of Unintended Consequences, Anthony J. Sciolino recorded the following events. I placed them in chronological order so you will be able to follow the beliefs about the Jews as they evolved through Christianity. While you read them, consider how many of the actions promoted found their way into the Nazi plans against the Jews. Read the complete blog at --

Our Belief Choices Either Build Barriers or Bridges.

Resolving Conflicts With People With Different Beliefs

The search for the most accurate ancient manuscripts of the biblical text.

An important component of the search for the original manuscripts of the books of the Bible – or later copies that are the most accurate – is called “Textual Criticism.” Textual criticism deals with the origin and nature of all forms of a text, in our case the biblical text.This involves a discussion of its supposed original form(s) and an analysis of the various representatives of the changing biblical text. Read the complete article at --

Surprising Mosaics Revealed in Ancient Synagogue in Israel

Working on a hill high above the Sea of Galilee, the team has uncovered one amazing floor mosaic after another in the buried ruins of a synagogue. Since the first patch of tiny, naturally colored stones came to light in 2012. "The mosaics were a complete surprise," says Dr. Jodi Magness, whose research is supported in part by a National Geographic Society grant. See pictures and read complete article at --

A Remarkable Story of the Power of TOV over Institutionalized Hatred

The power of TOV over institutionalized hatred is seen in Not by the Sword by Kathryn Watterson. She tells the story of Michael Weisser, a Jewish cantor, his wife, Julie and Larry Trapp.  Michael and Julie Weisser had recently moved to their new home in Lincoln, Nebraska, in June 1991 when their peaceful unpacking was interrupted by a threatening phone call. Shortly afterward, they received a package of racist flyers with a card that announced -- “The KKK is watching you, scum.” The police told the Weissers it looked like the work of Larry Trapp, a self-described Nazi and local Ku Klux Klan grand dragon. Trapp had been linked to fire bombings of African American homes in the area and a center for Vietnamese refugees. Read the complete story at --

On This Day in 1799 a French soldier discovered the Rosetta Stone

The Rosetta Stone is a large block of black granite, over 2,000 years old, that was rediscovered in Egypt in 1799. It was a remarkable find as it contains inscriptions that enabled scholars to learn how to read hieroglyphs that were previously indecipherable. See picture and read article at --

On This Day in 1799 a French soldier discovered the Rosetta Stone

The Rosetta Stone is a large block of black granite, over 2,000 years old, that was rediscovered in Egypt in 1799. It was a remarkable find as it contains inscriptions that enabled scholars to learn how to read hieroglyphs that were previously indecipherable. See picture and read article at --

See How the 5 Major Religions Spread Across the World in 2 Minute Video.

Hinduism, Buddhism, Christianity, Judaism, and Islam are five of the biggest religions in the world. Over the last few thousand years, these religious groups have shaped the course of history and had a profound influence on the trajectory of the human race. Through countless conflicts, conquests, missions abroad, and simple word of mouth, these religions spread around the globe and forever molded the huge geographic regions in their paths. See this displayed on an animated map --

The Blessing of Living in the State of Constant Disagreement

Citizens fighting each other are exactly what America’s enemies want. Citizens engaged in civilized, respectful acts of persuasion – each presenting reasoned evidence to support their position – is what American’s Founders envisioned. Read the complete TOV Center Blog at --

Mysterious 2,000-year-old marble dolphin found near Gaza

Archaeologists think 16-inch-high statuette found in southern Israel may have been part of larger sculpture, wonder how it ended up in Byzantine floor. You would think that 12 miles inland from the Mediterranean Sea is the last place to find a dolphin clutching a fish between its jaws. Hewn from marble, the 2,000-or-so-year-old statuette surfaced during archaeological excavations near Kibbutz Magen, bordering the Gaza Strip, in March of this year. See pictures and read article at --

The Civil War & Religion in the South

The Civil War affected the way of life in America in many areas – political, economic and religious. The way Americans viewed each other and life in general changed after 1865. The fact that it was a war of Christians against Christians was nothing new. The colonists Christians had fought the English, French and Spanish Christians to gain their freedom. The thing that was different in this case was that the Christians on both sides were Americans before and after the Civil War. During the Civil War, both sides believed in the same Jesus and prayed to same God for victory. Northern and Southern Christians were assured from their respective pulpits that their cause was just and righteous. How would the religious leaders of the South explain the loss to their members?
There were 1,094,453 casualties in the Civil War and the 1879 final official report placed the total cost at $6,190,000,000. The Confederacy spent perhaps $2,099,808,707. By 1906 another $3.3 billion already had been spent …

5,000-year-old musical scene found on pottery in Israel may reflect sacred marriage ritual

Archaeologists from the Israel Antiquities Authority working at Bet Ha-‘Emeq have discovered a shard from an early Bronze Age storage vessel depicting scenes from what seems to be a ‘sacred marriage’ ritual. The images are on a 5,000 year old seal which may be one of the world’s oldest depictions of musicians. All the figures are female. One of them is playing a musical instrument similar to a harp which may be a lyre. The instrument, the name of which is Greek (λύρα, lýra), is known primarily from its use in classical Greece. It is similar to a harp but a lot smaller. It has seven strings and the earliest known image of one is that which appears in the sarcophagus of Hagia Triada, a Minoan settlement in Crete. See pictures and read article at --

5,500-Year-Old Fingerprint Found on Ceramic Vessel

Danish archaeologists doing a survey ahead of the construction of the Femern Belt link scheme, an immersed tunnel that will connect the German island of Fehmarn with the Danish island of Lolland, have found a 5,500-year old-ceramic vessel bearing the fingerprint of the artisan who made it. The vessel is known with the name “funnel beaker,” a kind of ceramics which features a flat bottom with a funnel shaped neck. Such earthenware is characteristic of the Funnel Beaker Culture (4000 – 2800 B.C.), which represents the first farmers in Scandinavia and the north European plain. See pictures and read complete article at --

2nd Temple-era ritual bath found beneath Jerusalem living room

Renovations in a Jerusalem home recently uncovered an ancient mikveh (ritual bath) dating from the Second Temple Period, believed to be over 2,000 years old. “Beyond the excitement and the unusual story of the mikveh’s discovery, its exposure has archeological importance. “Ein Kerem is considered a holy place in Christianity because of its association with the ‘city of Judah’, where the New Testament says John the Baptist was born and where Elizabeth, John’s mother, met Mary, mother of Jesus. See pictures and read article at --

Southwest Jewish Congress Middle East Update

This past Sunday, eighteen professional pro-Palestinian international activists made a pathetic attempt to "run" the Israeli security sea blockade of the Gaza strip with four small yachts, in order to "bring much needed medical supplies to the "poor Gazans suffering under the brutal and oppressive Israeli occupation". Read complete update at --