Thursday, October 11, 2012

Narration: Egypt against the Hebrews 1

Narration: The conflict in Egypt against the Hebrews 1

Series: My trips back

By Ruben Vernal

Pretty motivated by my previous trip  to  the Incas Imperial  I decided  rest of what was for me an amazing and fascinating experience, before I get ready to take back to ancient Egypt.
As I planned the trip and instructed in the knowledge of this great culture, I came across a phrase or thought written by Gabriel Garcia Marquez who says: “life is not what one lived, but what one remembers, and how to remember tell it. "  May fail to understand the depth of thought of this illustrious writer, but I like the expression and it seems to be connected with him on that count and be more expressive.
All of us almost always behave according to certain patterns of behavior that reflect not only our view of life, but as a result of our successes and failures, we chose to act with some emotion or the lack of it.
But, may be wrong, I find that to be communicative both options are acceptable to and get the final product to be achieved. Not all are good communicators, but we should strive to be. Because I also believe that it is a great tool that would help us to know better and ignore the isolation in which we live today and also we have a great communication technology in the recent past, nor had the idea that it might be possible. I should add that I am someone who strives to try to be a social communicator in some cases bringing you water your soul requires for times of refreshing, in others, as in the case of my stories just to give you moments of relaxation.
Again the origins of writing in were a reason of the selection of my journey into the past of Egypt. And when I started preparing delving into the history of this mysterious civilization, not to be a "strange" when need to socialize and mingle among them, I learned remarkable and depressing issues of the ancient Egyptians.
As now had the experience of my last trip, my schedule better place finish. So check more carefully the geography and extension of the time. Well I decided to take my atlas with maps of ancient Egypt in my backpack in case I needed when I had to move around inside the territories of the nation.
Ancient Egypt had its origin in the river Nile reached three  periods of Pharaonic splendor: the Old Kingdom, the Middle Kingdom and the New Kingdom. His domain extended from the Nile Delta in the north to Elephantine, where the first cataract of the Nile in the south. At different periods expansion reached the Eastern Desert, the Red Sea coastline and the Sinai Peninsula. Formerly was divided into high, medium and lower Egypt. This civilization developed along 3mil years until 31 BC the Roman Empire conquered Ptolemaic Egypt which eventually disappear as a state. Cultural identity began to fade after the conquests of the kings of Babylon and Macedonia. Also with the advent of Christianity their religion disappeared.
The deposits fertile Nile River had allowed the Egyptians to practice agriculture in a less laborious, so that people could spend more time construction, art and cultural development.
The state controlled natural and human resources.
Geography of Ancient Egypt is very significant and will greatly influence on his art. Egypt is located in Northeast Africa and is very isolated from other countries because of its geographical location. Its boundaries are: in the west, the Libyan Desert, on the east, the Arabian desert, on the north by the Mediterranean Sea and the mountains of southern Ethiopia and the Nubian Desert.
Is crossed from south to north along the Nile River, which will have great importance in the development of this civilization.
(Herodotus says "Egypt is a gift of the Nile)." Call the Nile River the gods because it has a sacred and honored by the Egyptians. Plays the Nile valley develops along it. This Valley will have a very small width of 5-30 km, depending on the area, the  river is a very irregular in terms of flow due to rainfall monzonite, so it creates floods, benefiting fertility, so the harvest depends on the flooding of the Nile, and her work and life. Late June begins to increase its volume and drags weeds at first and later the silt, which is deposited on the ground, at which advantage to plant. This happens several times a year so that Egypt becomes a very rich and fertile territory.
Apart from an interest in the origins of writing and of this extraordinary civilization, which finally decided to make a "visit" was that recounts the events that occurred in the biblical story the territories east of the Mediterranean and in the region known as the Fertile Crescent And this is the name given to the agricultural production area that extends northwestward from the Gulf and running through the territories of Sumer, Akkad, Babylonia and Assyria to get to Syria, then took a southeasterly direction through Syria and Palestine, into Egypt. Projected on a map this contemporary Middle Eastern countries spanning the ancient Fertile Crescent from the Persian Gulf are Iraq, Syria, southeastern Turkey, Lebanon and Israel.
In some maps of the Arabian Peninsula, this area appears as a strip of land shaped crescent north of the Arabian Desert. The two rivers that ensure the fertility of the northern and eastern regions of the fertile crescent include in the biblical account of the Garden of Eden, and which are the Tigris and Euphrates rivers that run towards SE. , From its headwaters in the mountains of Armenia, near Mount Arat. Then join to form the Chat-elArab approximately 140 kilometers north of the Persian Gulf. The total length of the Tigris, from its source to its junction with the Euphrates, is 1,760 km. The Euphrates, longer course, runs the length of 2.752 km to its junction with the rich fertile Tigris. a drag these two rivers formed the soil of Southern Mesopotamia. The name Mesopotamia is the Greek word that means a land between two rivers.
Around the year 3000 BC lived in that region a non-Semitic people who were the Sumerians. The term Semite refers to people whose first language is a Semitic language. Like any other ethnic designation, has no biological denotation but only cultural and linguistic. The term was first used originally in the language field to refer to a large family of languages
​​originating Middle East and currently known as Semitic languages.
The Sumerian civilization is considered the first and oldest civilization in the world. The origin of its inhabitants, the Sumerians, is uncertain and there are many hypotheses:
The Sumerians invented pictorial hieroglyphs which later became cuneiform writing and language along with that of Ancient Egypt compete for the credit of being the oldest written human language is known. A large body of hundreds of thousands of texts in the Sumerian language has survived the great majority of these on clay tablets. The Sumerian texts known texts include personal and business letters and transactions, receipts, lexical lists, laws, hymns and prayers, magical incantations and scientific texts including mathematics, astronomy and medicine. Monumental inscriptions and texts on different objects like statues or bricks were also common. Many texts survive in multiple copies because they were repeatedly transcribed by scribes in training. The Sumerian remained the language of religion and law in Mesopotamia long after Semitic speakers race to become ruler of the area.
So here was happy to know where start  an writing a form, but my goal was another.
Continue planning my trip, finding that the history of ancient Egypt as a unified state begins to, by the year 3150. C., and is divided into three empires with intermediate periods of domination by foreign rulers and internal conflicts.
The Old Kingdom (2700 - 2200 a.) Was characterized by the flourishing of the arts and the construction of huge pyramids. During the Middle Kingdom (2050-1800 BC.), Following a period of decentralization, Egypt enjoyed a period of splendor in its economy.
In the New Kingdom (1567-1085 BC.) Egyptian monarchy reached its golden age conquering neighboring villages and expanding their domains under the direction of the pharaohs of the eighteenth dynasty.
The decline of the Pharaonic empire began around 1075 to. C., following several incursions of armies of other nations. Despite this Egyptian culture maintained its fundamental characteristics to Roman rule, influencing the whole western Mediterranean.
Egypt was an agricultural country, so that was the basis of its economy, welfare and prosperity, having relied on the production of the land. Growing and Labrador effort enabled the achievements of Egypt in a unique position among the nations of antiquity Preclassic.
During the three millennia of history of Egypt under the rule of pharaohs, the farmer was the backbone of the nation. Illiterate, left no written record about aspects of his life and person. Last rung on the social ladder, passing, fighting, a life of hardship, deprivation and stress, and died without leaving a trace in the world.
What is known comes from the Egyptian peasant epigraphic writings (and literary) and archaeological sources. Epigraphic documents are written and iconographic evidence (paintings, reliefs, text) preserved in the tombs of their lords and rich people, since the time of the pyramids to the Greco-Roman period

I wanted to visit at least one year before the confrontation with Moses Ramses argued about slavery of the Jewish people and their eventual release and departure from Egypt.
Start a search for data and the Bible mention the Pharaoh of the Exodus  was Ramses  name 
(Usermaatra Setepenra - Ramsés Meriamón o Ramsés II), it does give the exact date of the Exodus. In 1 Kings 6:1 we read that Solomon began building the Temple in the fourth year of his reign, 480 years after the Israelites left Egypt.
Most Bible scholars believe that the fourth year of Solomon's reign was the year 966 a. C.According   Exodus this date would be the year to 1.446. BC  obviously I had to get to the stage of the old empire. But knowing from Scripture that the Jewish people were as slaves for 400 years, and then I should get on my visit for the year 1.066 or so.
And so I was coming to the city of Buto (Arabic) Tell el-Farain, Egyptian: "Per-Wadjet") and from there went on a camel and sail in a small boat journey that took me several weeks to get to Alexandria.
I decided to adopt the name Abdon it means to be helpful, which is not to say that I know by that attitude, cone also many other names are not in good exception. When a baby was born in ancient Egypt, in charge of naming was the mother. With him it got a middle name, which was that the child would use on a daily basis. The first name was linked to the child's personality, or is related to some deity. Then put two names, one by which he was known and a secret that had magical connotations that only knew him, his mother and  their the gods.

So for mothers was paramount the child's name. Ren is called the name a person receives at birth.

And they believed that the Ren live while the name was pronounced, which explains the great lengths to protect it, writing on papyrus, monuments, or destroying them in case of enmity. They thought it was one of the essential elements of being, as if the name had disappeared afterlife. If the statues or mummies had not written the name, it was as if there was nothing that is, as not being born is why the Egyptians wanted to have children, as these would remember his name and that would give them life.
If after considering the importance of personal accomplishments as that part makes sense.
When get to Alexandria I posed as a Greek born in Rhodes and merchant business contacts with them and with the Middle East, because I knew that the Jews were subjected to a hard slavery as labor in the construction of various infrastructures public including the pyramids.
I went to the outskirts of town just to see them and initiate future contact with residents Hebrews. Actually it was depressing to see the conditions in which they lived, because as slaves they were, did not have a fixed home because they were moved or where they were taken to construction work, And fences them always stood as a kind of camps with mobile shops. Inputs were provided with meat, vegetables, fruits, oil, flour and water so they could eat. This was paid for their hard work. But not everyone was in this condition, but could access many other 'comforts'. I needed to travel to other locations and switch them to see with my own eyes the daily way of living.
When I return to see them, I went to the site of the government to introduce me to the authorities. Here I must make a clarification if you have not yet read the previous story about the conflict against the Chancas In this narration I  write that: "Along with the faculties could go back in time and space, and it was given me to speak the language or the language of the people who would alternate  with and dressed in the fashion of the time, and have cut their hair so you can go unnoticed when he had to live with them, and although my appearance would be equal to theirs, just would not be free of diseases and dangers.
What I do keep my intellect to understand the components of their civilization and to accept their way of life, however different they were from mine, centuries later.
I was forbidden, way to be my first and last trip to criticize advice or suggest any form of thought, foreign to them and they were not caused by them, because it is impossible for the story itself of to change the course of events. "

Now if continuous, then talk to several city officials who would ask the reason why they made slaves to the Hebrews, considering that since they came to this land had always worked for the good of them and of the same Egypt. His answer left me somewhat confused, not really believing it was true.
They told me the following: slavery is not part of the culture in Egypt, but there is a system called 'corvee') whereby those unable to pay the taxes with the harvest should do with their work, which should working for the Pharaoh. Corvee debt is inherited by the offspring, which was always a family member within the corvee system. I knew for a fact that this was not true in the case of the Jews because the Bible says that the Jews lived as slaves for 400 years. It was obvious that the corvee was applied to the rest of the population, and also above the Hebrews when one family decided to immigrate to Egypt. It was only a matter of time that Jews themselves tell their story to me at the earliest live and alternate with them. While planned my next moves, I decided to walk and explore this interesting city.
I already knew from my notes that in the year 332. BC, Egypt was under Persian rule. That same year, Alexander the Great entered Egypt as triumphant conqueror of the Persian king Darius III and the Egyptians accepted him and hailed him as a deliverer. Keep in mind also that Egypt had long since many Greek colonies and therefore were not considered foreign nations. That's why I chose my new name and citizenship.
The following year, in 331. C., founded the city that bears his name in a Nile Delta, about a town called Rakotis inhabited by a handful of fishermen. The choice of location was very lucky because it was protected from changes that would have the Nile River, and on the other hand, close enough to the course they could get through their waters goods destined to port, through a canal linking the river with Lake Mareotis and port.
After a few days I decided it was time to contact with the Hebrew people. Return to the same location on the outskirts of the city, was on Saturday which they sanctified to God and did not work because it was the Sabbath, according to what they said their Torah scrolls and now would become the books of Deuteronomy written by Moses.
I have received politely but suspiciously controlled. I identify as Abdon, a merchant attracted to know Egypt and traditions. I told them that on this trip was not interested in doing business and money but rather to enrich my knowledge and culture, as he had done previously with Greece itself, Assyria, Babylon, and the kingdoms of Mari and the Hittites. Look after each other's faces, approached me one, which I assumed was the leader of this large group, and he said: Shalom Abdon. Everything does seem at times that you are a man of peace. My name is Dorian, and I am in charge of these families, and on behalf of which we welcome, you  and we invite you to stay with us until tomorrow, as I'm going to see our leader Eleazar called to inform of these new, and he who will decide if we can help in the fulfillment of your desires. We had dinner that night, only cooked vegetables and unleavened bread.
The next day, as Dorian said we went to meet Eleazar, who lived in another part of town.
To my surprise he lived in a typical Egyptian house, and apparently their social situation was different, at least Dorian Group. It was about noon when I meet Eleazar. It was already old men in appearance but is appreciated that not only was strong and healthy, but could infer from his speech that was a very intelligent and educated person continually referred to the sacred manuscripts. He was accompanied by other elders and youth Hebrews. Dorian had told him about me and my purposes. After talking privately, where I practically Eleazar "investigated" he said Shalom Abdon-for  your peace of mind and joy we have decided to help you fulfill the desires that you have brought to these distant lands. Willingly accept your offer to fund all expenses for travel sue the interior of our people to go with you and to act by way of guides instructing in both cultures. Also we will thank us your charity with many of our brothers with whom you were in your path. Within a week you will know who will be your traveling companions.
I replied, Shalom Eleazar, I appreciate your help and support for my stay in Egypt, but especially appreciate your confidence and try not to disappoint you, but I assure you that will do is known to   other languages the  
​​greatness your people. Both got up and seal our agreement, with a prayer that the Lord God of Israel raised.
Invited me to stay at home this week to give me the names of my future companions and the visiting program, cities and pyramids. They organized the whole trip, based on what he had told them Iwanted to visit, including my inclusion in the daily life of them.
a)     The next day, Eleazar invited me to one of the rooms that used to expedite the business of the Jewish community, acting as a sort of judge and counsel. In this "office" could receive up to entire families, and  I could see many manuscript copies of his law, and carpets of beautiful designs, and very thick, which were used for sessions of prayer to the God of Israel. I sat on one of the carpets while he was sitting in a chair rustic motif Hebrew mixed with the traditional Egyptians, also denoting its merger with that culture. Once he finishes writing and preparing some issues of the day, he paused to answer certain questions that he had done before, and now I would answer. First I asked him how they came to Egypt, and he responded very brief and clear. And answer me this: When suffering from a severe famine in Canaan, Jacob, also called Israel, and their descendants, who were seventy people, down to Egypt, where Joseph was second in power after the Pharaoh. They were assigned to inhabit the land of Goshen, east of the Nile there multiplied, and were increased and waxed exceeding. That was 400 years ago.

We were treated with kindness while Joseph lived. But when he died and all of his generation, a new dynasty took power. The new Pharaoh, who already knew not Joseph, was disturbed to see how we have grown in numbers and strength. Fearing that we unite with a foreign enemy to attack, and then abandon Egypt, they provided taxes and forced us to build the store cities of Pison and Ramses.
However, while we overwhelmed them more and more increase and multiply we were growing up, so that the Egyptians most feared. The oppression increased and became very hard.
 We had to make bricks from mud, working in the field and work very hard bondage. However, the most awful that Pharaoh resorted to break our strength was to order for midwives to attend our Hebrew women, killed men and preserved the lives of women. But the midwives feared God and did not obey. As said the Hebrew excuse were strong women giving birth without their help.
 God blessed these women and their families prospered, while the people continued to grow. When he finished he said Abdon, do you think this story true or half looks fantastic? I said I did not doubt that he spoke about the historical basis of the story.
Also asked about other issues related to slavery and I  said, Are you also a slave to the Egyptians? Why not look it. Can I explain it?

This story will continue in the second part with trips inside Egypt visiting cities with pyramids, while I have waiting for the arrival of Moses.

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