The winds of protest and revolution that are blowing around in the world these days have not passed me over as well. A couple of weeks ago, a friend of the family who is also an antique collector came for a visit to my workshop. He came with a few ancient Jewish coins and asked me if I have an idea for a jewel based on them. I took a few coins from him and told him that I would think about it. After we parted, I looked at one of the coins. On the coin there was blurred, rubbed out writing from two thousand years ago. On one side of the coin there was a motif of a vine leaf with an ancient Hebrew writing, and on the other side there was a sort of jug/amphora also with ancient Hebrew writing.
Out of curiosity, I took a paper and started to decipher what was written. After a few minutes, there appeared on the page two words- "Year two". On the other side was written "Freedom for Zion".
In seconds I understood...
It was an original coin from the Jewish revolt against the Roman Empire. Year two was the second year of the revolt against the Romans- Year 67 of the Common Era (A.D.). The Jug in the center of the coin is one of the holy objects of the temple in Jerusalem, the jar of manna that was kept as a reminder of the people of Israel's wanderings in the desert.
The revolt against the empire broke out because of the cruel oppression and the corruption of the Roman regime, and also due to the division amongst the different sects in the kingdom of Judah. When I looked at the coin I couldn't help thinking about what was happening in different parts of the world; The middle class that in different parts of the world have despaired from the cynical exploitation of the economic bodies and governments. The uprising of the middle class against this continued cynical exploitation around the world will at the end of the day lead to change.
My identification with all those who are fighting against those corporations stems from a clear understanding that has sharpened within me over the years; behind the feeling of freedom that we are given in western countries stands a sort of enslavement of will. The high standard of living relative to previous centuries created a comfortable situation where we have paid our taxes and lived in relative welfare and comfort. The problem started in the last few decades when the masses discovered that they can't afford to purchase a house and have a satisfying lifestyle with their current level of income.
My first understanding started in childhood when I was a student in the "Education System". I didn't understand why the learning material was the same for everybody and consisted mainly of repeating information and suppression of creativity. The constant Mantra of the teachers was: "What will you do without matriculation papers?" That was what was important for the system. Not personal development, original thinking, or creativity, rather a stamp that says you memorized material that for the most part is completely useless for the student. Only after years did I understand that the object of this system is to lead the student at the end of the day to become yet another worker in the organized economic system, another tax payer giving his hard earned money to the government.
The coin that appears on the front of the pendant and ring is an exact rendition of the original coin. In the center there is the jar of manna and around it is the writing, Year Two.
On the back side of the pendant (and on the sides of the ring) is the date tree which is the ancient symbol of the kingdom of Judah. Around which I have added in ancient Hebrew the writing “Ben-Hurin”-which means "a free man".
This is the reason I decided to design the Rebel pendant and ring. The pendant and ring symbolize the personal yearning of each and every one of us for freedom, justice, and self actualization.
The intention of the pendant and ring is to inspire and encourage rebelling against convention, and to promote the quest and aspiration for freedom and self-actualization.