Fulfillment of an assignment in Western Oregon University’s course “Teaching Ethics & Professional Practice” in the Master of Arts in Interpreting Studies program with an emphasis in Teaching Interpreting. Our task was to find resources to help us in assessing our own ethics and teaching ethics to others. My contribution to my cohort’s resource list was three resources about ethical wills:

Genesis 49: 1–33 and Deuteronomy 32: 46–47
These Biblical passages are early examples of “ethical wills.” In Genesis, the dying Jaakov (Jacob) lays out for his sons what he sees will “befall” them based on what he thinks about their ethics; also, he expresses his prayers of blessing to his chosen son and the wish that he be buried with his ancestors. In Deuteronomy, the dying Moshe (Moses) instructed the people Israel to observe the commandments and teach them to prolong their lives and the lives of their children in the Promised Land (of Jordan).
Medieval sourcebook: Jewish ethical wills, 12th & 14th centuries. Internet History Sourcebooks Project. New York: Fordham University. Retrieved from http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/jewish-wills.asp
Here are translated texts of ethical wills given by two dying Jewish men in medieval times. These ethical wills show the ethics they wished their children to embrace in their lives.
Obama, B. (2009, January 18). A letter to my daughters. Life Legacies. Retrieved from http://life-legacies.com/ethicalwills/samples.html#3
Ethical wills don’t have to wait until death. They can also be given by people at important junctures in their lives. This ethical will, or legacy letter, was written by Barack Obama to his daughters as he prepared to take the place of President of the United States. (A good time to write a will if ever there was one.) I like this web page because it has five other legacy letters from other people as well.