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Happy Hanukkah 2010 - At the Western Wall Jerusalem

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Happy Hanukkah 2010 - At the Western Wall Jerusalem

Postby Charles » Thu Dec 02, 2010 2:47 am

Hanukkah.jpg
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This evening when the sun set, the first night of Hanukkah began.

I've been saving this as a special feature here on the AN Forums for the occasion of this Holiday, and now that it's here, I can share it with the world and our great community.

Let me start by wishing all of my Jewish friends, as well as all of the Gentiles out there, men and women of good will everywhere, a very Happy Festival of Lights. Hanukkah commemorates the miracle that happened after the successful revolt against the Syrian Greeks by Judah Maccabee, the Hammer, around 164 years before the time of Jesus.

The Temple in Jerusalem had been desecrated, and the only way to purify the Holy Place was to burn oil made from olives from the Mount of Olives, just outside of Jerusalem. There was only enough oil for a day's burning, and it needed to burn for seven days. When they lit the oil, it burned for eight days.

So in honor of this year's Hanukkah celebration, I'd like to share with you, in pictures, an adventure I had this past October, which unexpectedly led me to the Western Wall in Jerusalem, at the Temple Mount where the miracle of Hannukah took place.
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Re: Happy Hanukkah 2010 - At the Western Wall Jerusalem

Postby Charles » Thu Dec 02, 2010 2:57 am

Hanukkah2.jpg
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I had an invitation from a friend to visit Israel, so I made plans to go ahead with the trip. As I prepared to head out on my journey, a student of mine, a very special and talented young lady, asked me to go to Jerusalem and place a prayer between the stones of the Western Wall. The Western Wall, or Wailing Wall as it's sometimes called, is the holiest place in all of Judaism. Many believe that the Divine Presence is at the Wall. That the Wall is a direct connection to G-d.

I took the paper and told my student that once I was in Israel, I would try and make the trip to Jerusalem and wedge her prayer into the Wall, a long standing tradition for the Jewish people and many people of faith.

Well, as it turned out, I did make the trip to the Big J. I made it a priority, indeed, a mission of mine, to head to the Wall and successfully accomplish this undertaking.

I'll return with pictures of my walk to the Western Wall next.
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Re: Happy Hanukkah 2010 - At the Western Wall Jerusalem

Postby Charles » Thu Dec 02, 2010 3:17 am

So here we are, heading through the security checkpoints. This is the area of the ancient Temple in Jerusalem. The gray dome structure that you see is a mosque. The Wall is to the left of this.

Clicking on the photos will give you a better view.

Wall1a.jpg


And here it is as I first set eyes upon it. The Dome of the Rock in the general area where the Temple once stood. Contrary to popular belief, this is not a mosque per se. It's a holy sanctuary. The Wall is beneath it and towards the right.

Wall2a.jpg
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Re: Happy Hanukkah 2010 - At the Western Wall Jerusalem

Postby Charles » Thu Dec 02, 2010 3:33 am

A closer look at this very ancient and special area of real estate. The structure on the left with the windows, is a Jewish religious school I think. Above it are buildings involving the Muslim community.

Wall3a.jpg


Getting closer to ground zero. The area we're looking at is where the men go to worship. Just to the right, if you can make out the partition, is where the women congregate and pray.

Wall4a.jpg
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Re: Happy Hanukkah 2010 - At the Western Wall Jerusalem

Postby Charles » Thu Dec 02, 2010 3:59 am

Making my way to the Wall at the entrance for men, all the way to the left in the area of the religious school I pointed out.

Wall5a.jpg


Getting closer...

Wall6a.jpg
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Re: Happy Hanukkah 2010 - At the Western Wall Jerusalem

Postby Charles » Thu Dec 02, 2010 4:07 am

Getting closer...

Wall7a.jpg


Made it! Mission accomplished! The green paper you see is the prayer note my student gave me to place in the Wall. Paper was packed in so tight from so many petitions for so many years, it's like mortar in the spaces between the stones and anywhere there's a crack.

Wall8a.jpg
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Re: Happy Hanukkah 2010 - At the Western Wall Jerusalem

Postby Charles » Thu Dec 02, 2010 4:17 am

I spent some quality time there, and as I was getting ready to head back to the temporal world, I took this snapshot of the Wall from my vantage point. I was towards the right, close to the partition between the men and women.

Wall9a.jpg


All good things must come to an end at sometime. Here's a look at the way I came to the Wall, as I made my way back out.

Wall10a.jpg
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Re: Happy Hanukkah 2010 - At the Western Wall Jerusalem

Postby Charles » Thu Dec 02, 2010 4:20 am

Hanukkah3.jpg

And that's the show, folks! Hope you enjoyed it. I did.

A Happy Hanukkah once again to all. Shalom friends, peace, and have a great Holiday Season.
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Re: Happy Hanukkah 2010 - At the Western Wall Jerusalem

Postby paburrows » Thu Dec 02, 2010 12:06 pm

Happy Hanukkah everyone! Thanks Charles for sharing your wonderful pictures and experience!
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Re: Happy Hanukkah 2010 - At the Western Wall Jerusalem

Postby asymonds » Tue Dec 07, 2010 7:30 am

Great photos! Brought back lots of memories!
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