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October 22, 2014 / 28 Tishri, 5775
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Kotel’

He Was A Great Rabbi, A Soldier & He Liberated Jerusalem!

Friday, October 10th, 2014

As I have done for the past 25 years, I spent the holiest day of the year in the holiest place in the world.

In 1989 my father took me up to pray with a small group of men and women who got together on Yom Kippur. At first I was not very impressed, as the room we were praying in seemed to actually be a makeshift synagogue with a small ark and an even smaller Torah scroll. Everything looked quite bland and even the Rabbi leading the prayer looked like your average Hassidic Rabbi with a long grey beard and a big black hat.

It was only after my father told me to go look out the window did I grasp the uniqueness of where I was. Below is the view from the side room of what is known as the “Machkame”. It is ABOVE the Western Wall!

The “Machkame” was built during the Mamluk Kingdom (1329). The building held a synagogue and a Jewish study hall that looked over the Temple Mount. Later, during the Islamic occupation of the the Land of Israel, Jews were prohibited from praying or studying there and that prohibition lasted till 1967.

The Western Wall is holy to Jews only because it is the last remaining wall that surrounded the Temple.

It is what’s on the other side of the Western Wall that is really holy and where the Jewish Temple once stood.

It is no coincidence that the famous Mosque in Jerusalem with the gold dome is also called Bayit-AL-Muqqadas, which in Hebrew means a house built on the Temple!

This was the view from the “Machkame” window. 

Once I understood where I was standing, a feeling of total awe took over. The total jubilation and happiness was then over-shadowed by sadness as I watched Muslims kick around a soccer ball in an area that is so sacred to the Jewish people that only the Jewish High Priest was allowed to enter and only on Yom Kippur – and now Muslims are playing soccer there?

As I stood staring, my father gently moved my head to look at the “average” looking Rabbi who was leading the Yom Kippur prayer. “The Rabbi’s name is Rabbi Shlomo Goren”, my father explained, “he is one of the giants of the Torah world in Israel and one of the heroes of the 1967 Six Day War.”

The truth is, Rabbi Goren was NOT your average person or in fact not even your average Rabbi! He was an IDF paratrooper who fought in three wars and was the Rabbi who liberated the Old City of Jerusalem, Hebron and the Cave of the Patriarchs (Abraham, Isaac and Jacob) as well as the burial site of Rachel (wife of Jacob).

Rabbi Goren Blowing The Shofar for the first time At The Kotel in ’67

Muslims prohibited Jews from blowing the Shofar

Rabbi Goren with the IDF Paratroopers who liberated Jerusalem in ’67

Rabbi Goren after liberating the Temple Mount in ’67

It was then that my awe and admiration was turbo boosted into a whole other dimension! For the first time in 2,000 years a Jew sounded the Shofar on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. If this is not prophecy in our days, I don’t know what is!

Then there was that little Torah we read from. As I put my arms around it, I felt a bolt of spiritual lighting pierce the deepest part of my soul. It was as if I was transported back in time and could actually see and feel where this Torah has been.

Clean Up the Wall

Thursday, September 18th, 2014

Western Wall’s employees, remove thousands of handwritten notes placed between the ancient stones of the Kotel, the Western Wall, Judaism’s second holiest site, in the Old City of Jerusalem.

The operation is carried out twice each year: before the Passover festival in the spring and at the Jewish New Year in the fall.

The prayer supplications will be buried on Har HaZeitim (the Mount of Olives).

Moshe Feiglin: Netanyahu Has Conceded Temple Mount [video]

Friday, September 5th, 2014

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has conceded sovereignty over the Temple Mount to Jordan, and the holy site is being overrun by jihadists, Likud MP and Jewish Leadership chairman Moshe Feiglin wrote on his Facebook page Thursday.

The Prime Minister announced on Thursday that following protests from Jordan over a new bridge for non-Muslims leading from the Western Wall Plaza to the Temple Mount, he ordered its removal.

His office stated, “There was a structure built without proper authority; there is no real need for this structure. When the Jordanians approached us, we of course agreed. There was no objective reason to have it there in first place. Everyone understands the sensitivity of the area and there’s no logical reason to add extra sources of friction.”

MK Moshe Feiglin wrote on his Facebook page on Thursday, “About half a year ago I submitted a Knesset query to PM Netanyahu on the topic of Israel’s loss of sovereignty on the Temple Mount and its transfer to Jordan. This query has not yet been addressed.

“But yesterday, it became clear that PM Binyamin Netanyahu is transferring the sovereignty on the Temple Mount to Jordan in practice.

“The only approach for non-Muslims to the Temple Mount is via the Mugrabim Gate, overlooking the Western Wall. Following an earthquake, the original approach to the gate collapsed in 2004. The government had planned to build a new stone bridge to the Mugrabim Gate, but capitulated to world pressure and sufficed with a rickety, temporary wooden bridge.

“Engineers from the Jerusalem Municipality declared the temporary bridge unsafe, and over the past few weeks a new, safer wooden bridge has been built under the older bridge. Jordan, however, demanded that the bridge be removed and yesterday, work to dismantle it began.

“This capitulation to the Jordanian demand and the dismantling of a safety bridge that was erected over the Western Wall Plaza (it is not even on the Temple Mount) testifies to the fact that the PM has indeed conceded Israeli sovereignty on the Temple Mount.

“When ISIS and Hamas flags fly freely on the Temple Mount and when the Prime Minister transfers sovereignty on the Mount to radical Islam, Israel’s hold on the Negev, Galil and mixed Jewish-Arab cities is lost.

“ISIS flags can already be seen in Sachnin and Taibeh, Arab towns in northern Israel. The PM’s demonstration of weakness encourages Israel’s enemies in the south and north, infusing them with hope to continue to fight us.”

Israel Researchers Discover Some of Western Wall Stones Wearing Away

Tuesday, August 12th, 2014

Erosion in fine-grained limestones at the Western Wall is up to 100 times faster than other stones that have almost not eroded at all in 2,000 years ago stones, according to Hebrew University researchers.

The Kotel is not in danger of collapsing, but some of the stones have receded by several inches.

The erosion of some stones is good news for people placing prayer notes in the wall’s cracks and crevices, but presents a problem for engineers concerned about the structure’s stability.

To calculate the erosion in the different kinds of limestone that make up the Western Wall, a remnant of the ancient wall that surrounded the courtyard of the Holy Temple, researchers from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem used a laser scan to create an accurate three-dimensional computer model.

As reported in an article accepted for publication in the journal Geology, researchers Dr. Simon Emmanuel and PhD student Mrs. Yael Levenson found that stones made up of relatively large crystals were resistant to wear, so that they were almost unchanged in the 2000 years since they were originally put in place. By contrast, limestone with very small crystals (about one thousandth of a millimeter in size) eroded far more quickly.

In some cases, extreme erosion rates in fine-grained micritic limestone blocks were up to 100 times faster than the average rates estimated for the coarse-grained limestone blocks. In some places, these stones had receded by at least a foot, potentially weakening the overall structure.

To understand what causes the two types of rock to behave differently, the researchers collected samples from ancient quarries thought to have supplied the stones for the Second Temple. Using a powerful atomic force microscope, they were able to see how the rocks disintegrated when they came into contact with water. During the experiments on rocks made up of small crystals, tiny particles rapidly detached from the surface of the rock. These experiments simulated the way in which rain water interacts with limestone in nature.

Observed for the first time in Dr. Emmanuel’s lab, this process of accelerated erosion can explain why some rocks are more weathered than others. While mechanical weathering is thought to act on blocks and chips of rock at the visible outcrop scale, the researchers showed for the first time that chemo-mechanical erosion extends down to the tiny micron scale. The findings could have important implications for regional and global carbonate weathering.

“Understanding such weathering processes could help guide the development of effective preservation techniques,” according to Dr. Emmanuel.“ For example, it may be possible to develop materials that slow the rate of erosion by binding the tiny crystals in the rock together. Advanced engineering techniques like this should assist efforts to protect not only the Western Wall, but other cultural heritage sites in Israel and around the world.”

Arabs on Temple Mount Sit on Chairs Stolen from Kotel and Curse Jews

Thursday, August 7th, 2014

Several of the Arabs who cursed Jews on the Temple Mount Wednesday were sitting on chairs stolen from the Western Wall, where they were donated in memory of an American-Israel doctor and his daughter who were murdered in a terrorist attack 11 years ago.

Police prevented the Jews from trying to take the chairs back to the Western Wall but promised they would make sure the return is carried out. The spokesman for the police told The Jewish Press he is not aware of the incident and although he will try to find out if the chairs were returned, he doubts he will be to succeed, at least not today.

A dedication the back of the chair states, “Donated in memory of Rabbi Dr. David Yaakov HaLevi Applebaum, may God avenge his blood, and his daughter Naava Applebaum, may God avenge her blood, who were murdered in Jerusalem on Elul 3, 5773.”

They were among the victims in the September 9, 2003 suicide bombing at the Café Hillel restaurant in Jerusalem, where the American-born doctor took his daughter for a meal the night before her planned wedding.

The question remains how police allowed the Muslims to bring the chairs to the Temple Mount while they carefully search Jews to make sure they do not bring forbidden objects, such as an Israeli flag or a prayer book.

If you see a brick missing from the Western Wall the Kotel, you know where it was taken.

Comparative Religion Studies

Thursday, June 26th, 2014

Today’s class will be a quick one.

In the top half of the photo, we observe hundreds of religious Muslim women on the Temple Mount, cursing at Jews, and praising the kidnapping of 3 Jewish boys.

In the bottom half of the photo, we observe hundreds of Jewish women at the Kotel, crying and praying to God for the safe return of the 3 kidnapped boys.

If you understand the difference, give yourself an ‘A’.

Class dismissed.

Overnight Prayers for Kidnapped Boys at Western Wall

Sunday, June 15th, 2014

Mass prayers were held overnight Saturday night at the Western Wall for the safe return of the three kidnapped boys.

Israel’s two chief rabbis, Rabbi David Lau and Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu, led thousands of worshippers in reciting the sacred words beginning at 12:30 a.m.

The rabbis prayed for the safe return of Naftali Frenkel, Gilad Sha’ar and Eyal Yifrach, who have been missing since Thursday night after being abducted by a terrorist organization while on their way home from yeshiva in the Gush Etzion area of Judea.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu warned that Palestinian Authority unity government chairman Mahmoud Abbas is being held personally responsible for the safety of the three boys.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/overnight-prayers-for-kidnapped-boys-at-western-wall/2014/06/15/

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