Monday, May 18, 2015

Visiting the Western Wall

In Jerusalem, it is still very hot. Although it's technically impossible, I always feel like I am walking uphill today.

The Western Wall is a remenant of Wall around the second Temple that was destroyed by the Romans over 2000 years ago. It's one of the few pilgrimage destinations in Judaism. People pray there in part to identify with the whole Jewish people. On every visit to Israel I visit the Wall. Over the years I have noticed several changes in the dynamics here. Certain groups of ultra orthodox have control of the area. Over the years, they have restricted access to about 25% of the available Wall prayer space to women. The majority of prayer space is reserved for the men.

The women's section was particularly busy today. I could not get within touching distance of the wall by several meters. My photo illustrates the challenge.

Another change, which was for the better, was a big sign offering meals to those in need very close to the Wall area. In this area with so many restrictions, kindness is not forgotten.

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