Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Tisha Be'Av in Jerusalem


Tomorrow night (Wednesday), the Jewish fast day "Tisha Be'Av" is starting. Until Thursday night we are mourning the destruction of the two Temples in Jerusalem. It says that with the arrival of Meshiach and the building of the Third Temple, this day is going to turn into a day of joy.

The right - wing "Women in Green" including the activist Nadja Matar have been organizing a "March around the Old City walls" for many years. Every Tisha Be'Av, Jews from all over Israel are meeting in front of the Jerusalem municipality building, listening to Megillath Eicha and then starting the march. From the municipality, passing Damascus Gate (Sha'ar Shechem), the Flower Gate (Sha'ar HaPrachim) to the Kotel (Western Wall).

This year, the Eicha reading is taking place in front of the American Consulate due to Barak Hussein Obama's plan to divide Jerusalem.

I participated in the event many times and enjoyed myself. Especially because of being given the opportunity walking around the Old City walls freely and being protected by the army. Usually the Arabs stare but don't do anything.

The only thing bothering me was the polictical side of the event. Politicians talking, Nadja Matar yelling against the government, etc. It doesn't give me a Tisha Be'Av atmosphere and I think that particularly this day deserves more than "only" politics. Last year I participated in the entire "Aish HaTorah" programme organized by Aish and the Heritage House (free Jewish hostel and brainwashing factory). It was nice but I found the monolog of Rabbi Yom Tov Glazer too exaggerated and Rabbi Shmuel Schwartz tried his best to handle his lecture. I suffered and almost fell asleep if hadn't been sitting on the hard floor.

This year, I am going to try a Mea Shearim Synagogue and see how spirituality and Tisha Be'Av mourning goes there.

A few Tisha Be' Av (5768 / 2008) photos of Jerusalem's Old City.

I had putting the copyright through pictures but a friend of mine obviously loves doing so !

The Cardo, a Roman shopping street

The Cardo

Excavations across the Kotel (Western Wall)

Army trip to the Cardo

Western Wall (Kotel)

Men to the left and women to the right - Separation wall (Mechitzah) in front of the Kotel

Ruins of the city wall of the First Temple period

Excavations in the Cardo

Entrance to the AISH HaTorah programme

New building of the"Churvah Synagoge" which was destroyed by the Jordanians in 1948


  1. The "Hurva" is being rebuilt??? I had no idea...is it according to the original design/on the same location? this is really exciting news to me.

  2. B"H

    The "Hurva" has been rebuilt for more than two years and should be finished by now. Not ready for the service but almost.

    Don't ask what the costs where and the Square in the Jewish Quarter looks very different from what it use to be.

    By the way, the construction workers were mostly Palestinians. Somehow odd, as the Hurva was destroyed by the Jordanians.