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Published: March 10th 2015
I had a break from the boat so I packed my bag, which I'm living out of, and headed to Israel. There is a wonderful girl, Britt, that is studying in Tel Aviv and I decided it was time to go visit. I arrived and we spent a day in Tel Aviv before renting a car and traveling around the country. As Britt as my tour guide i knew this was going to be a great trip. We first headed to Jerusalem to see the Old City before heading to the Dead Sea and Jordan.
Jerusalem is an interesting place. Within one square kilometer you have the third most holy Muslim site, Al Aqsa, the most holy Jewish site, Western Wall, and the most holy Christian site, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. It is a very heavy place, a you have all the vendors that are selling you trinkets while dodging tour groups doing prayer walks. If you can get over the crowds and the peddling you can really feel the gravity of what this place means. I have heard all the stories and read about the events that have taken place here and when you walk the same
path it brings them to live. It does not matter what you believe or do not believe you cannot deny that something is there.
We hopped on a bus and went to Bethelehem to see the birth place of Christ. Bethelehem is in Palestine and we were dropped off in the middle of the town so we hiked a couple miles to the Church of the Nativity. The church was under cleaning so we didn't get the full experience but we crammed into the downstairs area where the stable was to see the place Christ was born. Like Jersusalem it was packed and police were telling people to go two at a time and get out. It was hard to grasp the place we were but there is a beautiful chapel next door to take a moment to reflect.
I have my beliefs and this is not the place to get into them but Jerusalem is the place to see where tradition meets the modern world. Whether you are hearing the call to prayer from the Al Aqsa, the Sabbat prayers at the Wall on Friday night or the Christian groups walking the Via Dolorosa singing hymns, you
can feel the presence of faiths that has changed the world. Jerusalem is a place that will stop you and make you sit and think about the past and what it means for the future.
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