|Zion Gate - Old City of Jerusalem|
The morning of our fifth day on the tour found us in the Old City of Jerusalem, and our first stop was at the tomb of King David of Israel. This is believed to be the site where he was buried. In the picture above, our group is getting ready to visit the site and we are standing just inside the Zion Gate.
Jerusalem is unique in that it is holy to Jews, Christians, and Muslims. Keep that in mind as I tell you the following story.
As we approached the site through a beautiful little courtyard, we saw this golden statue of King David playing a harp.
One cannot help but notice that King David is missing his nose. Natalie explained that the statue was placed there by Catholics. Jews do not believe in statues like this as the Torah forbids making graven images. No one knows who broke the nose off, but she'd heard the suggestion that it was probably a Jew - just to make a point. With the nose broken off, it could not be an image of King David, right? Such logic -- Oy Vey!
The photo above is a view of the tour group making our way to the tomb of David. I don't know about you, but I think Jerusalem stone is so beautiful. When the light hits, it turns to a gorgeous golden color. That could be why the city is called "Jerusalem of Gold". It is also very slippery when wet. More about that later.
When we entered the tomb area, I saw this sign, which I thought was an indication of a ladies restroom. No. It was the sign indicating where women were to enter the room. In Jerusalem, when entering Orthodox areas, women are separated from men. Below is the beautiful view of the women's entrance to the tomb:
This decorative screen is the separation point.
The photo I took inside the room was not usable, so I borrowed these two from Wikipedia. Below is a close-up view of the decorative covering of the tomb. I am always impressed by the beauty of Jewish decorations, tapestries and coverings. I am sorry I couldn't figure out how to make these two photos smaller, but they do show the beautiful details well.
"Jerusalem Tomb of David BW 1" by Berthold Werner - Own work. Licensed under Public domain via Wikimedia Commons.
"King david tomb". Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.5 via Wikimedia Commons.
While viewing the tomb, I heard a man singing in Hebrew, and it sounded so glorious. I stood in awe and worshiped Adonai for as long as I could. Then as we were leaving the building, I looked to the left and saw the cantor / singer. This was a special moment that stands out in my memory. The light and the whole atmosphere were golden.
This is one of my favorite memories and photos of my trip to Israel. The man is wearing the traditional tallit, which my husband always wears in our synagogue. The man is wearing tefillin (also called phylacteries), which are two small leather boxes that contain verses from the Torah They are worn on the forehead and on one arm and are held in place by leather straps. Jewish men wear these during morning prayers.
As we were leaving the site, I saw this beautiful golden Chanukah menorah. Once again, I was thankful to be in Jerusalem for the Holiday of Lights.
In my next post, I'll show you what is upstairs in this building. I'm sure you will be as surprised as I.
I'm linking up today with:
All Things Bright and Beautiful Link-Up
The Gathering Spot Link-Up
Modest Mom Monday Link-up
Share Your Stuff Tuesday
Jenny's Monday Meet-Up
Winsome Wednesday A Wise Woman Builds
Whole Hearted Wednesday
Wake Up Wednesday
Hearts for Home
Fab Creative Friday