Month: May 2015

Dome of the Rock

Temple Mount, Dome of the Rock, Har HaBeit (הר הבית), Haram al-Sharif, it goes by many names and has a deep history. Without going into too much detail this Dome of the Rock is the holiest site in Judaism. It is believed that at this spot all of creation took place from the creation stone. The first and second Jewish Temples once stood there. Now stands there the Dome in the center, one of the oldest Islamic structures. And on the south side sits a mosque. Now on the mount only Muslims are allowed to pray, which is cause for a lot of controversy in Israel. I was unsure about visiting the mount, it is not a common or recommended thing for most Israelis or Jews to do. When entering through security I was listening to a tour guide prep his group before entering. He double checked several times, asking if anyone was Jewish, if anybody was carrying something religious that was not Muslim, no bibles, or kippas, no rosaries. He didn’t want any trouble …

Jerusalem: The Old City, Church of the Holy Sepulchre, and the Wall

My Mommy has finally arrived! Now my twin and I are taking her around to see the sights. We’ve started here in Jerusalem which my brother knows very well. He has been volunteering at an archaeological dig site next to the wall for the last five months. So we are very lucky to have our own personal tour guide. We dove right in to site seeing on the first day. It was made easy by the perfect location of our hotel, right on King George St., in the center of all the action. The name, City Center Hotel doesn’t lie. This hotel is perfect! Superb location, great staff, and the rooms are modern, clean, with the comforts of home. I would call this place a hidden gem, nested in the heart of King George St. in the center of Jerusalem. It’s surrounded by restaurants and cafes, the light rail is just around the corner. It was lovely to wake up in the morning, walk outside and find a cafe to sit at, and enjoy some …

Masada

Taking a break from lounging at the Dead Sea we jumped in the car and went looking for some adventure. We came to the sign for Masada and made a turn for it. I had been there once before two years ago when I was on a ten day tour throughout Israel. That time we had hiked up the other side instead of taking the 3 minute rail car. King Herod built the fortress on this flat piece of mountain in 30 BCE. His palace was located on the northern side. Equipped with bath house, store rooms, mikveh pools which you can still see the remains. We watched the seven minute video before taking the lift up to learn some more about the history of the place. I was shocked when they showed pictures of pottery that was found that had names written in Hebrew. The story of Masada is quite tragic. It was in the year of 73 when the, almost 1,000, people on top of Masada commit suicide rather than be taken by …

What do we “know” about nutrition?

“The foods you consume can heal you faster and more profoundly than the most expensive prescription drugs, and more dramatically than the most extreme surgical interventions, with only positive side effects.” -T. Colin Campbell If I told you that by eating only plants you could enrich your life and your health without the help of prescription drugs or supplements, would you believe me? Now if I told you that eating meat will give you the protein your muscles need to be big and strong, and by drinking milk your bones will be close to unbreakable? The later sounds like a statement we’ve heard many times throughout our lives, am I right? And most likely they are ideas you have long accepted to be true. I know I haven’t been spared from this sermon either. But I’m curious… If you agreed with the sentence about a plant-based diet, you’ve probably already done some research on your own about the subject. But if you agreed with the sentence on meat and dairy, I want to ask you …

Camping at the Dead Sea

Camping at the Dead Sea sounds like a good idea, and it is… You get to wake up with sun rising over the salty sea, wade in its uninhabited waters, take in its healing powers. Yes its very nice and all, but only until the unrelenting sun is up and ready to start the day, then its a little less nice. Your skin begs you for freshwater as the salt dries it up with the help of the sun. We were lucky,  next to where we slept on the beach there was fresh water streaming. And as if the sun and heat weren’t enough, killer flies were sent to finish us off. Yes camping is fun, but next time I think I’ll take the more touristy route and just go to the spa at the Dead Sea instead. Equipped with umbrella, lawn chair, icy drink, and  a swimming pool to cool off my skin.