Thursday, April 30, 2009

Israel

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Places I Hope to Visit While in Israel
Part I


The Kotel: Western Wall

I get goosebumps even looking at pictures of the Kotel. I am anticipating it being the highlight of my trip to Israel. Surely this will be on the itinerary, right? I want to pray at the Wall--just me, my siddur and the stone I pick out to be my stone. I want to pray in the moment. In -- The -- Moment. I want to stop thinking and just experience.

Chana's (Hannah) Tomb


This is the place where Chana prayed for a child and is also the place where she is buried. Jewish prayer is based upon the way in which she prayed at this place. We learn from her that our lips must move when we pray but that our prayer should be heard by only us. We learn that we should pray standing. And we also learn that we should pour our soul into prayer. We should allow ourselves to open up and not be ashamed. G-d answered Chana's prayer. And the sages determined that how a Jew prays should be modeled after this woman--Chana.

Rabbi Issac Luria's Gravesite

Rabbi Isaac Luria was one of the five greatest Tzaddikim of all time. He brought the light of the kabbalah down from its lofty abode in the teachings of Rebbe Shimon into a practical system of study. The first book that Rabbi Rose ever recommended that I read was a book about Rabbi Isaac Luria called Physician of the Soul.

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