I have images in my head of my family and I walking through the winding side streets full of annoying vendors trying to sell you everything possible in every language they can speak only to finally descent in the silence of the kotel. I see my mom telling us to put on some sweaters to cover our shoulders, and to be quiet and respectful. I see dad going his separate way because he is a man and the four of us having to walk the other way.
Today I was there again. I was back in time 13 years at the Wailing Wall. Alone. With my camera.
Yes, quiet a touristy thing to do here in the Holy Land, but I needed to deliver a message inside the crack of such Wall before I officially began my journey among the Orthodox world.
Plus, I really wanted to feel like a child in a labyrinth for one last time like I did when I was 16. And this is just what happened. No maps, no gps, no questions to anyone. Just moving by intuition… and mine took me all around the three monotheistic creeds in one go to lead me back to starting point. Just Brilliant!
I got to experience a Barmitzva & the arrival of the African women from Angola at the Wall. The Muslim version of a baker and a game among old friends at Bagemon in the Arabic Quarter and some cerimonial mess in the church of the Sacred Sepolcros in the Christian Quarter.
It certainly felt as if everywhere I was walking to, I was meeting-up face to face with history. Every corner I was turning back pages of a spiritual past we something too often forget or deny it exists for fear of believing in something inexplicable, let it be G-d or any other unnatural force, which has special universal powers. But still simply a past that has made us the people we are today, religious or not, still a mere piece of a bigger puzzle that contains us all. Now, if only we could all co-exist in harmony and in the respect that religion is a form of spirituality and that everyone is free to believe in it as he/she wishes, then those corners I walked through today, those pages of history I turned, those biblical figures I met on my way in and out of the Old City of Jerusalem, they could all be inscribed in the Book of Life without the million definitions and the notorious ignorant judgments.
Jerusalem version .01