My husband has been among the growing group of Jews who do go up for the past forty three years, ever since Menachem Ben Yashar of Masu'ot Yitzchak came to visit us when we were literally recently off the boat. (We made aliyah by boat in 1970.)
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Until very recently, few Jews even attempted to enter Har Habayit as Jews. If a Jew looks like he or she is praying, the police will escort you off. This is an awful, antisemitic policy. The New York Times has a relative objective little film report about it, in that it allows both sides to speak.
JERUSALEM — Ten Jewish men were removed from the Temple Mount on Monday morning and questioned by the police after they unfurled an Israeli flag, sang the national anthem and danced at the holy site, according to Israeli authorities.You don't have to have a doctorate in ancient history to know that Har Habayit was where the Jewish People had its two Holy Temples long before there even was an Islam. It's all written in the Bible that the Jewish King Solomon built the First Temple three thousand years ago. That's the same Bible even Christians use to swear on in the courts of most western countries. That means that they recognize the truth in it. Christianity and Islam were both established much, much later in order to supplant Judaism.
In fact, because Christianity developed out of Judaism, and Islam grew out of both, similarities and allusions are also the markers of great differences. Each religion aggressively reinterpreted its predecessors, accepting its sacred texts but radically altering their implications and meanings. And each predecessor religion, in turn, opposed attempts to treat it as a prelude to something greater.I have no doubt that this awful, indefensible discrimination against Jews can be stopped only if the Jewish People demand it.
These are not subtle disputes, and the consequences were far from ecumenical, particularly when successor religions sought to spread their beliefs through conquest and conversion. And while the three share many traits — these are not primarily meditative or contemplative religions, after all, and they are indeed historical faiths, concerned with action, even with mission — their commonalities also lead to profound contrasts. For two millenniums, Judaism, tied to a particular people, was the least outwardly directed, but all three religions saw themselves as shaping world history. Each one also imagined a distinctive role for believers within it. And here the three are quite diverse indeed.
This is, of course, beyond the scope of this show... (complete article)
*The Temple Mount as it is today includes areas of various levels of kedusha holiness. Some are considered too holy for us to tread, and the purification process can't be done at this time.