JERUSALEM Chronicles from the Holy City, Guy Delisle

GUY DELISLE – Comic Book Author, Drawn & Quarterly, 2012, 336 Pages

(Göksu Köksoy hazırlamıştır)

-Is Jerusalem the capital of Israel ? 

It depends: For the international community, It’s Tel Aviv. That’s where the embassies are. But for Israel, It’s Jerusalem. The Parliament, or the “Knesset” is in Jerusalem, not in Tel Aviv.

-At Machsom Watcha group of Israeli womenwho monitor checkpoints in the West Bank, come and observe and write a report that they post on their website. They do it to bear witness to the way that Israelis treat the Palestinian people. These women are against the systematic oppression of the Palestinian people. 

-Jerusalem has 2 parallel transportation systems. There are the Israeli busses that go everywhere except the Arab quarters and Arab minivans that operate nowhere but the Arab quarters.

-There are many Ultra-Orthodox quarters in Jerusalem, but Mea Shearim is the oldest and best known. It’s a whole other world, some residents leave only to go to the Wailing Wall. The men don’t work and are exempt from military service. They spend their days studying the Torah. Schools of thought vary among the Rabbis, depending on their reading of the sacred texts. 

-Some Ultra-Orthodox Jews reject Zionism. They believe the Messiah will come and restore the promised land to the chosen people. Not vice versa.

-The West Bank is divided into three Areas: A, B and C. Area C is under the full control of the Israeli Army and Area B is under partial Israeli control. Then there is Area A (less then 10% of the territory) which is under Palestinian control.

Church of the Holy Sepulchre is the holiest site in Christendom. In the entrance is the stone on which Jesus’s body was washed after his death on the Cross. To the right is Golgotha, where he was crucified with two thieves. Below is the crypt in which Jesus was laid before his resurrection. On the walls leading to the crypt are countless little crosses, carved by pilgrims during the Crusades.
  Six religious orders (Ethiopian Orthodox, Armenian Apostolic, Roman Catholic, Greek Orthodox, Coptic Orthodox, Syriac Orthodox) share the custody of the church.
To prevent disputes, each oder manages its own section based on the so called Status Quo, issued in 1852.

However, the keys to the Holy Site are entrusted to a Muslim family. They have been opening and closing the doors every day for many generations.

Noble Sanctuary is sacred to all of the three major biblical religions. Physically it covers almost a fifth of the Old City.
4000 years ago God sent Abraham to this hill to sacrifice his son. The first temple was built on this site in 960 BC by King Solomon. In 586 BC, Nebuchad- Nezzar II destroyed the first temple. Part of the population was forced into exile in Babylon. They returned and built a second temple in 516 BC. In 10 BC Herod the Great expanded and beautified the Temple (Future Wailing Wall)
The Romans destroyed it in 70 AD, setting the Jewish diaspora in motion. Caliph Abd Al-Malik built the Dome of the Rock (Kubbet-us-Sahra) on the site in 691. During the successful Crusades, the Dome served as a church for close to a century. In 1187 Saladin reclaimed the site. The Dome of the Rock became Muslim once more and remained so today.

-According to the Torah, it is forbidden for any person to enter the area of the Temple Mount due to its sacredness ( The chief Rabbinate of Israel).

The Rabbis have forbidden Jews from entering the Temple of Mount since they might inadvertently set foot on the Holy of Holies. One Rabbi even called for a no-fly zone over the site.

-Before Jews can return to the Temple Mount, an elaborate purification rite needs to be performed. According to the Biblical book if numbers, it requires pure water and the ashes of a red heifer.
 The problem is that red heifers aren’t a dime of dozen. There have been only nine since Abraham. To speed things up American ranchers have been hard at work developing a breed to create tenth heifer. In 2002, a ritually acceptable heifer was born in Israel but in its second year it developed a few white hairs around a scar. To be declared Kosher; it needs to be perfectly red until the age of three.
 Once the red heifer is found, observant Jews will be able to return to the Noble Sanctuary and the way will be cleared for the construction of the third temple. 

-“Kippa Man” in Jerusalem

Every kind of kippa imaginable is available in this shop

-A bunch of fanatics have decided to stop waiting for the Messiah‘s coming to build the third temple. So they want to lay down cornerstones to get started.The problem is they would have to build it on the grounds of the Noble Sanctuary. But that doesn’t keep them from organizing a large march to the Temple Mount every year. The authorities stop them, so they turn back and place their stones on the corner to wait until the next year.

Masada, where long ago, a group of Jews chose to commit suicide rather than fall into enemy hands. Basically, faced with the unacceptable prospect of forced conversion by the Romans, they preferred to take their own lives.

-A wall surrounds Armenian Quarter and you enter through the St. James CathedralMany Armenian families live within these walls. In the 1340’s they came to find safety, today it is to avoid paying taxes. Because on cathedral grounds, the compound is tax exempt, like every other holy site in Jerusalem. It’s even carved in stone by the entrance. So its not suprising that the compound has grown some over the centuries.

-There is a part of the city where you can walk on the rooftop, with breathtaking views of the Dome of the Rock (Visitors can climb up to the rooftops via a small staircase at the corner of St Mark’s Road and Khabad Street.)
Purim. It’s a holiday that commemorates the deliverance of the Jews of the Persian Empire in the 5th Century. Traditionally, you fast, give gifts of food to friends and the poor, read a passage from the Torah and dress up. That’s why there are elves, pirates, and princesses at the kids school.

      Though interpretations vary, the Talmud requires Jews to drink until they “cannot tell the difference between ‘cursed be Haman’ and ‘blessed be Mordecai'” (good and evil)

Samaritans are one of the world’s oldest and smallest sects. In 2007, there were 712 of them. Half live just outside of Nablus, next to Mount Gerizim, which they consider to be the most sacred place in Israel. The Samaritans are considered to be Jews by the Israeli government (but not by the Ultra-Orthodox). They also have Palestinian ID cards and Jordanian passports too.

Yom Hashoah, 2 minutes of silence are observed throughout Israel to commemorate the victims of the Holocaust.

Hadassah Hospital (Region’s largest medical centre) houses a small synagogue that was decorated by Chagall.
In the last one Chagall drew the Holy City without any walls because he believed it should be open to all nations.

Categories: Chronicles from the Holy City, Guy Desile, JERUSALEM | 1 Yorum

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One thought on “JERUSALEM Chronicles from the Holy City, Guy Delisle

  1. Jerusalem delivrer…Goksu'ya teşekkürler….


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