The Dome of the Rock is one of the most recognizable symbols of the Holy Land. Although we have been in mosques all over the world and have enjoyed those opportunities, non-Muslims are not allowed inside the Dome of the Rock or the adjacent mosque. This is in reaction to an incident in 2000 when an Israeli Prime Minister visited but with an escort of over 1,000 armed Israeli soldiers. Palestinians rioted in protest and closed these religious shrines to outsiders to prevent a repetition. This is the holiest place for Jews and the third holiest site for Muslims. The King of Jordan paid $8 million dollars for the design and building that you are viewing.
This Muslim man was reading his scriptures in the square outside the Dome of the Rock and the adjacent mosque. Jerusalem is holy to Christians, Jews and Muslims. Muslims consider it the place where Mohammed ascended into heaven.
The Western Wall, also knows as the Wailing Wall, is the holiest site for Jews. It is the only part of the temple from King Solomon's time that still exists. It is therefore a physical connection to the original time of the nation of Israel.
People pray at the Wailing Wall at all hours of the day and night. They write prayers on little pieces of paper and leave the paper in the crevices between the stones. We left a prayer for a dear friend who passed away recently.
Men and women are segregated at the Wailing Wall. They have separate sections to which they have access. Jews did not have access to the Wailing Wall from 1948 - 1967 because it was not within the borders of Israel in what was the divided city of Jerusalem during that period.