According to Shamai, the first century Jewish sage, Rosh Hodesh Shvat (the new month) is the New Year of Trees – of course, we go by Hillel’s opinion that says the 15th of the month. This photo shows the ruins of the 3rd century synagogue on Mount Meron with a tree in the foreground. Both Hillel and Shamai are buried at Meron. I chose this photo as an example of a new photographic exhibit I’m working on that is called “Wild and Sacred Places”. Many ruins and tombs, revered as holy sites, have a large, old tree growing nearby.
Today I received an email from a German expat, Florian Seidel, living in Osaka, Japan who is into “urban exploration”, a term that I heard for the first time. With many abandoned or yet to be developed archaeological sites Israel would be a great place for urbex. For example, the synagogue in Meron was destroyed by the earthquake of 409CE. Coins were found at Meron from the Decapolis city at Sussita/Hippos that was destroyed in the Golan earthquake of 749CE and never rebuilt. Both are haikyo (廃墟 abandoned places) and fascinating to explore.
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The technical details – the photo was taken with a Nikon D70 digital SLR and 18-70mm lend in September (ISO 200, 31mm, F4 at 1/1600 sec).
Photographs on this website are © Shmuel Browns (unless marked otherwise) – if you are interested in purchasing one of my photos or using one of my photos for your own project please contact me.