Photo of the Week – Meron Synagogue Ruins

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.

Meron synagogueYou can click on the image for a larger view (which may take some time to load depending on your Internet connection). Please share this post with your friends by clicking on the icons at the end of this message.

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.

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