Western Wall, Israel
The Wall That Survived
The Western Wall is located in Jerusalem, Israel. Jerusalem is in the middle east of Israel, near the West Bank. It is also the capital of Israel. The Western Wall is in the Temple Mount.
The picture below shows the layout of Temple Mount. Temple Mount, or also known as Mount Moriah, or the Noble Sanctuary by the Muslims, is in the Old City of Jerusalem. It is remembered as the site where Abraham offered Isaac as sacrifice. The Western Wall is on the western side of Temple Mount, next to the Mugrabi Gate.
The Western Wall and the Temple Mount were built in 20 B.C. by King Herod. It took 11 years in total to build the temple, and people had to work through the rain at night. In 70 A.D. the Romans destroyed Jerusalem and the Second Temple, but the outer wall remained. This was because the Romans believed that the wall surrounding was not as important. The outer wall is the Western Wall, which remained until this day since the destruction. Jews visit this sacred wall to pray, and people will write down prayers or notes on paper and put them in the cracks of the wall. The Western Wall is also called the Kotel, which comes from Kotel ha-Ma'aravi, or the "Wailing Wall" because as Jews saw their temple destroyed it made people very upset, and caused them to cry and wail.
The Western Wall is about 488 meters long. In the past used to be 60 meters tall, but now is 40 meters tall. There are 45 stones in the height, 28 above ground, and 17 underground. Each stone varies in length; they can be from 80 centimeters, to 13.6 meters. The height can be from 1.1 meters, to 3.5 meters, and the depth is about 4.6 meters.
What Religion Considers The Western Wall Sacred?
There are three religions who consider the Western Wall sacred. Judaism, Islam, and Christianity. The Jews though, are the people who are most commonly known for being the people who consider it sacred. This is because the Western Wall was part of the Second Temple, which was a Jewish temple.
Why the Western Wall is Sacred
There are a few reasons why the Western Wall is sacred. It all started when Abraham offered his son Isaac as a sacrifice on Mount Moriah. This is how Judaism became an important part of Jerusalem, and how is believed by Jews that all creation started in Jerusalem. The Temple Mount was the center of their spiritual world, before the Romans destroyed it. Although, the only part that did remain from the temple was the Western Wall, and that is why it is so sacred. People will visit the sacred wall in order to see the remains of their destroyed temple.