Karin is an award-winning writer, editor and publisher of Christian and secular works in Europe and the USA.
The Dome of the Rock
The Dome of the Rock has defined the landscape of Israel for centuries. This remarkable building has featured in films, photographs and postcards since anyone can remember, however, whilst the images are beautiful they cannot compare to the real thing, indeed the Dome of the Rock is breathtaking.
As you approach the building for the first time you are overcome by a strong sense of awe and reverence. Although it is not a Mosque, it is a Muslim shrine and therefore it commands your respect. The Dome of the Rock is the 'Taj Mahal' of Israel in a tourist's eyes so whether you decide to stand or sit nearby trying to absorb this structure in all its glory, one thing is for certain, it looks magnificent from any angle and you cannot help but embrace it.
The Foundation Stone - Temple Mount
To all three main religions in the world Islam, Judaism and Christianity, this place is one of great spiritual importance. Many times Israel has been plunged into turmoil because of it, which in turn has caused conflict that has lasted for centuries as each lays claim of ownership. The reason it is so important to each is that it is the place where a supreme act of faith and submission to God's will was demonstrated thousands of years before through the 'Father of All Faiths', Abraham. It is believed to be the very the place where he took his son Isaac as an offering to God.
The place where Abraham took his son resides within the very walls of the Dome of the Rock and is aptly named the Foundation Stone. For all the three main faiths in the world today, this is a powerful discovery and one that ought to be shared, instead it is coveted. In addition, Jews also believe that the Second Temple was built here and that the third temple will also be built here, fueling rivalry.
In addition, the fact that this is the sight of the second temple in turn makes the place extremely important to Christians, as Jesus would have been presented here shortly after birth and would have preached in the temple also during his lifetime. Finally, Muslims also believe that this is the actual site where Muhammad ascended to heaven, therefore it is transparent that for these reasons alone complexities to the arguments continue...
I challenge all who visit this Holy site that there is at least one reason that should enable everyone to agree; it is precious and something that man cannot buy nor build and something that cannot be disputed. Maybe it is the thousands of years of prayers, maybe it is the sacrifices that have been offered up to God, whatever the real reason, I believe that God has answered it because somehow and without anyone telling you, you know you are on Holy ground...
The Dome of the Rock
Where Can I Stay?
- National Hotel, Jerusalem Probably number in Halal friendly hotels. Literally a 5 minute drive from Herod's Gate - an entrance into the Old City. Within easy reach of shopping, rooms are clean, air-conditioned, has parking (included) and FREE wifi. 15 min to Temple Mount.
- Prima Palace Hotel, Jerusalem. 100% Kosher hotel including Synagogue onsite. Open to Jewish and non-Jewish travelers. Offers a great Kosher cuisine. Close proximity to Old City and The Kotel. Economical. FREE wifi.
- CMJ Guest House, Jerusalem. The wonderful B & B is located in the heart of Jerusalem near the Jaffa Gate. There is a prayer garden available upon request for contemplation, prayer and reflection. All rooms are ensuite.
Here are a few great websites of organizations that will help make your stay pleasurable and easy:
Here are some guidelines & tips for visiting the Dome of the Rock:
- Best route is to go via the Wailing Wall and climb up from there to Solomon's stables and across to the Dome - this way you see all three sites at once!
- You may need to remove your shoes before entering this Holy site.
- Where a large brimmed hat on hot sunny days and don't forget your sunscreen!
- Take your water!
- Sometimes you cannot get inside but you can still usually take photos and visit the outside, the ushers at the doors will help you if you are not on a tour.
Nice Touch! You can visit the Al-Aqsa Mosque Tours and Activities for FREE! Link here
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.