Holy Land

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Holy Land
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{{Other uses}}{{short description|Term used by Jews, Christians, and Muslims to describe the Land of Israel and Palestine}}{{Use dmy dates|date=April 2013}}File:The map of the Holy Land by Marino Sanudo (drawn in 1320).jpg|thumb|Map of the Holy Land, Pietro Vesconte, 1321. Described by (Adolf Erik Nordenskiöld]] as "the first non-Ptolemaic map of a definite country".BOOK, Adolf Erik Nordenskiöld, Facsimile-atlas to the Early History of Cartography: With Reproductions of the Most Important Maps Printed in the XV and XVI Centuries,weblink 1889, Kraus, 51, 64, )File:SaidaCastle.jpeg|thumb|upright=1.15|Sidon's Sea Castle, built by the Crusaders as a fortress of the Holy Land in Sidon, LebanonLebanonThe Holy Land (Hebrew: {{transl|he|Eretz HaKodesh}}, ; Arabic: {{transl|ar|Al-Arḍ Al-Muqaddasah}} or {{transl|ar|Ad-Diyar Al-Muqaddasah}}) is an area roughly located between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea that also includes the Eastern Bank of the Jordan River. Traditionally, it is synonymous both with the biblical Land of Israel and with the region of Palestine. The term "Holy Land" usually refers to a territory roughly corresponding to the modern State of Israel, the Palestinian territories, western Jordan, and parts of southern Lebanon and of southwestern Syria. Jews, Christians, and Muslims all regard it as holy.Part of the significance of the land stems from the religious significance of Jerusalem (the holiest city to Judaism), as the historical region of Jesus' ministry, and as the site of the Isra and Mi'raj event of {{circa}} 621 CE in Islam.The holiness of the land as a destination of Christian pilgrimage contributed to launching the Crusades, as European Christians sought to win back the Holy Land from the Muslims, who had conquered it from the Christian Byzantine Empire in the 630s. In the 19th century, the Holy Land became the subject of diplomatic wrangling as the Holy Places played a role in the Eastern Question which led to the Crimean War in the 1850s.Many sites in the Holy Land have long been pilgrimage destinations for adherents of the Abrahamic religions, including Jews, Christians, Muslims, and Bahá'ís. Pilgrims visit the Holy Land to touch and see physical manifestations of their faith, to confirm their beliefs in the holy context with collective excitation,BOOK
, Harris
, David
, Functionalism
, Key Concepts in Leisure Studies
, SAGE Key Concepts series
, reprint
, London
, 2005
, 117
, 9780761970576
, 9 Mar 2019
, Tourism frequently deploys metaphors such [as] Christian pilgrimage, pilgrimage [...] Religious ceremonies reinforce social bonds between believers in the form of rituals, and in their ecstatic early forms, they produced a worship of the social, using social processes ('collective excitation').
and to connect personally to the Holy Land.
, Michael Sebastian, Metti
, Jerusalem - the most powerful brand in history
, Stockholm University School of Business
, 2011-06-01
, 1 July 2011
, {{dead link|date= December 2017 |bot= InternetArchiveBot |fix-attempted= yes}}


File:Israel_4_011.Cemetery_of_Jerusalem_with_view_to_the_City_with_Moshee2.jpg|thumb|Jewish cemetery on the Mount of Olives, Jerusalem. The holiness of Israel attracted Jews to be buried in its holy soil. The sage Rabbi Anan said "To be buried in Israel is like being buried under the altar."(Ketubot (tractate)]] 111, quoted in Ein YaakovBOOK, Michael L. Rodkinson (Translator), The Babylonian Talmud: all 20 volumes (Mobi Classics),weblink 7 December 2011, 2010, MobileReference, 978-1-60778-618-4, 2234, BOOK, Moshe Gil, A history of Palestine, 634-1099,weblink 7 December 2011, 1997, Cambridge University Press, 978-0-521-59984-9, 632, )File:OliveHarvest.JPG|thumb|upright=1.25|Olives trees, like this one in Qefin, have intrinsic holiness in Judaism, especially during the (Shmita|Sabbatical Year]]. This "seventh year holiness" carries with it many religious laws.Seasons in Halacha, Pinchos Yehoshua Ellis, pg. 74.)Jews do not commonly refer to the Land of Israel as "Holy Land" (Hebrew: {{transl|he|Eretz HaKodesh}}). The Tanakh explicitly refers to it as "holy land" in only one passage.{{bibleverse||Zechariah|2:16|HE}} The term "holy land" is further used twice in the deuterocanonical books.{{bibleverse||Wisdom|12:3|NRSV}}{{bibleverse||2 Maccabees|1:7|NRSV}} The holiness of the Land of Israel is generally implied in the Tanakh by the Land being given to the Israelites by God, that is, it is the "promised land", an integral part of God's covenant. In the Torah, many mitzvot commanded to the Israelites can only be performed in the Land of Israel,Aharon Ziegler, Halakhic positions of Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik: Volume 4, KTAV Publishing House, 2007, p.173 which serves to differentiate it from other lands. For example, in the Land of Israel, "no land shall be sold permanently" ({{Bibleverse|Lev|25:23}}). Shmita is only observed with respect to the Land of Israel, and the observance of many holy days is different, as an extra day is observed in the Jewish diaspora.According to Eliezer Schweid:, p.56.|sign=|source=}}From the perspective of the 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia, the holiness of Israel had been concentrated since the sixteenth century, especially for burial, in the "Four Holy Cities": Jerusalem, Hebron, Safed and Tiberias – as Judaism's holiest cities. Jerusalem, as the site of the Temple, is considered especially significant.Since the 10th century BCE. "For Jews the city has been the pre-eminent focus of their spiritual, cultural, and national life throughout three millennia." Yossi Feintuch, U.S. Policy on Jerusalem, Greenwood Publishing Group, 1987, p. 1. {{ISBN|0-313-25700-0}}
Sacred burials are still undertaken for diaspora Jews who wish to lie buried in the holy soil of Israel.WEB,weblink PALESTINE, HOLINESS OF,, December 7, 2011, Joseph Jacobs, Judah David Eisenstein,
According to Jewish tradition, Jerusalem is Mount Moriah, the location of the binding of Isaac. The Hebrew Bible mentions the name "Jerusalem" 669 times, often because many mitzvot can only be performed within its environs. The name "Zion", which usually refers to Jerusalem, but sometimes the Land of Israel, appears in the Hebrew Bible 154 times.The Talmud mentions the religious duty of colonising Israel.BOOK, Isaac Herzog, The Main Institutions of Jewish Law: The law of obligations,weblink 27 June 2011, 1967, Soncino Press, 51, So significant in Judaism is the act of purchasing land in Israel, the Talmud allows for the lifting of certain religious restrictions of Sabbath observance to further its acquisition and settlement.BOOK, Yosef Zahavi, Eretz Israel in rabbinic lore (Midreshei Eretz Israel): an anthology,weblink 19 June 2011, 1962, Tehilla Institute, 28, If one buys a house from a non-Jew in Israel, the title deed may be written for him even on the Sabbath. On the Sabbath!? Is that possible? But as Rava explained, he may order a non-Jew to write it, even though instructing a non-Jew to do a work prohibited to Jews on the Sabbath is forbidden by rabbinic ordination, the rabbis waived their decree on account of the settlement of Palestine., Rabbi Johanan said that "Whoever walks four cubits in [the Land of Israel] is guaranteed entrance to the World to Come". A story says that when R. Eleazar b. Shammua' and R. Johanan HaSandlar left Israel to study from R. Judah ben Bathyra, they only managed to reach Sidon when "the thought of the sanctity of Palestine overcame their resolution, and they shed tears, rent their garments, and turned back". Due to the Jewish population being concentrated in Israel, emigration was generally prevented, which resulted in a limiting of the amount of space available for Jewish learning. However, after suffering persecutions in Israel for centuries after the destruction of the Temple, Rabbis who had found it very difficult to retain their position moved to Babylon, which offered them better protection. Many Jews wanted Israel to be the place where they died, in order to be buried there. The sage Rabbi Anan said "To be buried in Israel is like being buried under the altar." The saying "His land will absolve His people" implies that burial in Israel will cause one to be absolved of all one's sins.WEB,weblink PALESTINE, HOLINESS OF -,, 2018-10-30, WEB,weblink Why Do Jews Fly Their Dead to Israel for Burial?,, en, 2018-10-30,


{{see also|Christian pilgrimage|Travelogues of Palestine|Jerusalem in Christianity|List of Christian holy sites in the Holy Land}}File:Holy sepulchre mass.jpg|thumb|upright=0.9|The Church of the Holy Sepulchre is one of the most important pilgrimage sites in Christianity, as it is the purported site of Christ's resurrection.]]File:Tebnine11.jpg|thumb|upright=1.15|Crusader castle of Toron in the village of Tibnin, LebanonLebanonFor Christians, the Land of Israel is considered holy because of its association with the birth, ministry, crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus, whom Christians regard as the Savior or Messiah. It is also because Jesus was himself Jewish, and personally considered it the Holy Land within the original Jewish religious context.Christian books, including many editions of the Bible, often have maps of the Holy Land (considered to be Galilee, Samaria, and Judea). For instance, the Itinerarium Sacrae Scripturae ({{Lit|Travel book through Holy Scripture}}) of Heinrich Bünting (1545–1606), a German Protestant pastor, featured such a map. His book was very popular, and it provided "the most complete available summary of biblical geography and described the geography of the Holy Land by tracing the travels of major figures from the Old and New testaments."WEB, Description of the Holy Land,weblink World Digital Library, 1585, German, Bünting, Heinrich, As a geographic term, the description "Holy Land" loosely encompasses modern-day Israel, the Palestinian territories, Lebanon, western Jordan and south-western Syria.


(File:Jerusalem Al-Aqsa Mosque BW 2010-09-21 06-38-12.JPG|thumb|right|upright=1.1|Al-Aqsa Mosque in the Old City of Jerusalem){{See also|Jerusalem in Islam|Syria (region)}}In the Qur'an, the term {{transl|ar|Al-Ard Al-Muqaddasah}} (, ) is used in a passage about Musa (Moses) proclaiming to the Children of Israel: "O my people! Enter the holy land which Allah hath assigned unto you, and turn not back ignominiously, for then will ye be overthrown, to your own ruin."QURAN, 5, 21, The Quran also refers to the land as being 'Blessed'.QURAN, 17, 1, 16, ns, QURAN, 21, 51, 82, ns, QURAN, 34, 10, 18, ns, Jerusalem (referred to as Al-Quds, , "The Holy") has particular significance in Islam. The Quran refers to Muhammad's experiencing the Isra and Mi'raj as "a Journey by night from Al-Masjidil-Haram to Al-Masjidil-Aqsa, whose precincts We did bless ...".QURAN, 17, 1, Ahadith infer that the "Farthest Masjid" is in Al-Quds; for example, as narrated by Abu Hurairah: "On the night journey of the Apostle of Allah, two cups, one containing wine and the other containing milk, were presented to him at Al-Quds (Jerusalem). He looked at them and took the cup of milk. Angel Gabriel said, 'Praise be to Allah, who guided you to Al-Fitrah (the right path); if you had taken (the cup of) wine, your Ummah would have gone astray'." However, some modern scholars argue that the 'Farthest Mosque' was a building or prayer-site just outside Medina.WEB,weblink The myth of al-Aqsa:Holiness of Jerusalem to Islam has always been politically motivated, Ynetnews, 15 Sep 2008, Mordechai Kedar, WEB,weblink The Jewish Temples: The Temples of Jerusalem in Islam, Martin Kramer, Jewish Virtual Library, The present building of Al-Masjid Al-Aqsa in Jerusalem had not been built in Muhammad's day, and the Quran does not contain any other reference to Jerusalem, apart from the reference to the change of the Qiblah from Jerusalem to Mecca. Jerusalem was Islam's first Qiblah (direction of prayer) in Muhammad's lifetime, however, this was later changed to the Kaaba in the Hijazi city of Mecca, following a revelation to Muhammad by the Archangel Jibril,QURAN, 2, 142, 177, ns, by which it is understood by scholars{{who|date=February 2016}} that it was in answer to the rejection by the Jews of Muhammed's prophetship.The exact region referred to as being 'blessed' in the Qur'an, in verses like QURAN, 17, 1, no, nosup, , QURAN, 21, 71, no, nosup, and QURAN, 34, 18, no, nosup, , has been interpreted differently by various scholars. Abdullah Yusuf Ali likens it to a wide land-range including Syria and Lebanon, especially the cities of Tyre and Sidon; Az-Zujaj describes it as, "Damascus, Palestine, and a bit of Jordan"; Muadh ibn Jabal as, "the area between al-Arish and the Euphrates"; and Ibn Abbas as, "the land of Jericho".Ali (1991), p. 934 This overall region is referred to as "Ash-Shām" ().Article "AL-SHĀM" by C.E. Bosworth, Encyclopaedia of Islam, Volume 9 (1997), page 261.BOOK, Kamal S. Salibi, Kamal Salibi, A House of Many Mansions: The History of Lebanon Reconsidered,weblink 2003, I.B.Tauris, 978-1-86064-912-7, 61–62, To the Arabs, this same territory, which the Romans considered Arabian, formed part of what they called Bilad al-Sham, which was their own name for Syria. From the classical perspective however Syria, including Palestine, formed no more than the western fringes of what was reckoned to be Arabia between the first line of cities and the coast. Since there is no clear dividing line between what are called today the Syrian and Arabian deserts, which actually form one stretch of arid tableland, the classical concept of what actually constituted Syria had more to its credit geographically than the vaguer Arab concept of Syria as Bilad al-Sham. Under the Romans, there was actually a province of Syria. with its capital at Antioch, which carried the name of the territory. Otherwise. down the centuries, Syria like Arabia and Mesopotamia was no more than a geographic expression. In Islamic times, the Arab geographers used the name arabicized as Suriyah, to denote one special region of Bilad al-Sham, which was the middle section of the valley of the Orontes river, in the vicinity of the towns of Homs and Hama. They also noted that it was an old name for the whole of Bilad al-Sham which had gone out of use. As a geographic expression, however, the name Syria survived in its original classical sense in Byzantine and Western European usage, and also in the Syriac literature of some of the Eastern Christian churches, from which it occasionally found its way into Christian Arabic usage. It was only in the nineteenth century that the use of the name was revived in its modern Arabic form, frequently as Suriyya rather than the older Suriyah, to denote the whole of Bilad al-Sham: first of all in the Christian Arabic literature of the period, and under the influence of Western Europe. By the end of that century it had already replaced the name of Bilad al-Sham even in Muslim Arabic usage.,

Bahá'í faith

Bahá'ís consider Acre and Haifa sacred as Bahá'u'lláh, the founder of the Bahá'í Faith, was exiled to the prison of Acre from 1868 and spent his life in its surroundings until his death in 1892. In his writings he set the slope of Mount Carmel to host the Shrine of the Báb which his appointed successor `Abdu'l-Bahá erected in 1909 as a beginning of the terraced gardens there. The Head of the religion after him, Shoghi Effendi, began building other structures and the Universal House of Justice continued the work until the Bahá'í World Centre was brought to its current state as the spiritual and administrative centre of the religion.JOURNAL, Jay D. Gatrella, Noga Collins-Kreinerb, Negotiated space: Tourists, pilgrims, and the Bahá'í terraced gardens in Haifa, Geoforum, 37, 5, 765–778, September 2006, 0016-7185, 10.1016/j.geoforum.2006.01.002, ENCYCLOPEDIA, Smith, Peter, A concise encyclopedia of the Bahá'í Faith, Arc-buildings of; Bahá'í World Centre, 2000, Oneworld Publications, Oxford, 978-1-85168-184-6, 45–46;71–72, Its gardens are highly popular places to visitWEB, Leichman, Abigail Klein, Israel's top 10 public gardens,, 7 September 2011,weblink 30 March 2014, and Mohsen Makhmalbaf's 2012 film The Gardener featured them.NEWS, Dargis, Mahohla, The Cultivation of Belief - 'The Gardener,' Mohsen Makhmalbaf's Inquiry Into Religion, New York Times, 8 August 2013,weblink 30 March 2014, The holiest places currently for Bahá'í pilgrimage are the Shrine of Bahá'u'lláh in Acre and the Shrine of the Báb in Haifa which are UNESCO World Heritage Sites.WEB,weblink 2008-07-08, 2008-07-08, Three new sites inscribed on UNESCO's World Heritage List, UNESCO World Heritage Centre,

See also



External links

{{Wikivoyage}}{{Commons category|Holy Land}} {{Jewish Encyclopedia|article=Palestine, Holiness of|url=}}{{Authority control}}{{Holy sites in Judaism}}{{Characters and names in the Quran}}

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