Friday, March 20, 2009


Jews on Har HaBayit?

by Reb Akiva at Mystical Paths

A significant halachic MYTH has developed over the last 40 years, that it is ASSUR (prohibited) for a religious Jew to ascent Har HaBayit - the Temple Mount, former site of the holy Beis HaMikdash, the Holy Temple of G-d, and current site of a number of mosques including the Dome of the Rock and Al Aqsa (not the same thing btw).

What has happened in the last 40 years, since Har HaBayit entered Israeli control (more or less) is this: the government discourages people from going up due to religious-political conflict reasons, some authorities are concerned about going up due to the possible errors of entering forbidden areas (where the Holy of Holies once stood - and it's exact former position is not known) and the severe spiritual results of doing so, and some authorities avoid the topic as not appropriate to discuss or consider prior to the coming of Moshiach. Reb Gutman Locks made the further point to me that as a site becomes familiar it becomes somewhat a tourist attraction and not treated with appropriate holiness - and for Har HaBayit this would truly be a terrible thing.

That said, as we clearly see in the video below, it is NOT prohibited. In the video below, HaRav Moshe Dovid Tendler, shlita, posek (halachic decisor) and son-in-law of HaRav Moshe Feinstein, zt"l, tours Har HaBayit, speaks of it's significance, what's permitted and what is not. It's a bit long (at 17 minutes) but WELL worth taking the time to view. Credit to Israel National News, who's Yishai Fleisher is seen interviewing the rav, and the Temple Institute, who conducts the Jewish KOSHER visits to the holiest site in Judaism.

In the beginning of the video, the rav speaks briefly about the Israeli police instructions, which specific FORBID a JEW from saying a tefilah - prayer or acting in any prayerful way on Har HaBayit, due to the concern it may offend the Muslim presence.


Nightghost said...

Neato. I liked this and learned a lot. I watched this last night on the Universal Torah website. Thought it was very cool. Not as cool as it would be to see a true temple there, but cool nonetheless, LOL. Got to see some of the Israel National Radio personalities too, LOL. Thanks for the post and video here too.

yaak said...


Nice video, and according to R' Tendler's opinion, it was nice to see Divrei Torah spoken on Har Habayit. May we soon see a Binyan Olam built there for all to come.

However, calling it a halachic myth to forbid an ascent to Har Habayit nowadays totally ignores the opinions of hundreds of great Torah giants who forbid it. In my opinion, it should definitely not be called a myth and reference to the other opinion should at least be mentioned. It is this opinion that I follow as well.

Akiva said...

Yaak - that gets into an interesting discussion. If something is not assur in the mishnah, gemora, mishneh torah, shulchan aruch, shulchan aruch harav, aruch hashulchan, or mishneh brurah, is it 'assur' or a community psak?

Yes the rabbonim have the authority to enact fences, and that's clearly (imho) what they are doing ruling this is prohibited. And it's not unheard of for rabbonim to rule something permitted is prohibited to strengthen or protect a community. But it's also heard of for rabbonim to make rulings due to pressure of the ruling authorities or due to general fear.

Neshama said...

Could we have a clearer expose of what Rabbi Tendler Shlit"a said about the Satmar Rebbe's version of a certain pasuk?

yaak said...

It's more complicated than you're portraying it, and it's not only a seyag or a politically-motivated psak. There is also the problem of not knowing exactly where things are located.

For Hebrew readers, see this Wikipedia article that brings all viewpoints.

Of course, don't pasken like a Wikipedia article. Ask your LOR.

Anonymous said...

what did the rabbi mean about the eitz when he asked to take a little piece of the tree to later burn it to ashes? Could you explain what that is about and why will Moshiach take even more of the eitz?

Neshama said...

From what I understand, there should not be any trees growing on Har HaBayit; he said that when Moshiach comes, he will take care of removing them. But in the meantime, he takes a cutting, burns it, and then applies the ashes to the head of a Chassan (under the Chupa)

Anonymous said...

thanks Neshama

Anonymous said...

please!!! somebody with some sechel!!!
the rav said that there is no kedusha in the world except with jews. and H' gave it all to the jews except for har habayis and shabbos.






Anonymous said...

ps, tell that 'nightghost' idiot to get off this blog or change the photo and name. this is totall avoda zara and an avera on any blog,esp a frum blog.

will someone please stand up and correct this rav!!!! rav tendler is WRONG!!!!!!

i hate this. yishai kisses his booty and the guy is plain wrong.

it is totally disrespectful.

the REAL GDOLEI HADOR say not to go up there because we really don't know for sure.

and the REAL GDLOLEI HADOR would never say what tendler said about the kedusha in the world.

it is simply FALSE>

it is a chilul H" what is happening here.

AKIVA!!!!! leshem shamayim:

1. get rid of that 'ghost' idiot with the pumpkin head or get him to change

2. seriously examine what tendler said and post a proper rebuke and correction for this chilul H".

Nightghost said...

Sorry for the pumpkin, Mr. Anonymous, but trust me I am doing everyone a favor with it, LOL. It looks a lot better than my face. As far as the other stuff, the only think I understood was "idiot". I would have to agree with you on that one, sure can't seem to get anything straight, but I am trying.

Anonymous said...

thanks for your response. this is supposed to be a frum based blog. why would you insist on posting a scary, avodah-zara image? it is not only a lack of consideration for others it is bad for you.

don't put that kind of image to hurt other people's eyes.

if you didn't realize it, now you see, hopefully.

but the bigger point here, which i hope will be addressed is the inaccurate statements made by the rav on har habayis that are detailed in the previous comment.

these should not go un-opposed because what he said was not judaism, not torah. he is misrepresenting torah in the holiest place and misguiding many people.

he needs to be corrected by the proper rabbonim.

please, akiva, do your part by not including this video on your blog.

and please. somebody educate yishai fleisher so he doesn't promote such wrong information.

this is har habayis. it must be viewed in the most sacred of ways.

not a place to interview a rav with wrong ideas; may Heaven help us all.

Christopher Darrin Horn said...

How's this one?

Anonymous said...

what's with pumpkins? the origins of 'halloween' are avoda zara. no matter how cute it may seem for kids to 'trick or treat' and ask for candy. ( i have no problem with kids asking for sweets) only suggestion to you is to find a non-avoda zara photo. it's none of my business what you do. certainly this is much tamer than the other awful photo.

since this is a religious jewish blog and you like to read it(are you jewish?)...then maybe consider a photo that uplifts people in a good way. the 'plain pumpkin' photo is a good transition until perhaps you find something else.

again; i appreciate your consideration for readers in removing the other photo.

lastly, the main point, which akiva hasn't addressed, is removing this video for reasons stated earlier.


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