Monday, July 28, 2008

In St. Louis as it is in Heaven

I think I've seen this before, but Paleojudaica just posted on it today. And, being from St. Louis myself, I could not pass letting people know about it--although Jim Davila has far more volume on his blog than I do, perhaps there is a handful of people who read me and not him, like friends and family in St. Louis who can actually take advantage of this offer:

A Virtual Tour of Our Holy Temple

Wednesdays: July 30, August 6 and 13
7:30 - 9:00 pm

This summer, nearly 2,000 years since the destruction of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem, Chabad of Greater St. Louis will unveil Heaven on Earth, a three-week interactive course developed by the renowned Rohr Jewish Learning Institute, which recreates the ancient Jerusalem Temples from the ground up. Heaven on Earth will be offered at the Lazaroff Chabad Center, at 8124 Delmar Blvd., in University City, on three consecutive Wednesday evenings, 7:30 to 9 pm, beginning on July 30.

Through an interactive and innovative virtual tour, Heaven on Earth will enable students to conceptualize the ancient Temple in Jerusalem, allowing them to “walk through” the Temple’s ancient corridors, throng with the crowds through Jerusalem’s gates, and discover the marvels of architecture and design that were integral to this sacred site. Heaven on Earth provides students with an explanation for the central role the Holy Temple plays in the life and history of the Jewish people, and why to this day Jews of all stripes pray for the Temple’s rebuilding and converge upon the Western Wall, its surviving remnant.

"While many have explored the politics and geography of the Holy Land, few have explored the spiritual significance of the structures that stood for a millennium on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem”, said Rabbi Yosef Landa, the course facilitator. “By helping students envision and recreate the ancient Jewish Temples, they will come away with a newfound appreciation to for its historical and religious significance.”

Just last weekend, I went with a group in NYC to model reconstructions of the Tabernacle, Solomon's Temple, and Herod's Temple. They were very small, of course (lego men would have been slightly too big for the reconstruction). So, this thing in St. Louis seems quite interesting. The cost for the St. Louis virtual tour is $36. I guess my question is, which temple are they reconstructing? If they are emphasizing the Western Wall, I guess it would have to be Herod's temple. But maybe since they say "Temples," they are going to do all of them.


Liam said...

All? Are there more than two? (Herod's and Solomon's?)

Jared Calaway said...

I assume they would just do the two (Herod's and Solomon's). But there is also the second temple built during the time of Ezra and Nehemiah that Herod tore down to build his. But, by all accounts, this was a rather unimpressive temple. They may also do the much smaller Tabernacle.

Additionally, there are the non-Jerusalem temples in Egypt: in Elephantine and Leontopolis (in the Hieropolite nome). But I doubt there is enough descriptive information to reconstruct these.