The weeping in the distance, the soft breathing next to me, the turning of a page, the low murmur of prayers. The tambourines shaking, banging drums, Hebrew songs, speaking- in all different languages. Shouts of joy. The passion in their eyes, with tears streaming down their faces, the sunlight on my shoulders. Everything. All at once.
I deeply wish I could better express all I have seen and felt this morning. Earlier today I walked to the Western Wall. The only wall left of the Second Temple, this spot marks both joy and sorrow. Jews go to pray and place written prayers in the cracks of this crumbling wall. Today there were many Bar Mitzvah's taking place. These festivals are so beautiful. People are weeping around me, while, just a few feet over, on the men's side of the wall, they exuberantly celebrate the coming of age.
I was nervous to walk up to the wall, the women's side is much more crowded. So I waited. A spot opened up. I remember closing my eyes and just listening. The beauty I found there is indescribable. The people praying were astoundingly dedicated, I wish I could find that more often. They wept for the ruined temple. They prayed, with passion. It was awe inspiring. Encouraging. Reassuring.
The Bar Mitzvah celebrations had so much life. I want to bring that joyfulness back with me. The life those people had as they watched boys becoming men. The delight in their eyes. These here, are beautiful, there is no other word that better describes them.