Tag Archives: time

it takes a village

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Always had this romantic love for the country… It was half a century ago, and I was on my way to visit a friend in a little village up north. I was used to buses that ran every few minutes, back in the city. Hadn’t occurred to me to check the bus schedule. So here I was, out in the country, after the big intercity bus had let me off… waiting… and no bus came by. I slipped my bag over my shoulder and started walking along the country road. What did it matter if it took me an hour… or even three. I was young, and the day was beautiful. I could walk.

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After I’d walked for about a half an hour, I heard the sound of a tractor coming down the road. It wasn’t moving fast, and you could hear it a long way off. I turned around and watched as it approached. Made the sign of the hitch hiker, and he slowed down to a stop. “Where you going?” he called out to me over the noise of the tractor. It was a big one, and it towered over me. I told him the name of the village I was headed towards. “I’m going to the same place,” he said. “But you’d have to sit on this dirty fender, and you’ve got your Sabbath suit on”. I’m not worried about that, I said, and with a smile, got up on the fender and rode the rest of the way. It was like visiting heaven. There was nothing I didn’t like about the place.

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bomb shelter

In the years that followed, I never got over the love I had for that beautiful piece of country. We even lived there for a while. But my darling wife couldn’t appreciate it the way I did, so we went back to the big city. That wasn’t hard for me, because I was part of Jerusalem too, as she was part of me. But there was something about living in the country that left me with a great longing for that kind of life.

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play car at the kindergarten

This was long before people started having ‘virtual’ experiences, and living the virtual life. But even back then, the difference was profound. I felt an intensity in the country life that made the colors more brilliant and the earth under my feet more immediate. There was an intimacy with nature that was always with me. I could listen to the plants growing… hear the flies as they flew in the air. I always had the feeling that it was a better place to bring up children. When you live in a village, you get to know a lot of people, all of whom are contributing something to the welfare of the general population.

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art

It isn’t as abstract as living in the city. You actually get to know people and the way they work… what they do all day. That’s the benefit of a real community. When you grow up with people you meet every day, you get a more realistic example of what can be gained in this life. You might get to know the garage mechanic and the barber, the horse trainer and the scholar. You see them working. You see a working man or woman on their feet from morning to night, and the farmer repairing fences. When you try helping with the chores for a neighbor or a professional in town, you get something of an idea of whether their work would interest you, whether you could really figure out the sort of problems that they have to deal with all the time.

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The photos here are from the same village… taken just a few years ago. Time moves a little slower there. The society I got to know there has changed a lot. But the village itself still carries traces of its past. And the people too, aren’t quite as up to date as we are in the city.

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summer time

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We usually have a short spring, and then a fairly long summer. And summer is my favorite time of year. Doesn’t matter, a heat wave or two. I can sit them out, inside. It’s rare that Jerusalem gets uncomfortably hot, because we’re on a mountain. And even when it does, since almost all the houses are made of stone, it stays quite cool inside… even when it’s terribly hot outside. And nowadays, just about everyone has air conditioning… so that makes it still easier. In the past, I didn’t care much for air conditioning. But I’ve been convinced.

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summer food

For me, an important part of summer is getting out early to take my morning walk… while it’s still relatively cool. Then I get a day’s work done, and still have time left to sit out on the balcony, where it’s always quite comfortable… or enjoy the light of day even in my salon till after eight at night. I have to admit, when people were still arguing here, about whether to have daylight savings time, I was against it.

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clothes hanging out to dry in the warm sun

For one thing, it’s nice for people who get up late in the day. But for people like me, it means getting up in the dark at the beginning and the end of the season, and there’s something discouraging about that. All the same, it’s very pleasant to sit with friends at the end of the day and enjoy the colors of the setting sun in late evening. And aside from the colors, which are at their best during this season, I also enjoy the fruits of the season; wave after wave of wonderful and tasty fruits.

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Nechama listening to a conversation between friends

I start out my day with a couple glasses of cucumber juice, which has proven to be a very healthy ingredient in my life. This was Chana’s idea, and it has proven better than any pill or medicine. I know a lot of you like to start the day with a glass of beer or coffee. But for me, drinking that cucumber juice feels as natural as a cat stretching himself, when waking up from sleep.

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And speaking of cats… you can see that all the animals in the neighborhood are affected and inspired by the coming of summer. Nachshon here, above, is playing panther, as he walks between the neighboring houses. As much as I care for him though, I’m hoping he doesn’t catch any of the local birds. But if he does, it’s all part of nature, and we have to accept that cats have their own way of looking at the world. We’re not going to convince them to be vegetarians. Why, even Nechama likes to have a light repast of herring in the afternoon.

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Noga feeding Nechama a herring

The children come by from time to time, each one with stories of the real world. The world that is constantly changing and challenging. They too have their ups and downs, and I take great pleasure in watching how well they deal with it all. I often have the feeling that they’re handling life’s challenges better than I did, and have reached a style of existence that I could only dream of at their age. Which is an exquisite feeling. It seems to me that since the computer became part of everyone’s life, I’ve been living in the ‘future’. But now, with waze, that feeling has been intensified.

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my son, Jonah

When Jonah was here this week, he spoke of the probability that cars would drive themselves within his lifetime. And that the person who would otherwise be driving the car could be enjoying a cup of coffee, and still working while on his way from one point to another. I thought of how much I used to enjoy driving when I was a young man. But that changed long ago. I think it was when they forced us to wear seat belts. And now with all the traffic jams, it’s become something of a pain. Not to speak of the difficulties of parking in the big city. Yes, having a car drive itself would definitely be an improvement. Less people killed and maimed on the highways too.

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cottage cheese is a popular summer food

So let me wish you all (at least those who live in the northern hemisphere), a joyful summer, with easy going long days; good reading and studies, and the pleasure of successful work. May you enjoy pleasant communication with human and animal neighbors. Listen to good music. See beautiful sights,

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the park behind my home

going from here to there

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grass pushing up from under the snow

After more than a week of snow, cold weather, electric failures, and now ice, Janne and I decided to head for the south to enjoy a bit of warmth before the Sabbath; a trip aimed at rehabilitation after a rather difficult week. We charged up our camera batteries, took a bottle of water and few pieces of fruit, sunglasses and maps. My plan was to show Janne, a very interesting spot along the shore of the Dead Sea that I had last visited with my friend Bill and his Goddess. But then, we had arrived a little late… as the sun was going down, and it wasn’t easy to photograph. There are fascinating salt formations there, that in some cases look like sculpture. A subject for photography that had been touched upon, but not fully explored. I prepared a flash memory with some good music which we could plug into the car radio for pleasant listening as we tooled along the highway. We looked forward to a very pleasant day.

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green trees in winter

The grounds of our little village were still mostly covered with snow. But there were also spots where the snow had receded, leaving slippery ice. And just the day before, when venturing out to get a little morning exercise, I had walked with the help of my cane, hoping that three legs would guarantee stability. But now, driving down from the Judean hills to the Ellah valley, we left the snow and the ice behind us, and were filled with joy at the sight of green trees, and millions of grass shoots that had spontaneously appeared after soaking up the rain, eagerly rejoicing in life, and reaching for the sunlight. The emerging green was everywhere. And though a long winter lay ahead, there was that image of spring to excite our spirits. Just looking at the jagged and uneven edge of the forest as it approached the highway, the different formations of trees, and the bright green edges of hardy bushes, I was tempted to stop the car again and again, to photograph. But keeping in mind that we had plans, we kept moving.

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is it an environmental art installation or agriculture?

One of the problems of traveling, is how to get from one place to another, far away. Some people take a train, and other people take a plane. Since we live in a small country, most people take an intercity super highway that is a ribbon of cement or asphalt leading from one place to the next with sturdy fences or bushy foliage at the sides to keep the traveler from getting distracted. But if the traveler is like me, and likes to take the side roads and the back roads… likes to drive real slow, the better to see the landscape, to ride a donkey, or even sometimes to travel on foot, then there’s always the danger that he’ll find new worlds just a few feet from home, and never discover that the world isn’t flat and you don’t actually fall of the ledge into the great abyss. That’s why they used to put blinders around the eyes of horses years ago. And that’s why they put up those big fences along the fast highways today, with all the commercials on them, It’s a dilemma. Should we go fast or slow?

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Janne photographing

So that’s what happened. After withstanding temptation a few times, with all the determination of people who wants to get somewhere… we saw more and more sights that just couldn’t be ignored, as we traversed the landscape from mountains to the plains, and then to desert environment. And here and there we did take a stop… did walk around a little lake… did investigate a few trees… did strike up a conversation with a couple of lizards… and then it was time for lunch. After all, you can’t just gobble up the universe with your eyes. You need something to put under your belt. And this being winter, after feasting on humus and beans and a few falafel balls, and chips and salads and schwarma slices on a plate, and then lubricating the digestion of all these delicacies with a couple of beers at a workers’ diner in a hilltop city of the northern Negev, we happened to notice that the shadows were getting longer. That was just about the time I was saying to Janne that it was a shame to leave such a beautiful city without documenting the imaginative design of the city center, and the wonderful characters who occupied it.

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green sprouts at a lake along the highway

This was after taking a long look at an orthodox Jew in traditional garb biking through the central plaza whistling ‘Home On The Range’, and then watching another fellow who looked like he’d been whisked out of some city in India by aliens, and then set walking in that same place… he walked to the middle of the plaza where he stopped and became fixated on his own shoes… giving them some thought before he became unimaginable still, just the edges of his gray beard rustling in the desert breeze… It certainly looked like it should be photographed…

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an orthodox Jew on a bike

What were we to do? If we we’d document the urban splendor here, what chance was there, that we’d see the salt formations? On the other hand… if we were to continue our journey, we might very well get there after dark, too late to photograph it, without having photographed the city we were now exploring. After discussing the pros and cons, we decided that we’d have to make another trip soon, to cover all the wonderful opportunities that we’d missed along the way, and continued on to the Dead Sea.

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a view of desert town Arad

On reaching our destination, however, we had more than a little trouble finding the object of our interest. It was quickly getting dark. And though we went along the shore, first to the south and then to the north… we just didn’t find those salt formations. The Dead Seas has been going through a lot of changes in the past few years. Who knows if those salt flats didn’t move inward towards the sea center, and was no longer visible from the shore. ‘Maybe it’s our mistake to make plans at all. Might it not be better to just let our eyes lead us, and enjoy ourselves wherever we go,’ I said to Janne. ‘No’, she said, ‘If you don’t make plans at all, you never get anywhere. But at the same time, we want to go with the flow. We want to be sensitive, and enjoy every step along the way’. And with that in our pocket, we headed north, all the way to the Lido for some coffee before we’d conclude our journey, going home.

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a colorful scene at the Dead Sea

At the Lido, we ordered two cups of coffee and a cupcake. The handsome Arab behind the counter delivered our order with style. ‘That’ll be 22 shekels’ he said, ‘including VAT… But no smile included’
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‘Very sweet of you to include the VAT in the price of the coffee, we answered. But why no smile?’ He explained himself with serious aplomb. ‘We Palestine people were living our day to day life most innocently, when suddenly the authorities started pouring Styrofoam insulation on our heads from up above. Then they turned off the heat till we were shivering in our boots, and then the electricity went off, and our cars got stuck, and our goats got moody. Life is just intolerable.’

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a hint of spring at the start of winter

‘What?’ I asked, did it snow here? In the lowest altitude in Israel?’ Actually, the dead Sea is not just the lowest point in Israel. It is the lowest dry land in the world, being 427 meters below sea level. But he was unfazed by my question. ‘No, this didn’t happen here’, he said. ‘I’m talking about my cousins further north. But you know, we Palestinians like to stick together’. I looked him in the eyes and smiled. ‘I heard there were a few Jews caught in the snowstorm too,’ I said.
‘There might have been’, he admitted. But then, the electric company probably fixed their electricity before they fixed ours. It’s out and out racism. The world will hear about it’. And then he smiled too. ‘If you want sugar’, he added, ‘I’ll tell you where it’s hidden’.

‘No thanks,’ I said. ‘We take our coffee without sugar’.

days getting shorter

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The days seem to pass very quickly. There was a period in my life, when I had so much to do, I’d plan the day to the minute. And it was amazing, how much I managed to fit into a single day. I am reminded of those intensive times when I talk to my children. They’re still doing that. Have a number of projects running at the same time; often eat on the run; answer mails on their cell phones; pick up something from the store on their way from here to there. I admire their pace, and their many accomplishments. All the more so, because they seem happy. They have the pleasure of accomplishment.

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I start my day with a walk. It’s most beautiful shortly after sunrise. Talk to the neighborhood cats, and they share with me that which interests them. Each day is different. The light falls differently on the trees and bushes, and the neighborhood buildings. By the time I return to my studio to begin work, it’s already the middle of the morning. Time seems to move quickly. I often listen to music while I work. Music is a great inspiration, though. Sometimes, I have to stop work just to listen a bit better. A little after noon, I eat a modest lunch, and then take a nap. And in the afternoon, I spend the time studying and reading for pleasure. By evening there are often visits with friends and family. And at the end of the day, there are always things I planned to do, that I didn’t get around to. That’s the way it is at the end of the week, or at the end of the month… there are always things that I planned to do, and didn’t manage to get to.

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I like the summer, and enjoy the heat. It’s almost never too hot, here in Jerusalem. And since the heat is a dry heat, I can enjoy it without an excess of sweat. The other day, I returned, with a couple of friends, to the ‘Spring Garden’, where I’d visited in the spring of this year. It’s an ancient garden at the edge of the city that had been deserted and abandoned for many years. The plant life had grown wild. The terraces remained, but the water ways had become blocked, the furrows forgotten, and the place had lost its lively culture. But then about ten years ago, some neighbors got together, and revived the garden. The water ways were cleared, and new fruit trees were planted, and old ones nursed. Birds and animals soon found their way to the renewed garden, and it is once again a lush corner of our world.

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After a very pleasant walk among the flowers and trees, we returned to a pub, and had some beers in the patio, as we watched carefree people, many on vacation, walking along the street. The shadows grew long. The colors grew rich in yellows and orange. It was a pleasure to enjoy the long day, knowing that soon the days would get shorter. We ate pizza and a variety of salads. I especially enjoyed the stuffed mushrooms. They were delicious, and brought back good memories as well.

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Because of the spring we had just visited, I was thinking about water. A few years ago, here in Israel, there was a bit of a panic about running out of water. Since then, we’ve created a few desalination plants, and it looks as if we’ll soon be able to supply as much water as needed, for an acceptable price. But I was reminded too, of our ancient forbearers who designed collection funnels on the roofs of the buildings here, collecting rain water for all the necessary uses. There is so much we can do, so long as we look for answers, and don’t raise our hands in despair.

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the future of mankind

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lonely in Sodom

Today, when I awoke, I checked my watch on the table near my bed… and I had awoken at my regular time. My cat was curled up between my legs, with her head resting behind one of my knees, as she likes to do when the sun first comes up, trying to tempt me to stay in bed just a little longer… It was only later, when I turned on the computer, and noticed that it was an hour later than I thought it was, that I remembered that the clock had been turned forward in the middle of the night. Ah… the computer is so in touch… knows more than I do, most of the time… and the shock of it, that the computer knew what time it was while I still hadn’t reset my clocks and watches, made me think of where we’re going in this world as human beings.

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a virtual pond

As you know, my friends, man knows everything. And if he doesn’t know, he’s quite willing to guess. And once he’s guessed, he’s ready to put his money on it. He’s ready to fight for his opinions… he’s more than ready to knock the shit out of anyone who thinks differently. That’s just the way we are… and as the Americans put it so aptly, love it or leave it. As everyone knows, there are two widely accepted theories of how we got here in the first place.

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outdoor café in the mall

One is called ‘the creation theory’. This is the religious point of view, and tells us that the king of kings, who is omnipotent, and greater than we could possibly imagine… having some spare time one day, created the universe. The second theory is scientific. It is accepted by a lot of people and taught in public schools, as if there was no question about it. It says there was this little bit of dust (no explanation of how that dust got there), and it just sort of sat around for a long, long time, and then evolved itself into earth, moon, and stars, rivers, seas and mountains, junipers and mosquitoes. And once we had the monkey… it was one small step to mankind. There are so many really great people on both sides of this debate, that I don’t believe it would be right for me to take a side. I’ll just speculate about where man is going…

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modern urban landscape

And when it comes to understanding man, it doesn’t really matter which side you take in the great debate between religion and science. If you’re religious, you know that it didn’t take long after man arrived, for him to start eating from the forbidden fruit, and killing his brother… and once we got the population growing, we killed great numbers of people… and often for the right reasons. If you’re on the scientific side, then you know that man started killing animals so he could eat, and used their pelts to make jeans, and raped women because their instinct told them to. They were so successful in overcoming all other life forms on this earth, that by the time Malthus started theorizing, it seemed like we would reproduce till there’d no longer be food to feed upon. And that would be terrible, don’t you know. He published his theory in 1798, and for most of the 19th century, academicians and thinking folks were really depressed about the future of man.

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riding a dragon

But by the end of the 19th century, man’s knowledge and inventive powers were leap-frogging, and it seemed that there was no end to the ability of man to influence his environment. And this optimism continued to grow during the 20th century, only mildly discouraged by two world wars, and numerous crimes against humanity, both big and small.

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children playing in the mall

Now here we are in the 21st century, and evolution is really hot and jumping. And if you’re on the religious side of the barricades, you’re not really surprised by the way things are going either. It is clear that man has not been taking the path of godliness. However, if you want to look at human progress from an innocent point of view, you could say that mankind is continuously trying to leave his animal existence behind him, and is aspiring to a more spiritual state of being. We’ve left hunting and rape, and sitting around the bonfire behind us (at least I hope we have), and now, as our bodies atrophy, and our waist lines expand (as does the universe), we’ve put the accent on mental activity, as realized by the computer, that fascinating tool which can do almost anything for us, with minimal physical work on our part.

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the sky is always blue

The most striking allegory of our spiritual direction, these days, is the mall. It is there that we become oblivious to the time of day or the weather, as we shop under a never ending synthetic blue sky, and choose between infinite varieties of synthetic clothes and playthings, never knowing how they were made or how they work… but so, so happy to buy them, two for the price of one, if we’re lucky… and in the worst case, at 25% off. And they said that the garden of Eden was fun!

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Chinese and American food side by side

But there is a fly in the ointment. In order to supply the multitudes with McDonald’s hamburgers, and other forms of meat, we’ve had to use some rather artificial methods to produce that food. And the same goes for fish. Actually, as difficult as it might be to believe, even a large part of the vegetables we consume, are raised in an extremely artificial way… and I’m not just talking about the poisons to discourage other living creatures; there’s an increasing enthusiasm for meddling with the DNA of plant life, and eating is no longer as simple as pulling a wild radish out of the ground and chomping on it. In fact, some of the issues that have popped up concerning the food we put in our mouths, bring back the nightmarish visions of Malthus, a little over 200 years ago. We may have to re-examine our eating habits.

And even for those who are not worried about food, there is a certain alienation from nature. I noticed that at nine this morning, when my computer told me it was ten.

the Dead Sea

I have mentioned before, that I enjoy accompanying tourists around the country. There are places we don’t visit so often when we live in proximity. And when taking a friend to see some place, one gets a taste of the excitement of seeing that well known place for the first time. It renews our appreciation of a site. I recently had such an experience, when sharing with my friend Bill, and his wife, a few of the spots that I especially care for in Jerusalem and Israel.

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But there is also a disadvantage when traveling with a tourist. Visiting a country that you don’t know, for just a few days, makes you want to see as much as possible. And when taking someone around, in such circumstances, it is much the same. You want to show your friend the sights. You want him or her to get to know as much as possible of the city, or the country. And it means that sometimes you get to a particular place, not at the best time. Or you leave faster than you would if you were on your own, because you want to see still another site. Usually, when I visit some place in the country, I like to stay at least a day. There are things you can experience only if you stay in a place for a number of hours. It gives you a chance to tune into the place, and allows the place to get used to you.

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Usually, upon arrival, you startle the wild life. Sometimes, the plants too. I’ve been in beautiful nature spots, when suddenly we were accosted by a visit of 4 wheel drive jeeps, or dirt bikes. Not only was it difficult for me to suffer the noise and the dirt that was thrown around, but I also observed the way that the nature just seemed to close up. It was as if the entire area went into a state of shock.

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And when you stay for a long time in a place, little by little, you become aware of the more timid life forms, and become sensitive to plants and insects you didn’t even see when you came. Colors appear. Sounds are heard. It is amazing. One of the names of god in the Hebrew language, is place. When you truly start internalizing a place, you become aware of the presence of god there. And of course, almost every place changes according to the time of the day. But what changes most is your own sensitivity.

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nuns dipping their feet in the water

The Dead Sea is popularly known in my country, in Hebrew, as the Salt Sea. But it is also referred to in ancient writings as the Dead Sea. This is because according to popular opinion, life can not survive in that body of water. There are very few plants or living things that can be found there. But we do know of some exceptions. For instance, the snail from which we extract the color blue, which is found on our flag, and which is used to dye one of the threads in our prayer shawl…

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a resort by the sea

One of my favorite stories, relates to that name. And uses the Dead Sea as an allegory to teach us something about human ethics. It is said that the Dead Sea receives water from many tributaries, but doesn’t pass any of it on. And so, we are ourselves warned that if we only take, and don’t give as well, we will die inside. For there must be a balance between giving and taking.

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The Sea itself is some 65 kilometers long, and 18 kilometers wide, and is situated on our eastern border with Jordan. There are places where it is 350 meters deep. It has slowly been receding for the past 50 years, because of a number of circumstances. But I believe we will soon see it return to its previous glory, as certain other circumstances develop. One of the problems has been that my fellow countrymen have been rather insensitive to how precious water is. There has been a lot of waste. In ancient times, people used to collect rainwater on their roofs. But in modern Israel, it was common to pump as much water out of the ground as was needed, and to drain water from the Sea of Galilee for all kinds of uses. The water that used to flow from the Sea of Galilee down the Jordan to the Dead Sea has become scarce, and so the Dead Sea has been thirsty for a long time now.

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In fact, the Dead Sea has many tributaries, including little streams that just appear when it rains in Jerusalem, or in certain parts of the Negev. Amazingly enough, there are underground springs and pools very close to the Sea, which are almost unknown to the general public. But they provide sweet water to the animals that live in the vicinity. The ibex, for instance, are able to find and drink from the sweet water found at the shore.

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The Salt provides many very interesting formations, and I have spent hours examining the strange shapes, which the waters often mirror. When the water is calm, it looks quite shallow despite its great depth. But there are fierce storms, at times, which have been known to scuttle boats. One of the very unusual phenomena of the Sea is that it always supports the body of a person. If you just lie on it, you will find yourself floating because of the high salt content. Someday, I will post some pictures I’ve taken of people reading the newspaper or a book while floating on the water. It is hard to imagine it till you’ve tried. The sea is also famous for it’s health products. The mud is known to cure a number of skin diseases, and cosmetics are also made from this natural treasure.

creative art and time

The last few days have been rainy. There is a whole different set of colors in the environment. At night it gets quite cold here in Jerusalem. That too brings a different mood to the environment. I have just re-commissioned the heaters. And last night there was a short electrical failure, that plunged our neighborhood, and the next one over, into darkness. We sat by the light of candles for a while. It brought back memories of years past. But it also brought a different atmosphere into the house. I started thinking about how to share the feelings and the look of the change of seasons on the blog, and found myself thinking about one of my difficulties in blogging.

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there are so many greens in the forest

As I learned to appreciate blogging; both reading the blogs of others, and writing my own; I began to see the blog as a creative art form. Of course, it can be a lot of other things too. I learn about new cameras and photographic tools from blogs, and am a regular reader of a blog that discusses philosophical questions related to religion, and there are some interesting blogs that feature political commentary. There are art blogs, where works of art are presented without much narrative, and there are personal blogs which describe feelings and personal experiences that are very much like a private journal. Each according to his ability, and from each according to his interest. There are those who employ themselves in order to earn a living of sorts… and there are artists who work for the sake of art. There are originators, and there are imitators. And some write for a very few, and some write for many.

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and the greens need light to engage their beauty

It occurred to me that the blogs I liked most were those that presented a personal journey; a type of traveling diary… and on numerous occasions, I tried this effect myself, relating my adventures at the very time I was going through them. There was this sense of immediacy, all the greater because of the other aspect of blogging that I admire so much, which is the ability to write to the blog writer in response, whether by email or by comments on most blogs. I remembered reading the journal of John Muir many years ago, when I was a young man, as I hiked through the high mountains of the Sierra Nevada. Were I to write such a journal today myself, I would be able to find comments the next day on my blog and in my inbox, from the people who were reading and sharing my adventure. Of course, it was not only the lack of technology that restrained me from writing to John Muir. He was already long dead when I read his journal as I followed his footsteps.

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each leaf, each fruit, demands our attention and love

Still, there is another problem. And that is a problem that involves the nature of how I relate to art. I could take snapshots along the way, and present them as illustrations along with the writing. I could tell of what is happening as I travel, and let my writing be a sort of reportage of my personal experience. But I have found that my own way of producing art is the way of fermentation. Like with the bread that has to wait and rise, and be pounded back and rise again with the activities of the yeast, or like the wine which attracts the yeast and undergoes an internal change in quality until it turns from the innocence of freshly harvested grapes to the sophistication of something else… so my ideas have to sit in my head for a while until they learn from all the experiences that I’ve gone through, and are tempered by my thoughts and meditation, and slowly evolve. And the images too, no matter how they’re seen, and whether they are sketched, or captured by way of the camera, are not really ‘ready’ in my mind until I’ve lived with them for a while, and worked with them, and only then do they represent me in the way that art becomes a very personal representation of the encounter between the world and the artist.

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and here is some more squill in the forest

And so, even if I’m able to create the illusion of an instantaneous production on the web page, I know in my heart that it is either, off the cuff… a snapshot or a letter to a friend, or a work of art. And if it is art, it is not from today. It can happen on those rare moments of grace. But it can’t be counted upon. That could only happen if I were to bring forth on my blog, works that I had completed in the past. That too would be worth while, but it would not be immediate. And so, today, you will just have to trust me that I am totally immersed in the spirit of the new winter, that has risen around me, and is discovering its power… that knows it can change and shake the world, like a young man or woman who has just joined the community of men and wants to change everything. Ah the winter, how she roars.

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it takes more than a day to get to know a tree