Bradley Burston, the Ha'aretz columnist, as well as the newly-appointed vice-president for ritual affairs at my one-man island synagogue, forwarded me some dispiriting news. Apparently, a religious genius of some sort has decided that what the Jews need now more than anything is the ability to deliver prayer notes to the top of the Temple Mount, where God will presumably read them, when He's not busy making plans to destroy the Dome of the Rock. According to the website for this new service, the scheme is entirely kosher:
The prayer note carriers - observant Jews - will ascend the Mount in strict accordance with Torah law. Prior to the ascent they will prepare for and immerse in a kosher mikveh to remove spiritual impurities. While on the Mount they will wear non-leather shoes and refrain from treading on the site of the Temple.
The problem, of course, is that the Israeli police, for good reason, strictly limit Jewish activities on the Temple Mount, on account of the fact that they're trying to prevent the apocalypse. No worries, though, because our non-leather-wearing-mikvah-dunked holy men understand the challenges posed by the Jewish police:
The prayer notes will be carried in a circle outside the periphery of the site of the Temple along with recitation of appropriate prayers. Due to the police enforced no-Jewish prayer policy the notes will be brought up to the Mount discreetly and it is not possible at this time to bury the notes on the Mount. All notes will be buried near the Temple Mount after the encirclement is completed.
There should be no doubt that the Temple Mount is the holiest site in Judaism. There should also be no doubt that when God wants the Third Temple built, He'll build it. Until then, it's in everyone's best interest to stop this sort of messianic idiocy.
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