This temple, too, was destroyed when the Romans attacked the rebellious city in 70 A.D. and burned the temple to the ground. The Jews were eventually exiled from Jerusalem in 135 A.D. following another uprising, and were not allowed to return until the Muslims captured the city in 638 A.D. The Jews did not rebuild the temple, but did build an underground synagogue at the West Wall of the old temple. Their peaceful coexistence with the Muslims lasted another four centuries, until the crusaders conquered the Holy Land in 1099 and decimated the Jewish population, again exiling them from their sacred spot of pilgrimage. They were allowed to return after ten years, and were accepted into the city on a limited basis, but did not regain control of their homeland until the mid-twentieth century. Even with the forming of the state of Israel in 1947, the temple has never been rebuilt, but the West Wall is still an active and revered shrine, a central focus of Jewish pilgrimage.
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St. Philip Neri was a man of the common people. He taught people to trust their intuition and to follow their heart's guidance in finding God. Philip was known for his big heart and sense of humor, attracting souls through his loving and accepting personality. Born Filippo Romolo in Florence on July 21, 1515, Philip Neri led an uneventful childhood as the son of a not-so-successful notary. Prospects for a successful career led Philip to move at age eighteen to live with his wealthy uncle. Living near the Benedictine abbey of Monte Cassino, Philip began spending more and more time in prayer and contemplation, often going into quiet seclusion amongst the rocky crags that characterize the area. It is here that he experienced a "conversion" and decided to leave the prospect of wealth for a spiritual life in Rome.
other Muslims are like floowing: ..
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Pilgrimage has been practiced since the sun first rose on human civilization. Before recorded history, the faithful devotees of the Indus valley, people now known as Hindus, made sacred treks to the revered sites of India. The Hindu spiritual life is a process of reaching complete union or oneness with the Divine, a state of consciousness known as samadhi, and pilgrimage has historically been a means of seeking this deep connection. Modern Hindus continue to take pilgrimage very seriously, often traveling to one of the seven sacred rivers, seven liberation-giving cities, or other spiritual sites found throughout their ancient land. For the Hindu, where one "goes" on pilgrimage is not as important as how one follows the "way of the pilgrim." The goal is to have a personal experience of God through a life-changing encounter with the Divine and to experience God as an inner reality.
Excerpts from "The Pilgrim's Italy" - Inner Travel Books
There is no disputing that Peter was the leader of the followers of Jesus for he was often in the forefront of their activities. One incident reveals the depth of Peter's intuitive perception of Jesus. When Jesus asked the disciples if they knew who he was, Peter replied; "Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God." And Christ responded; "Blessed art thou Simon, because flesh and blood hath not revealed it to thee, but my Father who is in Heaven. And I say to thee, that thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church." (Matthew 16:18)
The Pilgrim's Italy ISBN 0-9719860-0-2
The small chapel of Mary Magdalene (La Maddalena) is where St. Francis and his brothers held Mass. The window has a Tau sign that authorities say was drawn by St. Francis. The letter T is a biblical sign of salvation and, after Christ's death, represented the crucifixion. Follow the steps down to a small cave where Brother Leo spent time. Beside the cave is the stump of a tree where Jesus appeared to Francis. After more stairs is the cave where Francis fasted for forty days and completed the Rule. (The mountain fissure was caused by an earthquake.) This is the best place to meditate and pray. It can be cold and damp, so bring something to sit on if you plan to stay awhile. There are few pilgrims here, and it is a very quiet place to contemplate the life of St. Francis.
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The remaining years of his life are not documented, but he finally ended up in Rome, once again arrested for his faith. Imprisoned and tried, he was executed, following in the footsteps of his Master and hundreds of other martyred Christians. Sentenced to be crucified, Peter asked to be placed upside down, because he did not feel worthy of facing death in the same manner as Jesus. He was crucified about 64 A.D. on Vatican Hill, and is enshrined there in the Basilica of St. Peter.