In the north of Israel, in the eastern part of the Jezreel Valley in Lower Galilee, nine kilometers to the south-east of Nazareth, Mount Tabor rises, which is called Tabor in Hebrew, Arabic — Jabal Thor. Across its surface extends to the top of the ascending terraces dozen scallops with oaks and fig trees.
Together with my friend, driver and guide, we started a six-kilometer ascent to Tabor with a spacious car park at the foot of the mountain. Since we arrived here from far away and difficult ascent was coming, it was necessary to take advice of experienced: first quarter of an hour to break the motor.
We looked around. Parking was close to the Arab village, whose inhabitants for centuries ply the same: deliver tourists to Tabor. Earlier — on donkeys and horses, today -in vans for 8-10 passengers.
The fact is that during the ascent to Tabor usual tourist bus for 50-80 people stopped in a special place. Top it just does not get — the roadway is very narrow. Two large vehicles to pass one another is simply unrealistic. But minibuses it fit like a glove.
Private car buddy, almost touching the right side rock, almost tightly travels with oncoming traffic. It was overcome by the rise with no problems, though at times the angle of asphalt canvas on which we can say, scrambling, was nearly 30 degrees.
10-15 minutes — and we are on top. Here, on the site just outside the gates, built by the Crusaders still, and then restored two centuries ago the Franciscans already had a lot of mini-buses. They took an hour and a half ago, foreign tourists and is now waiting for them to return from the temples and monasteries favorite.
Drivers nervous. They have reported that the bottom of the waiting passengers of two large tour buses. Tourists there is always plenty. This is a guarantee of employment for dozens of residents of the Arab village.
Gods and men
On Tabor fate experienced the strength of different worldviews. Here the accumulated experience of the pagans, Jews, Christians, Muslims. The memory of this steel temples, churches, monasteries and fortresses, destroyed incoming new owners.
The ruins of old buildings become the basis for new ones. And changed the face of the mountain. But the top of Tabor was unchanged. She served as the altar, the place of ignition of fires. There were changes in the gods, and the fire was still announced to something important: the beginning of a new month, the approaching enemy, the occurrence of the holiday.
Today on Tabor, like thousands of years ago, heard by the service. But they are already taking place in the international format, in four languages: Greek, Russian, Arabic and Serbian. The peoples and faiths have learned if you do not make friends with each other, at least not to fight. An achievement.