Common questions

We know you have many questions about the Temple Mount, so we have grouped the most common of them and answered in detail.

The Temple Mount is the holiest place for Jews in the world. The place where the first and second temples were, and the place where it will be built, this is what the Jews have been expecting for generations – the third temple. According to our tradition, this is the mountain on which Abraham bound Isaac, the stone in the center of the mountain – is considered the foundation of the world (the drinking stone), and the mountain on which Isaiah prophesied the universal universal prophecy: And all the nations shall flow unto it … For out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.

Over the years, Jews have longed to immigrate to Jerusalem and pray there, and when they have succeeded, they have prayed on the Temple Mount, or as close to it as possible. When Jews were forbidden to enter it, for centuries, Jews used to pray near one of its walls. For centuries it was precisely the Eastern Wall, and in recent centuries – the Western Wall of the Temple Mount. In fact, the Western Wall is sacred only because it is part of the real thing – the Temple Mount, the place that God has chosen.

Over the years, Jews have longed to immigrate to Jerusalem and pray there, and when they have succeeded, they have prayed on the Temple Mount, or as close to it as possible. When Jews were forbidden to enter it, for centuries, Jews used to pray near one of its walls. For centuries it was precisely the Eastern Wall, and in recent centuries – the Western Wall of the Temple Mount. In fact, the Western Wall is sacred only because it is part of the real thing – the Temple Mount, the place that God has chosen.

According to many arbitrators, ultra-Orthodox and religious, Ashkenazi and Sephardim – the ascent to the Temple Mount is permissible, blessed and desirable. Today most rabbis of religious Zionism support the ascent to the Temple Mount, within the permitted limits, after baptism and without leather shoes. Although the issue is disputed by the arbitrators, such as many halakhic issues related to Zionism: immigration, military, state and the like. For those who want to delve deeper, we recommend the book ‘The Temple Mount Properly’, by Rabbi Elisha Wolfson. It is always worthwhile to consult and deepen and understand that aliyah is a great mitzvah.

No worries. Anyone who ascends with a Jewish appearance, or in the Jewish route, is restricted by the police, willingly and unwillingly, to the accepted halakhic route, which is permissible and blessed according to many arbitrators.

If this is important to you – Jewish law requires entry to the mountain after immersion in the mikveh, for men and women, as well as with shoes whose sole is not made of leather (as on Yom Kippur …). The baptism should be without clothing or jewelry, originally water that has not been pumped – that is, a spring, a pit, a sea – or a regular mikveh. Baptism is a purification before entering the place of the Divine. You can read about the laws here on the site and call for advice.

It is true that even among the permitted rabbis, there are those who forbid the baptism of bachelors in the mikveh (and therefore also their entry into the mountain). However, some important arbitrators believe that in order to enter the Temple Mount, single women can certainly be immersed as well. You can read about the laws here on the site and call for advice.

The Temple Mount is the holy place for Jews, and Jews from all walks of life can feel at home in it – because it is their home, no less than any other Jew. On the contrary: Jerusalem and the Temple have always been the meeting and gathering place of the whole nation, and even today, there is often a feeling that it is precisely on the Temple Mount that the ordinary partitions disappear, and a sense of unity and closeness opens up.

Unfortunately the Temple Mount is open to Jews only a few hours a day, on some days. If there is no Muslim holiday (and you should find out about it), the mountain is open on Sundays-Thursdays. In winter 7: 00-10: 00, 12: 30-13: 30. In summer 7: 30-11: 00, 13: 30-14: 30. The police at the entrance sometimes require an ID card, and do not allow entry with religious and national symbols (for example: prayer book, Israeli flag), nor with hot and cold weapons. No need to arrange a visit! Just note: there is no real parking close to the Temple Mount, nor is there a toilet. The only Jewish entrance to the mountain is in the Western Wall plaza – next to the security checkpoints in front of the Garbage Gate.

Really not dangerous. In fact, it is one of the most protected places by Israeli police forces. Throughout the visit to the mountain, the Jews are accompanied and surrounded, whether they like it or not, by Israeli police forces, and the hours of entry to the mountain are usually when the mountain is relatively empty of Muslims. Children are welcomed on the mountain, and many times they experience it ‘smoother’ and deeper than many adults.

The Temple Mount Heritage Foundation regularly provides a guide on its behalf on the mountain, free of charge and for the benefit of the general public, for those who are interested. For those who are interested, you can also coordinate with us in advance a dedicated guide for the group – if you want a detailed or special instruction.

During the Six Day War, Israel conquered, almost unintentionally, the Temple Mount, but Moshe Dayan immediately handed over control of it to the Jordanian Waqf (= Mishmar HaKedesh) (without a government decision). Today, the Jordanian Waqf sets the rules of visitation, and the State of Israel, although sovereign in the field, treats it (and the Jordanian government) as the one that determines what is allowed and what is forbidden. According to the State of Israel, the Temple Mount is not considered a holy place for Jews, but only for Muslims, and it cooperates with the ban on Jewish prayer on the mountain. In addition, the Waqf (and the Israel Police in its wake) prohibits all Jewish worship activities (prostration, raising dirt), as well as national symbols (Israeli flag, song of hope). In the heart of the State of Israel, control was granted to those who were unwilling to recognize it.

To our great sorrow and disgrace, the official policy of the State of Israel at present is to officially ban Jewish prayer on the mountain. We work to change that, and invite you to work with us. In any case, unofficially and under the radar, police often turn a blind eye to silent prayers, but not always. If you are a law-abiding citizen who has simply prayed quietly on the mountain – it will end, at most, with a police reprimand. Very sad, but the more we are there – this reality will change.

Everyone who comes up changes the situation. It is already changing: in recent years there has been a dramatic increase in the number of Jews ascending the mountain, and this has directly led to many policy easing. As more Jews ascend the mountain and seek to pray there, public policy will change. Come. The people of Israel need you on the mountain. join us!

Contact us

We are always available to help you