A Jewish Guide in the Holy Land: How Christian Pilgrims Made by Jackie Feldman

By Jackie Feldman

For plenty of Evangelical Christians, a visit to the Holy Land is a vital part of working towards their religion. Arriving in teams, almost all these pilgrims are guided by way of Jewish Israeli journey publications. For greater than 3 a long time, Jackie Feldman—born into an Orthodox Jewish relatives in ny, now an Israeli citizen, student, and certified guide—has been major excursions, examining Biblical landscapes, and fielding questions about faith and present politics. during this ebook, he attracts on pilgrimage and tourism reports, his personal studies, and interviews with different publications, Palestinian drivers and trip brokers, and Christian pastors to ascertain the advanced interactions by which courses and travelers "co-produce" the Bible Land. He uncovers the implicit politics of go back and forth brochures and non secular souvenirs. Feldman asks what it capability whilst Jewish-Israeli publications get stuck up of their personal performances or perform Christian rituals, and displays on how his interactions with Christian travelers have replaced his realizing of himself and his perspectives of faith.

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Sample text

The guide’s presentation of Israel, the Bible, current politics, and his own life story both confirm and question pilgrims’ initial religious and political views. The Jewish guide initially seeks to satisfy his Christian customer and do his job well. But in presenting his (native or adopted) country, he finds a Christian map of significance covering it. The pilgrims’ perspectives and their expectation that the guide engage them, may lead guides to reaffirm or question their relation to the land as Jews and Israelis.

Over time, I learned to step back and shut up when hearing things I didn’t like and felt I couldn’t change. I also learned where and when I could introduce a grain of doubt into the shell of the tour and get away with it. By now, I’ve spent most of my life in Israel; English is my children’s third language (after Hebrew and my wife’s French), and merchants will address me in Hebrew, even when I dress like a tourist. I no longer need the pilgrims to feel Israeli. My flirtation with Christianity has become less emotionally charged as I grow older and define myself in other situations, as opposed to other others – mainly Jewish-Israelis whose religious or political orientations I disagree with.

104 I believe, however, that my own conflicted choices and life circumstances and my experience guiding groups of many nationalities and denominations will reveal things along the road that might otherwise escape the sight of the pilgrim, even one who has been to the Holy Land several times. Desideratum – Sharing the Road In his discussion of Jerusalem’s contested and shared sacred sites, Glenn Bowman reminds us: “Ethnographic knowledge is by its nature perspectival, and profoundly partial; the wider theoretical and anthropological knowledge the anthropologist carries .

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