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November 28, 1980 - Image 23

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1980-11-28

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Neot Kedumim Gardens Re-Create Israel


HAIFA — For most of our
knowledge, of the ancient
history of this country we
rely on the written word of
the Bible. Our imagination
must fill in the details. No
architectural plans have
been preserved of the Ark of
the Covenant or of the Tem-
ple in Jerusalem. Even ar-
cheological reconstructions
are fragmentary_ and conjec-
\ tural.
There are no recordings
nor -cm musical notes of
the of Miriam, or the
melodies of the Psalms, or
the precise sounds of the
hymns — only flat, narra-
tive accounts.
One physical aspect of the
life of those days is still
- available to us — that re-
flected in nature. The Jews
of old lived essentially an
agrarian life, and so the
Bible is rich in its listing of
trees and plants, fruits and
grains and flowers, in its ac-
count of the growth of har-
vesting of crops, in its de-
scription of the greenery of
the times.
Much of this is still ex-
tant, in Israel or
elsewhere. What a great
idea it would be if some-
----one were to concentrate
in one area in -Israel all
the diversified vegetation
described or referred to
in the Bible and Talmudic
writings, and thus rec-
reate a physical setting
which together with the
native rocks and moun-
tains and skies would
constitute authentic wit-
ness to the written his-
tory of the people.
It is being done! In a 533-
acre tract of hills and val-
leys located at historicMod-
iin (remember the Mac-
cabees?) almost equidistant
between Jerusalem and Tel
Aviv lies the project known
as Neot Kedumim. It is a
beautiful phrase in Hebrew
that somehow escapes suit-
able translation into


English. Ancient Meadows,
or Oasis of Yore, or Gardens
of Antiquity, or Pastures of
Time Immemorial are some
of the efforts but they are
Neot Kedumim was
created by Nogah
Hareuveni, a man who has
dedicated his life to this un-
usual undertaking. His bi-
blical gardens are not a
museum in any sense of the
word. They are a complete,
living, growing re-creation
of the country as it was in
days of old.
The words of our ancient
literature come alive as one
wanders through the dale of
the Song of Songs, the fields
of the Seven Varieties, the
ascent of the Four Species,
the forest of Milk and Honey
and other glens and dales
and woodlands.
Names and phrases
from the Bible take on
color and scent and three
dimensions here: the
cedars of Lebanon the
myrtle and the hyssop;
the vineyards in blossom
and the olive trees, the
spicebeds and the date
palms and roses of Sha-
ron. -
The words of Scripture
assume new meaning in
these surroundings. In the
first" chapter of Zechariah
the prophet reports a vision
on the 24th day of Shevat, of
a man on a red horse, and

ADL Blasts. Realty Firm
for Pro-Christian Ads

Virginia real estate firm
has been ordered to halt its
Christian-oriented promo-
tions as a result of a corn-
1 plaint from the Anti-
Defamation League of Bnai
6. The order was issued by
'the Virginia Real Estate
Commission against Lotz
RF y Co. of Newport
No_ which had billed it-
self in advertisements as a
member of the "National
Christian Referral Service."
The ads also employed the
Christian symbol of the fish.
The state order against
Lotz Realty was made pub-
lic by Norman Olshansky,
director of ADL's
Virginia-North Carolina
regional office, who had
called for the investigation
into the discriminatory ad-
The notice to Lotz
Realty cited the Virginia
Fair Housing Law, which
makes it unlawful to ad-
vertise real estate for sale

or rent "that indicates
any preference, limita-
tion or discrimination"
based on religion, among
other considerations.
Noting that Lotz had in-
serted a nondiscrimination
disclaimer in its ads after
ADL had contacted the
firm, the state agency's
notice letter nonetheless
stressed that the continued
use of the fish logo still "ap-
pears to be in violation" of
the law.
The letter to Lotz, which
was signed by Fair Housing
administrator Richard C.
Kast, warned that if the
order is not complied with,
"the Attorney General may
file suite to enjoin your
further use of the subject

Beauty is the mark God
sets on virtue. Every
natural action is graceful;
every heroic act is also de-
cent, and causes the place
and the bystanders to shine.

behind him horses red and
sorrel and white. Those who
have seen the wild
anemones in full bloom in
the fields in Shevat, in their
multi-colored hues, will
awake with a start to the
poetry of the prophet's
The vineyard of Isaiah
becomes an elegy in green
at Neot Kedumim. And on
the Hill of the Menora are
the moriah plants, the au-
thentic horticultural inspi-
rations of the seven and
nine branched menora. And
the tamarisks of Abraham
. . . the list is long.
Hareuveni has the de-
voted help of an inspired
aide, Helen Frenkley. She

Friday, November 28, 1980 23


in turn pointed out to us
turban-headed Mahmoud,
who serves as grounds
Generous friends from
overseas are helping to
bring various aspects of
Neot Kedumim to frui-
tion, to use an appropri-
ate word.
The gardens are not yet
open to the public, but spe-
cial arrangements can be
made for escorted group
tours. Early visitors, Chris-
tians no less than Jews,
have responded
enthusiastically. In the
years to come Neot Kedu-
mim will be one of the truly
exciting, authentic, pro-
found experiences in Israel.


TO 22050 Woodward Ave., Ferndale
between 8 & 9 Mile Rd.


Wishing All Our
Friends & Customers




Oak Park

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'N111110 0 111 1 1 1111 11 1 11111111 11111 1111 111


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