Sunday, May 16, 2010

Dead Sea - Israel's Natural Wonder of the World

I received an email to vote for the Dead Sea as one of the 7 Natural Wonders of the World. Having recently seen it on a tiyul to the Jordan Valley, I concur that it is one of the most amazing things I've ever seen.


I went to the site to vote, , and I read up on the last vote that they held for the 7 man-made Wonders of the Modern World, which were named in 2007 after millions of votes were cast. They included: Chichenitza, New Mexico, JC Statue in Brazil, Colosseum of Italy, Taj Mahal of India, Great Wall of China, Petra in Jordan and Machu Picchu in Peru.
I had remembered as a child learning that King Solomon's Temple was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World – lauded for its magnificence and masterful building. But after delving further, it seems that the original list was made by one man as a kind of travel guide for Greeks, "Plato, don't miss this." And the second wonders added the Holy Temple for a while when it added other non-Greek structures.
This new contest for natural wonders is in its third stage in which the wonders will be chosen by about 1 billion votes. The Official Declaration of the New7Wonders of Nature will be on 11.11.11. It features forests, cliffs, volcanoes, waterfalls, canyons and remote islands all over the world. They are each a reason to bless the Creator of the Universe for the breath-taking phenomena that He crafted.
Israel's wonder, the Dead Sea, is currently ranked #9, so it needs your help to move up on the list.
Thus far, the top nine are:
Kilimanjaro - inactive strato-volcano in north-eastern Tanzania. It is the tallest free-standing mountain in the world.
Milford Sound – beautiful site southwest of New Zealand’s South Island.
Mud Volcanoes – a gloopy site in Gobustan, Azerbaijan and the Caspian Sea.
Vesuvius - volcano east of Naples, Italy - one of the most dangerous volcanoes in the world.
Great Barrier Reef - planet’s largest coral reef system, Papua, New Guinea
Matterhorn/Cervino - most familiar mountain in the European Alps. On the border between Switzerland and Italy.
Black Forest - wooded mountain range in southwestern Germany.
Uluru - one of Australia's most recognizable natural icons.
Dead Sea -This is its description: The Dead Sea is a salt lake between Palestine and Israel to the west and Jordan to the east. At 420 metres below sea level, its shores are the lowest point on Earth that are on dry land. With 30 percent salinity, it is 8.6 times saltier than the ocean. – The campaign says that voting for the Dead Sea is a vote for Peace.
Well, I'm for peace (I don't even mind shopping with Arabs in Rami Levi), but I was taken about when I read the description of the Dead Sea, as lying between Israel, Jordan and Palestine. First of all, as far as I know, there's a Palestinian Authority, but no Palestine. Secondly, unless Israel is planning to give away the strategically vital Jordan Valley, just where does "Palestine" fit in here? The Dead Sea lies between Israel and Jordan and doesn't touch any area that could be called Palestine, unless the government is planning yet another surprise for the Jewish People.
Anyway, despite this incorrect reference, I'm still voting for the Dead Sea. Unlike any of the other wonders listed, the Dead Sea has medicinal powers that cure people of all kinds of skin diseases. Swimming with giant turtles off the Galapagos Islands is thrilling, exploring the Great Barrier Reef is uplifting, climbing Kilimanjaro might be the experience of a life-time, but none of these can cure a person's health problems.
The Dead Sea waters helped the eczema on my sister's elbows and the psoriasis on my grandbaby's bottom. The waters cure tens of thousands of international visitors every year. From a sea of "death" comes enlivening properties that cure terrible skin ailments. That truly is a wonder.
I'm also voting for some wonders NOT in the top ten:
Colorado's Grand Canyon, Ecuador's Galapagos Islands, and the Komodo Islands of Indonesia.
Cast your vote for the Dead Sea and other wonders at:
All the wonders represent G-d's artistic tapestry, incomparable to all other things in the world. King David states in Tehillim (Psalms), "Ma Rabu maasecha Hashem Kulim Be'Chachma aasisah - How many are your works - they are all made with Wisdom."
If we could only appreciate and care for these beautiful works, the entire planet would be a safer place.

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