Sunday, 8 May 2016

Italy: Florence Part 3

السلام عليكم ورحمة الله وبركاته and good day!

Continued from Part 2

After we stretched our legs going up the dome and the bell tower, (total steps taken was 877!! pffttt) we went to the synagogue since we missed it on the first day.


You can see the synagogue from afar.

I've always wanted to see the inside of a synagogue since I've never been into one. I've been to a lot of cathedrals, churches, basilica, but never a synagogue. I almost got the opportunity to go when I was in Cordoba (I haven't written a post about it yet...huhu..), but it was closed then too. 

*We weren't allowed to take any cameras or phones inside the synagogue, so these pictures are from google.

To enter the synagogue, you have to pay for the tickets which costs 16 each. It was a bit expensive if you ask me. You'll see in a minute. When we arrive, it was already almost 4pm, so there weren't a lot of people here. Plus, this place close at 5pm.

At the entrance, there's the ticket booth, lockers where you need to put all your bags in (nothing is allowed in, including cameras, phones, food and drink) and a glass door, kind of look like a revolving door, but smaller. So after you've secured your bags and belongings in the locker, you need to push the green button to open the glass door, you enter the 'chamber'. it'll scan you, then the other glass door will open. Sort of like if you didn't pass the metal gates at the airport where you need to be scanned extra inside the x-ray chamber (probably like this at certain airports only). 

The security was super tight here. There's even an army, fully loaded and armed standing outside the gates and the entrance for people that wanted to go for prayer. 

As we enter, the courtyard was very quiet. There was a small garden in front. So we went inside, at the door, there's a basket of kippah for the men to wear. This is what a kippah is to those who don't know. I have an officemate who wear this everyday. 

Photo by google.

We decided to go to the museums upstairs first to see what's there before entering the prayer hall. The museum comprises of two floors.

It's a good thing there's a lift here. We had enough of stairs for one day.

We went to the top floor first, there's a whole lot of things about jewish history, and history about the italian jew.

I guess we were pretty tired from all the climbing, so we just walked past the displays and didn't really read much. There's a few Torahs on display as well.

In the synagogue, prayer halls are separated between male and female. Female prayer hall is located on the first floor while men prayer hall is at the main hall, located at the ground floor. Almost like mosques and musollas where male and female have separate rooms for prayer. 

We suddenly realised that the prayer hall will be closed earlier than the museum, so we decided to skip the first floor after seeing the female prayer hall and went down to the ground floor to see the main prayer hall.

The arrangement is almost similar to a church, except instead of facing forward, their main focus in at the centre where the podium will be placed and where the priest (or known as Rabbi in Hebrew) will stand and give his sermon and readings from the Torah. It forms sort of like a circular shape, if in Islam, we call it as halaqah. 

We sat on the chair for a bit to rest our legs. The chairs have a small pull out table, most probably for them to put their book of prayers and stuff. 

There's also a souvenir shop located beside the prayer hall, and that was it.

I told you there's nothing much, and I think the amount to pay for the entrance is way to much for this. 

We went back to our accommodation after that. 

Until next time....

No comments: