Monday, November 19, 2007
Water Reuse Project on the Blessed Mountain
View Larger Map
Har Bracha is a Jewish settlement on Har Gerizim, the Holy Mountain of the Samaritan people, over the city of Shechem (Nablus). The Samaritans are considered Jews, they dont marry with Arabs and are protected by the Israeli Army.
There are two villages on the mountain: Kyriat Luza, a small Samaritan village, and Har Bracha, the Jewish settlement. The Samaritans were a large nation in the past but around 1900 there was only one family left, the High Priest's family, living on their sacred mountain. They were joined by isolated families from Syria and Gaza, to form a 170 strong village. The Samaritan community grew to 654 persons (2003) divided into eight families, of which four are derived from the Danafis from Damascus, and two more Patriarchal houses belong to the Marchiv House whose origins are in Gaza and Sarafend [Tzrifin] on the Tel-Aviv- Ramleh road. The Danfi House number 212, the Priestly House 186, the Tsedaka Hatsafari House 139 and the Marchiv House 117.
The Har Bracha village is named after the Bible, which says "To the Gerizim Mountain - Blessings, to the Inval Mountain, Cursings". Har Bracha means, in Hebrew, Mountain of the Blessing, or the Blessed Mountain. Joshua sent half of the tribes to Mount Gerizim to say the blessings, and the other half to Mount Inval to say the Curses. A stone altar on top of the Inval show the historicity of the event.
The Settlement is based on a yeshivah, a school of Jewish religion, and after the students marry mostly stay on in the village. Thus the majority of the population is young (very young) couples with babies. current population is 600 including 100 babies. The water and sewage infrastructure is old and has been totally abandoned and no one knows or cares how to maintain it. It is my task to organize the solution to this problem. The WWTP is in the lower (South) end, near the large red sheep barn (also abandoned). Interesting. We shall see.