Monday, February 28, 2011

Touristing: Baptism Site

Bethany beyond the Jordan, the site where Jesus was baptized, is located about 40 km southeast of Amman. Interesting in a I-visited-the-Baptism-site-check! kindof way but honestly a bit of a letdown. I feel bad not finding spiritual sites of Biblical importance more exciting, but ... I don't. I was on the tour listening to the audio guide and it says "Here is where John the Baptist baptized people" and its a little brown thicket. Reaction: "Really, right here by this random bush and pile of rocks?" I had to constantly remind myself it is an archeological site and 2,000 years had passed and things looked different then. Same goes for the actual baptism place - there's no water there anymore. Same goes for the Jordan "River" - it's basically a sad, stagnant brown trickle of water now (although not really its own fault). The best part were the sweet mosaics - scroll down to check 'em out. 

Baptism site of Jesus

Mosaic of how the site looked 2,000 years ago. Note the plug for the website -

A huge mosaic next to the site featuring the late great Pope John Paul II .... in a golf cart (seriously??).

The  Jordan "River"

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