Sunday, December 25, 2011

Fewer pilgrims visit Tunisian rabbi's tomb

Numbers were well down for the annual pilgrimage to the tomb of Rabbi Hai Taieb Lo Met in Tunis earlier this month. The pilgrims were able to pour the customary boukha (fig brandy) over the tomb without objection from the authorities. Report in Tunisia Live:

The Tunisian Jewish Community celebrated the Hiloula, or pilgrimage for the anniversary of the death of former 18th century Chief Rabbi Hai Taieb Lo Met at the Bourgel Cemetery in Tunis, December 15th.

While in previous years the number of pilgrims have reached up to 600 people, this year the pilgrimage saw almost 100 pilgrims, mostly locals but also a handful from France and one Rabbi from Bne Barak, Israel, who said he holds duel Israeli-Tunisian citizenship.

According to Rene Trabelsi the Director General of Royal First Travel and one of the organizers for the pilgrims who came from abroad, “the pilgrimage was smaller this year because people are unsure of the security situation in Tunisia but everyone will come and go home safely as normal. There will be a higher number coming to Tunisia next year.”

About ten plain clothed police closely guarded the ceremony which included the pouring of Boukha, or a fig based alcoholic drink on the Rabbi’s tombstone as well as adding nuts and handwritten messages as is the tradition of the community that reveres the Rabbi.

Rabbi Hai Taieb

Rabbi Hai Taieb was born in Tunis in 1774, he was known as a great Kabbalist and according to Jewish oral tradition his prayers to God once brought rain during a time of drought in Tunisia.

Read article in full

Note one reader's comment, saying he would not trust Tunisian Jews since they were all 'Zionists' now.


Anonymous said...

Sionist means lover of Sion!!!!Right?
But the Arabs and especially the Egyptians turned it into an insult
ya sahouni ebn kalb!(you sionist son of a dog)
It was the worst thing that could happen to us down there. Men and women were arrested, their hair shaved off and beaten up in one of their smelly jails. And when they were released it was to be sent handcuffed to a boat that took them away without giving their families any idea of where they were being sent!
And to think that some Jews would like to return to an ARab country! It's a nightmare!
suzy vidal

Anonymous said...

ps. ...was to be sent handcuffed to a boat or a plane

please add these words: boat or plane.
Suzy Vidal