THE POLLUTED JORDAN: As a result of the diversion of water and the inflow of pollution, the Jordan ceases to exist as a natural river about two kilometers south of the Sea of Galilee. Courtesy Friends of the Earth Middle East.
A stroll along the Alumot Dam on the Jordan River is on no one’s list of holy sites in the Holy Land. Yet the interface between the holy and the profane happens here all day every day. The experience is available for every visitor without ritual and with no need for spiritual discipline beyond the ability to use visual or olfactory perceptions. The Alumot Dam has no entrance fee, but your soul may pay a price for the visit.
The dam is located less than two miles from the southern end of the Sea of Galilee, from where the Jordan River, the world’s lowest river, flows out and heads toward the Dead Sea. Between the Sea of Galilee and the dam, the Jordan can be seen from a heavily trafficked highway bridge as a refreshing wave of blue-green rolling water. On a hot day, which most days are in this region, the view generates a strong compulsion to quench your thirst, both physical and spiritual, with a long, cool drink from the river.