Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “At the Entrance to the Garden of Eden: A Jew's Search for Hope with Christians and Muslims in the Holy Land” as Want to Read:
At the Entrance to the Garden of Eden: A Jew's Search for Hope with Christians and Muslims in the Holy Land
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

At the Entrance to the Garden of Eden: A Jew's Search for Hope with Christians and Muslims in the Holy Land

4.12  ·  Rating details ·  139 Ratings  ·  18 Reviews
A brilliantly observed memoir of an unprecedented and remarkable spiritual journey.

While religion has fuelled the often violent conflict plaguing the Holy Land, Yossi Klein Halevi wondered whether it could be a source of unity as well. To find the answer, this religious Israeli Jew began a two–year exploration to discover a common language with his Christian and Muslim nei
...more
Paperback, 336 pages
Published June 18th 2002 by Harper Perennial (first published September 1st 2001)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about At the Entrance to the Garden of Eden, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about At the Entrance to the Garden of Eden

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
Sort: Default
|
Filter
Edward
Nov 12, 2013 rated it really liked it
Near the beginning of this book, Halevi talks about the “idolatry of separation,” the emphasis upon how the three monotheistic faiths that sprung out of the middle east, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, distinguish themselves from one another. Each claims Abraham as their spiritual father, but there the differences begin.

Halevi is not concerned with theological discussions of these differences. He does deal with the history of the area – it’s unavoidable in talking about the state of Israel an
...more
Real Supergirl
Jun 01, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: jewish, memoir
This is a brilliant, fascinating book about an Israeli, observantly Jewish journalist's spiritual journey. he spends a year observing the holidays and daily rituals with various religious Muslims (primarily Sufi) and Christians. He does all this without ever losing or questioning his Jewish faith - what he is searching for is the interfaith common language and belief structure for all three religions. And he finds it - even if plenty of fundamentalist Muslims, Christians, and Jews would deny it ...more
Devin
Oct 20, 2007 rated it it was amazing
This is one of my favorite non-fiction books. In the intro, upon re-reading the book recently, I came across a passage that I really connected with. He said that he's a religious pluralist. That he believes that all the religions of the world are really just one, its just that they interpret things differently. It is exactly how I feel. I always called myself a spiritualist, that I was more interested in spirituality than religion. But I agree, I think that people approach spirituality different ...more
Cheryl
May 14, 2015 rated it really liked it
A beautiful book about a man trying to learn if the beauty of religion can overcome the ugliness of religion. A Jewish man in Israel, with fear and hesitation, tries to experience the holiness of Islam and Christianity, and it brought me to tears when he did. I can't believe this book didn't win any or all the prestigious prizes. Yes, essentially he is the oppressor in Israel, so I can see cynics feel his arrogance, but he is an ordinary man trying to find a way out of the tragedy that is playin ...more
Anne Mc
Aug 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Beautifully written book about Halevi’s journey to greater understanding and shared prayer with Christians and Muslims. Very personal and autobiographical, it mostly describes his meetings with various figures and communities (Sufi Muslims, various Catholic monastics, Copts, and Armenian Orthodox). It’s full of wisdom and nuggets of ideas that I just wanted to chew on in thought for a while—which also made it a slow book to read but for other reasons than the above. Reading it and meeting him, i ...more
James Clephane-Cameron
Aug 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A truly inspiring story and a wonderful look at the Abrahamic faiths. A must read for any theologian be they Christian, Jew or Muslim.
Rachael
Oct 25, 2014 rated it really liked it
Written before the second intifada and before 9/11, this book should seem dated. I found his journey and experiences still quite relevant, both from a religious and political perspective. As an Orthodox Jewish Israeli raised in Brooklyn by Holocaust survivors, he certainly has an interesting background. His journey to find solidarity with Muslims and Christians in prayer and worship is fascinating. His ambitious mission could come across as naive Kumbaya-type exploration, but his deeply held rel ...more
Mike
Feb 12, 2017 rated it liked it
A Jew, a Christian, a Moslem in direct interactions in Israel......
Laura Engelken
Sep 30, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is an excellent book - clearly structured, well-written, insightful and inspirational. Halevi did an excellent job describing the complex social, religious and political realities of the Holy Land - all through the narrative of his own spiritual search.

Also, Halevi's perspectives as an American religious Jew, child of Holocaust survivors, and now Israeli citizen - helped me get a sense of the deep distrust many Jews have of Christians and Christianity. There were a number of vignettes whic
...more
Ronen
Mar 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: religion, israel
Hopeful against the odds, and very well written.

HaLevi isn't a starry-eyed mystic which would seem to be the main risk in a book of this sort. He manages to evoke hope and convey a seemingly Messianic vision while keeping his feet on the ground, not a simple feat.

As said by one of the characters in the book, a colorful Sufi Sheikh: "There are enough politicians in the land of the prophets. But where are the prophets in the land of the prophets?"
Lynne
Jan 29, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This is a wonderful account of one orthodox Jewish person's attempt to engage with the spiritualities of Islam and Christianity in the context of Israel/Palestine. It is beautifully written, very moving and ultimately hopeful about the human possibilities of overcoming the demonization of the Other. There is still no formally agreed peace process for the afea but the kind of meetings Halevi describes have a symbolic power for what is possible.
Elerzlikespi(e)
Dec 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: People Interested in Monotheism
Recommended to Elerzlikespi(e) by: Parents
An amazing look into the worlds of Christianity and Islam through both a Jewish and overall monotheistic religious lense. Though, as an Orthodox Jew, I don't necessarily agree with all of HaLevi's forays into Christianity and Islam, I think his explorations of the other two religions that hold the Land of Israel as holy are fascinating. Definitely worth a read!
Sharon Rosenberg-Scholl
Sep 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This was a beautiful book. The author's descriptions of the people he meets and places he goes and his honest reflection and expressions of his feelings and fears was just captivating. If he and the people he befriends in this book were in power, we could have peace. Insha'Allah - Keyn Hehi Ratzon.
Sherril
Feb 18, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: own-book, non-fiction
⭐⭐⭐1/2 ...more
Daughters Of Abraham
May 07, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: jewish
Jewish Israeli journalist spends time getting to know Christians and worshipping with Muslims. Sections are political in regard to Israel-Palestine.
Jenny Larsen
Mar 22, 2013 rated it liked it
An interesting book to read before Easter and to begin to learn about Israel.
John Hoag
Oct 31, 2013 rated it liked it
Chapter on Armenia is truly outstanding.
David Wolkin
rated it liked it
Jan 08, 2017
Brooke
rated it it was ok
Jul 12, 2011
wizardly
rated it really liked it
Mar 02, 2011
Kelsy
rated it it was amazing
Jun 27, 2012
Laura
rated it really liked it
Feb 08, 2014
Michael Fessler
rated it it was amazing
Sep 29, 2014
Cameron Dyer
rated it really liked it
Jun 07, 2009
Joshua
rated it really liked it
Aug 17, 2013
Randy Lundquist
rated it it was amazing
Apr 05, 2017
Adenam
rated it really liked it
Dec 13, 2012
Leonard
rated it it was amazing
Jul 20, 2015
Robert Jacobs
rated it really liked it
Jun 13, 2014
Rachel Sabath
rated it it was amazing
Oct 06, 2017
« previous 1 3 4 5 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Kaddish
  • Revenge
  • The Art of Blessing the Day: Poems with a Jewish Theme
  • The Smile of the Lamb
  • The Spirit of Peace: Pentecost and Affliction in the Middle East
  • Jerusalem: One City, Three Faiths
  • God in Search of Man: A Philosophy of Judaism
  • Through the Door of Life: A Jewish Journey between Genders
  • Hannah Senesh, Her Life and Diary
  • The Dignity of Difference: How to Avoid the Clash of Civilizations
  • Back to the Sources
  • The Guide of the Perplexed, Volume 2
  • New Jewish Wedding, Revised
  • Legends of Our Time
  • Bearing Witness: A Zen Master's Lessons in Making Peace
  • The 188th Crybaby Brigade: A Skinny Jewish Kid from Chicago Fights Hezbollah--A Memoir
  • Drinking the Sea at Gaza: Days and Nights in a Land Under Siege
  • In the Valley of the Shadow: On the Foundations of Religious Belief

Nonfiction Deals

  • A Guide to the Present Moment
    $7.99 $2.99
  • Hunting Eichmann: How a Band of Survivors and a Young Spy Agency Chased Down the World's Most Notorious Nazi
    $9.99 $2.99
  • The Breaks of the Game
    $11.99 $2.99
  • Soul Keeping: Caring For the Most Important Part of You
    $9.99 $1.99
  • How Soccer Explains the World: An Unlikely Theory of Globalization
    $8.24 $1.99
  • Dry
    $9.99 $3.99
  • Animal Liberation: The Definitive Classic of the Animal Movement
    $17.99 $1.99
  • The Measure of a Man
    $8.74 $1.99
  • Recovery: Freedom from Our Addictions
    $13.99 $2.99
  • 100 Days of Real Food: How We Did It, What We Learned, and 100 Easy, Wholesome Recipes Your Family Will Love
    $8.99 $1.99
  • Things No One Will Tell Fat Girls: A Handbook for Unapologetic Living
    $9.99 $2.99
  • Whipping Girl: A Transsexual Woman on Sexism and the Scapegoating of Femininity
    $13.99 $2.99
  • Best Friends: The True Story of the World's Most Beloved Animal Sanctuary
    $14.99 $1.99
  • Let. It. Go.: How to Stop Running the Show and Start Walking in Faith
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Still: Notes on a Mid-Faith Crisis
    $9.24 $1.99
  • The Earth Shall Weep: A History of Native America
    $17.99 $1.99
  • Crown of Blood: The Deadly Inheritance of Lady Jane Grey
    $17.48 $1.99
  • The Story of Sushi: An Unlikely Saga of Raw Fish and Rice
    $12.49 $1.99
  • The Noticer Returns: Sometimes You Find Perspective, and Sometimes Perspective Finds You
    $9.99 $2.99
  • Scar Tissue
    $11.99 $2.99
  • Running with Scissors
    $9.99 $3.99
  • The Beautiful Struggle: A Father, Two Sons, and an Unlikely Road to Manhood
    $10.99 $1.99
  • The Black Hole War: My Battle with Stephen Hawking to Make the World Safe for Quantum Mechanics
    $9.99 $2.99
  • 1968: The Year That Rocked the World
    $11.99 $1.99
  • Notes on a Banana: A Memoir of Food, Love and Manic Depression
    $11.99 $1.99
  • Unfinished Business: Women Men Work Family
    $13.99 $1.99
  • Talking as Fast as I Can: From Gilmore Girls to Gilmore Girls (and Everything in Between)
    $11.99 $2.99
  • The Warrior Elite: The Forging of SEAL Class 228
    $11.99 $1.99
  • Lunch in Paris: A Love Story, with Recipes
    $9.99 $2.99
  • And the Band Played On: Politics, People, and the AIDS Epidemic
    $9.99 $2.99
  • The Vegetable Butcher: How to Select, Prep, Slice, Dice, and Masterfully Cook Vegetables from Artichokes to Zucchini
    $22.95 $1.99
  • Facing Your Giants: The God Who Made a Miracle Out of David Stands Ready to Make One Out of You
    $9.99 $2.99
  • Fat Girl Walking: Sex, Food, Love, and Being Comfortable in Your Skin...Every Inch of It
    $8.99 $1.99
  • The Egg and I
    $9.99 $1.99
  • The Secrets of Happy Families: Improve Your Mornings, Rethink Family Dinner, Fight Smarter, Go Out and Play, and Much More
    $12.74 $1.99
  • City of Fortune: How Venice Ruled the Seas
    $14.99 $2.99
  • Just Another Kid
    $7.99 $1.99
  • The Second World War
    $12.99 $3.99
  • Dewey: The Small-Town Library Cat Who Touched the World
    $9.99 $1.99
  • The Price of Privilege: How Parental Pressure and Material Advantage Are Creating a Generation of Disconnected and Unhappy Kids
    $11.24 $1.99
  • Fall Down 7 Times Get Up 8: A Young Man's Voice from the Silence of Autism
    $13.99 $1.99
  • I Am Not Myself These Days (P.S.)
    $13.24 $1.99
  • In the Beginning...Was the Command Line
    $9.49 $1.99
  • Starvation Heights: A True Story of Murder and Malice in the Woods of the Pacific Northwest
    $11.99 $2.99
  • The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying
    $11.99 $1.99
  • The Toltec Art of Life and Death
    $11.49 $1.99
  • Put Your Dream to the Test: 10 Questions to Help You See It and Seize It
    $9.49 $2.99
  • The Diva Rules: Ditch the Drama, Find Your Strength, and Sparkle Your Way to the Top
    $17.99 $2.99
  • A Brief History of Time
    $9.99 $2.99
  • The Honest Truth About Dishonesty: How We Lie to Everyone--Especially Ourselves
    $9.99 $1.99
  • All My Road Before Me: The Diary of C. S. Lewis, 1922-1927
    $10.99 $1.99
  • The Penguin Lessons
    $12.99 $1.99
  • What They Don't Teach You at Harvard Business School: Notes from a Street-smart Executive
    $12.99 $1.99
  • The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath
    $10.99 $2.99
  • Meet Me in the Bathroom: Rebirth and Rock and Roll in New York City 2001-2011
    $12.99 $2.99
  • What We Talk About When We Talk About God
    $11.49 $2.99
  • Running with the Kenyans: Passion, Adventure, and the Secrets of the Fastest People on Earth
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Pilgrim's Wilderness: A True Story of Faith and Madness on the Alaska Frontier
    $11.99 $1.99
  • No God But God: The Origins, Evolution and Future of Islam
    $13.99 $1.99
  • Seabiscuit: An American Legend
    $12.99 $1.99
  • Factory Man: How One Furniture Maker Battled Offshoring, Stayed Local - and Helped Save an American Town
    $9.99 $2.99
  • Creating Magic: 10 Common Sense Leadership Strategies from a Life at Disney
    $12.99 $1.99
  • Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist: Unlocking the Secrets of the Last Supper
    $11.99 $1.99
  • The Power Of Habit: Why We Do What We Do In Life And Business
    $12.99 $2.99
  • The Loudest Voice in the Room: How Roger Ailes and Fox News Remade American Politics
    $12.99 $1.99
  • The Storm of War: A New History of the Second World War
    $10.99 $1.99
  • The Apache Wars: The Hunt for Geronimo, the Apache Kid, and the Captive Boy Who Started theLongest War in American History
    $12.99 $1.99
  • Creativity: Flow and the Psychology of Discovery and Invention
    $10.49 $1.99
  • Darkness Visible: A Memoir of Madness
    $17.99 $1.99
  • French Kids Eat Everything: How Our Family Moved to France, Cured Picky Eating, Banned Snacking, and Discovered 10 Simple Rules for Raising Happy, Healthy Eaters
    $12.49 $2.99
  • When the Game Was Ours
    $9.99 $2.99
  • Tomorrowland: Our Staggering Journey from Science Fiction to Science Fact
    $5.99 $1.99
  • The Art of Power
    $13.99 $1.99
  • Through My Eyes
    $8.74 $1.99
  • Romantic Outlaws: The Extraordinary Lives of Mary Wollstonecraft and Her Daughter Mary Shelley
    $13.99 $1.99
  • A Brief History of Everything
    $14.99 $2.99
  • The World's Religions, Revised and Updated (Plus)
    $8.74 $1.99
  • Leonardo's Notebooks
    $11.99 $2.99
  • An American Childhood
    $10.74 $1.99
  • Making Toast
    $9.99 $1.99
  • Under the Black Flag: The Romance and the Reality of Life Among the Pirates
    $14.99 $1.99
  • Those Guys Have All the Fun: Inside the World of ESPN
    $11.99 $2.99