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Panoramic Views > Bekaa > Rashaya > Kawkaba

Kawkaba Bou Arab, Planet of the Morn

The name Kawkaba is of Semitic origin, and calls to mind the planets, particularly Venus the Morning Star.

Kawkaba is in the region of Rashaya, a little over sixty-five miles from Beirut and 4000 feet above sea level. One can reach the town by going through Sarafand and Nabatiyeh, through Jezzine and Mashgara, or through Shtoura and Kab Elias.

Kawkaba is a village unique in many ways, different from others, quite apart from its picturesque aspect and the surrounding panorama. It is a marvelous place, with thousand-year-old olive trees, fruit trees and vines. There are remains from twelve thousand years ago and from the Phoenicians and Canaanites later. There are babbling springs and streams that ensure harvests of vegetables and fruit, and historical riches to be added to those of agriculture. But Kawkaba of Lebanon should not be confused with the other Kawkaba, a village of Southern Palestine.

Yes, Kawkaba has a history of grandeur, starting in mythological times with the gods of Olympus and the first rising of the Morning Star. the legends of the Greeks with Chronos God of Time and mighty Zeus, Hermes his messenger, and on another side Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel, and Noah of the Ark.

Kawkaba receives the first rays of the sun rising over Mount Hermon before they flood the whole land in their glow. But all that is of lesser importance. What matters is that Kawkaba was the land of Christ and his Apostles, and of the prophets such as Ezekiel. Our Lord went there several times to visit the relatives of his mother the Virgin May, for it was close to Caesarea Philippi in Galilee. Kawkaba is a village breathing the odor of sanctity, for it faces Mount Hermon, where took place the Transfiguration, and its olive groves received both Jesus and John the Baptist. But if one hanker after the remote past, one finds oneself in the first Neolithic, the Stone Age, one hundred and twenty centuries ago.

Kawkaba is certainly a town much privileged, one among the most ancient towns of the Hermon region. To its east is the river Hasbani, an affluent of the Jordan, and here Kawkaba faces the region of Arcoub, named in memory of Argheopa, mother of Cadmos, the illustrious Phoenician navigator who carried the alphabet to Europe, from where it benefited all mankind.

Not far from Kawkaba is the village of Marjaoun, Marje Eon, the plain of Eon, with a history and names taking one far into the past and the realms of mythology. Kawkaba is proud to have received Christ himself on several occasions. Legend has it that he rested in the shade near a great rock; being very thirsty he struck the ground with his stick and water sprang up, abundant and miraculous. Believers without number come to visit, make vows, and pray at this spring ever generous, and named Ain al-Messih, the Spring of Christ.

There are many residences here occupied by the people of Kawkaba during the summer. The village church is dedicated to the prophet Saint Elias, but there are other churches also. The people are well provided for as Kawkaba has all the services of a modern village and is well worth a visit.

Joseph Matar - Translation from the French: Kenneth Mortimer

- Kawkaba: >> View Movie << (2015-06-01)
- Kawkaba - Square: >> View Movie << (2015-06-01)


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