The cave named after Shem and Ever is located in Tzfat’s city center just a few minutes walk from the Old City. Jewish tradition identifies this cave as the study hall of Noah’s son and great grandson, Shem and Ever.
In a very early ‘Midrash’ from the oral Jewish tradition, it is said: “Anyone who studies Torah in this world, even in the world to come he will not be allowed to rest, but he is led to the study hall of Shem and Ever”.
Jewish tradition says that as our forefather Jacob went from Israel to Haran, from where he returned with the 12 Tribes and his 4 wives, he spent 14 years studying Torah in this cave. Later he studied Jewish law there with his son Joseph.
Jewish travelers who visited Tzfat during the Middle Ages note that this is the burial place of two of the earlies Mishnaic sages – over 2000 years ago – Rabbi Hanina ben Harcinnes and Rabbi Dosa ben Harcinnes.
The Holy Ari also talks about the cave and its special powers, noting that its name in Arab tradition is “Sons of Jacob”.
This ancient and holy site is a definitive example of Tzfat’s impact on all of civilization. Here the ancient Divine wisdom was studied and taught during the earliest generations of the human race, and from here stemmed the faith that influenced the entire world.