According to Wikipedia the Mount got its name from the olive groves that once covered the ridge east of Jerusalem's Old City. The Mount is associated with religious traditions and also has a connection with religious sites in Islam. The site has been in existence for over 3,000 years. Whether Christian, Muslim or Jewish the site has meaning and interest for all of them.
The hill site is filled with thousands of graves and it is said that miracles will take place when the time comes. There is a connection with the Jews, and the Mount was known as a place where pilgrims visited. The significance of the Mount and the soft chalky earth resulted in a burial ground over the generations with over 150,000 graves. Standing on the Mount with its searing views tourists flock to its summit to explore Jewish history. It is said that the rocks whisper its stories. When you close your eyes and breathe in the air, you can almost hear it.
In the Old Testament it is said that false gods were worshipped on the hill and it was destroyed by Josiah who 'filled it with bones' in the hope that it would deter people from worshipping at the site. In the New Testament it states that the Mount is connected with Jesus and his acts where he taught his disciples the Lord's Prayer and where he was betrayed and arrested; he had asked his disciples to wait for him while he went to pray. The tomb of Mary is not far away. A church was built on the site. Over time it was destroyed by flooding and other catastrophes. Today all that remains is a structure with three holes where a visitor can touch it and pray.
The Mount is a place filled with history. There are beautiful sites for tourists and pilgrims who ache to see the places of the old prophets, visit the church at the foot of the hill where there are ancient olive trees. Some people believe that the tree is a descendant of the original olive trees in the time of Jesus but no one can attest that it is indeed so. A lover of history and tradition will find the area very interesting and looking back on the past is a wonderful feeling especially when you come to see it for yourself. Standing on the hill you feel connected to God. You are reaffirming your beliefs because you are standing on the very soil that was walked upon by Jesus and other prophets. Religion is not a hoax. Your eyes are testament to the truth.
Visiting the places where one can connect with the past is indeed a life altering experience every human being should aspire to at least once during one's lifetime. Looking at photographs of churches and hills is one thing; standing at the actual spot and smelling the soil where Jesus had once walked, where Adam and Eve had defied God, is quite another.