After a night of Bedouin feasting, drumming, dancing and singing, we have only a few hours of sleep before waking up in the dark to head to Masada.

Watching the sun come up. Photo / Jhos Singer

While walking up, I have so many thoughts. Today is my brother's birthday as well as the fourth anniversary of my father's death.

Once there was a group of people who loved life and trudged forward in order to survive with such a strength of spirit when accepting defeat, acted as a group (versus our typical individualistic western culture stance) making the decision to die with dignity by mass suicide rather than be shamed by execution by their conquerors. I deeply respect and am in awe of the bravery of making this final decision in the end of their human lives.

Our tour guide Jeremy said we come to Masada to ask the questions "What do we value most. and are we willing to die for it?"

Jourdan Abel leads the willing in some yoga stretches on top of Masada.

Feature photo by Alexa Couphos-Hayes.