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Many people kiss the earth when they arrive in Israel, particularly if they are making 'Aliyah or if it's their first time visiting the Holy Land.

Is there anything wrong with this? Should it be encouraged? Does it matter what the circumstances are?

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Really? All that editing and nobody fixed my typo??? –  Seth J Dec 8 '11 at 15:28
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1 Answer

up vote 10 down vote accepted

Is there anything wrong with this?

Nope.

The Rambam wrote a unique halacha (Melachim 5,10): "Great Rabbis would kiss the ground of Eretz Yisrael, and kiss its stones as well as roll in its dust as it states: because your slaves wanted its stones and begged for its dust."

(from here)

The Talmud records that Rabbi Abba would demonstrate his great love for the Land of Israel by kissing the rocks of Acre (Ketubot 112a) as he returned to the Land.

(from here)

Can't answer the other part of your question though (the third is really dependent on the second)

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Ok, how about this - does the paved runway at Ben Gurion count as the ground/stones/dust? –  Seth J Dec 8 '11 at 5:23
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Yes, why wouldn't it? –  avi Dec 8 '11 at 7:15
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