"The Torah is Hashem's word...One must do as it says." This is a given. But you are viewing ambiguity in the hypothetical, that one must follow the Rabbonim "if" ambiguity exists. Surely you will not claim to fully understand the entire Torah, even after years of study? Yes, this is why we have meforshim, to explain and analyze the text. But they almost always disagree with one another. How does one decide which opinion to follow? This is where individuals must choose which opinions resonate more within themselves. (There are some who will choose one Rav and follow his opinion on every matter. But how does one go about choosing which Rav to follow? Nothing is arbitrary; one's own opinion is inevitably involved to some degree.)
What Kind of a Kapora is This???(69 posts)
"This is where individuals must choose which opinions resonate more within themselves. (There are some who will choose one Rav and follow his opinion on every matter. But how does one go about choosing which Rav to follow?...)"
You parenthesize the choosing a Rov and follow his opinion on every matter. But that is the ikur. Perhaps there is an element of choice in choosing a Rov (depending on ones situation), but once that choice is made, it is set. There is no "Rabbi shopping." One must follow that Rov's opinion on all matters, and defer ones own, regardless of ones agreement or option on any specific issue.
"option" should have read "opinion".
I am at a loss in understanding why jewishfeminist02 is being attacked - does anyone here understand that there are divergent philosophies and attitudes that fall under the umbrella word "feminism"?
Why not go and read how JOFA understands and frames "feminism" and incorporates that into a halachik framework BEFORE attacking jewishfeminist02 on idealogical grounds?
I think it cowardly and childish to attack without educating yourself about your intended victim's stance.
I, and surely others here, are familiar with jofa and their anti-Torah philosophies(as much as they miserably try to twist halacha out of it.)
Okay, Joseph, if you're so familiar with JOFA, why don't you give me an example of one of JOFA's "anti-Torah philosophies?"
"The Road to Wearing a Tallit: Why an Orthodox Woman Wears a Tallit," Marcus, Bat Sheva. JOFA Journal, V, 3, 2005, 12.
Synopsis: Bat Sheva Marcus describes the journey that brought her to wear a tallit in daily prayer."
The Rema on Shulchan Orach states it is an act of arrogance for women to perform this mitzvah (Shulchan Orach, O.C. 17:2).
Another example is their position on women being able to learn Gemorah. We've had a long discussion on this issue in the Coffee Room where it was conclusively demonstrated that a woman cannot learn Gemorah, per Masechtes Sotah Daf 21b and Shulchan Aruch Yoreh Deah siman 246 sif 6 as well as poskim and other sources. you can read it at (last 8 or so comments on the page):
I'm not going to further debate their "sources" for these things, where they use (at best) psak din that Klal Yisroel has long paskened against. They are essentially irrelevant within Orthodoxy, and not worth any more time.
Here is some other thread that may interest you and jofa:
In Pesachim we read of a case where a Jew shares property with a non-Jew, and the gemara says he should minimize his bedikah, so that the non-Jew should not suspect him of doing keshafim (withcraft).
In our days, one must realize that for many reasons (which may have nothing to do with us, and more to do with Islamic misbehavior) religion has a very bad rep. I personally believe, although I am not a Rabbi, and you must consult one, that any practice which has the slightest possibility of making us look primitive, boorish and superstitious should be discontinued, especially when many poskim hold it is darchei emori in the first place.
We must realize that only 7% of Jews are frum these days, and we have lost 93%. We are not doing well. When the nonfrum see certain practices that offend them, they make total ridicule out of our Torah C"V. I know this first hand, having met these types. This was one of the reasons the Reform movement began, not necessarily because they didn't want to keep mitzvos, but because they were totally embarrassed by the way the Jews were perceived by the outside world.
In my lowly opinion, we must make the utmost effort that everything we do looks appropriate, and we dress and act 100% neatly and refined, or we make a terrible chilul hashem. Perhaps we would be better off using money.
It would be interesting to see the ip addresses of all the screen names (particularly in this and the peta thread) and see how many of the people here are logging in under different names.
Joseph, did you actually read the article, or did you just look at the title and draw your own conclusions?
This is from morim.org, written by Rabbi Joshua Kullock:
"Now, if we wish to see in which way the Halacha is coded for a given item (such as, say, covering oneself with a tallit), we might open up the Shulchan Aruch and find the following:
'Women and slaves are exempt, for it is a positive precept with a determined time period. Ramah: And, in any event, if they wished to cover themselves [with the tallit] and bless, they could do so, just as with the other positive precepts with a determined time period; however it is considered an arrogant attitude, and for this reason they should not don the tzitzit.' (Orach Chaim 17:2)
While Yosef Karo presents us with a replica of what we read in the Mishnah, Moshe Isserles (Ramah) adds two interesting pieces of information: On the one hand, women can observe if they wish, but this would be considered an arrogant attitude, so they should refrain from doing so. In this paragraph we might underscore several linguistic details: Above all, the Ramah writes openly that women can observe all positive precepts with temporal specifications. However, in his opinion such observance would demonstrate haughtiness towards others and is therefore best not practiced. Now...does the arrogance of this attitude have something to do with the times in which there were marked differences in the observance, labor, and social status of men and women? Should we continue to adduce arrogance as a motivation, so that women not use the tallit? Who would be offended in the twenty-first century, should a woman don a tallit?...Without having to arrive at any final answer, we can already see how language, context and norm fuse together, in a multifarious, complicated web, which will have to be taken into consideration when drawing conclusions."
So you see, it's not as simple as you make it out to be. I have also thoroughly studied the sources for women learning Gemara and it is clear to me that there is no halachic issue there; however, I will reserve my comments for the existing thread. Thank you for pointing it out to me.
Pashuteh Yid, thanks for bringing the discussion back on topic. You make excellent points.
jewish02, you just continue to demonstrate my initial point. In any event, that little organization is without influence and a dead issue for all practical purposes.
That thread is closed. But it most certainly IS a "halachic issue", according to Shulchan Aruch, Yoreh Deah 246:6. Also see the 6th to last post on the aforementioned (closed) thread for additional sources.
when a bucket of water is clear
a drop of mud will cause the waters to become murky
when a bucket of water is as murky as mud, another drop of mud will not be noticed.
the lives of our fathers and mothers were as clear water as compared to our mud-filled world.
nevertheless, a drop of mud is a drop of mud, a woman wearing a Talis is arrogance, as the Halachah states, though it might not seem so to our blinded eyes in this dark world. a world where an intelligent well-meaning daughter of Sorah, Rivka, Rochel, and Leah can devote herself to "Feminism"
There is a teshuvah in Igros Moshe that says that just as with mitzvos like shofar and lulav, women can optionally put on a tallis. However, it depends on her intentions. If to really acquire extra kedusha or zchus, then it is ok. But if it is just to show that she is the same as a man, then not ok.
At any rate, I have always wondered why women would feel inferior when they have the mitzva of raising the next generation of yidden. Why is that less important or meritorious than wearing black boxes or a woolen cloth?
You are referring to Igros Moshe, Orach Chaim 4:49, where Rem Moshe clearly opposes use of a talis by a woman, precisely because the Rema calls it arrogance:
"In regard to the women who participate in the battle [feminism] with other women of the world. These women who are Torah observant wish to bring this battle to the arena of Torah law and therefore some pray with Talis and Tefillin and the like. They wish that I state my opinion on the matter. However, it is obvious if her soul desires to fulfill commandments which she has not been commanded. However, since this is not the motivation, but rather due to her complaint against G-d and His Torah, this is not a Mitvza, on the contrary, it is a sin."
Reb Moshe, Igros Moshe, OC 4:49
...which also brings out another point. Reb Moshe was clearly opposed to feminism. (But this is such an obvious point, it hardly needs any mention.)
Ahhhh.... but I forget:
The feminists question whether "this attitude have something to do with the times in which there were marked differences in the observance, labor, and social status of men and women."
And wonder whether we "should we continue to adduce arrogance as a motivation, so that women not use the tallit."
Times must've changed since Reb Moshe and the Rema, according to them, and we must "update" our poiskim to account for the new "social status" feminism has wrought upon society.
This is a forum, not a battleground.
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