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    For those who don’t know, Sefaria is self-described as ‘a Living Library of Jewish Texts Online’, which use by many Rebbeim in many Moisdos across all our communities. What many don’t know is that this organization is completely reform with fundamental views directly differing to our core Torah values. For example if you look on the website you will find pictures of a Beis Hamedrash filled with women, Rachmona Litzlan. I even stumbled across videos of women singing chazonas on the website. I struggle to understand why know one knows this and so many frum people use this??


    Who doesn’t know this?

    Its used becasue it is excellent and easily searchable


    How did this post get past mods or is this humor? Do laws of lashon hara applies to only some Jews? I do not know any of the people who run the site, but the pictures of the team show guys with beards and women in tichels. Siddurim are Ashkenazi and Sephardi, none are “Reform”. As this is a somewhat open platform, you need to see whether you are reading a classical text or a sheet by a site user.


    Let’s say it is run by reform Jews. If they are transcribing the texts accurately why should it make a difference?
    Sounds like two good things could result
    A) Give a big zechus to people who may not have many
    B) Encourage more non-Orthodox Jews to study the texts on the website


    You probably don’t know much about Jewish history but before Artscroll there were many seforim translated into English by Reform/Conservative Jews. I wouldn’t be surprised that people from Lakewood/Brooklyn don’t know this.


    They do not have a policy to filter the texts or even translations. But it is set up to be a resource of Torah, and it is the best by far.


    “you will find pictures of a Beis Hamedrash filled with women, Rachmona Litzlan”
    There is a problem with women learning Torah, or are you simply trolling?


    @takamamash, I think is the latter, and unlike most of them he make no attempt to hide the fact.


    Daniel Bomberg (c. 1483 – c. 1549) was a printer of Hebrew books. Including Chumash, Mikraot Gdolot and both Bavli and Yerushalmi Talmuds. He introduced the chapters and verses for the Chumash and the current layout of the Gemara, used today. He also was a Christian. The Ribbon Shel HaOlam has many shlichim.


    Sefaria is an amazing tool. It is also an open platform. It will be used by anyone who wants to learn from it and contribute to it. Just like a sefarim store is open to anyone who wants to come in and buy sefarim. And the internet is open to anyone with a browser and an internet connection.

    The question now is what you want to do with it. If you don’t want to contribute to the source sheets, the shiurim, etc – because there are “open orthodox” and fully “non orthodox” and possibly even non-Jewish academics using it – don’t contribute. I would similarly recommend you avoid these sections of the app/site.

    Even “just” as a resource for access to texts alone, Sefaria is incredible. Use it for what makes sense to you.

    Or ignore it entirely.

    Shlomo 2

    BigBochur: Could you describe the process by which you “stumbled” upon these things?
    I’ve used that site hundreds of times and never “stumbled” across what you “stumbled” across.

    Chas v’Sholom, chas v’Sholom that I would think you said “stumble” when you really meant “I never use that site for actual learning, but because I was bored, I searched and searched and searched until I found something to hock about.”

    Reb Eliezer

    We use the chapters as a reference but don’t sanctify it. The Alshich Hakadash says on the pasuk כי ראתה גוים באו מקדשה the last letters make up Hashem י-ה-ו-ה but the goyim separate it. Look where they placed the first chapter?


    My daughter sends them a check to show her hakarat hatov. The Minchas Chinuch is of course an old edition and is not the modern and updated Rennert edition. Some of the people on the website are from very prominent Torah families. When the CC spoke in Vilna , the women were in the Mens Section to hear his musar. About translations pre-Artscroll, the blue book was written by Harav Sheps and Harav Sharfman. The Soncino was done by Harav Leizer Kirzner , a Telzer who was Rav in Boro Park.


    Actually, if you believe in Hashem and Chazal then, yes, there are halachic limitations on women learning Torah.

    Reb Eliezer

    Look at the Magen Avraham 263,5 about Yom Tov making the bracha first when candle lighting as advocated by the Aishes Sema, the Drishe’s mother. The Magen Avraham had some foresight in the behavior of women. See Baer Hetev s’k 10.
    My mother a’h did by Yom Tov like Shabbos making the bracha after lighting only that she did not cover
    her face.


    @Shlomo 2, I don’t want to be oiver lifnei eiver but this is what I genuinely came across on the website – I had no intentions of ‘looking for something to hock about’

    No outside links

    And if you really don’t want to be oiver lifnei eiver, nothing could have made you try to post that


    @takahmamash, if you’re really think women are supposed to learn gemora then Hashem yerachem. You can look up the Gemora in Kiddushin chuf tes omud beis whuch clearly teaches that women are not supposed to learn Torah. You can also find that he The Rambam in Hilchos Talmud Torah 1:13 and the Shulchan Aruch in Yoreh Deah 246:6 pasken that women should not learn Gemora.

    Edited. This screen name of yours is fairly new here so you might not know that we try to address people’s comments and not call them names or other nasty things.


    Reb Eliezer

    The Chasam Sofer combines her two pesakim of making the bracha first and lighting late on Yom Tov to explain the Mishna in Shabbos 24 of not burning kodshim on Yom Tov.


    Sefaria contains translations of the Gemora and other seforim by non -Orthodox “scholars”. A user won’t necessarily know if he (or she) is learning Torah or taking in something from a tainted source. I myself have found Seforim translated in a skewed way. (Lines of Gemora – not the deplorable source sheets that are open to everything deplorable that can be misconstrued about the Torah ).

    This is a big issue. Torah must be learned with Tahara and Kedusha.

    It’s sad that so many don’t aeeem to be bothered by the idea of using a resource for Torah learning that is tainted.

    Shlomo 2

    You “stumbled” across two things (a Beis Hamedrash filled with women and videos of women singing chazonas), neither of which I have seen in my hundreds of visits to that site.
    So how is it that you stumbled across these TWO things and I haven’t stumbled across even one?

    How often have you used that site?
    What were you searching for, when “stumbling across” TWO seemingly unrelated things?

    As an experienced user, I couldn’t find EITHER ONE of the things you mentioned, even intentionally, searching both “Women Beit Midrash” and “Women Chazonut”.
    And yet you, dear bochur, found BOTH, without even trying!

    Given that I can’t find these things, even by searching for them and you find them even without searching for them, I partially agree with you about the ban.

    You, dear bochur, who so innocently stumbles across michsholim, even on Sefaria, should DEFINITELY ban yourself from Sefaria and from the internet in general.

    If you can’t ban yourself and need a Rabbi to ban you instead, I have semikha and would be happy to oblige


    Thank you @maskildoresh. If only people would actually stop and realise what treif and tumah you are exposing yourself and your talmidim to. If you want an English translation open an Artscroll. We all know of Reb Moshe Feinstein’s famous passionate endorsement of Artscroll. And besides we know we can trust Gedolim like Rav Nosson Scherman. There’s no need to turn to such a halachically corrupted system, namely Sefaria.

    anonymous Jew

    Chaim , some small corrections. Daniel Bromberg did not create chapters and verses. Chapters were created in 1227 by Stephen Langton. ( Archbishop of Cantebury ) and verses by Rabbi in 1448. It was done to make it easier to link a commentary to a passuk.The first printed Gemorahs were done by the Soncinos and they created the format, not Bromberg, who simply copied their format, with one significant change.
    Look at the bottom of any page in any Masechta , and you’ll see the first word in Rashi, Tosfos, and the Gemorah on the next page.Why? The Soncinos didn’t use page numbers and this was their way of making sure the pages got bound in the correct order.
    Decades later, Bromberg modified th e Soncinos format to include page nunbers. He started the practise of labeling the first page of the Gemorah as Page 2 ( daf b ). Why? Not for any mystical reasons, but because he considered the title page to be Page 1. BTW , the Soncinos could only afford to print , i think, 2 ir 3 masechtos. Bromberg printed the entire Shas.
    One more note. Rashi script had nothing to do with Rashi; it was a 15th century Sephardic script used by Soncinos and Bromberg when printing Rashi’s commentary to make it easier to distinguish Rashi from the text he was commenting on.

    Shlomo 2

    Could you provide some examples of lines of gemara (from the Sefaria gemara translation itself – as opposed to the source sheets) that were translated in a “skewed way”?

    As regards to their translation being the work of “non-Orthodox scholars,” it’s straight from the Koren Steinsaltz edition, which is the work of many tens of people, all of them Orthodox, as far as I know. (I worked on it myself.)

    It seems that you know more about this translation than I do, so I’d appreciate your showing examples of its being “skewed.”
    (That’s not saying I agree with every translation there, but “skewed” is another matter.)



    Just to clarify, while learning Gemora I saw brought down in the meforshim a reference to the posuk in tehillim of “Achas Shoalti”. I decided to look more into it when I found on Sefaria a section on this posuk which had a video of chazonus by Harav Deborah Sacks Mintz. So instead of being choshed bichsherim, stop accusing people.



    Hello again Rabbi Shlomo. If you look on the Sefaria Timeline, they say that in 2021, “they add the works of major female scholars to the library, including the first woman to be included in Sefaria’s official list of Talmud commentators, Dr. Judith Hauptman.”. Dr. Judith Hauptman is the first woman to receive a PhD in Talmud. So when you say “it’s straight from the Koren Steinsaltz edition, which is the work of many tens of people, all of them Orthodox, as far as I know. (I worked on it myself.)”, what exactly do you mean? If you say it’s okay for women to learn Gemora, then I repeat look up the Gemora in Kiddushin chuf tes omud.

    Reb Eliezer

    They say that there is no page 1 in the gemora to learn a lesson to review our learning as we never really began to learn in the first place. The four wide lines in the gemora teaches how everyone heard the Torah learning four times.
    The Sages taught the baraisa: What was the order of teaching the Oral Law? Moshe Rabbenu learned directly from the mouth of the Hashem. Aaron entered and sat before him, and Moshe Rabbenu taught him his lesson as he had learned it from G-d. Aaron moved aside and sat to the left of Moshe Rabbenu. Aaron’s sons entered, and Moshe Rabbenu taught them their lesson while Aaron listened. Aaron’s sons moved aside; Elazar sat to the right of Moshe Rabbenu and Itamar sat to the left of Aaron… The elders entered and Moshe Rabbenu taught them their lesson. The elders moved aside, and the entire nation entered and Moshe Rabbenu taught them their lesson. Therefore, Aaron had heard the lesson four times, his sons heard it three times, the elders heard it twice, and the entire nation heard it once.
    Moshe Rabbenu then departed to his tent, and Aaron taught the others his lesson as he had learned it from Moshe Rabbenu. Aaron then departed and his sons taught the others their lesson. His sons then departed and the elders taught the rest of the people their lesson. Hence everyone, Aaron, his sons, the elders and all the people, heard the lesson taught by G-d four times.

    Shlomo 2

    I did what you did (both in hebrew and in English) and looked at the meforshim brought there.
    All I saw were various texts.
    No videos of anyone or anything.
    What “mefaresh” did you click on that accidentally brought you to that video?
    (You said you were looking for “mefarshim,” so that’s where I looked.)

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    To all those who are morei heter that it’s okay to use them because they offer a great service, you are directly supporting them. Their functionality is solely dependent on people like to use them. So when you use them, you are keilu funding their existence which is complete treif and apikorsos.

    Shlomo 2

    Hello, BigBochur.
    What I meant is what I said, that the TRANSLATION is straight from the Koren Edition.
    I was addressing someone who specifically pointed to the TRANSLATION.

    anonymous Jew

    Reb Eliezer, with all due respect, you’re ignoring the fact that Bromberg cane up witn the page numbering system and it wasn’t mystical. Who exactly are the ” they say ” ? Did the they say know who Bromberg was ?


    @Shlomo2 All I did was search “Achas Sha’alti (Psalm 27:4) – Sefaria” . And please respond to my question RE: Dr. Judith Hauptman


    BigBochur: Perhaps you thought that since mommy allowed you to wear your “bigboy pants” that also was an authorization to Troll on a site where you are up against some world-class trollers. For example, you commented that Dr. Judith Hauptman was the first woman to receive a PhD in Talmud. You neglected to note that she is one of the most brilliant authors and commentators on judaic studies and is consistently cited for her insights. Perhaps aspire to her madregah and stop publicly flaunting your ignorance.


    I met Professor JH years ago and she is really a מרביץ תורה in an academic setting. As far as the shaylas Nashim is concerned there is no ספק that women use Artscroll and shteig. Rebbetzin BHM who was the wife of RIZM transcribed his ספר on the Rambam. Also I am told that the daughter of the Rov of Camden ( who was from the Bais Harav) was quite a מלומדת and there are so many more.


    Is she “marbitz torah” when she says that women count in a minyan?

    Shlomo 2

    Hi, BigBochur.
    Perhaps you didn’t notice.

    I did answer your question about Judith Hauptman.
    I said that the TRANSLATION was the Koren Translation – – and that in fact is what it is.
    The person I was responding to had commented on the TRANSLATION being skewed and I asked for examples and I said that as far as I know, the translators and the editors are Orthodox.

    And I’m still mystified as to how one could innocently wind up with a video of a woman chazan from looking at the mefarshim to the posuk you mentioned.

    Which mefaresh did you click on that brought you to the video?

    Maybe some other people here can try the search and see if, like you, they are innocently led to a woman singing.


    It seems that some bochurim are not aware of recent Jewish history and use “Reform” simply as a swear word. There is a difference between a non-halachik movement, like Reform, and possible halachic disagreements, even vehement ones. Say, R Feinstein was against women learning Gemora, his son on law respectfully disagreed. I am not sure where R Feinstein’s daughter stands on this, but at least one of granddaughters learned Gemora … would it be an insult to R Feinstein to say that he married his daughter to a Reform Rabbi?!

    Again, your position might have strong support, and you may be able to explain gemora Kidushin to Beruriah (is it the one that teaching daughters Torah is teaching her silliness or the one that if someone does not teach his son a job makes him into a gangster?) – but don’t call people inappropriate names.


    BAN YWN (or is it YNW?). I found lashon hara there.

    🍫Syag Lchochma

    AAQ – are you aware that when people find new and different interpretations of halacha it is problematic? I am always intrigued by your cry of lashon hora everytime someone who has altered halacha is spoken against. You don’t like when “your guys” get called out for making new paths. Sorry. You are aware, I assume that we don’t do live and let live unless it is all within halacha, right?
    As you said above – the men have beards and the women tichels so they must be frum. huh?


    Syag, I don’t have insights in how sefaria works and they ain’t “my guys” in any sense. I use it to look up basic commentaries and references and never found an objectionable rishon or acharon there.

    I saw that they have open pages for divrei Torah, I presume they do not police those, so I won;t be surprised there will be something bad there.

    How they dress indicates who they think they are. I saw Reform ladies in kipot but not in tichels, but I am not up with modern fashions. Could there be some militant feminists or OO? Possibly, I just did not see.

    As to “new paths”, I am all for old paths as much as possible. Everyone now is on new paths, though, whether they wear a shtreimel or a modern jacket. Rambam wore neither. And we here discussed enough Rambams that are not followed in “frum” communities – all with good sources, but they are all “new paths” that Rambam would not recognize or be upset about.

    🍫Syag Lchochma

    Did that have any connection to what i wrote?


    @Benephraim, you make me laugh. If you want to go clearly against the Shulchan Aruch then be my guest, I guess you’re just wasting my time.

    Shlomo 2

    I wonder if we could get back to the matter of innocent bochurim like BIGBOCHUR innocently going to Sefaria, going to Psalm 27:4, looking at the meforshim there (commentaries) and upon clicking on one of those commentaries being innocently led not to a mefaresh, but to a video of a woman singing, “stumbling” into it, when actually clicking on something else.

    I have not been able to reproduce this result.
    Could the rest of the oylam here see if they can?


    🍫Syag Lchochma

    I appreciate your attempt to call out what might be (we never know for sure) a fabricated situation for the sake of calling out a site. But if you are trying to deflect from the point that we have to worry about sources, that all scholars are not equal than you too are not being honest


    I love how some people can lump a tzadekes of a rebbetzin who due to being raised among gedolim picked up quite a bit of knowledge, with a feminist conservative “rabbit” who denies torah misinai and flouts halacha.

    Actually, I don’t love it. Sheker sonaysi ve’esaeivah.


    Rabbi @Shlomo 2. I honestly don’t know how many times I need to say the same thing to you, I’ve never seen anyone find something so hard to understand. While learning Gemora, I saw brought down in the meforshim a reference to posuk in tehillim of “achas shoalti”. I then looked into the posuk and saw a page on Sefaria about this posuk. Whilst looking on this page about this posuk, they showed a video of this woman – Harav Deborah Sacks Mintz – singing the posuk of achas shoalti. It’s not so hard to understand. The Sefaria page was “Achas Sha’alti (Psalm 27:4) – Sefaria”.

    Shlomo 2

    Syag Lchochm:

    This thread is called “Ban Sefaria.”
    The argument given that it should be banned is BIGBOCHUR’s claim that while searching that site for mefarshim to a certain posuk, he innocently “stumbled upon” a video of a woman singing.

    I have not been able to reproduce that finding.
    Anytime I click on any mefaresh on that pasuk, I get what it says I will get.
    I have not been able to reproduce a situation where I thought I was clicking on a mefaresh and instead had a video of a woman singing.

    I do not see the justification for banning that site if the given justification is not reproducible.

    If you want to start another thread about the halachic argument to have Gedolim ban things using claims for which there’s no evidence, that would be an interesting thread, if you want to start one.



    I am also appalled at the comparison between Rebbetzin Meltzer and other Nashim Tzidkaniyos, with a conservative lady who is machshil es harabim .

    🍫Syag Lchochma

    “If you want to start another thread about the halachic argument to have Gedolim ban things using claims for which there’s no evidence”

    I said nothing of the sort. This misrepresentation of the conversation sounds like more diversion. That’s why I questioned your motive. I agree with your assumptions about his “find”, and I strongly disagree with his approach to “public education”. But that doesn’t negate the fact that people have to be careful who their sources are. While “the men have beards” seems to work for AAQ even though most did not have yarmulkes, I prefer sources more aligned with mesorah despite their strong academics.
    Again, your point is well taken but don’t whitewash.

    Shlomo 2

    Syag Lchochm:
    I agree that we have to be careful about who our sources are.
    But the thread title is “Ban Sefaria.”

    After describing his having stumbled upon a video of a woman singing (which he later explains occurred when he was looking for meforshim on a certain posuk), the questioner says “I struggle to understand why know one knows this and so many frum people use this??”

    And I attempted to answer his question, to whit: Perhaps nobody “knows this” because they have not had the same experience, even after trying.
    And because they, unlike BIGBOCHUR, have not had this experience, they continue use it.

    He asked a question and I answered it.

    🍫Syag Lchochma

    “He asked a question and I answered it.”

    yes. And then you carried on with a few other comments. I was addressing those.

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