Gender Segregation in Jewish Cemeteries

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  • #604838

    iced
    Member

    Why are the burial plots in (many) Jewish cemeteries segregated by gender?

    #896185

    2scents
    Participant

    I think that it is only a more recent thing. I was told that there is no real reason to this.

    #896186

    avhaben
    Participant

    The oldest beis hakevorim in Europe are seperated like this, too.

    #896187

    Feif Un
    Participant

    Because tznius has gone overboard.

    #896188

    mythoughts
    Participant

    I heard that it might lead to mixed dancing by tichiyas hameisim.

    #896190

    gavra_at_work
    Participant

    It is a minhag thing. Some do it and some don’t. It probably depended on which town in Europe the person who was in charge of the section was from.

    Live & let live (in D’var Reshus).

    #896191

    yichusdik
    Participant

    avhaben – aside from the fact that in botei kvaros across Europe Rabonnim are buried with wives and daughters above below or beside them, If you have any knowledge of burial practices in eretz yisroel before and after the churban bayis sheini, you would know that families buried their meisim in ossuaries for a few years, then reinterred the bones. These were buried in family tombs, of which there are dozens around yerushalayim, especially in the areas of sanhedriya and talpiyot. families were buried together.

    At some point in the last 200 years a determination was made in some communities that it was appropriate to bury men and women separately if the space was available, but there is an abundance of physical evidence all over Europe that there is no halachic necessity to do so.

    #896192

    WIY
    Member

    Feif Un

    “Because tznius has gone overboard.”

    Dont you mean underground?

    In all seriousness though Tznius is at an all time low. I think the way women in our community dress today is overboard and I think it is extremely cruel that they 1) Cause such nisyonos to the men

    2) Cause nisyonos to frum girls and women who would otherwise dress Tzniusdig but because “everyone” else is dressing like EDITED they feel that they must also.

    #896193

    rabbiofberlin
    Participant

    mythoughts- very funny !

    On a more serious note, this must be a very new “minhag’ because the vast majority of Botei chayim in the world do not discriminate.

    #896194

    RABBAIM
    Participant

    The Satmar Rebbe Rav Yoel zt”l is buried right next to his wife!

    #896195

    cherrybim
    Participant

    It must be a new chumra because our Avos are buried next to their wives.

    #896196

    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    Cherry: It is not a new minhag at all. You can see some very old cemetaries with the men and women buried in alternating rows, so that they are one in front of another instead of side by side.

    One that I am aware of is the southern street cemetery in Baltimore, which is well over 100 years old.

    As far as the avos, I don’t know what information you have that they are buried side by side instead of one in front of the other.

    #896197

    golfer
    Participant

    Different minhagim. Not our business to get all excited or judgmental; this time of year we leave the judging to SomeOne Else.

    (But I did like mythoughts’ heara)

    #896198

    frummy in the tummy
    Participant

    gavra_at_work: don’t you mean live and let die? (That seems so familiar for some reason….)

    #896199

    HolyMoe
    Participant

    I heard from old-timers that before the war many women kept Shabbos and were entitled to be buried in Shomer Shabbos sections while, sadly, most of their husbands and sons did not stand up to the incredibly difficult Nisayon of Shmiras Shabbos in those years and they were refused burial in Shomer Shabbos sections.

    By the time the 1930s came around, cemeteries evolved into men’s and women’s sections originally being non-Shomer-Shabbos and Shomer-Shabbos sections.

    People in our time just continued these policies of the old cemetaries. Many thinking that it is some sort of Tznius or Frumkeit when it is just a relic of a very sad chapter in Jewish American history.

    #896200

    gavra_at_work
    Participant

    gavra_at_work: don’t you mean live and let die? (That seems so familiar for some reason….)

    Dr., No.

    #896201

    cherrybim
    Participant

    Another burial policy question is whether the women covered her hair; not did she speak loshon harah or did she give tzedakah,etc.

    #896202

    rabbiofberlin
    Participant

    cherrybim- this, again ,is a minhag and i think that Satmsr and some other Hungarian groups are makpid on that. the rest of the world is not.

    #896203

    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    I heard from old-timers that before the war many women kept Shabbos and were entitled to be buried in Shomer Shabbos sections while, sadly, most of their husbands and sons did not stand up to the incredibly difficult Nisayon of Shmiras Shabbos in those years and they were refused burial in Shomer Shabbos sections.

    By the time the 1930s came around, cemeteries evolved into men’s and women’s sections originally being non-Shomer-Shabbos and Shomer-Shabbos sections.

    People in our time just continued these policies of the old cemetaries. Many thinking that it is some sort of Tznius or Frumkeit when it is just a relic of a very sad chapter in Jewish American history.

    This is easily disproven by the existence of much older cemeteries which have separate rows for men and women, and by the fact it is not separate sections, but separate rows. That is:

    MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM

    WWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW

    MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM

    WWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW

    #896205

    golfer
    Participant

    Cherrybim, before you start to wonder why they would ask about hair covering before, for example lashon hara, tzedaka etc- it’s quite obvious why it’s often used to guage level of observance.

    We can’t peer into people’s hearts and determine their level of emunah & bitachon. We can’t overhear their prayers and determine their level of kavana. And if we don’t know the woman personally we may not be able to figure out how pure her speech was or how much chessed she did without nosey yentish inquiries that would inevitably lead to lashon hara and rechilus being spoken. We certainly cannot ask about taharas hamishpacha, and even shemiras Shabbos can be shakey inside the daled amos of a person’s home without strangers being any wiser. Hair covering is there for all to see easily.

    At least that’s how it was in the olden days. Some 21st century human hair sheitels may leave you wondering. But that’s a different topic for a different thread.

    #896206

    cherrybim
    Participant

    Well, there is no doubt that her hair is covered in the grave.

    #896207

    interjection
    Participant

    “Cherrybim, before you start to wonder why they would ask about hair covering before, for example lashon hara, tzedaka etc- it’s quite obvious why it’s often used to guage level of observance……Hair covering is there for all to see easily.”

    It’s quite obvious how well she observed that mitzva. It is no indication whatsoever of how observant she was of other mitzvos. Some of the absolute biggest baalos chessed I know do not cover their hair yet they are extremely dedicated to their avodas Hashem in every way.

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