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Old 02-03-2014, 10:51 AM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
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Orthodox school in N.Y. allows girls to pray with tefillin | Jewish Telegraphic Agency

Two weeks ago a Modern Orthodox high school announced that it would allow women to wear tefillin, the black leather boxes containing parchments of Torah that observant Jews wear during weekday morning ritual prayer.

The reason why this is controversial is that unlike in Islam, only men are obligated to perform all three daily prayers as well as any commandments that must be performed at given times (mitzvot shel zman grama), including wearing prayer shawls (tallitot) and tefillin. The traditional reasons given by the Sages for women being exempt were that their family and child-rearing duties would make it impractical to perform commandments at specific times, and that women were on a higher spiritual level than men and therefore do not need to perform mitzvot shel zman grama.

Despite this exemption, there are traditions of women laying tefillin in the past, especially in France and Germany, the most famous example being the daughters of the medieval Torah commentator Shlomo Yitzchaki (Rashi).

During the Jewish Enlightenment of the 18th and 19th centuries, traditional non-denominational Ashkenazi Judaism fractured into Orthodox, Reform, and Conservative streams. Traditional Judaism before this time (and to some extent, to this day in Sephardic Judaism) was more flexible to new customs, culture and traditions, even those that originated from outside of the Jewish world, as long as these innovations did not violate the letter of Jewish law. The new movement of Orthodox Judaism began to view changes in tradition (mesorah) as equivalent to violations of Jewish law (halacha) itself. It thus paradoxically viewed the wearing of tefillin, which is an effort by women to become more pious and religious in their everyday lives beyond what is required, as an external threat from secular feminists for egalitarianism that must be squashed. Hence the controversy.



What are your thoughts: Most of the time, when Jews go above and beyond the bare minimum of Jewish law, they are commended for rising to a higher spiritual level. So why aren't these women applauded for wearing tefillin and tallitot?

 
Old 02-03-2014, 01:43 PM
 
Location: OC/LA
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Because of what you said yourself.
Quote:
Originally Posted by usuario View Post
The new movement of Orthodox Judaism began to view changes in tradition (mesorah) as equivalent to violations of Jewish law (halacha) itself.
 
Old 02-03-2014, 02:48 PM
 
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The back story on those girls, is that they are conservative Jews. Not that that is a bad thing, but once a shul permits women to wear tefillin, they become unrecognizable as an Orthodox Jewish institution.

This story has had quite a bit of legs in the Conservative media the last several weeks. My guess, is that they are using it to attempt to legitimize their stances on egalitarianism by saying "look, even the Orthodox do this." Sorry it didn't work. Egalitarian practices in a halachic setting are still demeaning to women and cheapen their contribution to the normative Jewish family.
 
Old 02-03-2014, 02:50 PM
 
Location: Eretz Yisrael
21,369 posts, read 24,115,390 times
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I brought this up in another thread.
The future of Conservative Judaism

And the link I used was:
Should women wear tefillin? | Opinion | Jewish Journal

Which basically states that it's not forbidden, it'd just not required. And what has happened is that certain sects of TOJ's equate not required to mean forbidden.
 
Old 02-03-2014, 02:55 PM
 
Location: Eretz Yisrael
21,369 posts, read 24,115,390 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theflipflop View Post
The back story on those girls, is that they are conservative Jews. Not that that is a bad thing, but once a shul permits women to wear tefillin, they become unrecognizable as an Orthodox Jewish institution.

This story has had quite a bit of legs in the Conservative media the last several weeks. My guess, is that they are using it to attempt to legitimize their stances on egalitarianism by saying "look, even the Orthodox do this." Sorry it didn't work. Egalitarian practices in a halachic setting are still demeaning to women and cheapen their contribution to the normative Jewish family.

B"H I wish you would stop making things up to fit your own scope of reality in relation to TOJ's.

Show us exactly where in the Talmud that it is FORBIDDEN in the Orthodox world.
 
Old 02-03-2014, 03:06 PM
 
3,962 posts, read 3,344,225 times
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And FYI, it's a myth that Rashi's daughters laid tefillin. Although I understand it's reliable that the Vilna Goan's daughters did, but only in private, as violating community standards in public is a very serious problem.

And Pruzhany, where did I say it was forbidden? It's bizarre, unflattering and inciting, but did I say it was forbidden?
 
Old 02-03-2014, 03:34 PM
 
Location: Eretz Yisrael
21,369 posts, read 24,115,390 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theflipflop View Post

And Pruzhany, where did I say it was forbidden? It's bizarre, unflattering and inciting, but did I say it was forbidden?
So now you're saying it's not forbidden for Orthodox women to wear tefillin even at the Kotel. It's a simple closed end statement.
 
Old 02-03-2014, 03:36 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
939 posts, read 1,261,961 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HyperionGap View Post
Because of what you said yourself.
Admittedly that's my own narrow-minded take on it. I want to hear other opinions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by theflipflop
once a shul permits women to wear tefillin, they become unrecognizable as an Orthodox Jewish institution
The principal of the school is an ORTHODOX rabbi, which means that he has an Orthodox, Torah-based view of Jewish law and the 613 commandments. Therefore he would not allow something that is against halacha. Please explain how he is not Orthodox if he hasn't broken halacha or encouraged someone else to break it.

Historically, Ashkenazi Jews were not obligated to eat chalak Beit Yosef (Yiddish: "glatt") kosher meat. Regular kosher meat was fine. Were the first Ashkenazi Jews to eat glatt kosher "violating community standards in public"? Somebody had to do it, and now most Ashkenazi Orthodox only eat glatt kosher meat, refusing to eat perfectly kosher "Hebrew National" hot dogs.
 
Old 02-03-2014, 05:08 PM
 
864 posts, read 733,864 times
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Quote:
Please explain how he is not Orthodox if he hasn't broken halacha or encouraged someone else to break it.
Overwhelming poskim are against women wearing Tefillim because of its kedusha factor. Men have also been ordered to wear Tefillin only during shachris for this reason alone.

Quote:
he principal of the school is an ORTHODOX rabbi, which means that he has an Orthodox, Torah-based view of Jewish law and the 613 commandments. Therefore he would not allow something that is against halacha.
Well, now he just became conservadox.
 
Old 02-03-2014, 07:05 PM
 
Location: Eretz Yisrael
21,369 posts, read 24,115,390 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iwishiwerethin View Post
Overwhelming poskim are against women wearing Tefillim because of its kedusha factor.
And from who and from where do get this assumption from? Since there are two Talmud's, are you now choosing the one that better fits your current assumption and perception and using the other one when it fits?




Tale of Two Talmuds - My Jewish Learning
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