, , , , ,

There is no mention of bringing anything niddah-related to a rabbi in the Meam Loez

R. Moshe Maimon called my attention to the Meam Loez’s discussion of the laws of niddah, addressed to both men and women, and there is no mention there of bringing anything to the rabbi. This omission was rectified by R. Aryeh Kaplan, who in his translation (vol. 1, p. 136) adds: “When in doubt, a competent rabbi should be consulted.”

Marc B. Shapiro, “Answers to Quiz Questions and Other Comments, part 2”, The Seforim Blog (25 March 2012), n. 2 {http://seforim.blogspot.com/2012/03/answers-to-quiz-questions-and-other.html}

, , , ,

In Yemen and in some of the Sephardic world there was never a concept of asking a rabbi intimate niddah questions

I think many will find interesting that in Yemen and in some of the Sephardic world there was never a concept of asking a rabbi intimate niddah questions. This was because the women were embarrassed to do so, seeing it as “untzniusdik”. I mention this only because I have heard rabbis say that in truth there are no tzeniut issues with this, and women shouldn’t be embarrassed. They make it seem that it is only due to modern values that all of a sudden this sort of thing is uncomfortable for women. This is clearly not the case, as we see from what happened in the Yemenite and some of Sephardic worlds, hardly centers of modernity. (I am only speaking of the historical reality, not the wisdom of the Yemenite and Sephardic approaches, which usually meant that any doubt would be assumed to render the woman impure.)

Marc B. Shapiro, “Answers to Quiz Questions and Other Comments, part 2”, The Seforim Blog (25 March 2012), n. 2 {http://seforim.blogspot.com/2012/03/answers-to-quiz-questions-and-other.html}