MyShiur Explorations in Talmud: Tractate Ta'anit

Prayer and reflection are fundamental components of our spiritual life and the ultimate expressions of our faith. In Judaism, on Yom Kippur and other auspicious, holy days or times of need, we intensify our communion with the Almighty with fasting.

Under the guidance and direction of the renowned, leading Talmudic scholar of our era, Rabbi Adin Even-Israel (Steinsaltz), this new course is a study of the opening chapter of Talmudic tractate Ta'anit (Fasting).  The discussion in this section centers around the Torah's view on prayer, and specifically, prayers for rain in times of drought. 

The subject is inspirational and empowering, demonstrating the Jewish tradition of directly communicating with our creator and asking Him to provide for all our needs.



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MyShiur Explorations in Talmud: Tractate Shabbat

A mitzvah that is both widely observed and very demanding, Shabbat is the focal point of the Jewish week. To properly keep Shabbat, one must have an understanding of the various laws and customs associated with the holy day. In this new course, use visual aids to illuminate intricate legal analyses and legal derivations from the Talmud, shedding light into the mystery of Shabbat and its source in Biblical passages.

This course focuses on the melachot as studied and examined by the Talmud. A unique biblical verse is explored for all the implications that derive from it. The lay out and structure of this course are significantly improved over the earlier courses.



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MyShiur Explorations in Talmud: Tractate Bava Metsia

Perhaps you've always wanted to study Talmud, but thought it was too complex and inaccessible to anyone lacking extensive training. Not anymore. The Talmud Learning Initiative from myShiur provides Talmud courses in an innovative and user-friendly format to allow you to take part in traditional Gemara learning.

Our spring course introduces you to a fascinating discussion about lost and mislaid property. You'll tackle challenging analyses about the classification of various kinds of finds, and explore the Talmud's directives regarding your civic duties and moral responsibilities.

Join us as we delve into the two-thousand-year-old Talmudic tradition, enjoying the rich interplay of law, logic, and ethics as you acquire study skills.


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MyShiur Explorations in Talmud: Tractate Pesachim

The first course of the 2008-2009 Semester will delve into the first chapter of Tractate Pesachim (folios 2a-5a).  It will provide a profound study of the Mitzvot connected the holiday that celebrates our birth as a nation. This section represents the Talmud's wonderful blend of Jewish legal analysis, the practice of Mitzvot and Jewish values.

The Mitzvot associated with preparing for the holiday of Passover are classic examples where the Biblical commandments are closely interwoven with later Rabbinic enactments. As you study, you will learn to analyze the sages' thought processes as they sought to strengthen Torah observance.  Lessons will focus on practical Halacha as you follow the Mitzvah from its Biblical roots to the Talmudic dialogue, to the verdicts of the codifiers.

Along the way, The Talmud's text meanders to touch on topics as varied as safe traveling, speaking with refinement, trusting strangers and performing Mitzvot with alacrity, among other subjects.

As you experience the Talmud's full depth, you will not only observe a 2000 year old intellectual debate, but will have the opportunity to add your own voice and apply your logic to the discussion. Regardless of your previous experience studying Talmud, classes are structured to make you feel at home with the topic.


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MyShiur Explorations in Talmud: Tractate Ketubot

Our winter course provides a look at how we balance personal religious idealism and family responsibilities. Along the way, we will consider topics as varied as Jewish marriage and divorce laws, Jewish burial practices, and the value of living in the Land of Israel.

You will learn to suspend judgment as you take an argument to its logical extreme and examine the implications. You will also learn how to trace a subject from its Biblical roots through the insightful analysis of the Talmudic sages, and you will see how the debates of the Talmud are resolved by the codifiers of Jewish law.

Tractate Ketuvot deals with obligations between spouses that are taken on through marriage. It investigates what these obligations require when the family unit is strained in various ways and in doing so, helps the marriage partners to consider their situation soberly and so rise to the challenge of meeting their difficulties.

The section of Tractate Ketuvot being examined in this ten-week course is found in folios 110b-111a. This section deals with a particular form of serious disagreement between the spouses: the refusal of one spouse to accept the choice of the other of a place of residence, in particular, if one of them wishes to reside in the land of Israel.


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