Friday, September 3, 2010

means skin contract קירוב בשר

the claim that I am mistranslating קירוב בשר is very interesting but
is obviously mistaken. the language of Rambam and Shulchan Aruch is that
the father and daughter can sleep together בקירוב בשר however if she is
embarrassed standing nude then they must sleep in their clothing. It is
also the required state to be in for marital relations. It clearly does
not mean that they are wearing night clothes as opposed to regular
clothing. Similarly the discussion in Berachos regarding Shma - it is
clearing referring to a state of no clothing.

What is the age?26 Said R. Ada son of R. 'Azza in R. Assi's name: For a
girl, nine years and a day; for a boy, twelve years and a day. Others
state: for a girl, twelve years and a day; for a boy, thirteen years and
a day.27 And in both cases they must be, 'breasts fashioned and thine
hair was grown.'28 Rafram b. Papa said in R. Hisda's name: This was
taught only of one [a girl] who is not shy of standing nude before him
[her father]; but if she is shy of standing nude before him, it is
forbidden [for them to sleep in bodily contact]. What is the reason?
Temptation stirs29 her.3

Jastrow for קירוב בשר

nearness, contact. Keth. 48a טאר ח זו ק׳ בטר וכי her sh'er (Ex. XXI ,
10), this means the immediate contact of bodies, that he must not treat
her in the manner of the Persians &c Sabb. 13b he slept by my side
(under one cover) undressed; Y. Kidd. IV, 66c ויטן עמהן בקי בטר and he
may sleep with them &c.—
השגות הרמב"ן לספר המצוות מצות לא תעשה שנג

והנה לדעתי הברייתא השנויה בספרא אינה אלא לאיסור השכיבה בקירוב בשר כשיהיו
שניהם ערומים וקרא אסמכתא בעלמא משום חשש ביאה שהכל מודים בזה כדתנן
(קדושין פ ב) הגדילו זה ישן בכסותו וזה ישן בכסותו.

כתובות מח.

שארה - זו קרוב בשר, שלא ינהג בה מנהג פרסיים, שמשמשין מטותיהן בלבושיהן.
מסייע ליה לרב הונא, דאמר רב הונא: האומר אי אפשי אלא אני בבגדי והיא בבגדה
- יוציא ונותן כתובה.

R. Joseph learnt: Her flesh8 implies close bodily contact,9 viz, that he
must not treat her in the manner of the Persians who perform their
conjugal duties in their clothes. This provides support for [a ruling
of] R. Huna who laid down that a husband who said, 'I will not [perform
conjugal duties] unless she wears her clothes and I mine', must divorce
her and give her also her kethubah.

רמב"ם קריאת שמע ג

הלכה יט
עד אימתי הם קטנים לענין זה עד שיהא הזכר בן שתים עשרה שנה ויום אחד והנקבה
בת אחת עשרה שנה ויום אחד והוא שיהא תבניתם כתבנית גדולים שדים נכונו ושערך
צמח ואחר כך לא יקרא עד שתפסיק טלית ביניהן, אבל אם עדיין לא היו שדים
נכונו ושערך צמח קורא עמהן בקירוב בשר ואינו צריך הפסק עד שיהיה הזכר בן
י"ג שנה ויום אחד והנקבה בת שתים עשרה שנה ויום אחד.


  1. I am not saying that קירוב בשר cannot mean nudity. I am simply saying that it does not always mean nudity. Even in the Rambam you quote. He specifically states in the halakhot previous that it does not mean complete nudity, but rather they are covered from the loins down.

    If you really want to insist that the Sh"A there in Hoshen Misphat is saying that family members may sleep naked together. Then you must deal with, in a decisive manner, the meforshim in other places that interpret קירוב בשר as something else. Also the various halakhot brought previously of the need for clothing while sleeping for tzniut.

  2. In the subject it should be "contact," not "contract," I think.

  3. Another problem with your initial post is that you assume that family members sleeping nude together is the norm simply because the Sh"A addresses it.

    Even cooking meat in mai chalav or chalav maisa or chalav zachar or cooking blood and milk together is patur (exempt) and eating [milk cooked with blood]
    does not transgress the lav of basar b’chalav. RAMA Chalav zachar is not called milk at all and if it fell into a pot of meat it would not be assur.

    Here we are dealing with(amongst other things) cooking semen(according the Shakh 16 human semen) with meat. Would you consider that to have been the normal practice as well?

    Jewish law(at least as my Rabbanim have explained it) often deals with theoretical situations, which we do not expect to actually occur.

  4. Mekubal - you ought to take another look at that Schach. Chalav zachar refers to the product of male lactation, not semen!

    As to your assertion that Jewish law often deals with theoretical situations -- this is correct, but one can often deduce from context whether the situation described is "normal."

  5. Mekubal - you ought to take another look at that Schach. Chalav zachar refers to the product of male lactation, not semen!

    That is not the accepted answer for the Rabbinut semicha exams.

    Also it is not the way the Ben Ish Hai understands it.

  6. I don't know what the Rabbinut semicha exams has to do with this. The definition of Chalav Zachar is quite clear and well-established. Rashi in Chullin 113b (cited by the Schach!) states as follows:
    ולא בחלב זכר. שהיה לו חלב מועט מן הדדים כגון אם נשתנה והיו לו דדים

    I would be shocked if the Ben Ish Hai explains it differently, and I do not either believe that the Rabbinut adopts this as a normative interpretation of the halachah.

    And this is all besides the fact that (a) there already exists a regular term for semen (s"z), and (b) there would never be any reason to think that semen is classified as "milk."

  7. just went through bar ilan & dbs every reference is to milk from a male as contrastes with female milk

  8. I will fully admit that there are opinions that say it is simply male lactation. That the Mehaber is talking male animal lactation and the Rema human male lactation.

    So to bring this back from the rabbit trail it is headed down. The Shulhan Arukh rules on it. Does anyone think for one moment that we are talking a normal situation?


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