Thursday, January 13, 2022

Sorry, Rabbi Riskin and Rabbi Greenberg – Homosexual relations are not permitted by the Torah

In an interview (in Hebrew) that was sharply criticized even by some rabbis who generally identify with him, Rabbi Shlomo Riskin opined that the Biblical prohibition on homosexual relations only applies to one who voluntarily chooses homosexuality, but that one who considers himself wired as homosexual and feels that he can only experience intimacy with another man is exempt from the prohibition. Rabbi Riskin applied the Talmudic axiom of “ones Rachmana patreh” — that the Torah does not hold one accountable for an involuntary act — as his source for this whopper of a “heter” (halachic leniency).

Hence, Rabbi Riskin and others who invoked “ones Rachmana patreh” to permit homosexual relations are wholly in error and are contradicted by the Talmud and all halachic codes. This important point needs to be made.

Furthermore, how could Rabbi Riskin and others sincerely believe that this gaping-hole exception exists, in light of the fact that it is totally absent from the Talmud, all subsequent halachic codes and all writings of rabbinic commentators? Such a massive exception would surely have appeared in large print, so to say, in the canonical sources of Jewish Law.

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