Category Archives: Marc B. Shapiro

God, Torah & The Commandments

Historian Marc B. Shapiro writes: R. Kook argued that there is good reason to observe mitzvot even if one does not have a traditional view of the Torah’s authorship. On the one hand, there is nothing surprising in this. After … Continue reading

Posted in Marc B. Shapiro, R. Kook, Torah | Comments Off

The Torah’s Position On Voyeurism

Marc B. Shapiro writes: “I am aware of only two times that a woman (other than one’s wife) can be seen without her clothes. One is the sotah, when her top is removed.[18] R. Judah states that if her breasts … Continue reading

Posted in Marc B. Shapiro, Sex, Torah | Comments Off

Rabbinic Perspective On Dealing With Terrorism

Marc B. Shapiro writes: While I have enormous admiration for R. Bleich’s erudition, not all of his conclusions are widely shared. For example, in a 9/11-type scenario R. Bleich argues that it is forbidden to shoot down an airplane which … Continue reading

Posted in Marc B. Shapiro, Terror | Comments Off

What’s The Torah’s Position On Intentionally Injecting Somebody With HIV?

Marc B. Shapiro writes: Finally, I want to discuss a recent article by Rabbi Shalom C. Spira and Dr. Mark A. Wainberg that appeared in Hakirah entitled “Criminalization of HIV Transmission.”[30] They begin by quoting R. Zvi Spitz who argues … Continue reading

Posted in AIDS, Marc B. Shapiro | Comments Off

Spinoza The Righteous

Marc B. Shapiro writes: R. Hirschensohn discusses Spinoza’s pantheism and states that he was not guilty of two of the big heresies: (1) regarding God as a corporeal being, or (2) avodah zarah. He was simply in error, and that … Continue reading

Posted in Marc B. Shapiro | Comments Off

Burning Mordecai Kaplan’s Siddur In 1945

Historian Marc B. Shapiro writes: This burning of a Jewish book, coming so soon after the end of the Holocaust and so much at odds with the American tradition of freedom of expression, horrified both Jews and non-Jews. The fact … Continue reading

Posted in Marc B. Shapiro | Comments Off

Muslims & Orthodox Judaism

Marc B. Shapiro: “As far as I know there are no significant relations between the Modern Orthodox and Muslims. The Muslim community in the United States has never been forthcoming as it should be in condemning Hamas, Hizballah, and their … Continue reading

Posted in Islam, Marc B. Shapiro, Modern Orthodox | Comments Off

Sex With Non-Jewish Women Vs Sex With Jewish Prostitutes

An easy way to see a difference between the Jewish and Christian approaches to sex is to contrast the Jewish state of Israel with Christian countries such as the United States when it comes to prostitution. Using a prostitute is … Continue reading

Posted in Marc B. Shapiro, Prostitution, Sex | Comments Off

How Big Of A Sin Is It For A Jewish Man To Be With A Non-Jewish Woman?

Marc B. Shapiro writes: The censorship of this responsum can only have one purpose, namely, so that people don’t learn about how some members of R. Stern’s community (the Hungarian hasidic world) are having sexual relations with non-Jewish women. What … Continue reading

Posted in Marc B. Shapiro, Sex | 2 Comments

Jewish Honor Killings

Marc B. Shapiro writes: …we indeed have some examples in Jewish history of “honor killings”. For example, in 1311 a Jewish woman who married a Christian and became pregnant was killed by her brothers.[27] In 1557 an Italian Jew killed … Continue reading

Posted in Jews, Marc B. Shapiro | Leave a comment