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The Torah Learning Library of Yeshivat Chovevei Torah

Disabilities

Marriage for People with Down Syndrome

by Rabbi Dov Linzer
Posted on July 31, 2017

This is a shiur that Rabbi Linzer gave at the Young Israel of Sharon, MA, on July 26, 2017. Click on the following audio link to listen to the shiur and follow along with the sources below:     1. This couple with Down’s syndrome are celebrating 22 years of marriage– Metro UK They were criticized 22 years ago for wanting to get married.…

Who Teaches Torah to Your Nation Israel

by Rabbi Dov Linzer
Posted on April 4, 2017

This is a speech delivered by Rabbi Dov Linzer at the YCT Annual Tribute Dinner in March 2017 Barukh atah Hashem ha’melamed Torah li’amo Yisrael.  Blessed are You God who teaches Torah to your nation, Israel. This second birkhat ha’Torah follows אשר קדשנו במצותיו וצונו לעסוק בדברי תורה, the mitzvah-blessing for Torah study.…

Halakhic Status of a Deaf Person Who Cannot Speak Intelligibly: Part 2 – Poskim

by Rabbi Dov Linzer
Posted on September 6, 2016

In the previous lecture we saw that there were opinions of Tanaaim and Amoraim in the Talmud that would have allowed for a reassessment of a deaf person’s status, but that halakha rejected these opinions and rules categorically that a deaf person is not a person of legal standing.  …

Halakhic Status of a Deaf Person who Cannot Speak: Part 1 – Gemara and Rishonim

by Rabbi Dov Linzer
Posted on September 5, 2016

Introduction Traditionally, halakha has ruled that a deaf person who could not speak – a cheresh –  is not considered to be a bar da’at – a person of sufficient intelligence and understanding to have standing as an agent or responsible party in halakha.  …

Can a Person Who Is Blind Receive an Aliyah?: A Teshuva of Maseit Binyamin

by Rabbi Dov Linzer
Posted on September 5, 2016

Can a person who is blind receive an aliyah?  The question, from a conceptual and analytic point of view, is how to understand the post-Talmudic practice of having one person (the one receiving the aliyah) making a brakha on the Torah, and having another person (the shaliach tzibbur) doing the actual reading from the scroll.  …

The Mandate of Inclusion

by Rabbi Dov Linzer
Posted on August 3, 2016

Introduction [source 1] When it comes to our responsibilities towards those with disabilities, whether physical, educational developmental, or social-emotional – and indeed, any person or group that is being or can easily be marginalized – we first must problematize the use of the word “inclusion.”  …

Psychotherapy and Teshuvah: Parallel and Overlapping Systems for Change

by Dr. Michelle Friedman, MD
Posted on July 5, 2016

People come to mental health treatment because they are in pain. The presentations of their pain vary–they come because they suffer from symptoms that restrict or threaten their lives, because they struggle with inner conflicts that undermine and torment their integrity, or because if they don’t come, they will lose their job, their spouse, or their children.…

Shame and Illness: A Jewish Perspective

by Dr. Michelle Friedman, MD
Posted on July 5, 2016

I approach the topic of “Shame and Illness” from my twin perspectives as psychoanalyst and traditional Jew. This written piece contains material prepared for the forum held at New York Medical College on June 14, 2004 as well as issues raised that evening via case vignette presentation and audience participation.…

Labels Are for Grocery Items, Not People

by Rabbi Dov Linzer
Posted on April 14, 2016

Parashat Metzorah continues to detail the laws of tumah, impurity, that can occur to people and that would require them to maintain their distance from the Mishkan. The parasha opens with the case of the metzorah, the person afflicted with the skin disease of tzara’at, and how he is to become pure: “This shall be the law of the metzorah, the skin-diseased person, on the day of his becoming pure” (Vayikra 14:2).…

The Kedusha of Kohanim and Torah in the Bathroom

by Rabbi Dov Linzer
Posted on May 6, 2015

Parashat Emor opens with the prohibition against a Kohen coming into contact with a corpse, which would make him impure due to his special kedusha, his priestly sanctity. Such impurity would compromise his kedusha and keep him out of the Temple.…

Inclusion Doesn’t Happen by Accident

by Rabbi Dov Linzer
Posted on February 7, 2014

The lighting of the menorah opens our parasha: “Command the Children of Israel and they shall take to you pure olive oil, beaten for the light, to cause the lamp to burn tamid, constantly.” (Shemot 27:20) The placement of these verses is curious, as the more appropriate place would have been in last week’s parasha, together with the making of the menorah.…

‘Invisible Disability’ Kids Are Being Left Out

by Rabbi Dov Linzer
Posted on November 11, 2009

by Dov Linzer And Devorah Zlochower The Jewish Week, Op-Ed November 10, 2009 We are the parents of two children with what are often termed “invisible disabilities.” Invisible disabilities can include learning disabilities, autism spectrum disorders and Asperger’s syndrome, Tourette’s syndrome and other tic disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder and other anxiety disorders, mood disorders and behavioral disorders.…