[Avodah] De-Chokifying Arayos (including MZ)

Meir Shinnar via Avodah avodah at lists.aishdas.org
Tue Jul 21 17:48:20 PDT 2015

I think one has to be careful, as I find it difficult to reconcile
the position of the MN and that of the SP, and think they represent
two distinct aspects (?stages) in the rambam

Remember, the SP tries to reconcile two positions
I) in hazal -- that continued desire for some forbidden actions is
compatible with a high spiritual state -- issue is control of the desire
-- NOT its presence
II) Aristotelian ethics -- a high spiritual state does not desire
for forbidden -- the desire is a sign of a flaw. SP resolves by
differentiating between mefursamot -- whose desire is problematic and a
flaw -- and religious law -- where desire is not a flaw -- and applies
this specifically to arayot -- as examples in Talmud of Rabbanit with
desire are of arayot,

It is difficult for me to reconcile this position with the MN -- if our
proper relationship to even permitted sexuality is " to instil disgust"
-- how can desire still remaining not be a flaw????

In the MN, there is a conceptual framework to
distinguish homosexuality and bestiality from regular sexuality -- but
they are ALL viewed as things that should repulse us -- just some more
than others. It is by no means clear that this framework and distinction
can be read into the SP, and would think that One would need good evidence
.hat it does not include ALL arayot...

Meir Shinnar

> It's an Aristotelian attitude which the Rambam held is the Torah  
> attitude. One source would be the account of the Amorah who felt duress  
> during the marital process (you can find this in the Kitzur Shulchan  
> Aruch). The Ramban strongly disagreed with the Rambam when it comes to a  
> marital setting. I was taught we hold like the Ramban.

> Zvi Lampel

> On 7/20/2015 10:10 PM, Lisa Liel wrote:
>> So isn't that problematic?  The idea that sex is something dirty and  
>> should be avoided except when necessary sounds like something out of  
>> Christianity.  I understand that MN isn't a code of law, but what  
>> possible source can the Rambam have for this attitude?

>> On 7/20/2015 4:34 PM, H Lampel via Avodah wrote:
>>> Here is Pines' translation of the pertinent passage:
>>>     MN 3:49

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