[Avodah] De-Chokifying Arayos (including MZ)

Meir Shinnar via Avodah avodah at lists.aishdas.org
Thu Jul 23 07:12:32 PDT 2015

Again, one has to be very careful. There are four different sources here.

1)Shmona Prakim -- chapter 4 -- where reason for laws on arayot is to
limit Sexuality -- in the sense of a golden mean.

2)Shmona Prakim -- chapter 6 -- where desire for things forbidden only
by halakhah is endorsed as not a spiritual flaw

3) MN 3:35, where he describes category 14 of mitzvot -- relating to
arayot -- in terms similar to source 1, as the rambam notes and meforshim
point out.

4) MN 3:49 -- where purpose of hilchot arayot is to instill disgust --
not merely control and limit

Therefore, RZL is correct that MN 3:35 refers to Spm but chapter 4. One
can reconcile sources 1,2 and 3, or 1,3 and 4 -- but difficult to recocile
all 4.

I would ad that source 2 is problematic, in that it's view of halakhah
as an almost arbitrary set of limitations, seems quite different than
the rambam's normal presentation of the purpose of Halacha.

Meir Shinnar

More information about the Avodah mailing list