Rav Chaim Navon

Chaim Navon is the rav of Kehilat Shimshoni (Modi’in). He teaches Gemara and Jewish thought in Midreshet Lindenbaum and the Herzog College (Yeshivat Har Etzion). He writes a weekly column for Mekor Rishon and has written six books on Jewish topics and two novels. His books include Caught in the Thicket: An Introduction to the Thought of Rav Soloveitchik, Genesis and Jewish Thought (English); A Bridge for Jacob’s Daughters: The Status of Women in Jewish Law; Between Past and Future; and Eve Did Not Eat an Apple: 101 Common Mistakes in Judaism. Rav Navon studied at Yeshivat Har Etzion from 1992 to 2004 and received his rabbinic ordination from the Chief Rabbinate of Israel and Rabbi Aharon Lichtenstein. He received a master’s degree in Jewish thought from the Hebrew University.

Teacher Title Abstract Course
Rav Chaim Navon Shiur #06: Public Torah Reading by Women The Gemara cites a beraita that deals with the issue of women being called to read from the Torah: Our Rabbis taught: “All are qualified to be among the seven [who read], even a minor and a woman, but the Sages said that a woman should not read in the Torah out of respect for the congregation [kevod ha-tzibbur].” (Megilla 23a) Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Shiur #07: The Mechitza Many will be surprised to hear that the obligation to erect a mechitza in the synagogue is not discussed in the Gemara or any other early source. However, Jewish custom from time immemorial dictates that a mechitza be erected in the synagogue to separate between men and women. Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Shiur #08: The Obligation of Women to Recite Grace after Meals The Mishna in tractate Berakhot (20a-20b) establishes that women are obligated to recite the Grace after Meals (Birkat Ha-mazon). The Gemara asks: Surely, this is obvious; why would we have thought that women are exempt from this obligation? Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Shiur 9: Women and Zimmun The Gemara in Berakhot (45a-45b) deals explicitly with the issue of counting women towards Zimmun, the invitation to participate in the joint recitation of Birkat Ha-mazon (Grace after Meals). Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Shiur 10: Lighting Shabbat Candles This shiur is exceptional in the framework of this series, as the mitzva of lighting Shabbat candles does not pertain specifically to women, but rather to men and women equally. Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Shiur 11: Kiddush: a Woman’s Obligation The Gemara in Pesachim (106a) derives the mitzva of reciting Kiddush on Friday night and Shabbat morning from the verse: “Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy” (Shemot 20:8). Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Shiur 12: Havdala for Women The Gemara in Shevu’ot (18b) cites the verse, “And that you may differentiate between holy and unholy” (Vayikra 10:10), as a source for the mitzva of Havdala. Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Shiur 13: Women And the Mitzva of Procreation Let us open our discussion of the mitzva of procreation (peru u-rvu) with a review of the parameters of the mitzva. When does one fulfill the mitzva of procreation? Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Shiur 14: Betrothal and Marriage A Jewish wedding is comprised of two stages: The first stage, betrothal, is called kiddushin or eirusin; the second stage, marriage, is called nissu'in or chuppa. Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Shiur 15: The “Acquisition” Effected Through Kiddushin The first mishna in Kiddushin opens with the words: “A woman is acquired [nikneit] in three ways.” In this shiur I wish to deal with the meaning of the term “acquired” in the context of kiddushin. Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Shiur 16: The Ketuba and its Obligations The ketuba, or marriage contract, is a document that includes the various obligations incumbent on the husband and wife. In this shiur we shall deal with these obligations, including those that are not explicitly mentioned in the ketuba, but only alluded to therein. Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Shiur 17: The Division of Property Following Divorce As we saw in the shiur dealing with the obligations imposed by the ketuba, the Torah and Chazal established a system of financial obligations between the husband and wife (excellently summarized by the Rambam, Hilkhot Ishut 12:1-3). Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Shiur 18: Head Covering The mishna (Ketubot 72a) distinguishes between two grounds for divorce, both connected to inappropriate behavior on the part of the woman: violation of dat Moshe (the law of Moshe) and violation of dat Yehudit (Jewish practice). Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Women in the Mitzva of Chinukh The mitzva of chinukh (education) involves training a child in the performance of the mitzvot, so that the child will be accustomed to them when the child grows up. Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Shiur #20: The Mitzva of Yibbum and the Mitzva of Chalitza If a married man dies without children, his brother is obligated by Torah law to marry the deceased's widow (yibbum) or else to participate in a ceremony that involves the widow's removal of a special sandal from the brother's foot, thereby freeing the woman to remarry (chalitza). Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Shiur 22: Women And Shofar Blowing We saw in the opening shiur that the Tanna’im disagree about whether or not women are permitted to fulfill time-bound positive commandments. On this point, the law was decided in accordance with the opinion of R. Yose that there is no prohibition. Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Shiur 23: Women And Sukka The Mishna in Sukka (28a) explicitly exempts women from the obligation to sit in a sukka. The Gemara there notes that this principle is a “halakha le-Moshe mi-Sinai,” a law transmitted by God to Moshe orally at Sinai as an addendum to the written Torah. Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Shiur 24: Women And the Mitzva of Eating on Erev Yom Kippur The Gemara establishes that one who eats on Erev Yom Kippur (and fasts the next day) is credited as if he had fasted two consecutive days. This is undoubtedly a strange law. Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Shiur 25: Women And Chanuka Candles The mitzva of lighting Chanuka candles is discussed in a famous Talmudic passage: Our Rabbis taught: The mitzva of Chanuka [requires] one light for a man and his household; the scrupulous [kindle] a light for each member [of the household]... Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Shiur 26: Women and the Pesach Seder The Talmud states that women are obligated to eat matza at the Pesach seder, even though it is a time-bound positive commandment, from which women are generally exempt: . Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Shiur 27: Women and Megilla Reading The Mishna in Megilla discusses the issue of who is fit to read the megilla. Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Intro to the Guide of the Perplexed
Rav Chaim Navon Women and Mitzvot
Rav Chaim Navon Theological Issues in Sefer BeReishit
Rav Chaim Navon Philosophy of Halakha