Friday, December 20, 2013

Rabbi Baruch Efrati on the Role of a Woman

ערב שבת קודש פר' שמות תשע"ד

Life In Israel: The Role of a Woman
Rabbi Baruch Efrati
A Dati Leumi (chardal, perhaps) rabbi, Rav Baruch Efrati, from Efrat, has said something that would get him skewered if he were a Haredi rabbi.

Rav Efrati was asked what is a woman's role in the world - to work? learn? raise children? business? feminisim? simple?

Rav Efrati's answer was that a woman's role in this world is to raise children and grandchildren to be wise, God fearing and God loving people who do good deeds and toil in Torah.. for that she should give up her life, along with davening and learning Torah on her level - halachos of women and issues of emuna.

After that, if she still has any time available, a woman could get a job to help bring parnassa home, develop hobbies, develop talents, etc. This is the order, and it should not be changed.
(source: Moreshet)

There are some people who need a job or a hobby or some other focus in order to better themselves and it can help them raise their kids. There are others who cannot have kids. There are some people who have a special talent in a specific field and develop that as their role, and everything people do can be incorporated into their personal lives and help them raise their kids properly.

Surely raising children has been, historically, the focus of the mother, and until recently it was her main role in the family. Even if one believes that to be true today, I don't think it necessarily must mean that a mother cannot look for fulfillment and expression and development of her talents. I'd say the opposite - doing all those things helps her function better in all her roles, including in her role as a mother.

Esser Agaroth (2¢):
I'm surprised he hasn't been skewered by the modern orthodox!

He said,...
"learning Torah on her level - halachos of women and issues of emuna"

I'm surprised that you think that he would be skewered if he were Haredi. Feminism has already infiltrated the Litvish community, as the the English speaking segment,...heavily so. The above statement does not seem in the least bit contradictory to those women teaching in seminaries, or giving shi'urim on the parashah or Tehillim on Shabbath.

But, that he did not include "Talmud," "intricacies of divorce proceedings" (as his own town's Rabbi Riskin teaches to women), nor "issues not directly related to women."

When this gains more publicity in English, we will probably see Rabbi Efrati hit with a great deal of criticism.

Collaboration with the hierarchical patriarchy which bears responsibility for all aggression in the oppression of women, and the silencing of the feminine voice...

...comes to mind.

No, these are are certainly not my words, nor in the least bit connected to my opinion.

I am just trying to take the wind out of "their" sails, by beating "them" to the punch.

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