A report on Halakha and Joseph Karo

A full set of the Babylonian Talmud
Artistic conception of Karo's appearance. Painting of 19th century
Sefer Torah at Glockengasse Synagogue (museum exhibits), Cologne
Synagogue of Maran, R. Joseph Karo, in Safed
Hasidim walk to the synagogue, Rehovot, Israel.
Karo's grave in Safed
A mixed-gender, egalitarian Conservative service at Robinson's Arch, Western Wall
Title page of Karo's Shulchan Aruch
Set of Mishneh Torah
Shulchan Aruch HaRav
Peninei Halakha Set
An illuminated manuscript of Arba'ah Turim from 1435

Beit Yosef (בית יוסף), a commentary on Arba'ah Turim, the current work of Jewish law in his days. In this commentary Karo shows an astounding mastery over the Talmud and the legalistic literature of the Middle Ages. He felt called upon to systematize the laws and customs of Judaism in face of the disintegration caused by the Spanish expulsion.

- Joseph Karo

The Beit Yosef and the Shulchan Aruch of rabbi Yosef Karo (1488–1575). The Beit Yosef is a huge commentary on the Tur in which rabbi Karo traces the development of each law from the Talmud through later rabbinical literature (examining 32 authorities, beginning with the Talmud and ending with the works of rabbi Israel Isserlein). The Shulchan Aruch (literally "set table") is, in turn, a condensation of the Beit Yosef – stating each ruling simply; this work follows the chapter divisions of the Tur. The Shulchan Aruch, together with its related commentaries, is considered by many to be the most authoritative compilation of halakha since the Talmud. In writing the Shulchan Aruch, rabbi Karo based his rulings on three authorities – Maimonides, Asher ben Jehiel (Rosh), and Isaac Alfasi (Rif); he considered the Mordechai in inconclusive cases. Sephardic Jews, generally, refer to the Shulchan Aruch as the basis for their daily practice.

- Halakha
A full set of the Babylonian Talmud

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Shulchan Aruch

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Most widely consulted of the various legal codes in Judaism.

Most widely consulted of the various legal codes in Judaism.

It was authored in Safed (today in Israel) by Joseph Karo in 1563 and published in Venice two years later.

Together with its commentaries, it is the most widely accepted compilation of Jewish law ever written.

An illuminated manuscript of Arba'ah Turim from 1435.

Arba'ah Turim

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An illuminated manuscript of Arba'ah Turim from 1435.
A 1565 edition of Even Ha'ezer, the third part of Arba'ah Turim

Arba'ah Turim (אַרְבָּעָה טוּרִים), often called simply the Tur, is an important Halakhic code composed by Yaakov ben Asher (Cologne, 1270 – Toledo, Spain c. 1340, also referred to as Ba'al Ha-Turim).

The best-known commentary on the Arba'ah Turim is the Beit Yosef by rabbi Joseph ben Ephraim Karo: this goes beyond the normal functions of a commentary, in that it attempts to review all the relevant authorities and come to a final decision on every point, so as to constitute a comprehensive resource on Jewish law.

The first page of the Babylonian Talmud, Tractate Berachot, folio 2a. The center column contains the Talmud text, beginning with a section of Mishnah. The Gemara begins 14 lines down with the abbreviation גמ (gimmel-mem) in larger type. Mishnah and Gemara sections alternate throughout the Talmud. The blocks of text on either side are the Rashi and Tosafot commentaries, printed in Rashi script. Other notes and cross references are in the margins.

Talmud

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The first page of the Babylonian Talmud, Tractate Berachot, folio 2a. The center column contains the Talmud text, beginning with a section of Mishnah. The Gemara begins 14 lines down with the abbreviation גמ (gimmel-mem) in larger type. Mishnah and Gemara sections alternate throughout the Talmud. The blocks of text on either side are the Rashi and Tosafot commentaries, printed in Rashi script. Other notes and cross references are in the margins.
An early printing of the Talmud (Ta'anit 9b); with commentary by Rashi
A page of a medieval Jerusalem Talmud manuscript, from the Cairo Geniza
A full set of the Babylonian Talmud
Talmudic saying on the Divine Presence
Koren Talmud Bavli
The Talmud on display in the Jewish Museum of Switzerland brings together parts from the first two Talmud prints by Daniel Bomberg and Ambrosius Froben.
Jewish Scene I
Jewish Scene II
A Controversy Whatsoever on Talmud<ref>See Schleicher's paintings at MutualArt.</ref>
At the Rabbi's
Jews studying Talmud, París, c. 1880–1905
Samuel Hirszenberg, Talmudic School, c. 1895–1908
Ephraim Moses Lilien, The Talmud Students, engraving, 1915
Maurycy Trębacz, The Dispute, c. 1920–1940
Solomon's Haggadoth, bronze relief from the Knesset Menorah, Jerusalem, by Benno Elkan, 1956
Hilel's Teachings, bronze relief from the Knesset Menorah
Jewish Mysticism: Jochanan ben Sakkai, bronze relief from the Knesset Menorah
Yemenite Jews studying Torah in Sana&#039;a
Oz veHadar edition of the first page of the Babylonian Talmud, with elements numbered in a spiraling rainbowː (1) Joshua Boaz ben Simon Baruch's Mesorat haShas, (2) Joel Sirkis's Hagahot (3) Akiva Eiger's Gilyon haShas, (4) Completion of Solomon ben Isaac's commentary from the Soncino printing, (5) Nissim ben Jacob's commentary, (6) Hananel ben Hushiel's commentary, (7) a survey of the verses quoted, (8) Joshua Boaz ben Simon Baruch's Ein Mishpat/Ner Mitzvah, (9) the folio and page numbers, (10) the tractate title, (11) the chapter number, (12), the chapter heading, (13), Solomon ben Isaac's commentary, (14) the Tosafot, (15) the Mishnah, (16) the Gemara, (17) an editorial footnote.

The Talmud (Tálmūḏ) is the central text of Rabbinic Judaism and the primary source of Jewish religious law (halakha) and Jewish theology.

Joseph Caro, Kelale ha-Gemara (commentary on Halichot Olam)

Maimonides (artist's conceptual drawing)

Mishneh Torah

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Maimonides (artist's conceptual drawing)
A page of a medieval Jerusalem Talmud manuscript, from the Cairo Geniza
Torah scroll
The single scroll of the arm-tefillin
A sukkah booth
A Ketubah in Hebrew, a Jewish marriage-contract outlining the duties of the husband.
Herod's Temple, as imagined in the Holyland Model of Jerusalem. It is currently situated adjacent to the Shrine of the Book exhibit at the Israel Museum, Jerusalem.
The Sanhedrin, from an 1883 encyclopedia
Title page from Sefer Shaarei Teshuvah (1960 pocket edition) by Yonah Gerondi (d.1263), first published in 1505.
Title page of Karo's Shulchan Aruch
Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, known as "the Lubavitcher Rebbe", studied the Mishneh Torah daily and encouraged other Jews to follow along with him in an annual study cycle.

The Mishneh Torah (מִשְׁנֵה תּוֹרָה), also known as Sefer Yad ha-Hazaka (ספר יד החזקה), is a code of Rabbinic Jewish religious law (halakha) authored by Maimonides (Rabbi Moshe ben Maimon/Rambam).

g., Yosef Karo's Kesef Mishné) set out to find sources for Maimonides' decisions, and to resolve any disputes between him and the Raavad.

Imaginary 18th-century depiction of Maimonides

Maimonides

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Medieval Sephardic Jewish philosopher who became one of the most prolific and influential Torah scholars of the Middle Ages.

Medieval Sephardic Jewish philosopher who became one of the most prolific and influential Torah scholars of the Middle Ages.

Imaginary 18th-century depiction of Maimonides
The dominion of the Almohad Caliphate at its greatest extent, c. 1200
Maimonides' house in Fez, Morocco
Monument in Córdoba
Bas relief of Maimonides in the United States House of Representatives.
The Tomb of Maimonides in Tiberias
Depiction of Maimonides teaching students about the 'measure of man' in an illuminated manuscript.
The title page of The Guide for the Perplexed
Plaque of Maimonides at Rambam Medical Center, Haifa
Manuscript page by Maimonides. Judeo-Arabic language in Hebrew letters.
The original manuscript of the Commentary on the Mishnah, handwritten by Musa bin Maymun in Judeo-Arabic in a Rashi script.

During his lifetime, most Jews greeted Maimonides' writings on Jewish law and ethics with acclaim and gratitude, even as far away as Iraq and Yemen.

Joseph Karo later praised Maimonides, writing of him, "Maimonides is the greatest of the decisors [of Jewish law], and all communities of the Land of Israel and of Arabia and of the Maghreb base their practices after him, and have taken him upon themselves as their rabbi."

Orach Chayim book of 1817/1818 published from the collection of the "Mezhybizh" State Reserve (Ukraine)

Orach Chayim

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Orach Chayim book of 1817/1818 published from the collection of the "Mezhybizh" State Reserve (Ukraine)

Orach Chayim, modern Hebrew: Orech Chayim (אורח חיים; manner/way of life) is a section of Rabbi Jacob ben Asher's compilation of Halakha (Jewish law), Arba'ah Turim.

Rabbi Yosef Karo modeled the framework of the Shulkhan Arukh (שולחן ערוך), his own compilation of practical Jewish law, after the Arba'ah Turim. Many later commentators used this framework, as well.

Moses Isserles (Artist's rendering)

Moses Isserles

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Eminent Polish Ashkenazic rabbi, talmudist, and posek (expert in Jewish law).

Eminent Polish Ashkenazic rabbi, talmudist, and posek (expert in Jewish law).

Moses Isserles (Artist's rendering)
The Rema's tombstone at the Remuh Cemetery, Kraków

Among his fellow pupils were his relative Solomon Luria (Maharshal)—later a major disputant of many of Isserles' halachic rulings, and Chayyim b. Bezalel, an older brother of the Maharal.

He became a world-renowned scholar and was approached by many other well-known rabbis, including Yosef Karo, for Halachic decisions.