Abortion in Judaism by Daniel Schiff

By Daniel Schiff

Abortion in Judaism offers a whole Jewish felony background of abortion from the earliest correct biblical references during the finish of the 20 th century. For the 1st time, nearly each Jewish textual content appropriate to the abortion factor is explored intimately. those texts are investigated in ancient series, thereby elucidating the advance inherent in the Jewish method of abortion. The paintings considers the insights that this thematic background offers into Jewish moral ideas, in addition to into the position of halakhah inside of Judaism.

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It is worth noting that while Urbach narrows his focus to the “field of Halakha,” there is Talmudic evidence that at least one Tanna did espouse the contrary position: “Rabbi Eleazar holds the same view as Rabbi Yochanan . . ” Nevertheless,      The Latin counterpart, which was a part of Roman law, was pars viscerum matris. See sources in E. Westermarck, The Origin and Development of the Moral Ideas, New York, Macmillan Company, volume , , p. , nn.  and . Ubar yerekh imo does not appear in Tannaìitic sources, and is usually an anonymous formula of the Talmud.

Ibid.  Abortion in Judaism characterized Philo’s position in this area. In fact, if anything, Philo’s apparent equivocation is emblematic of the same complex, blended outlook on the status of the fetus that was discerned in the Septuagint’s effective compromise between the Academy’s view of fetal independence and the Stoic view of dependence. ” It seems correct, then, to assert that Philo’s reference to the fetus as being part of its mother is used more as a physical evaluation, imparting the sense of an intertwined destiny of mother and offspring, rather than as a legal description.

Though these issues of timing attest to the gravity with which the rabbis might have beheld an act of feticide at a given point during pregnancy, they cannot, of course, be said specifically to have permitted or forbidden feticide. Elsewhere, however, the rabbis were more direct. Within the halakhic language of the Mishnah, the Tannaìim provide two relevant sources.  Although the Mishnah’s use of the term chaiyav seems to denote an acknowledgment that the fetus is indeed to be considered a living entity, the Tannaìim, consistent with previous Jewish positions, regard it as a living entity whose claim to life is secondary to that of its mother, at least when her life is at stake.

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