by Rabbi Uri C. Cohen

[Version 1-December 18, 2002]

Jewish educators today need to be aware of Torah responses to homosexuality. We may be called upon to defend the Torah's approach in class, or -- more significantly -- we may be approached for counseling by a student involved in a personal struggle. Fortunately, much has been written on the subject in recent years. In this bibliography of over sixty articles, about half have appeared only since 2000. Conveniently, most of the articles are available on the web. (Several appear at the website of JONAH, which stands for Jews Offering New Alternatives to Homosexuality.) Please take the opportunity to read them and become informed.

While Orthodoxy cannot permit homosexual sex, there is a range of opinion today on several issues regarding a homosexual person. Is the halakhic status of a practicing homosexual a mumar lehakh'is (see below, Rabbis Tendler and Lubitch), an oness (Rabbis Lamm and Bleich), or a mumar letei'avon (Rabbis Freundel and Finkelman)? Is the very orientation prohibited (Rabbi Spero), or only acting on it (most writers)? Are people with homosexual desires still obligated in heterosexual marriage and procreation (Rabbis Sherlo and Unterman), or are they exempt (Rabbi Rapoport)? Should we even recognize the existence of a homosexual identity (Rabbis A. Feldman and Spero), or not (Rabbis Beasley and Freundel)?

There is even a debate regarding how we should relate to the prohibition. Does the Torah's use of the word "to'evah" mean it evokes instinctive repugnance (Rabbis Lamm and Goldberg), or not (Rabbis Hecht, Boteach, and Sherlo)? Should we consider homosexual sex to be a prohibition comparable to eating non-kosher food, for which the desire is normal and just acting on it is forbidden (Drs. Wolowelsky and Weinstein, and Rabbi Boteach), or should we say that homosexual sex is especially immoral (Rabbis Adlerstein, Schochet, and Tendler)? A teacher might want to have a class read, as a point/counterpoint, the opposing articles written in 2000 by Rabbis Boteach and Adlerstein, and ask the class to debate the question. (Actually, as Rabbi Hecht points out, the rishonim argue about whether all the arayot are a chok or mishpat. See also Rabbi Elchanan Samet, "Forbidden Unions (Arayot) -- Vayikra 18," which is available at

I've chosen articles that focus on Torah responses to homosexuality and homosexuals, and omitted those articles that focus on the social issues, including responses to the movie Trembling Before God and how the Orthodox community should respond to the perceived threat from "the gay lobby." I disqualified as non-Orthodox any articles that claim the prohibition no longer applies. By the same token, I included articles from non-Orthodox but traditional people who defend the Torah's prohibition (and I indicated the author's affiliation). I added a bracketed comment to some articles, and a star on those I thought were the most important or useful. A glossary of Hebrew terms appears at the end of the bibliography.

Please email me if you find other articles on the subject.

Uri Cohen
ATID Fellow



*Adlerstein, Rabbi Yitzchok. "Lieberman, Schlessinger, and Boteach." Cross-Currents, 2:4 (Sept. 2000). Available at An abbreviated form of this article (minus a quote from Rav Kook) appeared as "Dawn of the Orthodox Celebs," Jewish World Review, Sept. 12, 2000. Available at
[Rejects Rabbi Boteach's distinction between religious and moral laws, and says that the word "to'evah" indicates there's "something particularly nasty about" homosexual sex.]

*Anonymous. "A Torah Orientation: A Letter By A Torah-Committed Homosexual." The Jerusalem Letter, 3:1 (June 22, 2000). Available at,2000/orientation.htm
[A letter of chizzuk and practical tips to struggle with one's homosexuality, from one who's been there.]

Atzat Nefesh. "Homosexual Tendencies: Dear Frum and Gay…" Available at
[A letter of chizzuk from Jerusalem's Atzat Nefesh Crisis Center & Hotline. The rest of the site, in Hebrew, has information and encouragement for those "experiencing troubles with various addictions, homosexuality, sexual obsessions and matrimonial problems."]

Aviner, Rabbi Shlomo. "To'evah Chad Minit." Be'ahava Uve'emuna, Vayikra 5762 (March 12, 2002). Available at
It also appeared in the English edition of Be'ahava Uve'emuna, entitled "The Homosexual Abomination," translated by Raphael Blumberg.

*Beasley, Rabbi Joel. "Why Neither Homosexuality nor Heterosexuality Exist in Judaism." The Jewish Spectator, Winter 1998, pp. 26-29. Available at
[The Torah identifies people not by their carnal instincts but by their obligations to God. "God does not ask people to do anything beyond their capacity. He does at times ask them to go against their desires..." Self-proclaimed homosexuals "have not had it easy in a society that does not know how to distinguish between condemning actions and condemning people."]

Bleich, Rabbi J. David. "AIDS: A Jewish Perspective." Tradition, 26:3 (Spring 1992), pp. 49-80. He deals with homosexuality on pp. 49-54.

Bleich, Rabbi J. David. "Homosexuality." In his Judaism and Healing: Halakhic Perspectives (New York: Ktav, 1981), pp. 69-73.

*Boteach, Rabbi Shmuel. "Reinterpreting Homosexuality as Human Sexuality." Oxford-Judaism Mailing List, June 29, 1993. Available at Reprinted as "Does Homosexuality Differ from Heterosexuality?" in his Moses of Oxford (London: Andre Deutsch, 1994), vol. 1, pp. 24-44.
[This long article is the most sympathetic towards homosexuals, of all the Orthodox approaches. "If a homosexual comes for advice it is best to concentrate, sympathetically, on the fact that a human being may be in distress." Homosexual sex isn't deviant or against nature. It's the Divine prohibition that makes it morally objectionable. "Homosexuality is a sin like any other sin: because someone eats a ham and mayo sandwich does not in any way impair their ability to participate fully in Jewish life." Rabbi Boteach's approach is the most liberal and controversial of those in this bibliography; see next entry.]

*Boteach, Rabbi Shmuley. "Dr. Laura Misguided on Homosexuality." The Jewish Week (New York), May 26, 2000. Available at Reprinted in The Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles, June 16, 2000. Available at
[In disagreeing with Dr. Laura's opinion that homosexuality is deviant, he describes homosexual sex as a "religious law" and not a "moral law." Like Shabbat and Kashrut, homosexual sex is prohibited not because it violates any ethical norms but because there's a biblical injunction. Rabbis Adlerstein, Schochet and Tendler object strongly to this article.]

Boteach, Rabbi Shmuley. "Response to Rabbi Moshe Tendler." Oxford-Judaism Mailing List, June 6, 2000. Available at

Bulka, Rabbi Reuven P. One Man, One Woman, One Lifetime: An Argument for Moral Tradition. Lafayette, Louisiana: Huntington House, 1995.

*Dresner, Rabbi Samuel H. "Homosexuality and the Order of Creation." Judaism, 40:3 (Summer 1991), pp. 309-321. Reprinted in Kristen E. Kvam, et al, eds. Eve & Adam: Jewish, Christian and Muslim Readings on Genesis and Gender (Indiana University Press, 1999). (His affiliation is Conservative.)
[A close reading of parshiot Bereishit and Noach paints a picture of what God expects of humans: heterosexuality within the marital bond. Homosexuality violates this natural law.]

Eidensohn, Rabbi David. "Homosexuality and Sexual Perversion" (August 27, 2002). This is Segment Five of his online book, Jewish Gender, Marriage and Sexuality. Available at (His website is called : The Torah Approach on Sexual Matters.)

Eidensohn, Rabbi David. "The Orthodox Homosexual -- A Halacha Perspective." Available at

Eidensohn, Rabbi David. "Questions and Answers with Rabbi David Eidensohn." Available at

Feinstein, Rabbi Moshe. "Teshuvah leNikhshal beMishkav Zakhur." In his Iggerot Moshe, Orach Chayim vol. 4, #115 (1 Adar I, 5736).
[In this 1976 responsum to someone trying to do teshuvah for homosexual sex, Rav Moshe zatzal takes the strictest approach of those in this bibliography. The very desire for homosexuality is so unnatural, it must be lehakh'is -- a rebellion against God.]

*Feldman, Rabbi Aharon. "A Letter to a Homosexual Baal Teshuva." The Jerusalem Letter, 1:5 (March 24, 1998). Available at,1998/homow.htm
This letter, with a slight change, appeared in Jewish Action, 58:3 (Spring 1998), pp. 69-70. Some clarifications appear in Rabbi Aharon Feldman, "Letters from Homosexual Friends," The Jerusalem Letter, 3:1 (June 22, 2000). Available at,2000/friends.htm
[Not only is this letter of chizzuk sympathetic to the Orthodox homosexual, but it carries some weight since the author has since become the rosh yeshivah of Ner Yisrael. "Judaism looks negatively at homosexual activity, but not at the homosexual nature... A Jewish homosexual has to make a commitment to embark on a course where he will ultimately rid himself of homosexual activity. It is not necessary that he change his sexual orientation (if this is at all possible), but that he cease this activity." A Jewish homosexual can live as a celibate "if he decides that the Jewish people is his 'wife and children.' It is possible to do this if he throws his every spare moment into devotion to the welfare of his people." He concludes: "In your struggle towards reaching the goals of your life, remember that you are not unique: all of humanity is engaged in the same struggle. You were just given a different set of circumstances within which to operate."]

Feldman, Rabbi David M. "Homosexuality and the Halacha." Sh'ma, May 19, 1972. (His affiliation is Conservative.)

Feldman, Rabbi David M. "Homosexuality and Jewish Law." Judaism, Fall 1983, pp. 426-429.

Feldman, Rabbi David M. "Interview with Rabbi David Feldman: Homosexuality." Leora Tanenbaum, interviewer. In Carol Diament, ed. Jewish Marital Status (Northvale, NJ: Jason Aronson, 1989), pp. 276-280.

Finkelman, Rabbi Eliezer. "Homosexuality in Jewish Law." Journal of the Society of Rabbis in Academia, 1:1-2 (June 1991), pp. 37-49.
[Includes analysis of the opinions of Rabbis Spero, Lamm, Freundel, and Feinstein. This article is hard to find.]

Freudenthal, Gad, ed. AIDS in Jewish Thought and Law (Hoboken: Ktav, 1998).
[Several of the articles touch on the subject of Jewish attitudes to homosexuality. See the book's index for the relevant pages.]

*Freundel, Rabbi Barry. "Homosexuality and Judaism." Journal of Halacha and Contemporary Society (RJJ), volume XI (1986), pp. 70-87. Available at
[Arguably the best article on the subject from the 1980s. "The modern transliteration of homosexual into Hebrew only proves the point" that halakhah doesn't recognize a homosexual identity. "Calling him a mumar [letei'avon], if handled correctly, strengthens the chances for change" and for kiruv. A section called "Condemnation of Homosexuality -- Why?" evaluates four approaches in light of the difference in halakhic severity between male and female homosexual behavior.]

Freundel, Rabbi Barry. "Homosexuality and Halachic Judaism: An Orthodox View." Moment, June 1993, pp. 40, 43-45.
[A simplified form of his RJJ article.]

*Goldberg, Rabbi Hillel. "Homosexuality: A Religious and Political Analysis." Tradition, 27:3 (Spring 1993), pp. 28-35.
[The first half focuses on how Rabbi Yisrael Salanter would view the subject. "It makes no difference to Rabbi Israel whether the in-born desire is for adultery, unethical monetary gain, homosexual sex, or any other violation of the religious norm. The in-born desire -- call it 'nature' if you will -- must be tutored and transfixed." "Ultimately, therefore, a person was responsible for his every violation of the norm, no matter how profound the desire to violate it. Ultimately. In the meantime, God measures each violation ... against the magnitude of the subjective struggle necessary to prevent it." Rabbi Goldberg adds that this prohibition is both a chok which is beyond reason as well as a to'evah which inspires repugnance.]

Hecht, Rabbi Benjamin. "Homosexuality: Is There a Unique Torah Perspective?" Nishma Update, June 1992. Available at

*Hecht, Rabbi Benjamin. "The March for Israel Parade and Halachic Decision Making." Nishma Update, June 1993. Available at
[The rishonim are not conclusive on whether homosexuality -- and arayot in general -- are chukkim or mitzvot sikhliyot. Usually, chukkim focus on the cheftza and mitzvot sikhliyot focus on the gavra. If homosexuality is a chok, we can be more open to homosexuals because the aversion is to the action, not the person. If it's a mitzvah sikhlit, we would stay away from the person as well. It's also possible that the dividing line between chukkim and mitzvot sikhliyot can change with the times.]

*Hecht, Rabbi Benjamin. Untitled. Spark of the Week - 5754 - #27. Available at
[Suggests that "to'evah" is a rejection of practices of the idolatrous Canaanites.]

Herring, Rabbi Basil. "Homosexuality." In his Jewish Ethics and Halakhah for our Time (New York: Ktav and YU Press, 1984), vol. 1, pp. 175-196.
[A review of the classic sources and responsa, complete with a sourcesheet in English.]

*Kimelman, Prof. Reuven. "Homosexuality and Family-Centered Judaism." Tikkun, July/August 1994, pp. 53-57. Reprinted in M. Katherine Baird and Robert M. Baird, eds. Homosexuality: Debating the Issues (Prometheus Books, 1995), pp. 264-271. (His affiliation is Conservative, I think.)
[The big picture: an eloquent defense of Judaism's emphasis on marriage and the family -- Judaism's "major contribution to the civilization of humanity." Both the individual and society need the family. In that light, homosexuality is just one of several arayot which must be delegitimized if the family is to remain central. "The fear is that the legitimation of loving homosexual relations is the first step to the legitimation of 'loving' incestuous, pedophiliac, and adulterous relationships. Such is the slippery slope in today's sexual climate as it was apparently in antiquity. Accordingly, Rabbi Akiba in Talmud Sanhedrin (58a) derives the prohibition of incest, homosexuality, adultery, and bestiality all from different parts of the same verse, Genesis 2:24."]

Kobre, Eytan. "Judaism, Nature and Homosexuality." Forward, February 2, 2001, p. 11. Available at
["The implacable foe with which Judaism's battle is forever pitched, then, is not so much secularism or even non-belief as it is 'nature'... For some, that challenge will be the struggle to control anger and aggressiveness, while for others, it will be the attempt to rein in arrogance and reach out in acknowledgement of the other. Yet others' particularly daunting charge will be combating powerful sensual drives, with their potential to reduce the unlimited human potential to nothing more than the pursuit of shallow, momentary fleshy pleasures. This is no less true for the individual who claims to have been 'born gay' than for anyone else."]

Lamm, Rabbi Norman. "Judaism and the Modern Attitude to Homosexuality." Encyclopedia Judaica Year Book 1974, pp. 194-205. Reprinted in Menachem Marc Kellner, ed. Contemporary Jewish Ethics (New York: Sanhedrin Press, 1978), pp. 375-399, and in Fred Rosner and J. David Bleich, eds. Jewish Bioethics (Brooklyn: Hebrew Publishing Company, 1979), pp. 197-218. Available at
[The first to suggest an approach, based on homosexuality as pathological, using the metaphor of oness.]

Levin, Rabbi Shlomo. "Bad to be Gay?" New Moon, December 1991, p. 10.

Lubitch, Rabbi Ronen. "Emdat haYahadut Kelapei Yachasim Bein Benei Min Echad veKavvim Manchim leYissumah beChinukh." Mayyim miDalyav (Shenaton Mikhlelet Lifshitz), 5756, pp. 233-251. Available at
[The first Hebrew article to survey the issue of Orthodoxy and homosexuality. Includes sections on how responsa recognized the phenomenon through the ages, how the rabbis viewed the prohibition as rational as opposed to visceral, and why tolerance makes more sense than either permissiveness or intolerance.]

Lubitch, Rabbi Ronen. "Selidah, Sovlanut o Matiranut: Yachas haYahadut leHomoseksualiyut." De'ot, 11 (August 2001), pp. 9-15. Available at (HTML form) or at (Adobe Acrobat form).
[This is a magazine adaptation of his previous article. New material includes the comment that the author tried ten years earlier to publish an article on the subject, but met with resistance from editors with outdated assumptions. Rabbi Lubitch includes a summary of Israeli laws passed in the 1990s which granted more and more rights to homosexuals and gay couples. In addition, he cites philosopher Michel Foucault that it was only with modernity that people started viewing homosexual sex as unnatural and its practitioners as possessing a different sexual identity. Rabbi Lubitch suggests that this paradigm shift explains both Rabbi Feinstein's harsh reaction and liberals' appeal to accept homosexuality as an alternative lifestyle.]

*Lubitch, Rabbi Ronen. "Sovlanut -- haMaksimum shehaHalakhah Me'afsheret (Teguvah leTeguvot)." De'ot/Amudim, 12 (December 2001), p. 47. Available at (a 2.6 Meg file).
[In response to calls for halakhic change "just like pruzbul," he explains why it's not possible in this case.]

Naor, Rabbi Bezalel. "Rav Kook on Homosexuality" (1998). Available at with footnotes at
[According to Rabbi Naor, Rav Kook implies that the rabbis' begrudging permission of anal intercourse between husband and wife is meant to be a sublimation of men's latent homosexual desires.]

Ohr Somayach Institutions. "Judaism's view on Homosexuality." Ask the Rabbi, #6 (January 15, 1994).

*Ostow, Dr. Mortimer. Letter to the Editor. Conservative Judaism, 40:1 (Fall 1987), pp. 103-106.
[This Emeritus Professor of Pastoral Psychiatry at JTS (Conservative) uses his clinical experience to argue against those who think that psychiatry has legitimized homosexuality.]

*Prager, Dennis. "Judaism, Homosexuality and Civilization." Ultimate Issues, April-June 1990, pp. 1-24. An abridged form of the article which retains the important parts but omits the footnotes is Dennis Prager, “Judaism's Sexual Revolution: Why Judaism (and then Christianity) Rejected Homosexuality,” Crisis 11: 8 (September 1993). The abridged one is available at (He does not affiliate with any one movement.)
[Prager devotes an entire issue of his journal to this long article, which includes a contrast with other societies' tolerance of homosexuality. "[H]omosexuality denies many of Judaism's most fundamental values. It denies life; it denies God's expressed desire that men and women cohabit; and it denies the root structure that Judaism wishes for all mankind, the family... Yet another reason for Judaism's opposition to homosexuality is homosexuality's negative effect on women."]

Rapoport, Rabbi Chaim. "Judaism and Homosexuality" (March 2000). Available at
[Agrees with Rabbi Aharon Feldman that a homosexual should "marry" the community. Someone incapable of a heterosexual relationship is exempt from marrying and procreating.]

Samuel, Rabbi Michael. "What Can Traditional Judaism Say to the Religious Homosexual?" (1999). Available at (His affiliation is Traditional.)
[Includes a quote from Rabbi Shlomo Goren about which actions are forbidden.]

Schneerson, Rabbi Menachem Mendel (The Lubavitcher Rebbe). "'Rights' or Ills" (a sichah on Purim 5746). Excerpted and translated in Sichos in English, vol. 30, pp. 120-130. Available at
and at (the latter includes excerpts from the publisher's preface).
[Homosexual relationships are abnormal and a sickness. "An important point to stress is that there is no insult intended and no derogatory attitude is suggested; it is a case of healing a malady. When a person is ill and someone volunteers to help him get well, there is no disrespect involved, not at all!... If he claims that he was born with this nature, this is indeed all the more reason to reassure him that no disparagement was meant, for it is no different from the case of one who was born with the tendency to bang his head against the wall. Do we shame that unfortunate one?! Nevertheless, everything must be done to remedy the situation."]

Schochet, Rabbi Ezra. "The Torah: A Moral Compass." The Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles, July 14, 2000. Available at
[Argues with Rabbi Boteach, and says the context of arayot indicates that the homosexual prohibition is a moral law, not just a religious one.]

Sherlo, Rabbi Yuval. "Homoseksualiyut." In She'elot uTeshuvot OnLine, 29 Tammuz 5761. Available at
[Since Moreshet started the Online Responsa project in 2001, Rav Sherlo has responded to many poignant questions from Orthodox people struggling with homosexuality. Throughout, he balances empathy and chizzuk with an insistence on overcoming one's impulses. You can access these and any later responsa among the thousands of anonymous questions at by typing keywords into the search box.]

Sherlo, Rabbi Yuval. "Homoseksualim." In She'elot uTeshuvot OnLine, 9 MarCheshvan 5762. Available at
[Just as false prophecy and divination are shadows of true prophecy, so too homosexuality is a shadow of the true sexual drive. The Torah's punishment for homosexual sex indicates that it's possible to struggle with this drive. Our unequivocal condemnation of homosexuality must not bring us to a lack of caring; rather, we must share in their anguish and help them as much as we can.]

*Sherlo, Rabbi Yuval. "Homoseksualiyut." In She'elot uTeshuvot OnLine, 12 MarCheshvan 5762. Available at
[Two reasons for the prohibition may be Canaanite custom and the holiness of marriage and of procreation. However, Rav Sherlo continues, that's speculation; the main thing is the genuine struggle.]

Sherlo, Rabbi Yuval. "Homoseksualiyut, Kapparah, veHakamat Mishpakhah." In She'elot uTeshuvot OnLine, 5 Kislev 5762. Available at
[Though it seems as if Rav Sherlo has published many responsa on homosexuality, he says that actually, most of the ones he's written have not been made public on the Moreshet site. In this case, he's not happy with the expression "I've come to terms with..."]

Sherlo, Rabbi Yuval. "Homoseksualiyut." In She'elot uTeshuvot OnLine, 14 Kislev 5762. Available at
["Every one of us, more than once, is faced with a situation in which our personal voice contradicts God's word and what it says in His Torah."]

Sherlo, Rabbi Yuval. "Meshikhah leBnot Oto Min." In She'elot uTeshuvot OnLine, 19 Tevet 5762. Available at
[Many types of struggle are possible -- rejecting the impulse, studying and intellectually convincing oneself, counseling and treatment if relevant, struggle on the part of society, etc.]

Sherlo, Rabbi Yuval. "Homoseksualizm veAte'istiyut." In She'elot uTeshuvot OnLine, 22 Shevat 5762. Available at

Sherlo, Rabbi Yuval. "Onesh Mavvet mehaTorah al Homoseksualiyut." In She'elot uTeshuvot OnLine, 12 Iyyar 5762. Available at
[The Torah isn't saying it's unnatural, but rather that there's a need to struggle with natural things as well. The Torah fights nature and shapes it according to ethics and holiness.]

Sherlo, Rabbi Yuval. "Ha'im Nitan leDaber al Nisu'in shel Homoseksual." In She'elot uTeshuvot OnLine, 8 Sivan 5762. Available at
[This is a followup to id=2941. The questioner wants to know if he must tell a potential wife about his homosexual inclination. Rav Sherlo says he must (as opposed to not telling or not getting married).]

*Sherlo, Rabbi Yuval. "Homoseksualiyut -- ha'im Adam sheHino Homoseksual Yakhol leHitpater miZeh uLehihapekh laAdam im Netiyah leMin haShoneh." In She'elot uTeshuvot OnLine, 12 Sivan 5762. Available at
[Rav Sherlo says he recognizes that many homosexuals cannot be "cured." He describes several types of struggle (sublimation, rejection, internal akeidah), all of which refuse to accept ourselves as we are.]

Sherlo, Rabbi Yuval. "Homoseksualiyut -- Hemshekh." In She'elot uTeshuvot OnLine, 15 Sivan 5762. Available at
["Even if we're talking about something inborn, who says you can't struggle with something inborn?"]

Sherlo, Rabbi Yuval. "Homoseksualiyut -- Od Hemshekh." In She'elot uTeshuvot OnLine, 16 Sivan 5762. Available at

Sherlo, Rabbi Yuval. "Homoseksualiyut veLesbiyut." In She'elot uTeshuvot OnLine, 25 Av 5762. Available at 
[Rav Sherlo says it's true that there is no explicit prohibition against lesbianism [in the Chumash], but the metahalakhah is clear. We see from the Garden of Eden story that the main thing is the heterosexual family. This, Rav Sherlo suggests, is why the Israeli Rabbinate allows nonreligious Jews to marry halakhically, despite the possible negative consequences -- because the family structure is the most important thing. For the community's sake (as opposed to the individual's), we must maintain the traditional family.]

Sherlo, Rabbi Yuval. "Zugiyut Chad-Minit Mekudeshet." In She'elot uTeshuvot OnLine, 26 Elul 5762. Available at
[The Torah's prescription that husband and wife "shall become one flesh" is stronger than a formal prohibition on single-sex marriage.]

Spero, Rabbi Moshe HaLevi. "Homosexuality: Clinical and Ethical Challenges." Tradition 17:4 (Spring 1979), pp. 53-73. An expanded form of this article appeared in Proceedings of the Association of Orthodox Jewish Scientists, 6 (1980), pp. 177-199, and in his Judaism and Psychology: Halakhic Perspectives (New York: Ktav, 1980), pp. 153-167, 249-252.

Spero, Rabbi Moshe HaLevi. "An Examination of the Halakhic Status of Homosexuality: Female Homosexual Behavior, and Homosexuality as Oness." Proceedings of the Association of Orthodox Jewish Scientists, 7 (1983), pp. 99-122. Reprinted in his Handbook of Psychotherapy and Jewish Ethics (Jerusalem: Feldheim, 1986), pp. 149-172.

Steinberg, Dr. Avraham. "Miniut," subsections "Mishkav Zakhur" and "Lesbiyut." In his Entziklopediah Hilkhatit Refu'it (Jerusalem: Machon Schlesinger, 1994), vol. 4, pp. 71-80.

Tendler, Rabbi Moshe Dovid. "Treife Sex" (Letter to the Editor). The Jewish Week, June 2, 2000, pp. 6-7.
[This is a response to Rabbi Boteach. Following Rabbi Feinstein (his father-in-law), Rabbi Tendler views gay sex as "a willful, voluntary perversion."]

Unterman, Rabbi Alan. "Judaism and Homosexuality: Some Orthodox Perspectives." Jewish Quarterly 40:3 (Autumn 1993, #151), pp. 5-9. Reprinted in Jonathan Magonet, ed. Jewish Explorations of Sexuality (Providence, RI: Berghahn Books, 1995).
[Concludes: "I have no doubt that God loves gays as He loves straight people. I would like to believe that Orthodox Jews, for all their hangups, can practise imitatio dei and make traditional Jewish space less claustrophobic for gays..."]

**Wolowelsky, Dr. Joel B. and Weinstein, Dr. Bernard L. "Initial Religious Counseling for a Male Orthodox Adolescent Homosexual." Tradition, 29:2 (Winter 1995), pp. 49-55. They clarified a few points in a letter to the editor, in Tradition, 29:4 (Summer 1995), pp. 93-94. The article and clarifications are available at and at The Hebrew translation of the article appeared in Assia, 15:3-4 (#59-60, Iyyar 5757), pp. 108-115, and is available at
[Focusing on counseling strategies, they suggest reassuring the adolescent homosexual that's he's not crazy. Even though "to'evah" means the act is improper, the impulse is still normal. The main thing -- and the hallmark of human dignity, according to Rabbi Soloveitchik -- is to withdraw from acting on that impulse. "Halakha rejects the current proposition that sexual fulfillment is the summum bonum of life, arguing that a halakhically ethical life often denies the heterosexual as well as the homosexual the possibility of total sexual fulfillment." "No matter what is said, the adolescent must have continual and convincing reassurance that he still remains a person worthy of love and understanding."]

Wurzburger, Rabbi Walter. "Preferences are Not Practices." Judaism, Fall 1983, p. 425.



Akeidah -- binding for a sacrifice (what Abraham did to Isaac).
-- the list of people with whom one may not have sexual intercourse.
-- the object or action of a mitzvah.
-- encouragement, inspiration.
-- nationalist-religious, Israel's very rough equivalent of modern Orthodox.
(plural chukkim) -- a commandment without a known logical reason.
-- the person doing a mitzvah.
-- outreach.
-- a commandment with a known logical reason.
Mitzvah sikhlit
-- a commandment with a known logical reason.
Mumar lehakh'is
-- a sinner because of rebellion against God.
Mumar letei'avon
-- a sinner because of desire.
-- a sinner because of coercion or duress.
-- Torah portions.
-- rabbinic document to avoid the annulment of debts in the Shemitah (Sabbatical) year.
-- Medieval rabbinic authorities.
Rosh yeshivah
-- Head of a yeshiva.
-- repentance.
-- abomination (used in Vayikra 18:22 and 20:13 regarding male homosexual intercourse).
-- may the memory of the righteous be a blessing.

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