Rosh Yeshiva Responds
Rabbi Linzer answers halakhic questions from rabbis and community members

24 03, 2021

Performing Taharah on a Transgender Meit

March 24th, 2021|Death and Dying, LGBTQ, Yoreh De'ah|


New York, NY

I asked the Rosh Yeshiva this question on phone, but thought people might benefit. A chevrah kadisha wanting to be sensitive to transgender issues, who do they assign for the taharah of a transgendered meit?


My tentative answer – and this is really a policy question more than a halakhic one – is that we have to have a chevrah of the same gender as the meit‘s identity – to do otherwise would be a tremendous pegiah in kevod HaMeit and a tremendous delegitimization and erasure of the trans community and the identity of its members. The reason for

21 07, 2015

Lesbian Sex in Halakha

July 21st, 2015|Even HaEzer, LGBTQ, Sex|


I am a single bi-sexual woman living in NYC. What are the halakhic parameters of lesbian sex? What is mutar and what is assur? What is the letter of the law and what is the spirit of the law? I’ve never been sexually active with another woman though I would very much like to do so.


Halakha defines sexual intercourse as penile penetration of the anus or the vagina. Thus, (anal) sex between two men is defined as sex and forbidden by the Torah, while sex between two women is not defined as sex, and thus not forbidden in the Torah’s list of arayot, sexual