21 June 2006

Beginning of Bava Mezia

Something that some of us in my class ('09) will be undertaking is learning the first forty pages of Bava Mezi'a in the Babylonian Talmud. This is in addition to what I will be doing this summer (including cleaning up my room this week). I was trying to think about blogging about it, then I thought maybe it'll be too boring for people to read about. Time will tell - most likely, I'll blog whenever something seems interesting enough to mention, rather than systematically describe it.
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24 comments:

Anonymous said...

Those 40 pages are usually covered by 2-3 times by the typical yeshiva student by the time they leave high school. I'm not sure how to place this in terms of perspective - how much learning does the average YCT graduate have under his belt by the time he leaves the program?

Drew_Kaplan said...

To be perfectly honest, I don't know that there's such a thing as an "average YCT graduate" in so many different ways, and that includes learning, as well.

Anonymous said...

Certainly the Yeshiva has a minimum proficiency requirement in learning, no? What curriculum leads toward that standard? Do you leave there having mastered shas and poskim, barely able to read Hebrew, or (most likely) somewhere in between? If it's somewhere in between, I'm curious as to where, that's all. It struck me as odd that learning the first 40 blatt of BM would be blogworthy for a rabbinic student and then it dawned on me that perhaps YCT and I have very different ideas of what makes a "rabbinic student".

torahandmitzvot said...

anonymous -

Thats a good question. The average YCT graduate by the end of their 4-5 years of study has passed proficiency exams in Shabbat, Kashrut, Niddah, Aveilut, as well as Orakh Hayyim, Machshevet Yisrael, Jewish history, pastoral counseling, sermonics and a host of other areas.

What Drew was referring to was a program offered to 1st year students to increase their general bekiut. And yet many of the students had already learned these 40 blatt, but when is review a bad thing?

Sister said...

Ben-
Please tell me you're making up "sermonics"...

Anon-
Not everyone has had the luxury of learning "by the time they leave high school" and instead start their learning later and are at different points (OMG! not everyone in the frum world is FFB! doesn't compute, doesn't compute)

Anonymous said...

"Not everyone has had the luxury of learning "by the time they leave high school" and instead start their learning later and are at different points"

And not everyone is qualified for the title "rabbi", either. What's your point? One would assume that anyone with the title should have reasonably well developed skills in learning rgardless of their background.

torahandmitzvot said...

Drew's sis -
unfortunately i'm not

anonymous -
I agree with you and thats what yeshiva, mechina and semicha programs are for. However, I'm not sure what your point is, if you have one. Please enlighten us.
Thanks,
Ben (and yes, I'm not anonymous).

Anonymous said...

Why the defensiveness, Ben (not anonymous)? I'm simply curious how much emphasis, if any, is placed upon talmudic expertise. Is it sufficient for a grad to be able to prepare a leining? Is even that much required? Are they capable of sophisticated talmudic discourse? Need they have shas at their fingertips? I'm just interested what YCT expects and how they get there. *shrug*

torahandmitzvot said...

anonymous -
Yes graduates are capable of a sophisticated Talmudic discourse and yes they can make a leining. What you interpreted as defensiveness was only my response to your presumptuousness.
Shabbat Shalom,
Ben

Sister said...

Anon-
What's my point? LOL! My point is that people can start out at a myriad of different places and still grow enough through learning to have the skills and knowledge to earn the title "rabbi" - I do agree that there should be standards. Your standards for the title "rabbi" appear to have gone to a yeshiva high school, and presumably have grown up going to day school their whole lives and have their mother use a white tablecloth for Shabbos dinner to make a shadchan happy. I am asking you to have an open-mind to the possibility of people who have minimum (if any) learning by whatever certain age you see fit to judge and choose to learn Torah to the degree that would satisfy the title of "rabbi," at whatever age they start this endeavor.

Anonymous said...

No presumptions at all, Ben(not anonymous). I'm simply curious what the the standard is for proficiency in learning and what the curriculum is like to get a guy there. Interestingly, while you've tiptoed around it several times now, we still really don't have an answer.

I wouldn't read so much into my previous post, anon. My mention of a misivta bochur's level of learning certainly wasn't meant to imply that someone who wasn't fortunate enough to enjoy a mesivta education is somehow disqualified from ever having the title "rabbi". Many gedolim didn't have a mesivta education, for instance. My intention was quite the opposite, really - I referenced a mesivta bochur since I thought everyone could agree that such a level of learning is far short of what would be required of a "rabbi". After Ben(not anonymous)'s vague answers, I'm not sure what to think. Maybe some think that's plenty. *shrug*

Drew_Kaplan said...

Anonymous,
I think we know that Ben is not anonymous, that's blatently obvious, so I'm not clear why you would need to keep pointing to his non anonymity, while you stay behind yours.

Anonymous said...

"Thanks,
Ben (and yes, I'm not anonymous)."

Anonymous said...

YU boys are HOT! And you should have read bava metzia atleast ONE in your high school years.

bava metzia is one of my favourite tractates to read.

Drew_Kaplan said...

I think what's novel, here, is that we're not in the midst of yeshiva, but, rather, we're in the midst of other activities - internships, jobs, summer school, etc. Yes, we're expected to tackle 40 dapim in 10 weeks, but as opposed to daf yomi (which would cover seven dapim per week versus four), these aren't being prepared by others, but rather derekh agav, while we're busy with other activities.

Anonymous said...

If you're doing daf yomi right, it's not being prepared by others, either. And what's the chiddush of doing it while not being in full time yeshiva? Working b'nei Torah manage to do it all the time.

torahandmitzvot said...

anonymous -
I don't see how I was vague whatsoever. You asked if graduates can engage in serious Talmudic discourse and I answered in the affirmative. You asked what we are expected to have mastered by graduation and I gave you a general list of items. If you would like a specific course listing feel free to call or email the Yeshiva and I am sure they would send you one.

Anonymous said...

I asked about the standard of learning that is expected of a graduate and the curriculum which wnet toward meeting that standard. You gave a list of areas which students are expected to master. Exactly what does it mean to have mastery of Shabbos, for instance? Is this a Yadin Yadin mastery, a Yoreh Yoreh master, a thorough familiarity with the halachos and how they evolved from the relevant sugyos, merely a functional familiarity with the halachos, what?

I'm not sure why this is such a secret...

torahandmitzvot said...

anonymous -
YCT Semicha is Yoreh Yoreh and the education at the institution is equivalent in its halakhic component to that of YU. There have been students who have gone on from completing the coursework at the end of 4 years to then take and pass the tests for Israeli Chief Rabbinate semikha. I'm not sure what your asking in the purpose of a blog to provide other then general information.
If you feel comfortable in your own identity and do not need to be behind the mask of an anonymous computer monitor then anyone is welcome to the Yeshiva during the academic year and welcome to converse with any of the students or faculty. In addition, you are welcome to call the Yeshiva and ask for any specific information.

I am not sure why you perceive any secrecy because there is no attempts at secrecy being displayed in this conversation. Detailed information is available as I have said now 3 times, if you take the effort and to research it by visiting the Yeshiva or calling for information. Of course those methods are inconvenient for those who need the comfort of anonymity.

B'Shalom,
Ben

Anonymous said...

Anonymity has nothing to do with it. I asked a simple question and got (until now) a lot of doublespeak. That struck me as odd. I'm not interested enough to do a lot of legwork. I was interested enough to post here when the subject came up. *shrug* No big mystery (other than why such basic information was like pulling teeth).

Anonymous said...

drew kaplan, which dorm do you room in at YU

Sister said...

Anon-
Are you trying to stalk my brother? If you haven't been paying attention, he's not a student at YU, so I'm not sure why you think that he lives there.

Drew_Kaplan said...

Anonymous,
When I dormed at YU, I was living in Rubin. But as I am no longer a student at YU (haven't been for four years), I no longer dorm there.

Anonymous said...

No, I just have a bunch of friends, some from the Rubin dorm. Calm down.

If I wanted to stalk your brother I would have emailed him, searched, blah blah blah, but I could care less.

No offense, your brother isn't cute at all... And you guys are modern orthodox... another sad problem

Drew Kaplan, fix that yarn kipa, it is slanted. LOL