Take the 2-minute tour ×
Mi Yodeya is a question and answer site for those who base their lives on Jewish law and tradition and anyone interested in learning more. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Suppose the following situation, which commonly arises. A Jewish guy starts dating a non-Jewish girl, and they both fall in love. She respects his religion and wants to convert in order to be able to marry him under a chuppah. We are talking here about Orthodox Judaism.

Now, she may start out wanting to convert in order to be with someone. But as she goes through the process of learning about Judaism she may genuinely come to accept the Jewish Covenant and decide to follow all the commandments. If she immerses in a Mikveh and a court of three observant Orthodox Jews finds her Giur to be successful, then she is a Jew, right? From that point on, if she keeps all the commandments to the same level as a relatively lax Jew, she is still considered fully Jewish.

I realize there are some Kabbalistic opinions that souls of converts were really Jewish from the moment they were born.

My question is this: rabbis traditionally ignore the first few requests for conversion. But are they expected to totally turn someone away if they begin conversion as a result of being in a relationship, because it is "for the wrong reasons"? What is the most successful way to actually get such a Gentile girl to convert? I am concerned about the following issues:

  • Rabbis refusing to start the process because the girl is in a romantic relationship with a Jew

  • The effect on soul of the convert of not following all the commandments post-conversion vs remaining a relatively righteous Noahide

If I were to date gentile girls, and casually tell them about Judaism, and only marry one who becomes genuinely interested of her own volition (placing me in the company of e.g. Steven Spielberg, Jared Kushner and Sasha Baron Cohen) what are the consequences of this in the afterlife, etc. according to rabbinical Judaism?

share|improve this question
Hello and welcome to Mi Yodeya. It seems like you have at least two questions here: whether and (if so) how a gentile woman in a relationship can convert, and what the consequences (spiritual and otherwise) for both people in the relationship. I suggest splitting out the latter as its own question. Some related questions: first steps for converts, discouragement. –  Monica Cellio Jun 20 '13 at 3:21
Are Orthodox Jews indeed "commonly" dating non-Jews with the intention of converting them? –  HodofHod Jun 20 '13 at 3:35
@hod the statistics are irrelevant as is how much is 'common'. –  Double AA Jun 20 '13 at 8:25
It's my impression that the population of rabbis who deal with conversion is divided when it comes to the conversion of someone romantically involved with a Jew. I think the idea in North America is that commitment to Judaism is the most important thing about conversion, and the relationship casts a lot of doubt on the candidate's sincerity. In Israel the concerns about national integrity are stronger, so there may be a more willing attitude. Perhaps in areas with less distinction between ortho and heterodox groups also. –  yitznewton Jun 20 '13 at 13:31
@Gregory Magarshak After a proper conversion she is considered Jewish even if she doesnt keep the commandments to a lax level. Once becoming Jewish one stays Jewish forever. That is why rabbis try to discourage it. It sometimes is only a 'fad' which one tires of after a time. Just because some Jews keep it to a lax level is no excuse for her to do the same, and no orthodox rabbi will accept her on those terms. The effect on the 'soul' is exactly the same for a ger as for an original Jewish person, whatever that may be. –  user2800 Jun 20 '13 at 14:32
show 1 more comment

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.