Conversion to Judaism. This entails acceptance of the mitzvos, tevila (immersion), and for men, bris milah (circumcision).

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7
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1answer
402 views

“Am I Jewish​​​?”

How can one tell if one needs to convert or if one is already Jewish? Would one's or one's ancestors' conversion to another religion or their lack of knowledge about Judaism change anything?
26
votes
5answers
3k views

Is it possible for a Gentile to convert to Judaism?

Is it possible for someone who is Gentile to convert to Judaism? What is the prevailing belief of Jewish people on this subject? What scripture backs up this belief? What do prominent Jewish ...
19
votes
6answers
808 views

When did Avraham Avinu become Jewish

Avraham Avinu is often called "the first Jew". When did he become Jewish. Was it when: He recognized G-d? G-d spoke to him for the first time? Covenant Between The Parts? When G-d changed his name? ...
27
votes
4answers
2k views

Can a Jew lose their Jewish Status?

Can a Jew lose their status as being a Jew by performing any action (example: performing idolatry, disavowing core beliefs, converting to another religion, etc)? Or once a person is a Jew then they ...
18
votes
2answers
686 views

When (if ever) are converts still related to their relatives?

It is my understanding that when a person converts to Judaism, certain halachic relationships are severed. So I have a couple questions about this. Which relationships are severed? Is a convert ...
18
votes
6answers
2k views

First steps for someone considering conversion

I am 25 years old and I am truly interested in converting. I too also only believe in G-d. I live my life to certain rules that others I see aren't strong enough to live by. I want to know what I ...
9
votes
2answers
2k views

My great great grandmother was Jewish - am I? [duplicate]

I've discovered that my great, great grandmother was Jewish - i.e. my mother's mother's mother's mother. She converted to Catholicism upon marriage. Are matrilineal descendants of a Jewess who ...
18
votes
2answers
743 views

May (or should) a convert recite kaddish after his biological parents' deaths?

May (or should) a convert recite kaddish after his biological parents' deaths? I think the answer is that yes, he may do so out of respect for them (even though, in a strict halachic sense, he is no ...
16
votes
2answers
487 views

Does a convert have a clean slate?

When a non-jew converts to Jusaism, must he still do teshuva from past sins, or does the "reborn" concept stretch far enough to consider him "sinless"?
7
votes
2answers
6k views

Can a gentile go to Synagogue on Shabbat and what is forbidden on Shabbat for a gentile?

Is a gentile allowed to participate in Shabbat prayers in a Synagogue (of course he/she will not count for a minyan) if they do so in order to gain knowledge of Jewish customs for the purpose of ...
17
votes
7answers
962 views

Am I liable to be stoned for my devotion to Hashem and the Jewish people?

I have spent over 2 years to this day praying for the Jewish people from the Koren Siddur and Machzorim. I have with my Rebbe's help tried to follow Jewish customs and laws, to my best ability. ...
10
votes
2answers
957 views

Can the child of two converts marry a Cohen?

Can the child of two converts marry a Cohen? How does the situation differ if only the mother, or only the father, is a convert? (I have read that "ideally" the child of two converts should not ...
11
votes
1answer
360 views

Understanding discouragement of converts

Why do we discourage converts? I know that Naomi did so with Rus, but Moshe doesn't seem to do so with Yisro. Why wouldn't Judaism want to encourage converts? Furthermore is it a responsibility merely ...
10
votes
3answers
191 views

What happened to Avraham's students?

We read how Avraham was going around convincing people to believe in one G-d and of his many students. Yet we don't hear of those students (or their descendants) ever again. What happened to them ...
6
votes
6answers
1k views

Is there any benefit for a gentile to convert through one denomination versus another?

Despite being raised Conservative, it has been my impression that the only conversion that "counts" is an Orthodox one. I suspect this is the case for making aliyah, but under what other ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

A Convert taking on customs of ashkanazim or sephardim

When someone converts is there any determining factor on what minhagim (customs) they will take upon themselves in terms of Ashkanazim or Sephardim? Should it be dependent on the Beis Din they ...
5
votes
1answer
499 views

Are children whose mother converted after bearing them Jewish?

If a Jewish man and non-Jewish wife have a child, and the mother completes her Orthodox conversion to Judaism after the child is born, must the child also convert to be considered Jewish, if they were ...
20
votes
2answers
2k views

Can a non-Jew don tefillin?

May a non-Jew or a person who is in the conversion process don tefillin? If not, what are the reasons that they cannot?
7
votes
2answers
642 views

Can a convert become a synagogue president? Why or why not?

I understand that the National Council of Young Israel has a rule that women and converts may not be elected president of a Young Israel synagogue. I think I saw a gemara -- or a comment to a gemara ...
23
votes
2answers
2k views

If a woman converts to Judaism while pregnant, will her child be a Jew?

If a woman converts to Judaism while pregnant, will her child be a Jew once born?
20
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8answers
3k views

Conversion: If G-d really wanted me to be a Jew (and observe mitzvot), why was I not born into a Jewish family

This question pertains to the issue of conversion, and if it makes sense in the Jewish context of some people being Chosen specifically by God. Before beginning, this poster is aware of the long, and ...
18
votes
4answers
735 views

When did Ruth convert?

In the book of Ruth it never openly states that she converts and in fact she is referred to as Ruth the Moabite throughout the text. At what point, chronologically, did she in fact convert?
14
votes
2answers
733 views

Can an Alien convert to Judaism?

Suppose we one day find an extraterrestrial walking on our planet that originated from another planet. The alien quickly learns all about religion and now wants to become a Jew. Do we let him? ...
12
votes
4answers
568 views

Can conversion be revoked?

In a recent case the Israeli Rabbinical Court has revoked someone's conversion to Judaism on the grounds that they were deceptive. This decision was "...Based on the fact that she completely ...
11
votes
1answer
507 views

Are we allowed to ask someone if he's a convert?

I remember learning that we are forbidden to "remind a convert of his past". The implication, as I remember it, is reminding someone that he used to be an idolater. (Though not all converts were.) ...
9
votes
2answers
210 views

Do converts represent a “farblondzshet” neshama?

Before our wedding, a mikvah lady learned that my wife was marrying me -- a convert to Judaism. Her response was that I must represent a "farblondzshet neshama" (a confused or a lost Jewish soul). ...
8
votes
1answer
211 views

Can a convert drink wine he previously touched?

If a non-Jew touches uncooked wine it is considered yayin nesech. If that same non-Jew then converts and states categorically that he did not offer the wine as an idolatrous libation when he was a ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

How is giyur le’chumra different from a standard conversion in practice?

I am interested to know how giyur le’chumra is different from a standard conversion in practice? Does anyone have any personal experiences? My understanding of the meaning of giyur le’chumra (from ...
7
votes
3answers
558 views

Do Rabbis have to be Jewish by ethnicity?

I am under the impression that a person can be received into Judaism from a gentile nation. My question is whether or not that person could conceivably then become a Rabbi? Please indicate whether ...
7
votes
1answer
329 views

Who are these “aliens” in Isaiah 56?

I was reading through this passage in Isaiah 56: 4 For thus saith the LORD concerning the eunuchs that keep My sabbaths, and choose the things that please Me, and hold fast by My covenant. 5 ...
7
votes
3answers
1k views

what percentage of Reform Jews are halachically Jewish?

Was there ever a study done on the percentage of Reform Jews who would be considered Jewish according to Halacha?
6
votes
2answers
353 views

What happens when a potential convert can't have a circumcision?

If a man wants to convert to Judaism but cannot have a circumcision for bio-medical reasons, does this prevent him from converting, or may he complete the conversion process without being circumcised? ...
6
votes
1answer
345 views

Non-Jews & Shul Access

Can a shul deny access to a non-Jew due to the fact that he/she is not Jewish? Even if the person genuinely has a desire to learn about Judaism and worship Hashem? What are the rights (if any) of a ...
6
votes
3answers
354 views

Is a convert free to choose his own minhagim?

Back when Jews lived in the same communities for generations, they were obligated to follow the minhagim (customs) of their community. The classic example is that East European Jews held that one ...
5
votes
2answers
560 views

What is a ger toshav?

I read in the Book of Isaiah (Is. 56:1-8), about the foreigner joining Hashem. I asked my Rabbi briefly about this passage. He explained that the passage is probably neither about a gerut conversion ...
12
votes
3answers
1k views

Was Judaism ever a proselytizing religion?

It is often asserted that up until the time of Constantine or so, Judaism was an actively proselytizing religion. This can be contrasted with the common practice today of rejecting potential converts ...
9
votes
5answers
519 views

Can a convert be a prophet?

I don't think there were any gerim amongst the nevi'im, but would it have been possible?
7
votes
1answer
135 views

Precedent for Forbidding Conversion

The Syrian community has a Takkanah in place which bars conversion. In addition to forbidding conversion under their own auspices, they also "Never accept a convert or a child born of a convert", as ...
18
votes
1answer
439 views

Is a convert obliged to honor his parents?

Is a convert obliged to honor his parents? I understand that a convert loses all halakhic relationship to his parents upon being "reborn." Therefore, does the mitzvah of kibud av va'eim still apply?
10
votes
3answers
350 views

What should a Jew do if encountered by ISIS?

Theoretically, if (Gd forbid) ISIS took over Israel, and the Jew in question was not immediately killed because he was Jewish and was not in the financial situation to pay the required taxes, should ...
10
votes
3answers
674 views

Would a convert/Ba'al Teshuvah have to remove any tattoos they may have?

A Jew is prohibited from tattooing himself. If a person with tattoos were to convert to Judaism, would they be required to have the tattoos removed? Would a Jew who got a tattoo and later repented be ...
8
votes
2answers
205 views

If a convert goes off the derekh, must he go to the mikvah again after he repents?

A female convert I know, who had stopped observing mitzvos for a few years, but then sought to return to the fold, was led to believe by someone that she would have to go again to the mikvah to ...
8
votes
1answer
395 views

Can a convert serve as a dayan?

I believe that there are specific restrictions placed on a ger (convert) being a legal decisor on a beit din. What are these restrictions and do those, ipso facto, preclude that individual from ...
6
votes
1answer
669 views

If a woman converts to Judaism while pregnant, will her child be eligible to marry a Kohen?

If a woman converts to Judaism while pregnant, will her child be eligible to marry a Kohen? Case #1 -- Assume her husband is a Jew by birth. Case #2 -- Assume her husband converted to Judaism prior ...
5
votes
1answer
114 views

Can one adopt a non-Jewish child and not convert him/her?

Take this hypothetical situation: A Jewish couple which has fulfilled the requirements of peru urevu wants to adopt an additional child but (perhaps due to the immense cost of Jewish day school) does ...
5
votes
2answers
240 views

Does a ger (convert) say Yizkor?

A convert's biological parents are not their parents in a halachic sense. In some senses the converting beis din is "responsible" for the convert in the way of parents. In name, at least, the ger's ...
5
votes
0answers
220 views

Statistics regarding how many people convert yearly

What are the statistics for the last 50-100 years as to how many people convert and become Geirim yearly?
5
votes
1answer
180 views

Convert that had children prior to conversion

If a fellow converted (his children remained gentiles) and prior to his conversion he had children - has he fulfilled the Mitzva of Peru U'Revu? (sources)
4
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2answers
223 views

Motivation for disallowing Conversions

What was The Syrians communities Rabbis motivation For disallowing conversions and when did it happen and did any other Sephardi communities join in this decision later on?
3
votes
3answers
3k views

Is it possible for a man to convert to Judaism without circumcision?

Is it possible for a man to convert to Judaism without circumcision? I'm not talking about where medical reasons would prevent circumcision; I'm curious to know if an uncircumcised gentile can ...