Can anyone please help me? I was told about this great Sefer called Kerem Yehoshua and I'd like to get my hands on it. However, due to the current world pandemic it's pretty hard for me to purchase it.

So, can someone please give me a synopsis of what he says one should do in order to retain his learning (chazaring shas)?

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    I am unsure what you mean "during pandemic hard to purchase it" if its not a financial reason then its available on amazon for around $43 ,and the Hebrew can be bought from Mizrachi books ebay.com/itm/373003194726
    – sam
    Apr 26, 2020 at 3:29
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    The entire sefer in Hebrew is available for free on Hebrew Books at hebrewbooks.org/6965 ; there is a free English translation available online I will bli nader track down this evening Apr 26, 2020 at 15:40
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    @JoshK any luck?
    – Moshe
    Apr 27, 2020 at 0:25
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    @JoshK The book the question is asking about is about methods of learning by a contemporary author, Yehoshua Cohen. The book you linked is a 19th century commentary on the Talmud by Yehoshua Lang (and FYI to ping me, write @ba with no space)
    – b a
    Feb 9, 2021 at 15:17

1 Answer 1


I found this book yesterday in my yeshiva's library. It seems like an interesting book. In any case, the book describes his technique at length, but there's one specific chapter called "סדר הלימוד בקיצור" - "The progression of study in short". I'll bring what he says there in my own words:

  1. Learn a quarter or a third of the page (from the beginning to the end of one issue), or when studying mishna, learn the entire mishna (or part of it, if it's long) and try to understand the reasons of the rulings and the disagreements, and in each disagreement, try to understand if the disagreement is about the logic (סברא) or just out of understanding the wording of the mishna, or if it isn't a disagreement but מר אמר חדא ומר אמר חדא ולא פליגי (one said such and such and the other said something else and they don't disagree), and do not look into Rishonim and Achronim during the first three times of studying, because this confuses the learner and occupies the mind. You may only look if you really don't understand anything, but then only in Rishonim (and preferable to stick only to Rashi).

  2. After learning the prescribed length of gemara or mishna, once having understood more or less the gemara, recite everything by heart in your own words, to make sure you properly understood the issue, and haven't simply memorized something you don't understand. Make sure you are able to properly explain the entire length of the discussion/debate and what dinim are to be learned from this section. If you're unsure whether you can already recite by heart, look again to see that nothing has been missed and recite again. After knowing that section properly, continue to the next section.

  3. And so, finish the sugiya or daf. And then re-learn once the entire sugiya. Re-learning=doing exactly as you did when you first learned it, no skipping or fast-forwarding. Pace yourself, make sure you've properly gone over everything that was said and that you've understood everything once again.

  4. Now feeling comfortable with what you've learned, learn the sugiya over again. And once again, break down the sugiya to sections and learn each section is described above.

  5. And once you feel that you understand and remember the sugiya, learn it all over again a third time, exactly like the previous two times.

  6. At the end of the sugiya, learn Rashi slowly, making sure Rashi is properly understood. learn the entire sugiya with Rashi.

  7. Having learned all of Rashi on the sugiya, learn Tosfot, and with the Tosfot re-learn the sugiya. This can be done in one of two ways: Either learn Tosfot by itself, or learn the sugiya and stop whenever arriving at a Tosfot to learn the Tosfot. And with Tosfot, you should learn it as done with the gemara and Rashi, slowly and maing sure you've understood everything.

  8. Having finished Tosfot, learn it once more, and do so exactly the same way as the first time.

  9. If you can, make up a time every night to go over everything you've learned during the day. On Friday and Shabbat, go over everything learned during the week at least once (twice is preferable). During these study periods, try learning the gemara based on understanding the final dinim, not specifically the back and forth of the debates. For example, for every section of a mishna, attempt to organize all of the views on a certain halacha - the gemara, Rashi, the Tosfot. Then on to the next halacha. And if you can, learn Rosh, Rif, Ran or Nimukei Yosef on what you've studied.

  10. All of this of course takes time, until you've gotten used to this way of study.

  11. After a month or six weeks, you should take a break from learning new gemaras by re-learning in a few days everything learned over the previous weeks. During vacations (bein hazmanim), re-learn everything studied during the previous z'man.

  12. During the next z'man, dedicate an hour a day to re-learn everything from the previous z'man.

  13. If one doesn't have time to learn Tosfot, or if it's hard for him, then learn only gemara and Rashi in the prescribed manner, which has tremendous value in itself.

It's worth finding a copy to read the more in-depth explanations. He also gives pointers for use during the actual study, and such.

  • This is good, but I can't follow the parts (9 onward) where he says to relearn everything that night, or over Shabbos, or later. Did he not say and stress earlier that relearning should take exactly as long as learning it in the first place? "Re-learning=doing exactly as you did when you first learned it, no skipping or fast-forwarding."
    – MichoelR
    Feb 8, 2021 at 20:35
  • @MichoelR I'll look it over again and get back to you.
    – Harel13
    Feb 8, 2021 at 20:50
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    @MichoelR I'm still making my way through the book, but so far it doesn't seem that he's answering your question. However, it seems to me that he implied that the quality of the learning every time should be the same, but naturally, the more times you learn something, the quicker it will be for you to understand it. Which is really the big trick he's trying to teach, that every time you re-learn, you go through every word and try to understand once again, not just zip through almost impatiently.
    – Harel13
    Feb 11, 2021 at 16:13
  • Thank you, that's a good point. And that is something that I have always found very difficult to do.
    – MichoelR
    Feb 12, 2021 at 5:07
  • @MichoelR Yeah, same.
    – Harel13
    Feb 12, 2021 at 6:39

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