New member and first question! I'm looking for resources for guidance in the possibly made-up term, vertical learning. What I mean by that is my learning often suffers from being hodge-podgey and lacking depth/comprehension. I end up jumping from topic to topic. To me, this is horizontal and I often don't get a good enough understanding of the area. What I am looking for is more topic based. Let's say I want to take up the topic of hilchot mezuza or hilchot orlah, is there a guided resource that brings you from mishna down to halacha le'maaseh.

I say guided because it is rather daunting, at least to me, to do it without direction. Any suggestions are welcome.

Update #1: I'll try to give more info on myself - let me know if I leave anything out - I very much enjoy learning, whether it's tanach, shas, halacha or hashkafa. I do not regularly learn but would like to. I believe a routine would help immensely but I think a routine needs less hodge-podge and more structure. I have intermediate Hebrew proficiency, beginner aramaic, it's rare for me to get through a daf without the help of artscroll, tosafot is often out of the question. I would describe myself as having beginner-intermediate skills but poor structure/big picture 

Update #2: I started using the suggested method and have taken up hilchot tefillin going through the tur through the shulchan aruch. It's a pretty extensive area but enjoyable. Does anybody have suggestions for an area that's less ambitious.

Thanks, Hal

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    Welcome to Mi Yodeya Hal. Good question. Jun 6, 2014 at 17:28
  • If you are looking to find a topic in shas there is a very good resource which is called Hamafteach on shas,has all topics in the Bavili
    – sam
    Jun 6, 2014 at 17:53
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    Welcome to Mi Yodeya and thank you for bringing your question here. It feels very broad as written; I encourage answerers to focus on categories of resources or ways of identifying them, rather than trying to list resources for all possible topics of in-depth learning. Jun 6, 2014 at 22:19
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    Welcome to Mi Yodeya, Hal. I imagine you may get better answers (for you) if you would identify a target skill level. For example, someone who cannot read Gemara without a translation may need a different resource than someone who can fluently read Rishonim. Jun 8, 2014 at 2:43

2 Answers 2

  1. Look up the subject in Shulchan Aruch. Find the Siman.
  2. Look up the Siman in the Tur.
  3. Read the Beis Yosef, and look up his sources.
  4. Go back to the Shulchan Aruch and commentaries.
  5. Look up Mishna Brura/Aruch Hashulchan.
  6. Search the Internet/CYLOR for practical Halacha
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    I would add that the Ein Mishpat Ner Mitzvah on the side is a very important resource as well as Torah Ohr and Mesores Hashas. For history of alot of halachos the Aruch Hashulchan Is sometimes the only one who mentions certain ideas
    – sam
    Jun 6, 2014 at 17:50
  • One really has to know your level. Your question is excellent and it is a pity that very few learn the way you propose. And even those that claim to hardly do. You really need a 'rebbe' and a good one at that. I doubt if you will ever find one. But keep on and tell us more about yourself and I am sure we can guide you.
    – preferred
    Jun 6, 2014 at 18:49
  • I must add that each topic you mentioned is very broad and trying to do 'all' of it is well nigh impossible. The way Jewish learning works is that each topic is 'interleaved' with others which makes it all more daunting.
    – preferred
    Jun 6, 2014 at 18:52
  • A good and better question would be which I would reply to. What is the best topic I should choose to achieve this.
    – preferred
    Jun 6, 2014 at 18:55

Encyclopedia Talmudit (Hebrew only) has sources and summaries for many topics, and can provide a good framework for in-depth learning.

For example, if you were interested in learning about Eating Matzah on Pesach, you'd find a summary of the following issues א. המצוה והחייבים בה; ב. ברכתה; ג. השיעור והזמן; ד. סדר אכילתה; ה. מצה שאין יוצאים בה; ו. איסור אכילתה בערב פסח. with extensive footnotes to help you learn the sources yourself.

Another good resource is the Sefer haChinuch. It summarizes each mitzvah, and provides a quick overview of the halacha, and refers you to the relevant Gemara's. It's available in English translation.

If you're looking for shuirim or more guidance, YU Torah and the Virtual Beit Midrash have many articles and recordings on a wide variety of topics in both English and Hebrew.

There are several similar websites, but those two are the most comprehensive (as far as I know).

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    Iyun hadaf is probably one of the most comprehensive
    – sam
    Jun 13, 2014 at 2:58

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