Maran HaShulḥan 'Arukh, citing the Talmud Bavli (Niddah 13B), states that a man must avoid holding his member when urinating (Oraḥ Ḥayim 3:14). That is, holding me'atarah u'lema'alah is forbidden while holding me'atarah u'lemattah is permitted (using the Gemara's terms).

MishnaBeruraYomi.org (2:17-2:57) and MishnaBerura.com (18:30-19:25) both explain me'atarah u'lema'alah (the forbidden area) to be the shaft until where it connects to the glans ('atarah). RaSh"I explains the Gemara accordingly (s.v. מעטרה ולמעלה).

Considering that the glans ('atarah) contains the highest concentration of nerve endings in the male body, how does this make sense? Would it not make more sense to permit holding a place with fewer nerve endings and to avoid holding a place with more nerve endings (to avoid stimulation)?

  • 2
    Perhaps it's not a din in sensitivity rather a din in how much area you could be holding.
    – andrewmh20
    Mar 31, 2016 at 19:42
  • Let us continue this discussion in chat.
    – andrewmh20
    Apr 1, 2016 at 6:45
  • The Kitzur Shulchan Aruch states that one is permitted to hold his organ of circumcision while urinating if he has "bread in the basket" according to the Artscroll translation.
    – user13937
    Feb 27, 2017 at 4:19
  • 2
    Doesn't the Shulchan Aruch pasken that one shouldn't urinate while standing to begin with?
    – DonielF
    Mar 27, 2017 at 0:33
  • @Ploni judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/60038/…
    – DonielF
    Mar 27, 2017 at 0:58

2 Answers 2


A small Google search tells me that, it is almost impossible to ejaculat only through glans stimulation,
but very possible through shaft stimulation

(There is a halacha that someone can not have children if he does not have any glans)


I'm no medical expert, far from it, but, as far as I can tell from an online search, those extra nerve endings appear to be primarily in the foreskin.

Judaism mandates circumcision for almost all Jewish males.

  • @msh210 I agree that this doesn't really answer the question and rather calls its validity into question (which is fine).
    – Lee
    Mar 31, 2016 at 17:07
  • @Clint TMI. Way TMI.
    – user6591
    Jul 25, 2017 at 23:28

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