I was told that one should not learn the laws of Nidda (I guess including orach Chaim 240 and even hoezer 25) until engaged, and not the laws of mourning until applicable (lo alainu)

Is this true?
Or is something similar to this true?
Are there other parts of the Torah which are recommened not to learn...?
Sources please.

  • 2
    I've also heard (in the opposite direction) that learning Gitin is a segula for a happy marriage
    – b a
    Dec 28, 2017 at 13:26
  • 1
    @ba, Eli Mansour said something similar in teaching Gittin Daf Yomi in the 11th cycle.
    – Ze'ev
    Dec 2, 2019 at 19:45

3 Answers 3


The idea behind not learning the laws of mourning, is a superstition that this could cause someone to die, and the laws to become applied (see Hattam Sofer YD 346, and a discussion of the idea here). R. Elyashiv is quoted as rejecting this idea here. Similarly, this article quotes Yossef Omets (pg. 270) as referencing this superstition, but nevertheless encouraging the study of the laws. There is also a famous passage in Sefer Hassidim (291) encouraging the study of Moed Kattan and the third chapter of Berakhot. Presumably this was due to a superstition about studying death related material, but the Sefer Hassidim nevertheless extols such study. The article also infers from Igrot Moshe (YD Vol. IV:60:4) that there is no problem for non-mourners to study the material. R. Hayyim Kanievsky is similarly quoted (Shu"t Hok Heshiv YD: 5) as stating not to be concerned with this superstition.

The idea behind not learning the laws of Nidda is presumably that it is inappropriate / and or may arouse inappropriate thoughts. However, a Rosh Yeshiva I know felt there was no problem. (Presumably if an individual felt he had a problem learning the material, then that individual should refrain, but he felt there was no universal default problem.)

  • I don't plan on naming the RY...
    – mevaqesh
    Dec 28, 2017 at 13:25
  • Are there sources supporting these ideas?
    – hazoriz
    Dec 28, 2017 at 13:28
  • @hazoriz Added many sources regarding the former. Haven't found sources explicitly prohibiting for the latter. In general, it is safe to assume that the general source of the mitsva of talmud Torah applies...
    – mevaqesh
    Dec 28, 2017 at 13:48

Two thoughts on learning the laws of mourning, in addition to the very good set of answers here on MY

  • in a weekly gemara shiur, we are learning Moed Katan (the third chapter of which covers some of the laws of mourning). Before we got there, the rav leading the shiur went to ask R Chaim Kanievsky if it was appropriate. R Kanievsky initially advised to only learn these laws between 17 Tammuz and Tisha b'Av. Once he understood we were learning weekly (and it would take years if only learning for 3 weeks), he said there was no problem to continue and we should all give one pruta (smallest coin) to tsedaka
  • on a practical level, if one doesn't know the laws in advance, it is too late to learn when one needs them. "Things" go very fast when learning of the departure of a closed relative, and a Jew needs to know how to behave in these circumstances

Many semikha programs, including RIETS for example, require that students study Niddah & Avelut. There is no requirement that students enrolled there be married or mourners.

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