Positive time-bound mitzvot.
A few notes from my Women and Judaism class that I’ve learned before but have come up again and bear repeating. I present them here without commentary but for the sake of remembrance.
- ‘פטור,’ patur—exempted—is not the same thing as ‘אסור,’ asur—forbidden.
- Tzitzit were considered a non-time-bound mitzvah but R. Shimon dissented said they were (because they were not required for pajamas—although we note they weren’t forbidden for pajamas) and the Bavli ultimately decided not only to side with R. Shimon, the minority opinion, but to erase the original opinion that this mitzvah is imcumbent upon women. The Yerushalmi presents both.
- The act of laying tefillin is in the same exempt category as hearing the shofar, also a positive time-bound commandment, which many women flock to and believe they are not exempt from.
- The Talmud was a radically progressive document in its socio-historical context for the protections it offered women. What we need is new Talmud.