PSYCHOLOGY AND JEWISH IAWl by Solomon Schimmel Dr. Solomon Schimmel is Professor of Jewish Education and Psychology at Hebrew College, Brookline, MA. He is the author of The Seven Deadly Sins: Jewish, Christian and Classical Reflections on Human Nature (The Free Pr~ss, 1992) and has published widely on psychology and religion. Dr. Schimmel moderates the JEWISH-PSY list on SHAMASH on the Internet and has offered distance-learning courses on Judaism and Psychology over the Internet. He is currently writing a book dealing with Jewish perspectives on communal service/social work/social welfare. It is difficult to imagine any legal system, secular or religious, in which assumptions or predictions about human thought, feeling, and behavior do not playa major role in establishing, interpreting, and applying the law. Jewish law, too, in all its spheres-civil, criminal, family, and ritual-is replete with assumptions about how people think, feel, and behave in various life situations. Many halakhic Oewish legal) terms and concepts are of a psychological character or include significant psychological dimensions. Among them are "migo" (an individual making a false claim would use a more rather than a less plausible lie), "umdena" (assumption or assessment), "hazaka" (presumption), "ones" (duress or coercion), "ratzon" (will or
Shofar: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Jewish Studies – Purdue University Press
Published: Oct 3, 1996
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