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  • Halacha
  • Man's Role in Life

Can women go to hell?

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Rabbi Ari Shvat

Cheshvan 12, 5782
Question
I once heard something about how women do not normally go to gehinnom. is this true? If so, do they just.. go straight to gan eden? or what?
Answer
I have no idea where you heard that, but women clearly have free will, and accordingly, also reward and punishment. "All Israel has a share in the world-to-come", but that includes men as well, after we all finish our respective "training and development" here and in the hereafter. It's true that women didn't sin in many of the Biblical sins (the Spies, the Golden Calf…), and in general they obviously commit much less violent crimes, not to mention rape and sins of problematic lust. In general, women are more spiritual, and Godly ("merciful, kind, patient…"), and that's why, according to R. Hirsch and Rav Kook, they need less mitzvot and obligations. Their roles as wives and mothers are innately spiritual and giving=Godly, as opposed to the problematic money-hungry, over-sexed and/or violent "taking" personality, which is clearly more associated with men. In every country in the world, there are many many more male inmates and jails for men, just as they comprise most of the alcoholics and drug addicts. For whatever reason (and there surely are many interacting factors), women are clearly more responsible, less reckless, and more loyal than men. Unfortunately, in today's western society, resulting from a misunderstanding of feminism, women often have an inferiority complex, and try to copy men, while in reality, if Judaism measures a person not by their physical strength or money, but by their Godliness, men should strive to be spiritual like woman! Nevertheless, if a woman does choose wrong, she obviously must also pay the consequences and undergo the necessary rehabilitation in this world and in the world to come.
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