This is it! You’ve been waiting many years for this special moment in your life – and it’s arrived! You’ve met that special woman of your dreams, someone you are ready to spend the rest of your life with! The time period leading to your marriage should be the most exciting period of your life! You’re anticipating a full life even beyond that happiness. This is how it should be and you are deserving of it!
Preparing for a proper Jewish home – based upon Torah and Mitzvot – the very foundations of a Jewish home, takes effort and work. By the time marriage comes, the groom (Chatan) should already be well learned in the laws of two of the three pillars of the Jewish home – namely, Kashrut and Shabbat. Naturally he should also be familiar with Tefillin, Mezuzot, Tzitzit, the holy days, davening, giving charity and much more. But there is one area he may not yet be familiar with. The third basic pillar of the Jewish home rests on the laws of family purity – Taharat HaMishpacha – or, as these laws are commonly known – the laws of Niddah.
From the moment a woman experiences her first cycle, she becomes a Niddah. Her status is changed to one of ritual impurity which must be purified before she may be intimate with her husband.
This stage can begin at any age, but since women do not go to Mikvah before marrying in today’s times, she will remain with her status until marriage. She will then need to prepare herself in accordance with Jewish law, for immersion in a Kosher Mikvah (a ritual pool of water) and thereby be prepared for her first night of marriage together with her husband.
This process will repeat itself with each successive cycle that she undergoes. During the times of her cycle, many laws will come into place for both the husband and wife. After following the laws for purification, the woman will be required to immerse in a Mikvah once again in order to be permitted to be with her husband.
It’s a beautiful process. An on and off cycle which keeps husband and wife “connected” – always. An on-off process which allows each one of the couple to experience a period of separation – with a view to creating a unique respect for each other, followed by a period of being together again. Though the separation seems to keep the couple apart from each other, following the laws in accordance with the Shulchan Aruch (the basic code of Jewish law) actually ends up bringing the couple closer together, allowing them to see each other as souls, as people with emotions – not just physical desires.
The laws are by no means simple, and every Chatan (and Kallah) must familiarize himself with them in order to be prepared for what will follow.
Reb Eliyahu is a qualified Chatan counselor (with certification from Rabbi Fishel Jacobs of Kfar Chabad – author of “Family Purity” and many other books) and offers Chatan classes to those who need to learn these laws. Chatan counselling is all about sharing the beautiful values of a pure Jewish life and preparing Chatanim appropriately for their start in following the laws of Taharat HaMishpacha.
Sessions are offered on a professional basis in-person at his home in Jerusalem, as well as over the Internet using Skype. Reb Eliyahu’s wife Shoshanah is responsible for teaching the Kallot.
“…Thank you for your teaching and your wonderful enthusiasm” — S.M.