Nishmat's Women’s Health and HalachaIn memory of Chaya Mirel bat R' Avraham

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Mikveh for spiritual purpose

25 November, 2015

Question:

I was wondering – Is there any halacha against a woman using the mikvah even if it would not be halachically significant? For example – starting fresh after divorce, finishing radiation treatment, a woman in menopause etc. If a woman wants to immerse in the Mikvah because it is a spiritual experience for her even though she does not need to halachically – can she?? Are there any sources that relate to this – whether pro or con?


Answer:

It is permissible for a married woman to immerse in a mikveh any night when she is tehorah for spiritual reasons.  In this case, she should not recite a bracha prior to immersion.  She also would not be required to perform the full preparation procedure.

We are not aware of any classic sources that deal with this question directly, although there are sources explaining why single women (including divorcees) are not generally permitted to immerse.

There is a custom to immerse on erev Yom Kippur for purposes of teshuvah (repentance). In some communities, unmarried women are also permitted to immerse at this time; a local halachic authority should be consulted.


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