The Development of Halacha

The Philosophy, Development & Structure of Halacha

Rabbi Manning has developed and taught various courses on the Philosophy, Development and Structure of Halacha, which investigate this important topic in different degrees of detail. You can download these audio shiurim and source sheets by following these links.


 The Oral Law

 Introductory course of 4 lectures

A short lecture series on the nature of halachic change and development over the centuries. 

  1. Revelation of Torah at Sinai;
  2. Transmission, Machloket and Truth;
  3. Mishna, Gemara and Talmud;
  4. Rishonim, Acharonim and Modern Psak


Torah MiSinai

 A course of 20 shiurim

Click on the microphone icon for a detailed analysis of the origins and development of the halachic system, from Mount Sinai to the present day. This course charts the historical and philosophical evolution of the Oral Law, with emphasis on its historical and geo-political context, and major meta-halachic and hashkafic themes.

Torah, Text & Transmission

A 10-part course

A 10-part course of audio shiurim on the transmission and development of the Torah, recorded at the OU Israel Center in Jerusalem during the summer of 2015.

Halachic Change in the Modern World

A series of 10 lectures

This lecture series outlines the theological and sociological influences on the development of halacha since the formation of the Talmud 1,500 years ago. How and when does Jewish law change and adapt and what is the hashkafic matrix which determines the parameters of acceptable and unacceptable halachic innovation?


Mekorot HaTorah

A course of 61 shiurim

The Mekorot HaTorah course focuses on the origins of halacha and hashkafa and it raises and attempts to grapple with issues that are rarely dealt with, and analyzes the sources in depth. 

Important Notes on this Course


Controversial Issues from the 2nd Temple Period

A 3-part course

This short course examines key issues that were decided during the Second Temple Period and which still have resonance today. 

1. Ktav Ivri and Ktav Ashuri – How Did They Write?
2. The Missing 168 Years   
3. The Canonization of Tenach

Understanding Minhag

A series of 7 lectures

What is Minhag (Jewish custom) – and how is it integrated into the halachic process?  How do we define what is a legitimate minhag?  This series of shiurim examines a number of prominent minhagim and explores this fascinating topic.


Da’at Torah & Rabbinic Authority

2 series of lectures

Rabbi Manning gave a series of 4 lectures in 2017 presenting the current and historic understanding of Rabbinic authority, and a second series of 3 lectures in 2019 about Da’at Torah concerning the Israeli Election and Vaccinations.


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