Yeshivat Har Etzion

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Yeshivat Har Etzion
ישיבת הר עציון
Yeshivat Har Etzion's main Bet Midrash building
Established 1968 (1968)
Affiliation Jewish
Students 480
Location Alon Shvut, West Bank
Coordinates: 31°39′28″N 35°07′24″E / 31.65765°N 35.12332°E / 31.65765; 35.12332

Yeshivat Har Etzion (YHE; Hebrew: ישיבת הר עציון), commonly known as "Gush", is a hesder yeshiva located in Alon Shvut, an Israeli settlement in Gush Etzion in the West Bank, near Jerusalem, Israel. With a student body of roughly 480, it is one of the largest hesder yeshivot in Israel and the West Bank.[1]


Most of the students are Israelis in the hesder program, which integrates intensive yeshiva study with at least 15 months of active service in the Israel Defense Forces. Post-high school overseas students are also accepted after undergoing a selective application and interview process. Many return after university to study for the rabbinate in the yeshiva's Semicha Program (Semicha given by the Israeli Rabbanut) and affiliated Herzog College. Over 550 alumni from overseas have made aliyah and a high percentage are involved in Jewish education. Others have gone on to prominent academic careers in science, law, medicine, engineering and mathematics.

Yeshivat Darkaynu, a yeshiva program for developmentally disabled men, is located on the YHE campus.[2]


In 1968, shortly after the Six Day War, a movement was founded to resettle the Gush Etzion region. Rabbi Yehuda Amital, a prominent rabbi and Jewish educator was asked to head the yeshiva. Rav Aharon Liechtenstein moved from the United States soon after it was established to join Rav Amital as Rosh Yeshiva. First established in Kfar Etzion, it moved to Alon Shvut, where it developed into a major institution.[3] On January 4, 2006, Rabbis Yaaqov Medan and Baruch Gigi joined Rabbis Amital and Aharon Lichtenstein as roshei yeshiva in anticipation of Rabbi Amital's upcoming retirement. Rabbi Amital's involvement in the yeshiva effectively ended due to illness in Fall 2009, and he died on July 9 (27 Tammuz), 2010. Rav Aharon Lichtenstein passed away in April of 2015, and his son Rav Mosheh Lichtenstein replaced his spot as Rosh Yeshiva.

Educational and religious philosophy[edit]

According to the mission statement of the yeshiva, it advocates a combination of Torah study and a love of the Jewish people and the Land of Israel.[4] Its embrace of spirituality and religious striving is tempered with a message of moderation and openness. YHE encourages serious study, creative thought, intellectual rigor, fellowship with all Jews regardless of level of observance or political outlook, and a universal, humanistic outlook.

YHE employs the Brisk analytic style of Talmud study.


The yeshiva operates two libraries. The Torah Library has over 70,000 volumes, as well as CDs, microfilms, a collection of rare Judaica and an antique book facility. The state-of-the-art Pedagogic Resource Center of the Herzog College supplements the central Torah library, providing audio-visual material for teachers of Judaic studies in Israel and worldwide.

Virtual Beit Midrash[edit]

YHE established the Israel Koschitzky Virtual Beit Midrash, which provides yeshiva-style courses and shiurim (lectures) in Torah and Judaism to students of all ages outside the Yeshiva walls, in an effort to open to the greatest extent possible a window into the Beit Midrash. Over 18,000 subscribers in every continent throughout the world subscribe to weekly shiurim, in English, Hebrew and Russian covering subjects such as Tanakh, Gemara, Halakha, Jewish philosophy and various other Jewish topics.[5]


KMTT is a daily Torah study Podcast, from Yeshivat Har Etzion which is sent out every day of the week.[6]

Notable faculty[edit]

Notable alumni[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Yeshiva University". 
  2. ^
  3. ^ Lonely man of faith, Larry Derfner, Jerusalem Post, December 22, 1995
  4. ^ Administrator. "Mission Statement". 
  5. ^ "vbm haretzion". 
  6. ^ "KMTT - The Torah Podcast". 
  7. ^ a b c d e Roshei Yeshiva Archived March 20, 2012, at the Wayback Machine.

External links[edit]