In Judaism, a neder (נדר, plural nedarim) is a self-made oral declaration that makes an object prohibited to the person making the vow. The person thus creates a prohibition (ISsuR) having the status of scriptural law (De'oraita), as the Torah states: Due to the latter phrase, "he must do," he also creates the positive commandment to fulfill what he said, as well as the negative prohibition to not desecrate his word. The most common way a neder is made is through verbal pronunciation. But according to some opinions, the performance of an act on three consecutive occasions is akin to a neder.

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  • In Judaism, a neder (נדר, plural nedarim) is a self-made oral declaration that makes an object prohibited to the person making the vow. The person thus creates a prohibition (ISsuR) having the status of scriptural law (De'oraita), as the Torah states: אִישׁ כִּי-יִדֹּר נֶדֶר לַיהוָה, אוֹ-הִשָּׁבַע שְׁבֻעָה לֶאְסֹר אִסָּר עַל-נַפְשׁוֹ--לֹא יַחֵל, דְּבָרוֹ: כְּכָל-הַיֹּצֵא מִפִּיו, יַעֲשֶׂה.When the man pledges a vow (yiDoR NeDeR) to Hashem, or swears an oath (hish'ShaVA` SheVu`Ah),proscribing a prohibition (lE'SoR ISsuR) on himself, he shall not desecrate his word; whatever has come out of his mouth he must do.   Num. 30:3, at the beginning of the parashah Matot. Due to the latter phrase, "he must do," he also creates the positive commandment to fulfill what he said, as well as the negative prohibition to not desecrate his word. The neder may a promise of prohibition or deprivation (neder issar, e.g., "Let all beans be forbidden to me for thirty days"), or a dedication to the Temple (neder heḳdesh, e.g. "I pledge to bring a burnt-offering"). The latter case forbids the object's benefit to the person making the neder, and obligates him to bring it to its new "owner." Thus the thing common to any neder is that it applies to the object, not the person. When a specific object is pledged, the neder is also called a nedavah, dedication, which is the name in Deut. 12:17; an example is, "This [animal] shall be a burnt-offering." In contrast, the type of shevu`ah mentioned above (referred to by the Sages as shevu'at bitui, שבעת ביטוי) (and distinct from "oath" in testimony and jurisprudence, also called shevu`ah) is a declaration wherein a person makes a statement obligating himself to perform a positive act or to refrain from doing something, either regarding past events or future ones. A shevu`ah is a requirement on the person, not on the object. An example is, "I will not eat any beans for thirty days." The word neder is often translated into English and other languages as a "vow", while shevu'ah is often rendered as "oath" though no single English word can exactly describes either. The word "neder" is mentioned 33 times in the Pentatuach, 19 of which occur in the Book of Numbers. Judaism views the power of speech as very strong. It is speech that distinguishes humans from animals, and has the power to accomplish a lot for better or for worse. Due to the strength of a neder, and the fact that one must absolutely be fulfilled if made, many pious Jews engage in the practice of saying "b'li neder" after a statement that they will do something, meaning that their statement is not a binding neder in the event they cannot fulfill their pledge due to unforeseen circumstances. The most common way a neder is made is through verbal pronunciation. But according to some opinions, the performance of an act on three consecutive occasions is akin to a neder. (en)
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  • In Judaism, a neder (נדר, plural nedarim) is a self-made oral declaration that makes an object prohibited to the person making the vow. The person thus creates a prohibition (ISsuR) having the status of scriptural law (De'oraita), as the Torah states: Due to the latter phrase, "he must do," he also creates the positive commandment to fulfill what he said, as well as the negative prohibition to not desecrate his word. The most common way a neder is made is through verbal pronunciation. But according to some opinions, the performance of an act on three consecutive occasions is akin to a neder. (en)
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  • Neder (en)
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