The Society for the Advancement of the Torah Sheb'al Peh
Innovation in Learning , Return to Tradition
The textual systems which accompany the student in learning are as follows:
Numbering of sugyot – every chapter is divided into individual sugyot and the sugyot are numbered consecutively. Thus, one may refer to a given sugyah, not only to a given page of Talmud, and the reference becomes more exact.
Numbering of sugyah components – the lines of the sugyah are numbered for ease of location and reference.
Fonts and colors - The four levels of Biblical quotations, Tannaitic sources, Amoraic sources, and Talmudic sources are given different fonts and colors. The following is the color and font key:
מקרא - Biblical quotations
תנאים – Tannaitic sources
אמוראים – Amoraic sources
שקלא וטריא – Talmudic sources
The colors enable the student to immediately “map” the contents of the sugyah, and thereby to know what sections relate to what other sections.
4. Indentations – in sugyot from the Amoraic period in which the basic structure of the sugyah is the series of amoraic memrot, the talmudic additions onto the amoraic frame are indented. This sets the talmudic additions as commentary on the amoraic statements which, of course, is their intended function. The student who scans the text can immediately learn the sources on the right margin first, and afterwards the talmudic additions.
The cumulative effect of the four systems is clarity, precision, and efficiency of study, freeing the student to concentrate his efforts on the real essence of Talmudic study: understanding of the content of the Amoraic statements and analysis of the Shakla V'Tarya.