As per the title. The tag seems inherently opposed to the site's identity as one which is aligned with traditional Judaism, which does not generally view traditional Jewish beliefs as being mythological. Is there a better word that might be used for the concept being conveyed? Should the tag not be used at all? Should I not be so sensitive?

For what it's worth, the tag is used five times: Here, and I confess I don't see how it applies. Here, where I do see how it applies, I think, but then any question seeking a Jewish perspective on non-Jewish beliefs might be eligible for this tag, and it seems that those questions are not in j.se's scope. Finally, there are three old questions by one user that seem, at least to me, to have the agenda I'm reading from this tag in the first place.

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    I'm not comfortable with "myths" either but am also at a loss for how I would tag the question about the lamed-vavniks or the one about what sheidim look like. Maybe "legends"? ("Aggadah" would be too general, IMO.) Commented Oct 2, 2011 at 17:42
  • @MonicaCellio - I don't necessary agree with you that Aggadah would be too general. Commented Jul 16, 2012 at 14:06
  • I think you are confusing the traditional meaning of the word myth ("A myth is, broadly, any worldview-based traditional story, or collection or study thereof" (from here)) and a later common/slang usage to mean falsehood (similar to how the meaning of awesome has changed with time). IMO the traditional/technical meaning is quite applicable to Judaism, and is used as such in various academic or formal English writings. See for instance this article and particularly these two sections in it.
    – Double AA Mod
    Commented Jan 14, 2013 at 3:26
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    Related english.stackexchange.com/q/420366/19365
    – Double AA Mod
    Commented Nov 30, 2017 at 4:47
  • @DoubleAA Perhaps an urban-legends tag, which doesn't have any other meanings (traditional or slang) attached to it?
    – Zev Spitz
    Commented May 21, 2018 at 23:03

1 Answer 1


For all the questions listed above except "Geihinom and Gan Eden", "myths" seems to be used to mean "urban legends" or the like: things that many people speak of but the questioner doubts the veracity of. In other words, it's used the same way is.

So one solution would be to merge it into as a synonym and write a good summary for so that people don't use it for other myth-related questions. (And de-tag "Geihinom and Gan Eden".)

That leaves open a separate question, viz whether is necessary at all. But it's a good plan for the time being IMO.

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    I remember a discussion a while ago in which there was a consensus that sources is superfluous. I think there is a distinction between it (very broad, possibly universally so) and the tag in question. myths is for things about which there is a reasonable assumption to be baseless.
    – WAF
    Commented Oct 2, 2011 at 19:26
  • @WAF: Well, myths is for things about which there's an assumption that they're baseless. Its reasonableness will generally be debatable. (This very question seems to be based on such debatedness.) As to sources, I don't recall the discussion you mention, but I have no problem with getting rid of the tag.
    – msh210 Mod
    Commented Oct 2, 2011 at 19:32
  • (See my comment to the question.)
    – Double AA Mod
    Commented Jan 14, 2013 at 3:29

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