Saturday, June 28, 2008

Note from the TH Blogger

I will be out of town and unable to respond to comments for a while - please continue to leave comments, or news articles or blog entries of interest, for me to post. Comments require my approval, so you won't see your comments any time soon. Many thanks to those of you who have commented on the news and notes here, and to those of you who continue to link here to keep informed.

Please continue to search through the articles and links in the "Those Headcoverings" web pages. Look through the Google news feeder thing I added to the side bar for news. Look through the Christian blogs I've linked to as well, and their side bars. Just keep walking. . . .

"It is good to learn, and even better to act on what you believe to be true."

Friday, June 27, 2008

Letter to Denmark

Dear Inger Støjberg,

In this news entry, I found this quote attributed to you:

Muslim headscarf divides, disturbs in Denmark

"The headscarf symbolises that women are inferior to men (and) I don't think this is something we should promote through a beauty competition," Inger Stoejberg, a high-ranking member of Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen's Liberal Party said in a newspaper interview ahead of the pageant.

Beauty competitions are demeaning to women, but that's not my point.

I wanted to respectfully point out to you that the headscarf does not, in fact, symbolize that women are inferior to men, but that if anything, men are inferior in having more difficulty to control their physical passions or focus their visual minds. The headscarf is not worn because of a specific religious injunction (as you can see if you look up the debates within the Muslim community ) - it is only an understanding of a portion of their scriptures held to by some as an extreme view of modesty. Some Muslim, and some Jewish, women wear a headcovering out of modesty. It is Christian women, specifically the most Orthodox, Catholic and Traditional (Hutterite, for example) who wear a headcovering because of the position of men and women in God's creation. They do not believe that women are "inferior" either, but that there is a place for everything, and that the headcovering during prayer and reading the scripture shows their understanding of their position.

I simply wish that all those in authority in Europe, and many of the Muslims themselves, would understand the head covering for what it is - a symbol of MODESTY. If you wish to punish or put down Muslims, radical or otherwise, please attack something besides their convictions of dressing with modesty.

If I have not contacted the correct person, please pass on my thoughts to anyone else that needs to understand this, including "Naser Khader, a Muslim member of parliament, who agreed, calling instead for a competition for "the best arguments against the headscarf,"" according to this article.

Respectfully yours,


Thursday, June 26, 2008

Christian Headcovering Bible Class

"Wisdom and Hope" produced a series of YouTube videos of a Bible study class on the subject of Christian headcoverings, and other various germane topics which came up during the class. Go to this link at "Babylon Falling" to see the seven part video discussion concerning 1 Corinthians 11. Each section is about 8-10 minutes long. Questions from the class during the study, and other points are edited into the video as text (like subtitles), as well as a trendy, rock accompanied introduction (which, I think could have been left off or done differently - LM).

I did try to watch all of the videos, but I cannot vouch for every moment, because I missed some of the study. I plan to go back to view more later, but wanted to pass this on to the readers of this blog for your information and comparative studies. Please feel free to post comments or questions to this, or any other post at my blog. I'm sure that the original writers/bloggers would appreciate hearing from you as well.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Hijab Tutorial 2

Hijab is it a Must, Not a Choice?
Tuesday, 24 June 2008; - Pakistan Daily

Thorough article explaining from Qur'anic scripture and the original Arabic language, what is meant by Islam, hijab, and khimar. Photo from the article.


Another newbie Hijabi blogging at Muslima Maria. She writes: "
When you put on a head scarf you are sort of forced to look at yourself without any of he masks you carry with you day to day, you are forced to look within - and I think that is the underlying reason why it is so hard to do." I think that is the way it is with anyone who is trying something like headcovering in the beginning.

Christian headcovering blogs and etc.

Having trouble understanding what covering - or not covering - might mean to someone who doesn't agree with you? Please read "Pursuing Titus 2"'s blog entry: "We’re All Letting the Guy Keep His Shoes, Let’s Be Loving About Everything Else".

Beginning with a quote: "Who art thou that judgest another man’s servant? to his own master he standeth or falleth" from Romans 14:4, she continues a discussion of judging one another, using headcovering as the point of possible "contention". A must-read and think-about for understanding headcovering Christians, and those who don't cover too.

Here are her opening remarks. Please click the title to read the entire entry and see the answer to the question asked.
Christians are a judgmental lot. It probably springs from the fact that the Lord is so important to us. We want desperately to please and honor Him, and we’re all doing our very best. Trouble is, Jane Christian’s best may not look like Nancy Christian’s best, and then what? Well, sometimes there can be very cordial, loving interactions between people as they seek to understand each other, and maybe one or both will even end up changing somehow. But more likely Jane and Nancy are both quite firm in their convictions (thank you very much!) They’re doing things differently, and they’re going to keep doing things differently. And that’s when the trouble can start.

I cover my head in real life so let’s use that for our Jane and Nancy story, too. Let’s say Jane doesn’t cover her head. She has no conviction whatsoever about that. And let’s say Nancy has a very strong conviction that she just cannot get away from that she should cover her head. OK, here’s the question: Who is going to be judgmental?


"a heart pierced" posts in "on headcovering" why, as a Catholic woman, veiling is a good thing. She writes:
Many people ask me why i wear the veil…and there are so many “arguments” for and against it. For me it comes down to three things: Holy Traditon and Holy Scripture (St. Paul), to help me persevere in humility, and the sense of hiddenness it gives me: reminding me that i am here for God alone and, symbolically, visible to Him alone. i also find it a great help in connecting to and imitating our Blessed Mother and a great help in keeping “custody of the eyes,” so that none of my attention is drawn away from God when I am in His presence at the Holy Mass or in prayer while in His Eucharistic Presence.
She also quotes from a homily by Fr. Hathaway in the title linked above. Please read her full thoughts at the title linked above.


"Free to Cover" is going through the week in headcovering and modest dress, and keeping up with it by posting pictures of herself as she goes. She shares her thoughts, doubts and triumphs in this blog - scroll through her other entries as well.


Finally, if you haven't seen it before, see Veiled Glory's video at YouTube about why she wears a headcovering. Not the most "dynamic" video, but thorough in it's explanation, at almost 5 minutes long. Click to view: Christian Headcovering or Veil

Note: Always be careful when searching through YouTube (some of the videos and comments to videos are not family or gentle-people friendly). This one is good. :)

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Various Recent News and Notes


Malaysian city warns women over make-up, high heels
, found in Yahoo news
Kota Bharu, capital of conservative northern Kelantan state. . . .

"Nowadays the way women dress attracts unwanted attention. It could lead to all sorts of vice," said Azman Mohd Daham, public relations director of the city council in Kota Bharu, capital of conservative northern Kelantan state.

"We do not advocate tight clothes, too much lipstick or thick make-up, and even the headscarf should not be too transparent," he told AFP. "Women should dress modestly, this is what Islam requires."

The guidelines were sent to local businesses and shops last month, he said, but denied reports that anyone flouting the code faced a fine.

"If they want to follow what we advocate in the campaign, it is entirely their choice but we hope they do because this is the best for them."

"We do not punish anyone for wearing thick make-up or high-heel shoes, there are no fines either," he said, but added that Muslim women did face a fine if they failed to cover their heads with a scarf.

Covering Up: What to learn from the French debate over headscarves.
Reviewing the books: "Why The French Don't Like Headscarves, Islam, the State, and Public Space" by John R. Bowen, and "The Politics of the Veil," by Joan Scott

Click the link above to read the full book review and opinion by Rayyan Al-Shawaf in Christianity Today Book Reviews.


To remove or not remove an Hasidic woman’s wig
short news blurb in "Blogging Religiously" in, in full here:

There have been several interesting court cases in recent years over whether Muslim women can wear the hijab (head covering) when having a picture taken for their driver’s license.

Now a police officer here in Ramapo is taking some heat for forcing an Hasidic Jewish woman to remove her wig for a head-shot after her arrest.

Many Hasidic women who are married wear a wig to cover their hair, which is to be seen only by their husbands.

Town Supervisor Christopher St. Lawrence apologized for the officer’s conduct, saying that a female officer should have processed the woman. He said that police officers will be given a new round of sensitivity training.

Internal link provides full story.


The Head Shaving Event for Breast Cancer Awareness

in the, South Jersey

Just a personal note - I realize that these types of events are done for "solidarity". But, I want you to know that if I ever lose my hair due to cancer treatments, or some other illness, I would rather you KEEP your beautiful hair! and just wear a cancer-cap with me if you want to try to appear sympathetic and raise money for research. I personally don't think that I would feel solidarity with you if you shaved your hair, but rather sadness for your not understanding. There may be some hair loss victims who applaud your sympathy in shaving your hair off. I personally do not understand them. - LisaM



This is a lengthy and more scholarly abstract posted by Mohamad Abdun Nasir concerning "Muslim headscarves in the West: Religion and modernity," in the blog "We Read: Read whatever you want and let's share our thoughts and experience for a better world."


And finally, a blog entry called, "The Science Behind the Veil". Posted by Fatimah, one of four full time university students blogging at "The Deadliest Four". You knew there were more healthy reasons for wearing headcovering. (automatic radio turns on and plays at this address)

Monday, June 23, 2008

Jewish Homemade Kippah

Making Cover, by TikkunKnitter, presents some ideas for homemade head coverings in the Jewish kippah style. This photo is taken right off of the page, so please link to the title above for the full article.


EDIT 10.06.08 - For those of you looking for patterns for making a homemade kippah, please check out "Doctor Simcha".

Miss Headscarf 2008

I had heard rumors of this fashion competition being held in Denmark, but hadn't posted anything yet. So here, in case you haven't heard, are a few links.

During the contest, there was this BBC video report: "Anger over headscarf contest", which is referenced in the really good article from Anthology at blogspot, "Miss Headscarf 2008." The official website of the contest sponsored by Danmarks Radio, "Miss Torklaede 2008," includes a gallery of the headscarf wearing ladies who participated. The winner was a young Danish woman with family heritage from Iraq, as shown here, from this article: Iraqi wins Miss Headscarf contest in Denmark.


Also, if you have the time and would like to "meet" a blogger who wears - and says she is still learning to wear - a headscarf, in the USA, check out "Scarf Ace: Wearing a Muslim Headscarf in America". She chose a great blog name, eh? And she's posted a lot of pretty pictures of women in Muslim style headscarves (hijab) in her sidebar (and various blog entries) too.


For more information on the Muslim faith in other places, read the opinion article, "The Islam you don't hear about," in USA Today, regarding Indonesia - home to more than 200 million Muslims - and containing a lot of links. The author includes this observation: "During my days in Indonesia, I did not see a single woman covered from head to foot in the chador so characteristic of Iran, and in the rural areas I visited many women did not wear any head covering at all."

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Jewish Why I Cover My Hair

happyduck1979 from blogspot is a jeweler by trade, but in this post, "hats on for me," explains her understanding and practice of covering her head and hair in the Jewish tradition. Read her thoughts at the linked blog entry title above, and just a portion of it here:
I am a Modern Orthodox Jew. This is a huge part of who I am and does effect a lot of what I wear and what I do. Through various biblical reference we learn that a married woman should cover her hair. When and how much are questions that people more learned than I have been struggling with for a very long time, but the base fact, that according to traditional Judaism married women wear something on their heads is not really arguable.

From a modesty point of view it is something that becomes private. One of the parts of us that are designated for our husbands. Just as we teach children that "what is under a bathing suit is yours and yours alone, so to does our hair take on this status when we get married. (Why our hair and not, say, our nose or our pinky? I have no idea.) In essence, we cover our hair as a sign both to ourselves and those around us that we are married, and therefore unavailable. In the religious world it is as common a sign of being married as a wedding ring is to the rest of society (Although thankfully for jewelers like myself we also have wedding rings!)

There are a number of ideas of how this should happen. The more traditional streams of Judaism say that it all must be covered all of the time and often use wigs, snoods, scarves etc, that will cover every last strand of hair at all times. Many even sleep in thair coverings of choice. Less traditional streams believe that you should wear a hat or other headcovering for religious rituals (prayer, ceremonies, etc. Along the ideas of wearing a hat connotes respect).

There are also those who have chosen to leave this idea behind all together.

And in case you wondered (and this has nothing to do with the post referenced above except the Jewish tradition, and the fact that she references this movie herself in her entry, which reminded me that I'd taken this quiz once) ...
I am Hodel!

Take the Fiddler on the Roof quiz at

Ancient Roman Statues

Ben Witherington posts on his blogspot about ancient art and inscriptions with "relevance to NT studies which are found in the Istanbul Archaeological Museum." Of notice to those interested in those headcoverings, he observes:
The Romans tended to prefer more realistic portraiture, the Greeks more idealistic portraiture, with the result that we have a bit clearer picture of what ancient Romans looked like than ancient Greeks. At the top eschelons of society one finds many busts of women, almost as many as that of men. Here above is a nice example of a bust of a patrician woman, with prominent Roman nose. One of the things you learn a great deal about from such statues is women's hairstyles of the period, which is of direct relevance to the discussion of a text like 1 Tim. 2.8-15 where Paul critiques women who wear their hair piled up on their head with jewels woven into it. One can well imagine the effect of such a hairdo, if not covered by a head-covering, in a small room at night full of lamps. The woman's coiffure would have been a constant distraction, having the effect of an ancient disco-ball glinting in the lights. This is why Paul insists on women, especially high status women keeping their heads covered, as only God's glory, not human glory was supposed to show up in Christian worship, and a woman's hair was viewed then (and often now) as her own, or if married her husband's glory.
The photo above is copied from this personal website without permission by me; please link to the title above to view the entire article on Graeco-Roman statuary and inscription, with many more photos: Memori Mento-- Please Remember Me; Part One

Of note: what the author here refers to is 1 Timothy 2:8-15, specifically verses 8-10:
I will therefore that men pray every where, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting. In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works.
The detail of the hair dressing the author mentions is not here specifically, but the application this author makes of its distracting quality is worth considering. The apostle Peter writes similarly of women's adornment in 1 Peter 3, particularly verses 3-4: "Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price." The idea of humble modesty and piety, in the aspect of not showing off materially before others or giving undue over-consideration to ones physical self, applies.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Head Covering and Summer Health

Just a reminder; take it for what it's worth:
Protection against the sun begins with wearing a hat. This is a vital first step in keeping healthy, as it guards against overheating and overexposure to the sun. The preferred head covering is a hat, not a cap. Although the popular and seen-everywhere ball caps help some, a hat with a full brim will protect the head, face, neck and ears.

Aside from bringing on heat exhaustion, sun on skin can lead to cancer. It can happen to anyone, but dermatologists and scientists can point to groups in our population who are more susceptible than others to skin cancer. Whether you are in a high-risk group or a low-risk category, the potential danger is there, and it's not worth taking a chance.

If you are going to be outside in the prime sunburn hours of 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., wear a hat. It will fend off harmful ultraviolet rays and keep you a little cooler.

- health information gleaned from from Conway, Arkansas, US
- photo information - June 1963: British actress Millicent Martin models a patterned hat and matching headscarf. (Photo by Harry Benson/Express/Getty Images) Isn't she cute?

* This image is intended for Editorial use (e.g. news or commentary). Any commercial or promotional use requires additional clearance. Contact Getty Images to see if they can clear this image for you.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Headscarves in Germany

For information on the continuing problems of showing a personal understanding of modesty - er, wearing a Muslim style head scarf - in secular Europe, consider taking the time to read the article mentioned yesterday regarding the headscarf in France, and the article, "Muslim Headscarves Test the Limits of German Tolerance," By Thomas Darnstädt, of SPIEGEL ONLINE International. He begins:
For years, Germany's legal experts have been arguing about whether Muslim public officials have the right to wear headscarves. The issue raises difficult questions about religious tolerance and constitutional rights in Germany.
This is a thorough article, relating the controversy in the various states in Germany and for the people of the country. The article asks, over and over again: So what IS a headscarf? It means so many different things to different people. What is a country to do?

(PS - I couldn't help noticing that the German court, pictured in the background of the headscarved woman in the photo used in the front page of this article, are wearing bright red head gear.)


Did you pick up my attitude in the opening sentence there? I'd rather just report the things being said and done about head coverings, and let you, the reader, draw your own conclusions and attitudes. But I just wanted to share a thought I have. I read a question somewhere else which read, "How did we let the Muslim head scarf become the new swastika?" And that is what it has become, in some ways. Interesting how that comparison came up the same day that I came across this article on headscarves in Germany. (Portrait of German countess and fashion model Veruschka wearing a headscarf, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, September 1967. (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

This image is intended for Editorial use (e.g. news or commentary). Any commercial or promotional use requires additional clearance. Contact Getty Images to see if they can clear this image for you.

Let's not forget that the hearts of many in this world that are turning towards a greater orthodoxy, in whatever faith, are in fact intelligent people who are researching and making conscious and difficult choices - sometimes against family, childhood beliefs, and - yes - even their community or country. I do not propose to guess why others are wearing headcoverings in obviously secular or non-orthodox jobs or countries. But to sit on the outside and declare that they are doing so just to show contention for the powers that be, as if this is some new hippie generation throwing off the "shackles" of those who went before - is just kind of closed minded, isn't it?

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Some people just don't get it

Paper: Muslim Women Sidelined at Obama Rally

Go to this website to listen to the NPR broadcast from All Things Considered, June 18, 2008
Two Muslim women who attended Barack Obama's event Monday in Detroit were told they couldn't stand behind the candidate, Politico reported. One was told her head covering was an issue, and another was told by an Obama volunteer that for political reasons they didn't want Muslims appearing with him on TV. Melissa Block talks with Ben Smith, senior political reporter at the Politico.


Obama Camp Apologizes to Muslim Women
Senator Barack Obama’s presidential campaign has apologized for keeping Muslim women wearing headscarves out of a key shot at his Detroit event.
Full text of this article at the linked title above.

Turbans get Sikh students expelled
first part of the article from the Edinburgh News:

THREE Sikh students have been expelled from a French school for refusing to remove turbans. It was the first time Sikhs were forced out under a new French law banning conspicuous religious signs and apparel in the classroom, their lawyer said.

Officials of the Louise Michel high school in Bobigny, near Paris, decided to expel the three teenagers at disciplinary hearings ordered by a court, said lawyer Felix de Belloy.

The ruling was the latest twist in France’s effort to apply a new law banning religious symbols at public schools. The ban, which includes Islamic headscarves, Jewish skullcaps and large Christian crosses, took effect at the start of the school year.

At least eight Muslim girls have been expelled under the law. Islamic headscarves were its main target because of concerns that growing Muslim fundamentalism in France was weakening the nation’s secular roots.

Turbans were not a focus of the debate over the measure, but Sikhs later learned the head covering would also be outlawed.

This story is also available at other posts, including the BBC News/Europe, under the title "Turbans Get French Sikhs Expelled." The BBC site also includes internal and external links to further information on the "Headscarf Debate".

Muslim teen awarded £4,000 over headscarf snub

LONDON (AFP) — An employment tribunal has awarded a Muslim teenager 4,000 pounds after a the owner of a hair salon refused to employ her because she was wearing a headscarf.

The tribunal dismissed a claim of direct discrimination, but found that woman, Bushra Noah, had suffered indirect discrimination and awarded her the settlement for "injury to feelings".

The salon owner said she needed stylists to reflect the "funky, urban" image of her central London salon, and that new hires with conventional hairstyles were asked to re-style it in a more "alternative" way.

In its judgement, the tribunal said it accepted Noah had not been treated differently because of her Muslim headscarf, but that it doubted there was as severe a risk to the business by employing someone wearing a head covering as the owner believed.

Study Series on Christian Headcovering

Find the Light Study Library presents:

"Womans Headcoverings Part 01", By Craig Simpson

In this series of articles we want to consider the subject of head coverings; it is a subject that has caused so much confusion throughout the years, and in a lot of people's minds, it is really an unsettled matter. This however, needn't be the case. If we look at this subject with a searching mind, we will see that the subject is very clear and has a reasonable explanation, which is provided in the pages of the Word of God.

Our objective in these articles is to approach the subject with a clear mind helping all of us to come to a firm conclusion once and for all, we will:

* firstly set the background to the Apostle Paul's inspired comment
* look at what Paul has to say in 1 Corinthians 11
* look at what early church history has to say on these matters
* consider objections which have been raised throughout the years
* and finally consider what we in the twenty first century should be doing in our worship to our Heavenly Father.

In this first article, the writer goes back to the beginning, presenting the concept of the authority of men, as is mentioned in the passage from 1 Corinthians 11. A short article using scripture.

Part 2 is also available here.
This website is maintained by the Maranatha Christadelphians of New Zealand, Southern California, and Australia.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Chrysostom on the Headcovering

"Free To Cover" at blogspot has posted for your interest and reading time, a copy and paste from the CCEL website (Christian Classics Ethereal Library) - the writings of John Chrysostom (c. 347–407) on 1 Corinthians 11:1-16. In the early style of our modern commentaries, Chrysostom uses the original Greek, the cultural times, and reasoning from other scripture, to go through the letter from the apostle Paul to the Corinthians, and explain this idea of headcoverings, and other aspects of worship and relationship between men and women. This is not light reading. I hope to finish it myself soon...

When Religious Head Covering Is Not a Problem

"The Hijab 'controversy' that isn't"
RTE News, Ireland

"RTE's Education and Science Correspondent Emma O Kelly finds that the recent 'controversy' over the Hajib in schools is a media creation." Read the entire article at the title link above. Below are some quotes from the article:

In the midst of all the articles, opinion pieces and polls in newspapers and elsewhere about the wearing of the Hijab by pupils in schools here, one crucial point appears to be being lost: within the schools themselves, it is currently not an issue of any real concern.

In one way that's probably not so surprising. After all, for generations the Veil has played a central role in education here. Countless generations of Irish children have been educated in Irish schools by Irish women wearing veils. Some still are. The only difference now is that its pupils, not teachers, who are covering their heads, and they're not Catholic, they're Muslim.

In the schools where this is happening, it's no big deal. Where I have discussed the matter with schools, they tell me no permission was given to a particular pupil to wear the veil, but only because permission was never sought. These schools see it as a private matter, to do with tolerance and the right to religious expression.

. . .

Some commentators have referred to the banning of the Hijab in schools in France. The French ban followed intense and bitter debate and controversy there. One may agree or disagree with that decision, but Ireland cannot be compared to France. The French education system is a secular one and it is on that basis that the Hijab, along with other overt religious symbols, was banned.

Our education system is of course the complete opposite - and a ramble down the corridors of many of our secondary and primary schools will testify to this.

There among the crucifixes and statues of the Virgin Mary you're likely to see the faces of countless women, some smiling, some stern, wearing some of the most outrageous and ostentatious headgear you are ever likely to see.

I began this article by saying that the wearing of the Veil or Hijab is 'currently' not an issue of concern in Irish schools. It would be deeply regrettable if a media-driven debate, that's taking place outside the reality of student and school experience, were to make it one.
[Emphases mine - LisaM]

Monday, June 16, 2008

Why Drop the Practice?

"Head Coverings in Church", from El Shaddai
- DWXI Prayer Partner Foundation International, Inc.
A Catholic Charismatic Renewal Movement, Amsterdam, The Netherlands Chapter

This article explains the point of view concerning "Head Coverings in Church Canon Law." Using the difference between wordings in the 1917 Code of Canon Law and the 1983 Code of Canon Law, reasoning from moral law and as a sign of subjugation, this article from EWTN goes on to explain why the church would "drop the practice of such a fitting sign of the natural order." Concluding:
While it is absolutely clear to me that there is no canonical or moral obligation for women to wear a head-covering in Church, women are certainly free to do so as a matter of personal devotion. They should, however, see it as a sign of subordination to God, as that better suits the liturgical context. Those who wear a covering or veil, and those who don't, should not judge the motives of the other, but leave each woman free in a matter that is clearly not of obligation.

**(NOTE) Inclusion here does not mean that I do or do not agree with all of the teaching or opinion you will find contained in these sites.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

"Turbans Make Targets"

A short quote here from the article: "Turbans Make Targets, Some Sikhs Find", by KEVIN COYNE, June 15, 2008, in the N.Y. Region of the New York Times. Read the entire informational article at the title link.
To wear a turban in America — even in a state that has absorbed as many waves of immigration as New Jersey has — is to subject yourself to judgment by strangers, not all of whom have warm and fuzzy feelings about diversity.

“You get these looks all the time, especially after Sept. 11,” said Rajinder Singh, 57, who holds two doctorates, works as a chemist for a pharmaceutical company, has never cut his hair, following the requirement of his faith, and wears a turban. “You could see people — their lips inside their car — that this person is swearing at me.”

Muslims have absorbed much discrimination in the United States in recent years, but also caught in the crossfire have been Sikhs, members of a religious minority from India whose men happen to wear a similar head covering, and who have endured similar suspicions since the terrorist attacks and the subsequent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Photo also from the New York Times article.

Again From Turkey

[This is only the first part of the article at this link. The boldface emphases were made by me, LisaM, to highlight the points of main interest to the subject of head covering.)

The Anachronistic Kemalist ideology
By Khalid Amayreh, June 13, 2008

Underscoring the ideological rigidity of the ultra-secular but undemocratic Kemalist ideology, Turkey’s Constitutional Court this week ruled that Islamic headscarves violated secularism and can’t be allowed to be worn at universities and other public institutions.

The verdict overrides a recent decision by the Turkish parliament allowing the hijab at universities as a matter of personal and religious freedom. It also sets the controversial court above the parliament and even above the collective will of the Turkish masses.

Indeed, it is more than mind-boggling to see female Muslim students granted full freedom to attend universities in Europe and North America with their headscarves on while Turkish students are denied the same freedom in a country where Muslims constitute nearly 99% of the population.

The military-dominated Kemalist establishment, which has been steadily losing public appeal as is evident from the outcome of the two latest general elections, claims that the hijab constitutes a mortal threat to the safety and survival of secularism in Turkey.

This rationale, however, is as irrational as it is silly, since it is beyond the pale of common sense to think that a small piece of cloth covering a woman’s hair poses a threat to the survival of secularism. In fact, one might argue that a secular regime that can’t tolerate, let alone survive, a woman’s headscarf is not worth maintaining.

Besides, true secularism shouldn’t really interfere with people’s choices and personal freedoms.

Nonetheless, it is obvious that the Turkish court as well as the military establishment and their allies in the media and business sectors have long come to view secularism as a kind of religion whose raison d’etre is to counter and, if possible, eradicate Islam.

To the chagrin of the anti-Islam Kemalist establishment, however, nearly nine decades of fundamentalist secular inquisition have utterly failed to realize this sinister goal. Turks continued to express their respect of and adherence to Islamic teachings and ideals.

Khalid Amayreh continues to work as a journalist. He lives with his family in the Occupied Palestinian town of Dura with his wife and family. More political commentary on the headcovering and secularism in Turkey can be found in this article from desertpeace at wordpress.

Found online: comparison photos of 1957 USA and 2008 Turkey

Friday, June 13, 2008

Headcoverings - SermonAudio

What was the 'head covering' in 1 Corinthians 11 and what is its application to today?

Listen to Robert Truelove, Pastor for the Christ Reformed Church, in Lawrenceville, GA
Head Coverings - What Are They & How Do They Apply Today?

Sermon is about 43 minutes long.

That Turban

In The Washington Times article, "Sleek Sikh", by Julia Duin, you meet Sandeep Singh "Sonny" Caberwal, 29, a graduate of Duke University and Georgetown Law School.


Mr. Caberwal, shown in photos accompanying this column, grew up in rural Ashboro, N.C. as the son of a doctor and the wearer of a turban ever since he was a small child. His family is from Punjab, India. He has never cut his hair, as all Sikh men have been required to have long hair since 1699. It is always covered by a skull cap and turban. Some time ago - he does not know when - Kenneth Cole, founder of a clothing line by the same name - got an idea for an advertising campaign on breaking stereotypes - and plugging clothing. Mr. Cole hired a casting agency to find a male Sikh willing to be a model. The man had to be American-born, highly educated and articulate. There being no candidates on the usual lists, the agency began calling up national Sikh-rights organizations and Mr. Caberwal heard Cole was looking.

One thing led to another and last October, he found himself in New York posing in some pretty spiffy clothes along with that turban.

Read the entire article at the link above. Photo here is also from the article referenced above.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Veils and Wimples - How To

Simple Steps to Look Great in a Veil, or Veil-and-Circlet, with photos.
by Cynthia du Pré Argent

Thank you, coffeecatholic, for posting the link to this really neat page, with photos, of how to gracefully wear a veil, medieval style. Those interested in the history of head coverings will enjoy this.

Photo used here is copied from this website, which takes a long time to load up for me and I don't know why.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

A Torah Command?

Head Coverings for Men and Women, a Torah and Mitzvah
by Israel ben Betzalel, at Messianicblogs

Listen to this:

According to the Torah, is a man commanded to wear a kippah or other head covering? Is a woman commanded to wear a head covering? If we are to be ready to “guard” the commandments of God, then yes, wearing a head covering is part of fulfilling that mitzvah to be on guard to do God’s commandments concerning head coverings.

As it is written:

Deuteronomy 27:1
And Moses and the elders of Israel commanded the people, saying: ‘Keep all the commandment which I command you this day.

Keep” is the Hebrew word “Shamar” which means to “guard” or “hedge around” as if to protect what is inside.

In this, the Torah teaches us that we are to create a hedge to always be ready to do God’s commandments.

There is much more to this answer, including scripture and reasoning. It's all about submission to God, and guarding His commands. Recommended reading.

This blog also appears on the The Jerusalem Council - Messianic Beit Midrash: Global Forum for Messianic Judaism, Halakha, Apologetics, and Torah Study.

Dominican Use of Capuce

I did not know this.

Dominican Use of the Capuce

from Dominican Liturgy, "A Mirror for Dominican Material Published on the NEW LITURGICAL MOVEMENT"

Here is the beginning of the article - copied directly, including photo, from the website (please refer to the article linked above for the full explanation and source):


This post is at the request of a commentor who wanted more information about choir rubrics and the capuce (habit hood) in the Dominican rite.

Historically men have worn hats, or at least they did until John F. Kennedy made going bareheaded fashionable, and the Capuce is the "hat" of the Dominican habit. The capuce is one of the three parts of the white Dominican habit and has a short shoulder cape attached to it. It is worn over the scapular, which is wore over the tunic. There is also a black version, which is worn over the white one when the cappa (a long black cape) is worn. The raising and lowering of the capuce is analogus to the lay practice of doffing one's hat, and to the parallel use by secular clergy of the biretta. The capuce is the only head-covering used by Dominican friars, with the exception of the doctoral biretta worn by those with ecclesiastical academic titles. And those birettas are never used in liturgical functions. Of course, this rule did not prevent wearing of a black zuchetto to cover the tonsure or, today, baldness. Well, at least that is the theory, and perhaps it was so in the Middle Ages. Photographs of friars working outside in habit under the sun, wearing wide staw hats, can be found from the 1800s in our province archives. And I have seen plenty of pictures of friars from my province at the Angelicum in Rome, some as recent as the 1980s, showing them wearing the cappello romano, the broad-brimmed Roman clergy hat. To the above right is a photo of some Angelicum students in the early 1950s on an excusion in the country outside of Rome, with their "Roman hats."

"Head covering, not shoulder covering"

clevsea at yahoo 360 answers the following question, using 1 Corinthians 11:1-16 and an understanding of the Greek language in the Bible:

Has anyone been told that if you're not wearing a headcovering that covers, your neck, possibly even wrapping around the shoulders, that you're not following the Biblical example of the headcovering? ... that since most who wear the headcovering aren't even wearing the "right kind" that those who do, might as well give it up.

She relates personal experience, plus the following explanation:

Paul chose Katakalupto for his word choice for the head covering. Paul did *not* choose the Greek word for face covering. He did not choose the word for neck covering. He did not choose the word for ear covering or chest covering. Paul worked with the word for head covering and he chose the word kaphale (Strong's # 2776) which is clearly the word for head.

At the end of the head covering teaching Paul teaches the church that the long hair is a peribolaion (Strong's #4018) and that word nicely translates as a vest or mantle. So at the end of the passage we see that the Lord covers our vest area, our chest area, with a covering of long hair. Peribolaion also denotes the ability to throw the covering around oneself like you can throw a shawl around yourself, which you can do with long hair. But the head covering, the katakalupto, it is clearly a head (kephale) covering not a neck, chin, face, ear, shoulder, chest, etc, covering.
[Links added by me - LisaM] You may read the entire blog entry at clevsea's yahoo 360 page.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Becoming More Orthodox

Young British Jews: more and more strictly orthodox


It seems - with Evangelical Christianity and Muslim strictness - that in an irreligious society those who ARE religious tend more and more towards the extremes of observance. The Jewish Chronicle reports that the demographers reveal a remarkable growth in the "Haredi" community in the UK. It has grown at 4 per cent a year for twenty years and there is a predominantly young group - of the under-18s one third are haredi. This site About Judaism offers more detail on what Haredi involves: they don't like to be called 'ultra-orthodox' because they consider more liberal forms of Judaism to be unauthentic. They believe God wrote the Torah, live in self-contained communities, have their own financial systems, eschew television and dress as their European ancestors dressed, in wide-brimmed hats and, for women, modest long skirts and head coverings after marriage.

Photo above linked from this website.

I am reminded of what Princess Leia told the governor of the empire that was trying to take over the universe in the first Star Wars movie:

The more you tighten your grip, Tarkin, the more star systems will slip through your fingers.

It is not strange that in an era of increasing pushiness towards secularism and away from religious tradition and faith, that those who are seeking faithful ways are "becoming more orthodox". Perhaps they can see how compromise (or even quitting their faith), in the past has actually allowed repression, cruelty and more deviant behaviours to abound in the name of "secularism" (versus freedom of religious expression, that is). But there is always a remnant, and the remnant is always more conservative and orthodox than those who were willing to give in or remain silent in the name of the secular. Didn't your parents ever teach you that you can't "sit on the fence" forever? A person must choose one way or the other.

The more the secular (read, non-faith religions) tighten their grip on those who desire to express their religious faith - by banning head scarves and any other sign of "religiousness" - the more religious systems of faith will slip through their fingers.

Admissions of Headcovering Christians

"Practicing Theology" posts the question: Would it surprise you to know...
...that I own a headcovering . . . and have used it regularly? And, would it surprise you that I keep it handy since I have no Biblical or personal objections to covering my head if the leadership of a church we visit/attend determines that it is fitting for women to cover their head during worship?
She shares her decision to wear a headcovering in this blog entry, along with these thoughts:
I realize that this is not a common or even a popular topic, but I'm still surprised when I hear an attitude of scoffing--even scorn--among women (professing believers) who have admittedly given little to no careful consideration of the practice, but steadfastly renounce it as something 'I could/would never do!'. As Bereans wouldn't the better response and attitude be, 'Maybe I need to study and consider that...'?
(reference of Bereans is to Acts 17:10-11)

Also, please consider reading many of the recent blog entries from "Free to Cover":

I think I tend to personally agree with much of what she writes.

Monday, June 9, 2008

One Muslim Woman's Decision

Please read:

Me without my hijab

"Removing my head covering changed how I saw myself and the world."
By Zainab Mineeia, June 8, 2008

Sharing the hard decision of whether or not to continue to cover in the United States. Please read this article with an open mind and heart. The decision to cover your head in a secular country seems to be contrary to the law of "modesty" which covering is supposed to provide. How sad for the secular countries of the world, when to be modest merely means to blend in and be like everybody else.

T-shirt of the Day...

Found this at Life - for Catholic Teenagers

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Web site of the week

One of my favourite web sites - - has made
"Web site of the week" on the Modesto (California), in their "Beliefs & Issues" section.

Their summary:

Many faith traditions require girls and women to dress modestly. This site (www.modestclothes. com) gives links to categories such as style (swimsuits, trendy, classic, head coverings) and creed (Islamic, Jewish, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Catholic). The site's author, raised Lutheran and now a Muslim, also blogs with new finds and offers readers a chance to interact.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Propriety in Worship

1 Cor. 11:1-16 Propriety in Worship (1)

in "Yom Yom" at blogspot, by Harry Hoffner, the "John A. Wilson Professor of Hittitology Emeritus at the University of Chicago. . . . For 13 years the teaching leader of a large inter-faith Bible Study class for men in the Chicago area." - (from the "about me" section of the blog)

An academic article discussing the passage from 1 Corinthians, including ancient and modern understandings. Discussion of the meaning of dress in society, on the term "traditions", and the place of women in creation. Special emphasis on the idea of respect and order, "propriety". Interesting thoughts.

Friday, June 6, 2008

What is a head covering?

A few answers found online...

First, a sometimes emotional blog article:

Ave Maria Gratia Plena...: What head covering is and isn't...

Dealing mostly with the modesty side of the head covering. Good stuff.

Secondly, a cute covering / hat you can make from an old sweater:

Morning Coffee: Dinner Plate Hat from Sweater: How To

Includes step by step photos! Scroll through the previous few entries too. This is one creative lady. Photo from her blog.

Thirdly, a link for handmade coverings that I gleaned from Offbeat Modest Dress, called:

Garlands of Grace. "Wisdom is the principal thing; Therefore get wisdom. And in all your getting, get understanding. Exalt her, and she will promote you; She will bring you honor, when you embrace her. She will place on your head an ornament of grace; A crown of glory she will deliver to you." ~ Proverbs 4:7-9

Their variety of head coverings are lovely. Photo from their web page.

Finally, from That Natural Girl, a post full of pretty pictures, giving examples of Christian women's headcovering, the world over!

Please check out the ThoseHeadcoverings pages linked in my title box above for links to more information...

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Poll - Closed

When I first began researching head covering, a couple of years ago, I thought it might be nice to post all of the links to one webpage and share it with others who might also be researching. (That old page has been re-done into the Those Headcoverings Links Webpages). I asked some of the websites I wanted to include, and most thought it was a good idea and were glad for me to do it. I did get one response back, however, stating that since they believed that the headcovering was a sign for Christians only, they did not want me to post a link to their website in a list that included other beliefs.

So I'm wondering, now that I have more hits to this blog: are there others who feel this way about the headcovering? Or a particular type of head covering perhaps? I have posted the poll in the side column. Let me know what you think, please, and if you have any other comments on this idea, please leave me a comment.

Thank you.


I suppose that very few believe that the headcovering is for their faith only - though most do understand that they have different reasons for wearing a head covering. Thank you for voting.

Headcovering "Support Groups"

Click here to view 79 entries/groups at Yahoo Groups which use the term "headcovering"

There are a few "nasty" ones in there; be advised.

Choose your flavour . . .

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

"Women covering their heads at Mass"

A Catholic woman explains why she covers, using references from scripture, from Canon laws, and plain and good reasoning. Please read the article here:

Ave Maria Gratia Plena...: Women covering their heads at Mass...

She begins:

When I was becoming a Catholic back in 1998 I was taught that the Second Vatican Council did not remove the head covering of women from Cannon Law and so ever since then I've covered my head in some way when I go to Mass. I don't think that this makes me super holy ~ I do it because the Church says to do it, end of story.

(If I forget a head covering I still go to Mass ~ I have no doubt that God understands and isn't about to smite me on the spot with a bolt of lightning.)

I've stated vocally that the head covering of women was still "on the books" but since my brain is like a hunk of swiss cheese I have never been able to recall the actual law so here it is:

Canon 1262, #2:
"Men, in a church or outside a church, while they are assisting at sacred rites, shall be bare-headed, unless the approved mores of the people or peculiar circumstances of things determine otherwise; women, however, shall have a covered head and be modestly dressed, especially when they approach the table of the Lord." (emphasis mine)
1917 Pio-Benedictine Code of Canon Law, Ignatius Press in 2001

At this point in time I have been unable to locate in the 1983 updated Cannon Law anything that says explicitly that "women do not have to cover their heads."

Please read her entire article at the link above. Also read her follow-up article:

Feminism Literally Burned the Catholic Veil

Headcovering Eastern Orthodox Christians

Headcovering Eastern Orthodox Christians

Offbeat Modest Dress has just started a Yahoo Group for Headcovering Eastern Othodox Christians. Here's what she's written about the purpose - please click on the link above to visit her site.

Here’s the official description: A discussion group for Eastern Orthodox Christian women. Some of us, for whatever reasons, have chosen to cover their heads all or most of the time, in and out of church services. Some of us are drawn to doing this but haven’t yet taken the leap. Some of us are just trying to get up the nerve to wear a headcovering during church services!


If any readers know of other "support groups" for ladies who cover, let me know and I will post information to this blog to support your group as well.

Also, please check the "web ring" for "Those Headcoverings" and consider joining, if you post about head covering, make or sell head coverings, or have a website otherwise dedicated to head covering. Thank you! - LisaM

The Choice of Hijab

Behind the Veil
in The Daily of the University of Washington
By Jeremiah Rygus, June 4, 2008

During the last six years, images of Islam have flooded the media — some positive, others negative, but almost all of them misunderstood.

For many Americans, the most common image of Islam is of a veiled woman. Pictures in newspapers or on TV depict everything from a completely covered woman in Afghanistan to the more common headscarf.

These images conjure a myriad of thoughts and emotions for many who have little understanding of what the hijab is and what it means to the women who choose to wear it.

Hijab is an Arabic word that literally means “cover.” More accurately though, the word means, “to veil, shelter or protect.” Here in the West, we refer to the head covering itself as hijab, but in its Islamic context, the word refers to the virtues of modesty, privacy and morality.

“There’s much more to hijab than a piece of cloth,” said Zakiya Qadir, a senior and Near Eastern Studies major. “It’s an entire lifestyle. The way I dress is just a part of being a hijabi.” A “hijabi” is someone who wears the head covering.

If a woman decides to don the hijab, there is more involved than simply placing a scarf on her head.

You may read more of this basic and informative article by clicking on the title link above. Image above is directly linked from the webpage article.

A simple observation by Crossings at blogspot, an English professor working in Palestine, in "Student Daydreams":
Although most women on the streets of Nablus wear the hijab (covering their hair and often neck), my students make it clear that this is a choice, not a requirement as it is, say, in Saudi Arabia. They see the current popularity of head coverings, in Palestine and much of the Muslim world, as symbolic of a general conservative reaction to the influence of Western / American culture and values. (A generation ago Palestinian women did not cover their heads.)

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Head Covering and Recent Culture

In a very insightful blog entry, Jennifer of Reformed SHEology illustrates the symbolism of head covering and even the secular understanding of the symbol in the art and culture of previous generations here in the West. She reviewed the movie, "Splendor in the Grass," for her blog last month, and wrote specifically concerning the head covering in a recent blog entry: "The 1 Corinthians 11 Society." She writes: "Headgear communicates quite a bit. It becomes an additional appendage by which we can amplify our body language." And I think she makes several good points for Christian men and women to consider when wearing head gear of some kind.

I recommend reading.

I also appreciate the observations she makes in the film she reviews this month, regarding masculinity and femininity: "The Best Years of Our Lives".

Criminal Head Coverings

Some banks banning hats, sunglasses to deter robbers

By Macollvie Jean-François | South Florida Sun-Sentinel
June 2, 2008

It's an all-too-common image from bank surveillance footage: a robber wearing a hat, sunglasses or both, walks up to a teller, passes a note, and walks away with cash.

Detectives says the accessories can serve as effective disguises and deterrents to catching the bad guys.

Now, some banks and other businesses are fighting back by posting signs telling customers to remove hats and sunglasses. The real message: Let's see your face so if you rob us, police can track you down.

"It's sort of a no-nonsense, simple solution to an ever-increasing problem that Florida is facing," said Renee Thompson, spokeswoman for The Florida Bankers' Association, which launched a "no hats, no hoods, no sunglasses" robbery deterrent program in January. "We're optimistic that customers will understand the importance of the program."

Customers who refuse to comply will not be denied service, the association said. They'll simply be served in an area of the bank with more security or by an experienced teller. (article continued at the linked text above)
(image above is from an article in, reporting on a Lake Mary, Florida, bank robber, dated April 18, 2008)

Just a few can ruin a good thing for everyone. Of course, if I were asked to remove my covering in a bank, I would; I have nothing to hide. But I do feel concern for those folks who feel that they cannot uncover their heads before others. These crooks have messed up stuff for a lot of people, and not just those at the airports.

I suppose there's a lesson there for those who cover their heads. Bad behavior in a head covering can reflect on everyone who puts something on their head. Think about it.

Editorial Comments on Symbolism

Two personal opinion articles that I came across addressing the same symbolism often attributed to those who cover. I've underlined the emphasis that I make in this respect. Please read and determine for yourself.

Re: "A contradiction?" (Letters, May 29).

First, on the basis of absolutely nothing, Ken Shore equates modesty with a desire to be unattractive. It's an untenable link. Just as it's possible to be both modest and attractive (e.g. my wife in a business suit), it's equally possible to be both immodest and unattractive (e.g. me in a Speedo). [emphsis mine, LisaM]

But then from this flimsy perch, Shore leaps to the absurd conclusion that a woman he saw wearing both lipstick and a hijab was forced to wear the latter (but not the former). Surely it's equally possible she was just trying to be like my wife: modest and attractive. Or is Shore suggesting that a woman must be immodest to be attractive?

It's possible Shore possesses an impeccably logical mind, but in this case,it appears to have been impeded by his clear antipathy toward those who don't share his secular principles.

Aidan Murphy


I appreciate these thoughts so much, since very often head covering is equated with plain dressing, so as not to attract attention. I personally feel that there is a broad path painted between the two extremes of very plain and showy so as to attract attention. A head covering, no matter what color, attracts attention in a society where they are little worn. But I have heard the comments, and even entertained thoughts myself, concerning the women who cover with a pretty scarf: as if its prettiness actually contrasts with her desire to be modest. It doesn't, and I think that is what this author addresses pretty well here. - LisaM


Prayer group's acts were protected expression, not religious establishment

in the, By WILLIAM HINES • June 3, 2008

I wish to express my concerns relative to the events described in Friday's front-page Tennessean article, "Prayer group can't get special access."

Having just perused the Constitution and relevant Supreme Court cases, I disagree with the court ruling. It seems that the crux of such cases as this is in determining the difference in establishment and expression. [emphasis mine, LisaM] According to the First Amendment, individuals are guaranteed the freedom of expression. This seems to include religious expression. To allow groups to pray during the school day does not promote a particular religion, as long as such access is not denied to other religious groups.

Furthermore, I would like for someone to explain to me how the wearing of "I prayed" buttons establishes a religion. It is, to be sure, an expression of a religious belief/practice, but is no more an establishment of a religion than for an Islamic woman to wear her traditional head covering during her everyday activities.

The statements of the Constitution relative to the separation of church and state are specific, and refer to the establishment of a religion. I would concede that they might even cover an overt endorsement of a certain religion or sect. However, simply expressing one's belief by wearing an "I prayed" button is no different from a yarmulke or other traditional religious garb (expression) being worn by a student, faculty member or administrator.

There's more, but I appreciate this writer's pointing out the difference and often the problem for so many is between the EXPRESSION of faith and the ESTABLISHMENT of faith. No matter what head covering, jewelry, or t-shirt is worn as it expresses someone's faith - or personally reminds them of their faith and devotion - they are not attempting to pressure anyone else into doing the same. Before I covered, I wondered if women who did cover wore theirs with a predominant thought that I was wrong and needed correction. I know now that these thoughts are usually far from the head coverer's mind. The plain devotion to faith, obedience, and humbleness of heart in the face of the secular, materially minded society in which we live is generally enough to be on one's mind. Though I'm sure that many of us would like to see a more faithful, obedient and humble society (as I am always somehow comforted and encouraged a bit myself when I see or read from another lady who covers her head). - LisaM