Thursday, August 28, 2008

Kippah Photos of the Month - Politics, and Being Green

Shmuel Tennenhaus, of (which I've mentioned here before), has alerted me to a rather interesting fun slideshow on the website: "US Presidents Wearing Kippah". Click the link for a smile.

Photo of "Hot Kippah" from vanitykippah reads, "Don't you wish your kippa was hot like mine?"


Meanwhile, somewhere else in New York...

"‘Green’ Kippah Grows in Brooklyn"
By Lana Gersten
, of the Jewish Daily

For Jews, the environment has always been a central concern. In the age of eco-conscious living, the issue has become increasingly visible. Members of the tribe may soon have another way of displaying their values, courtesy of Brooklyn-based artist Miki Katagiri, creator of a prototype for a “green” yarmulke nicknamed the “yarmulchia” for its close resemblance to the Chia Pet.

Though the prototype is made of felt and plastic, the yarmulchia is meant to be a symbol for Jews who want to reduce their carbon footprint. Katagiri originally made the head covering as environmental art and had not intended to design a yarmulke. But when she was spotted sporting one at a gallery opening in New York City’s Greenwich Village earlier this summer, a passerby suggested that her head covering could be made into a yarmulke. Out of that encounter grew the yarmulchia.

Katagiri said the yarmulchia, currently not available in stores, could be made to order.

For more information, e-mail Katagiri at photo by Tequila Minsky, in "Cheers for Green Hats"

An Orthodox Christian Blog

Meet Seeking Livity, at blogspot, who writes:
I have been covering all or most of my hair for the majority of my adult life. There have been many reasons for this but religion has played the biggest role in growing this conviction in me. Now that I am an Orthodox Chrisian there is even more force behind my conviction. Ironically, I stopped covering when I entered the Orthodox Church. I wanted re-examine my reasons for many things in my spiritual life and practices to be sure that they conformed with Orthodoxy.
. . .
The only challenges in my opinion is how to refrain from judging others who do not agree and covering in such a way that I do not draw undue attention to myself.

This is a topic that I plan to write about often. If there are women like me that scour the internet looking for others with this urge to cover their bodies including their hair, I want them to be able to find a likeminded soul or two through this blog.

Be encouraged!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Headcovering Christians

Two Christian women who cover their heads have posted their reasons and how they wear a headcovering.

Sister Judith Hannah, from whom I have found informative blog entries concerning Christian headcovering (click here for her "why" answer blog entries), posts "HEAD COVERINGS here at HOME..., including a few photos of the styles that she uses for various reasons.

A Plain and Simple Life, posted a query for help with headcovers for little girls. I wrote to her, asking for her thoughts on having children cover their heads, and she posted such a thorough response in her next blog entry, I wanted to direct my readers to it as well. Please see, "About our headcovering practices...". Here is just a part of her post, for your interest:
In a nutshell, we believe The Lord has led us to cover, according to His Word shared in 1 Corinthians 11. We believe our hair is given to us as our glory. Therefore, we choose not to cut off that glory, and keep our hair long. We wear coverings over our hair because we also believe this is contained in the same Scripture. We read that we are to be covered, as women, whenever praying or prophesying. As we are called to 'pray without ceasing' (1 Thess. 5:17), it just makes sense to us to be covered at all times.

For my older daughters, they wear a covering all the time, same as I do. My youngers, while not at an age of understanding or accountability so to speak, are growing up with dresses-only and headcoverings as their normal attire. It seems easier to me to not place them in both worlds...being allowed to dress in a manner that we will not allow later on. As Christians, we cannot live in both worlds and must choose which ppath we will follow. We cannot serve two masters. If my daughters are raised from the start to seek a modest dress and covering, the struggle of coming to it later, once the 'worldliness' has crept in, won't be there as strongly. It will simply be normal life to them.

Head Coverings for your Health and Safety

Health director warns of Rocky Mountain fever
August 22, 2008 - 12:39PM
The Telegraph

"The recent death of a resident has prompted a warning about Rocky Mountain spotted fever by the Illinois Department of Public Health." Among information and other tips for protection:
. . . Persons spending time outdoors in areas where ticks commonly are found - wooded areas, tall grass and brush - should take precautions against all tick-borne diseases:

Check your clothing often for ticks climbing toward open skin. Wear white or light-colored long-sleeved shirts and long pants, so the tiny ticks are easier to see. Tuck long pants into your socks and boots. Wear a head covering or hat for added protection.

For those who may not tolerate wearing all of these clothes in hot, muggy weather, apply insect repellent containing 10 percent to 30 percent DEET primarily to clothes.

(For those who may not tolerate wearing all of those chemicals in any weather, apply some clothing.)


How Can Women Avoid Sexual Harassment When Traveling?
by Dorothy Yamich
found at ""

An excerpt:

When you are traveling, or on vacation, your best protection is to understand the local culture and customs of that country. By observing how the local women behave and dress will give you valuable clues on how to avoid sexual harassment.

If the local women cover their hair and their arms and legs then you should do that also. Do not wear bikinis, swimsuits, or short shorts in towns where local women are all covered up. Dress conservatively.

Be sure to avoid direct eye contact with men as they might think you’re flirtatious. Do not speak, smile, or wave at strange men who may smile or say hello to you. If a man begins to follow you, cross to the other side of street. If this tactic doesn’t work, find a policeman, or go into a store and ask for help.

When you need to ask directions, always ask a woman. And, if you are traveling by bus or train, you should always sit with other women.

It is a great idea to carry a versatile head scarf in your handbag just in case you need to cover your head and arms.

(These ideas work well in non-headcovering cultures as well!)

Headcovering Nuns are Beautiful

Online beauty contest for nuns
- ukpress article
An Italian priest and theologian says he is organising an online beauty pageant for nuns that aims to give them more visibility within the Catholic Church and fight the stereotype that they are all old and dour.

The Rev Antonio Rungi says the Miss Sister 2008 contest will start in September on his blog and will give nuns from around the world a chance to showcase their work and their image.

Rungi, a theologian and school teacher from the Naples area, said that visitors to his site will have a month to "vote for the nun they consider a model".

Nuns will fill out a profile that includes information on their life and vocation as well as a photo.It will be up to them to choose whether to pose with the traditional veil or with their heads uncovered.

The story continues here, from

No nuns on catwalk, priest stops "beauty contest"
Aug 26, 2008

ROME (Reuters) - An Italian priest who had planned an online "pageant" for nuns has suspended the project, saying he was misinterpreted and had no intention of putting sisters on a beauty catwalk.

"My superiors were not happy. The local bishop was not happy, but they did not understand me either," Father Antonio Rungi told Reuters by telephone from his convent in southern Italy Tuesday.

"It was not at all my intention to put nuns on the catwalk," said Rungi, a priest of the Passionists religious order, speaking from his convent in the town of Mondragone.

Rungi's idea appeared in newspapers around the world after he wrote of a contest for nuns on his blog, called by some "Sister Italy 2008."

(full article continues at title link above)


Dear Fr. Rungi - the thought is appreciated. - THCblog

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Headcovering Journeys

Life is a journey, and we keep learning everyday. Please read, share, and consider...

One Year Headcovering Anniversary
August 18, 2008 — Anna of Veiled Glory
(interesting how those responding also have only been covering for the past few years)

Is Hair the Covering?
August 16, 2008 - Lacy of A Godly Maiden
(private study using outside sources by a lovely younger woman)

A Crowning Glory
Friday, August 15, 2008 - Jules of On Eagles' Wings
(personal testimony on her decision to wear her hair long, and to cover it)

The Burden of Explanation
August 16, 2008 - Alana of Free to Cover
(a question humbly asked - who should explain: those who cover or those who don't?)

Some History On Head Coverings
August 7, 2008 - by Tia Lynn of Abandon Image
(considering the issue from some historical viewpoints. Also from this poster:)
What's the Deal with Head Coverings and Hair Length?
(on being thorough and consistent)

And from the "outside":

Head coverings: part 1 of 2
17 August 2008 – Women and Marriage
(with photos - is it only oppression when women cover and not when men do?)
Head coverings: part 2 of 2
(also with a photo, and description of which styles he likes too)

East meets West, some thoughts on racism and beyond.
August 17, 2008 - The Ranting Lad
. . .

The idea of the Hijab being an attitude reflected in a dress sense is echoed in other religions. Although largely died out now, Jewish women up until the nineteenth century would cover their heads as a symbol of pious observance and some of the stricter Hasidic sects still use wigs for this very purpose.

In the Christian tradition St Paul had some interesting things to say about the covering of heads.

"Now I want you to realize that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is man, and the head of Christ is God. Every man who prays or prophesies with his head covered dishonours his head. And every woman who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered dishonours her head - it is just as though her head were shaved. If a woman does not cover her head, she should have her hair cut off; and if it is a disgrace for a woman to have her hair cut off or shaved off, she should cover her head. A man ought not to cover his head, since he is the image and glory of God; but the woman is the glory of man. For man did not come from woman, but woman from man; neither was man created for woman, but woman for man. For this reason, and because of the angels, the woman ought to have a sign of authority on her head" (I Corinthians 11:3-10).

Bet that sits fairly uncomfortably with some of you and it walks all over the argument that Christianity doesn't make some strict observances on anyone wishing to take it strictly by the book. And if you argue that it's an out dated requirement and open to modern re-evaluation then surely Islam is allowed to undertake its own interpretations of its codes and laws. So it would seem that the idea of covering the head through religious devotion appears in all Abrahamic traditions, whether people chose to observe it to the letter is a different issue, the fact remains that according to all three "religions of the book" there is a strong tradition of head covering and Islam though the centre of the debate at the moment is by no means alone in this.

. . .

Monday, August 18, 2008

"Headscarves, Secularism, and Religious Freedom"

This article so well sums up so many things, I thought I'd re-produce it here. Please give full credit to the author at the title link:

"Headscarves, Secularism, and Religious Freedom"
By Nick Gier, Unfiltered, New West Politics, 8-16-08

I thought I would never get a consulting job until the day that the ACLU gave me a call. Some Muslim prisoners in the Boise penitentiary were complaining that the warden was forcing them to cut off their beards.

For $25 an hour I agreed to research the issue of beards and religion and write a report. I interviewed Muslim imams and Jewish rabbis, and I found that certain sects of each did indeed require beards as part of male religious identity.

Certain sects of orthodox Judaism do not even allow the trimming of beards because they read: "You shall not round off the hair on your temples or mar the edges of your beard" (Leviticus 19:27).

I also discovered that Sikh men may never cut their hair or their beards. Sikh women also must cover their heads, and they may not remove hair from any part of their bodies.

The Jewish Talmud requires that women cover their hair while in public, and Orthodox Jews still follow that tradition. In earlier times Roman Catholic women had to cover their heads during Mass, following Paul's injunction that a "woman who prays with her head unveiled dishonors her head" (1 Cor. 11:5). Some Pentecostal, Independent Baptist, and Mennonite women cover their heads in public as well as in church.

The passage most often cited from the Qur'an (24:31) has more to do with general modesty, although the specific injunction to cover the bosom with a veil does of course imply veil wearing, a common custom for women in the Middle East and now seen by many Muslims as a religious requirement for their women.

Recently Abercrombie Kids refused to hire a Muslim woman because she was told that her headscarf did "not fit the Abercrombie image." Abercrombie's own Code of Business Conduct and Ethics prohibits discrimination on the basis of religion, and religious headscarves are now explicitly included in new guidelines from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

The Muslim headscarf (hijab) can be worn in several ways: very loosely as former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto did; completely covering the hair; or covering the head except for the eyes.

U.S. citizen Sultana Freeman is now suing the State of Florida because she refused to show her full face for a photo required for a driver's license. Freeman's attorney believes that she will win her right to drive on the basis of legal precedent, because 14 other states have made exceptions for Christians who claim that taking photographs of them is a violation of the Second Commandment.

General American tolerance of the hijab stands in contrast to French intolerance. A 2004 law prohibiting the wearing of hijab in France's public schools was passed by a vote of 494-36 in National Assembly. Recently a Moroccan woman was denied French citizenship because she wore the burqa, which covers the entire body.

Most Americans and Europeans are proud of their commitment to a liberal secular democracy in which church and state are kept separate. But the Latin word "liberalis" means "pertaining to the free person," and a liberal society should protect, first and foremost, its citizens' right to the free exercise of their religious beliefs, as long as those beliefs to do infringe on the rights of others.

Turkey's radical secularists have also been undermining the liberal foundations of their modern nation. Over the years the Republican People's Party abolished capital punishment, legalized abortion, extended women's rights, liberalized the economy, but also banned the hijab in public.

In the past several decades there has been an Islamic revival in Turkey, and a moderate Muslim party has won the last two elections, the second one by a 47% margin. Turkey's chief prosecutor brought charges against this party claiming and it had threatened Turkey's secular society by bringing back the hijab in public.

This month the Turkish supreme court ruled 10-1 against the party. The prosecutor had recommended that 70 party members be banned for five years, but that punishment required at least seven judges to rule in favor. The vote was 6-5. One vote the other way would have thrown Turkish society into chaos, and most of the world is now relieved that a crisis has been avoided.

Religious persecution in Europe was one of the primary reasons for the American and French Revolutions, and failure to respect the rights of believers of all faiths will lead us into times just as dark as the religious wars of pre-Revolutionary Europe.

Nick Gier taught religion and philosophy at the University of Idaho for 31 years. Read or listen to his other columns at

Olympic Veil

Headcovering watchers have probably heard of, if not seen in action, the Muslim women participating in the Olympic Games wearing hijab. If not, check out "Hijab Style: Famous Faces" for this week.

Photo of Sarah Khoshjamal-Fekri, of Iran women’s national taekwondo team, from


Amal Amireh writes in, "Interview with a Muslim Woman Olympic Athlete", a reaction "pretend" interview, her response to coverage of the female athletes choice to cover their heads rather than coverage of their athletic abilities.

". . . when it comes to Muslim women who veil, the media seems to be interested only in one thing: the piece of fabric on the woman's head. They want to know if its weight slow down runners; if it blocks the view of archers; if it interferes with the concentration of weight lifters. And let's not forget the color. It must matter!
And they are surprised when they find out that what they're obsessing with is irrelevant. Still, they write the article about the veil, not the woman competing."
(Photo of Najmeh Abtin, archer from Iran, from Getty Images)


"Aussie "burqini" designer creates athletic veil"
Mon Aug 18, 2008 from

"The Australian designer of the full-length swimwear for conservative Muslim women has created special headgear for athletes seeking to win glory without compromising their faith.

Bahrain's Olympic sprinter Rogaya Al Ghasara is set to become the first athlete to compete in the "hijood", a combination of the words "hijab" or veil and "hood", on Tuesday in Beijing.

Designed by Aheda Zanetti, managing director of Australian firm Ahiida, the hijood is breathable, fits snuggly like a hood and covers the hair and neck in accordance with Islamic custom."
(photo here of Rogaya Al Ghasara of Bahrain from
*** notice - the address I have for this photo is: "" - I cannot find any other information - please pass photographer or agency on to me if you can document this photo.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Those Headcoverings

(photos in slide show are from Getty Images)

I started the blog, "Those Headcoverings" here at blogspot, to help to educate, to alert and to encourage.

Education - When I started studying about headcoverings, I wanted to find out what I could about them, and searching could sometimes be difficult. One of the most fascinating things that I found, was that head covering by women really is an across time and culture "phenomenon", and a choice made by many people for many different reasons. I eventually categorized those reasons into religious (Christian, Jewish and Muslim women, in particular, but also for men), for health reasons (preventative, as well as for those with cancer or other hair loss), and the wonderful world of headscarf fashion. Since I've added the Feedjit widgit to my blog, I have been able to see how people found my blog, when they came from a search for something, and often others are searching for the same things that I was - all falling into the above categories and including how to make or tie up a headcovering, or where to buy one, and the history of head coverings of various places.

I knew that for many, especially those with slow dial-up(!), difficulties can stall or even stop searches. And that is discouraging, especially when there are many search entries that use the same words (such as veiling or covering) that can mean something else. Hopefully, having categories of news and blogs in one place will make a search a little easier, and jump start even more ideas.

Alert: With education comes the persuasive edge, to alert others to what is going on in the world. In other countries, people are forced against their will and knowledge to either wear or not wear a head covering. Sometimes they are ridiculed, persecuted, or misrepresented by the media. It is my hope, that as the world "grows smaller" due to the internet and world news, that people will come to better understand one another. It may be a dim hope, considering how people are people, but I hope that those who stop by here would be moved to think further of how significant their actions are.

Encourage: I truly hope to encourage others by making them aware of the simple, quiet blogs, where women have written of the reasons they chose to cover, their difficulties and joys as they went through a change in life style, and sometimes sharing the way that they wear a headcovering. They have all encouraged me - from the young women who began covering in a place where no one else did or understood, to the women who grew up in communities where everyone covered. In this simple act of obedience and respect, without even much of a word (though we wouldn't know unless she wrote the words down), we can be won over to a humble, honourable and beautiful Way of life.

I really don't have the time to continue doing as much work as I have been on this little hobby of mine, especially as the summer comes to an end, and I must get back to teaching on a much wider variety of subjects. I will keep up from time to time. I do hope that those of you who stop by this blog will continue to make use of the webpages that I created and modified at googlepages: "ThoseHeadcoverings" (also linked in the upper right). Please continue studying and praying about your personal decision. Know what you believe, and if you are unsure, ask for help to understand. Continue learning about other cultures and lifestyles so that you can make wise decisions regarding your treatment of others. I personally have come to consider many headcover-ers "kindred spirits" - though we may not agree on other things of the Spirit. I stand up with those who are misunderstood merely because they have that headcovering on, and I encourage them to keep on doing what they understand to be good and right.

Headcoverings are not an oppresive burden; they are as unique as a woman's skirt, as personal as her faith, and as liberating as the difference between men and women. They can be as beautiful or as ugly as our inner spirits show them to be. I pray that whether you wear scarf, mantilla, hat, turban, hijab, cap, bonnet, or wide headband - others will see its beauty because of the beautiful head that it is worn on.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Head Covering Sun Protection, and Covered Athletes

Just a short entry and free advert. for Coolibar, makers of sun protective clothing, sun hats, and UV protection swim wear. They're having an end of summer sale. Please check out head coverings for men, women and children, as well as a variety of modest, sun protective active and swim wear. Even a protective face drape. Such a neat thing that sun protection equals modest dress sometimes - they'll make more business that way, I think. :)


And speaking of head covering athletic types, see this article on the veiled athletes competing in the Olympic games this year. "Veiled Athletes Challenge Stereotypes in Beijing", story in

This year's Games will see a sizable sprinkling of veiled athletes who are determined to avoid offending devout Muslims back home while showing skimpily dressed rivals there is nothing constricting about wearing "hijab".

To Georgia

Originally uploaded by
I'm still trying to figure out what is going on in the little country of Georgia. Praying...

Caption: Tbilisi, Georgia - January, 2008: Senior Georgian woman lights a prayer candle in Sioni Cathedral in Tbilisi, Georgia where a church has been since the 6th century AD. (Photo by Christopher Herwig)

22 months ago: Georgian woman sells national fur-caps in the town of Mckheta outside Tbilisi, 08 October 2006. Russia's military would go to the defence of Georgia's separatist regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia if the Georgian government launched an assault, Defence Minister Sergei Ivanov said Sunday. (Photo credit: VANO SHLAMOV/AFP/Getty Images)

Irakli's Public Gallery » Malcolms Abkhazia
Oct 9, 2007

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Historical Christian Headcoverings

Sister Judith Hannah brings us a collection of Christian writers' thoughts on head covering for Christian women, who lived and wrote within the first centuries after the days of Jesus Christ on earth. Each seems to take the scriptures and tradition of Christian women veiling as a literal act of covering the head, regardless of local culture.

Please find the time to read: "HEAD COVERINGS... the Historical Record"


Personal Opinion Time:

To many, reading these words of the old teachers, the subject may come across as one of legalism where nothing has been specifically commanded, one of opinion therefore, and because following this command is of works, and not "unto salvation". Please, stop for a moment, and consider the words of Jesus himself, as recorded in the first four books of the New Testament. If the greatest command is to love the LORD God with all our heart, soul and mind, then one will show that love, just as a light on a hill that stands out for all to see - and for all to see something, something has to be... done. That is obedience. Not someone trying to save themselves. The second great command is taught that we are to love others as we love ourselves. That is an act of respect and consideration, not thinking of ourselves and acting for ourselves, but for others - whether respect for men, to show them that we understand the heavy responsibility of their position and we are here to hold them up, (or, also, respect for a man's ability to be distracted as we "flaunt" our hair, which is our glory, or our bodies, or etc.); or respect for other women, to point out to them some things to consider in their own lives which may help them to grow in their love towards their husbands, their children and their LORD God.

The simple act of covering a woman's head seems so trivial, if only taken as an act to be done, because "somebody made me" for example. It is much more than just one thing on a list of things that a woman does to be pleasing to God and man(kind). It is obedience done out of love, respect, trust, and faith. If I told my husband (or my best friend, or my father) that I loved him, but never showed him by my actions that I cared about the things which were important to him, never listened when he explained something to me that he really did have more knowledge or experience in, never thought twice about him as I spent all my time with other people and in trying to please them more than I want to please him, never respected his authority when it came time to make decisions or wise choices where it seemed that it "just didn't matter" to me - I would not really be loving.

When you pull those headcoverings on today, Sisters, please remember who you are really doing it for, first of all. Humble yourself in the sight of the Lord, and he will lift you up. Become as little children, who do not turn to a loving parent and say, "I don't have to!" But who love and obey and trust. And whose Father is happy to call them to him, and lift them up.

~ LM

Friday, August 8, 2008

Cancer Caps

"Mad for caps"
By Mary Shustack, The Journal News, August 8, 2008
(New York's Lower Hudson Valley)

When Carrie Bell first designed feminine baseball caps, she never imagined who her biggest customers would be.

She thought the caps - think polka dots and flowers instead of team logos - would be ideal for tennis players and golfers. But Madcapz sells best to women and children experiencing hair loss from medical treatments and conditions. . . .

To find out more about Carrie Bell's caps and visors, or to place an order, visit

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Studying Christianity or Living It Out

I came across a verse by verse study of 1 Corinthians 11:2-6, done by a lady who believes that the command for Christian women to cover their heads while praying or prophesying made by the Apostle Paul there was only for that culture. She made a lot of references to the culture of that time, which she did not verify with sources, unfortunately. She did make some interesting points, such as this one, referring to cultures:
"When we visit other countries, or even subcultures in our own country, we need to keep in mind the customs of the societies we’ll be moving about in. Let’s not let our liberty become a cause of reproach either to ourselves, our nation, or especially, to our God. It falls to us to learn what people in the places we’re going to consider to be appropriate and modest and respectful behavior and then to be considerate of local customs as much as we reasonably can, even if we think those customs silly and superficial."
She also concludes: "We can always find a solution if we show love and preference for one another, and that is what the whole head covering thing is about if you distill it down to its most essential form. Do nothing for selfish reasons, but do everything out of love for one another and out of your desire to advance the Kingdom of God."

Some interesting points were then made in a comment reply to this post, of which I only include a part:
. . . As a non-Christian, I find the “picking-and-choosing” to be a great barrier to taking modern Christians seriously. Homosexuality is treated as an eternal ultimate evil, but women staying silent in Church is treated as a historical culture-specific suggestion. The same cultural arguments for the latter apply to the former. We can interpret Paul’s attacks on homosexuality as attacks on the ancient Greek sense of the superiority of homosexuality over heterosexuality, and particularly as an attack on pederasty, rather than as an attack on committed, loving relationships between people of the same gender. That Christians use cultural arguments to excuse things they wish (equality for women), but reject them for groups they dislike (homosexuals) creates exactly the image of hypocrisy that I believe Paul was speaking against. . . .

My editing may change the ideas of the writers, due to context; please read them in their entirety. I am submitting this link with these two viewpoints I found for your consideration:
1 Corinthians 11:2-16 - by CindyinSD at wordpress

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

"How to wear Hijab"

Equal time! The other day I linked/posted a how-to manual on choosing a head covering scarf, which could apply to Christian and Jewish women, as well as women who desire to cover for hair loss or other reasons. Today I came across a blog with a similar purpose, but specifically for how to wear the Muslim style head scarf. I often remark in this blog that I personally don't think that most women choose one style over another so that they can mark out which "team" they belong to. But I would be lying if I said that I really believed that to be true 100% of the time. Many women do in fact wear their hijab, or mantilla, or prayer cap or bonnet with pride, BECAUSE it easily identifies them with their type of belief. Of course, they must also be made aware themselves, that many women like to wear the same style of head coverings because they like it, and may not share their beliefs after all. It's really a many faceted thing, this head covering. But, I digress. Please read the following article on how to wear a head scarf, in identify-ably Muslim styles (and there are quite a few!). Note - There are many spiritual aspects to a style, too, especially where purity and modesty is concerned, so the decision to cover your head is not a decision to be made too lightly.

The following is a thorough article: several basics, lists, pictures and links included.

"How to wear hijab: choosing your own style", from islamzpeace at wordpress.
Often when a new muslima or one who has decided to start wearing hijab looks at the variety and types of hijabs available it can be confusing. It is also confusing when we see some women covering from head to foot leaving almost nothing exposed, yet others wearing pretty much western clothing with just a scarf over their hair. It is important that when a woman puts on hijab that it is for the sake of pleasing Allah and for seeking the reward in the hereafter. So where is a woman supposed to begin?


I keep seeing that book title used in the photo above, and I have longed to use it in a post. The book is listed in my "other resources" in the sidebar.

Does My Head Look Big In This? is the first novel by author Randa Abdel-Fattah. It was released in Australia, by Pan MacMillan Australia, on the 1st August 2005. It won the Australian Book Industry Award for Australian Book of The Year Award for older children.

The plot involves a sixteen-year-old girl who decides to adopt the Muslim custom of hijab dress, with varying reactions from her family and peers." - from Wikipedia

Chapel Veils and Angels

The interest in veiling/wearing a headcovering for Christian women, in my observation, transcends schism, denomination and any other background. There is a desire in Christ following hearts to go deeper than just "going to church and quitting cursing". I've noted in an earlier article, the observation that "the whole spiritual world" is turning their hearts toward more traditional and conservative beliefs and practices, one of the most obvious being the wearing of something on a spiritually minded woman's head. This blog has pointed out, from the various blogs and articles that I've linked to, the trend of young women to "take the veil", be it Muslim, Jewish or Christian. Even the secularists are picking up on it and bringing head scarves into the fashion world. (We affect each other, I think.) Keep watching the trend, and be encouraged.

(Image here from, provider of chapel veils and mantillas. Please also see my Those Headcoverings Illustrated web page to find more places providing chapel veils and other headcoverings.)


"the chapel veil, revisited", by Chris & Co., is another testimonial describing the decision to wear a veil or mantilla in the old Latin style Catholic Mass, and translating that understanding of covering to be more than just a nice "old fashioned" style, but a spiritual, obedient act. Read how Chris puts it, in her blog:
". . . A veil is not a sign that a woman is "holier than thou". It is a sign that she is humbling herself before the Lord where he is present in the Blessed Sacrament. The mentality has seeped into other areas of my life, such as choosing what I wear to Mass and even to work. St. Agnes does not have an official dress code, but the pastor has written some suggestions in the bulletin and for the most part people dress nicely and modestly. Lots of jackets, ties, dresses, etc- in spite of the fact that the church is not air conditioned. I always wear a skirt to church and I kneel on the floor of my bedroom before I leave to make sure the hem touches the floor (then you know the skirt is long enough!) I am much more aware of how women (especially young women and teens) dress, and I can't help but ponder what effect that has on their dignity and how they are treated by men.

Many women cite 1 Corinthians 11 as Biblical support for headcovering. (Funny how fundamentalists, who are so keen on interpreting the Bible literally, don't wear mantillas!) Fellow blogger and mantilla-wearer Mary Rose recently wrote about this on her fabulous blog. It is true that the Church used to require women to cover their heads in church (formerly, this often meant a hat) and according to current canon law it is no longer explicitly required. But no one ever said we couldn't. Or shouldn't. For me, a sign of respect and submission to the Lord is just as valid now as it was 50 years ago. Anything that fosters more respect and reverence in Mass can ONLY be a good thing! . . ."

Please also read: "Veiling Again", from Jonathan Knox of "TestimonyToTruth" at blogspot, for a lengthy discussion of veiling in the Catholic churches and Vatican 2.

Read more about the Latin Mass and Vatican 2 discussion in the article: "Traditionalist parish at odds with Catholic Church - Members favor doctrine before Vatican II", by Jim Merkel, in (St. Louis).


"The Christian Libertarian" offers an answer the question of the angels, including this interesting version of the verse in question:

1 Corinthians 11:10 (Amplified Bible)

Therefore she should [be subject to his authority and should] have a covering on her head [as a token, a symbol, of her submission to authority, that she may show reverence as do] the angels [and not displease them].

What this translation seems to be indicating is that the angels are very reverent and respect the authority of God (their head), and women are to show respect to their head (the husband) in much the same way; otherwise the angels would be displeased (because it would seem they are in a similar position of submission, and being blameless before God, they disprove of disrespect of authority).

Just more to think on, and why I personally see this subject of headcovering as transcendent of local culture, time and even diversity of beliefs.


In summary, the reasons that St. Paul advises women to cover their head in the church are:

  • Our Lord commanded it;
  • It is a visible sign of an invisible order established by God;
  • The Angels at Mass are offended if women don't use it;
  • It is a ceremonial vestment;
  • It is our heritage.
Christian women around the world have other reasons to wear a hat, mantilla, rebozo, gele, scarf, shawl or veil. Some wear it out of respect to God; others to obey the Pope's request, or to continue family traditions. But the most important reason of all is because Our Lord said: "if you love Me, keep My commandments" (John 14:15). We should always be ready with our bridal veils, waiting for Him and the promised wedding (Apoc. 22:17), following the example of our Blessed Mother, Mary, who never appeared before the eyes of men but properly veiled. To those who still think that the veil is an obsolete custom, remember that: "Jesus Christ is the same, yesterday and today, yes, and forever" (Heb. 13:8).

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

"How to Choose a Headcovering"

Found in WikiHow - "How To Do Just About Everything"

by "DandelionMom"

Headcoverings are beautiful, and they really show that you honor your husband in your daily work. They cover the hair, and they can be a wonderful addition to your wardrobe!

. . .
Covering the hair is an ancient tradition, which was and still is seen in faiths such as Christianity, Judaism, Islam, and many others. It is a simple way to honor your husband and to honor your God. [I just love the simplicity of that statement! - LM] Here are my favorite styles, all coming from a wonderful website that I found: Headcoverings By Devorah, located at

The first style is called Mimkhatah, which means a Kerchief Scarf Headcovering. It is a great way to start covering and is really beautiful. I like it the best because it reminds me of frontier-style or dutch women's attire.

. . .

Another version is called the Batiste Tiechels, or Scarves Headcovering. This type drapes beautifully, and is wonderful when worn at ceremonies, gatherings, or any special dinner or event.

. . .

Finally, this one is called the Snood. It is a great choice when baking or cooking as the hair tucks up into the covering.

. . .

These beautiful headcoverings are wonderful to wear, for any woman who wants a simpler, more traditional way of life! They work really well for those of you recovering from cancer as well!

Find the full article with larger photos at:

Book Review: The Veil

"Getting behind the veil"
02/08/2008, in the

Kamila Shamsie reviews The Veil: Women Writers on Its History, Lore and Politics, edited by Jennifer Heath.
"It can be illusion, vanity, artifice, deception, liberation, imprisonment, euphemism, divination, concealment, hallucination, depression, eloquent silence, holiness, the ethers beyond consciousness..." And that's only the first half of the sentence.
The Veil is well aware of the reasons why the veil has become such a paradoxically visible entity in the past few years, and counters this with the opening sentence of its first essay, by Mohja Kahf, which bluntly asserts: "Veiling - covering the head with a piece of fabric, and sometimes the face as well - predates Islam."

That sentence both acknowledges the connotations attached to the veil in the contemporary West and tries to make the reader consider the term more broadly - a strategy continued through much of the book, with considerable success.

Read the full review at the title link above. Find a link to this book at Amazon in the sidebar here, right. Product Description as found on Amazon follows:
This groundbreaking volume, written entirely by women, examines the vastly misunderstood and multilayered world of the veil. Veiling-- of women, of men, and of sacred places and objects--has existed in countless cultures and religions from time immemorial. Today, veiling is a globally polarizing issue, a locus for the struggle between Islam and the West and between contemporary and traditional interpretations of Islam. But veiling was a practice long before Islam and still extends far beyond the Middle East. This book explores and examines the cultures, politics, and histories of veiling. Twenty-one gifted writers and scholars, representing a wide range of societies, religions, ages, locations, races, and accomplishments, here elucidate, challenge, and/or praise the practice. Expertly organized and introduced by Jennifer Heath, who also writes on male veiling, the essays are arranged in three parts: the veil as an expression of the sacred; the veil as it relates to the emotional and the sensual; and the veil in its sociopolitical aspects. This unique, dynamic, and insightful volume is illustrated throughout. It brings together a multiplicity of thought and experience, much of it personal, to make readily accessible a difficult and controversial subject.

See also the review of "The Veil" in the,
The articles here are thoughtful, intelligent and each tells an individual story. But readers seeking a more historically nuanced analysis would do better to turn to Joan Wallach Scott's recent book, The Politics of the Veil (Princeton University Press). This volume, however, is more personal, intimate even, urging us to focus on more serious threats to women's lives, including wars that claim to bring liberty while raining down bombs.

Un-orthodox Jewish Head Covering

Sometime before I came to Israel, I took on the custom of covering my head at, pretty much, all times. Sometimes I wear a kippah, sometimes a scarf wrapped in such a way that I hope it is obvious that what I am covering is the top of my head and not my hair. I have been doing this for about two years now.
From "Covering My Head", by Azadi, in "Beyond the". Read here of the understandings and experiences of a woman who chooses to cover her head with a kippah (usually worn by Jewish men) rather than a full hair covering, as is usually the case for Jewish women.


Head coverings of all kinds are truly worn by people of all kinds for various reasons of all kinds. To me, a head covering is just not a simple symbol of one thing or another in our world. One must stop and ask or study the subject for themselves. Or at the very least, one must not assume that they can know or judge what goes on under that head covering, in the mind and heart of the wearer.

Christian Headcovering - the Sacred Veil

In "Veiling the Sacred",by "Mary's Anawim" of wordpress, restating the sense of the sacred, and referencing back to the Lake Charles Latin Mass Society, and Fr. Robert Fromageot, F.S.S.P. (which has been referenced before in this blog; if you haven't read it, please click here for the full text).
Consider also, the function of those things which are ordinarily veiled: the tabernacle, the chalice, etc. All of these are vessels of the very Source of life, Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, the Light and Life and of the World. It is because these vessels are designated to contain Christ Himself that they are sacred vessels; hence, they are used for no other purpose than to receive and contain the Blessed Sacrament.
. . .
The leading lights of our age often claim to champion the rights of women, and in certain respects the claim is legitimate. At the same time, however, our age has clearly not sought to protect and foster the sacred dignity of women. On the contrary, society would have us remove our wedding garment, divest ourselves of Christ, and put on the “old man” and make ample provision for the flesh. Men are practically encouraged to treat women as mere objects of pleasure, and women are encouraged to seek this degrading form of attention and accept it as normal and compatible with their dignity.


Consider also: "Head Coverings Redux" by "The Rosemary Tree" at blogspot. Quoting a bit from a personal account of Christian head covering from the Orthodox Christian Information Center, (if you haven't read this testimony, please do), she posts a photo of a model wearing a cute headcovering hat (shown below), and posits:
I mean, if covering one's head in church allows us to participate more fully in the life of The Theotokos and makes us more harmonious with our Guardian Angel, what's not to like? The author's experience rings true and resonates with my personal experience. Amen, Elisabet! Now, if wearing a beret could only make me look like the model above ~ wait; it does? At least a little bit? Ah ha! When women realize head coverings are gorgeous, the churches wil be full of them, say what? If purity doesn't do it perhaps vanity will...

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Christian Headcovering Testimony

Please notice: "Why are you wearing that thing on your head, Ms. Debbie?" by Debylin at I really appreciated the thoughts of this woman who has recently started head covering. Here is part of what she wrote:
I had made the decision about I think close to 3 months ago to start wearing a head covering full time. I had listened to a sermon on head coverings and researched it for myself and found it to be completely biblical. When I first put one on it was a bit uncomfortable and I thought I looked funny. But all that didn’t matter as I wanted to be obediant to the word. It is important to show that I am in submission to God and my husband. Glorifing God should be what is most important in the life of a true believer and me wearing a head covering does just that. Some would say it is legalism and I say how can being obediant to the word be legalism. How can glorifing God be legalism? This is just one part of the process of separation that I have taken.

She also included several Bible scriptures, and an audio link to a sermon that she found online: "Just scroll down to where it says headcoverings part one and then you can listen to part two as well."

Saturday, August 2, 2008

"The Veil: A Mystical Symbol"

from: Tea at Trianon: The Veil: A Mystical Symbol
. . .

Most people are familiar with the injunction of St. Paul in 1 Corinthians 11: 5,6, 13 for women to wear veils in church. It is interesting, however, to reflect upon other scriptural passages in which persons or things are covered out of reverence for God, beginning in the Old Testament. In ancient times, covering oneself, and especially hiding the face, was a sign of respect and obeisance. . . .

Friday, August 1, 2008

Modesty? Submission? Fashion? or Identity? - YES!

Yikes, yikes, yikes. For once and for all time, please, secular world, get this: a woman wearing a headcovering can do so to be modest AND still be in style AND to recognize that she is different from men AND EVEN show her personal identity. All at the same time!

How can a trendy clothing store for young people refuse to hire a young woman because she wears a head scarf? It's trendy, already! Don't they read?

How can a news reporter (or editorial commenter) write that it's a double standard for a young woman who wants to cover her hair and dress modestly to also want to be able to fit in with her society? Isn't that what everybody is clamoring for - assimilation? OK, so let them cover their hair, their heads and their bosoms and legs in the summer time and be modestly dressed with a fashionable flair (with fashions being sold, I might add, by mainly secularly oriented fashion designers). They've "assimilated" AND kept their sense of spirituality and cultural identity. How does that hurt anyone? It's as if someone just doesn't think that it could be possible that everyone in the world just can't think, and dress, just like them. Where do these ideas come from?

Secular people praise those who come to these liberated Western secular countries and throw off their "old religion" or "modify their religion" so that their religion fits in with their new home. While I certainly love the idea that old traditions and requirements of culture which are harmful might be "thrown off", I don't understand the need for supposing that all of the religious requirements are temporary cultural items that can be added or discarded at the whim of men and women so that they can "fit in". Sometimes a solid faith or belief in values (such as modesty, respect for one's elders, a strong work ethic, organization, family values) is a good thing - even for those who don't believe in the spiritual roots of the understandings. Why would we want to take those things away from people? Is a woman wearing a headcovering to worship, or to live worshipfully, really so much of a threatening thing? If you really believe it is unncessary, then just "smile and wave" - either she'll lose her faith in spiritual things and come to think of the human body and the here and now as the greatest things, or she'll keep believing that there is really something more, and behaving as she always has. Or maybe she'll say she believes, but still be influenced enough by the world to try to have it both ways. People are people, after all. Every individual one of them.

Today's rant inspired by incoming news and notes (see below), and a low tolerance level for things not going the way I think they should this afternoon. By the way, a couple of these have some good photos, esp. the step by step how to tie LJ's (not religious) head scarf - the last entry in the list.

"Scarf resulted in hiring refusal, Muslim teen says"
By BILL SHERMAN, World Religion Writer, 8/1/2008,

Muslim Hijab and workplace "discrimination" (Part II)
Aug 01, 2008, by Tod Robberson, Opinion Blog,

"Wrapped up in style - `Muslimahs' are more adventurous than ever with their hijabs"
Aug 01, 2008, by Diana Zlomislic, Living Reporter,

"Abaya - allowing women comfort without compromising freedom"
From Habib Shaikh (Jeddah Letter),, 1 August 2008

"Head Scarfs… hit or a miss??"
by loraheartsfashion at

Ask Us Anything: LJ's Headscarf Tying Technique
by blog

Oh, yes. And this:

"Turkey Ends Attempt to Lift Islamic Head Scarf Ban in Universities"
July 31, 2008, Associated Press

That Kheffiyeh (Men's Headscarf)

The head scarf worn by men (and women?) of the Middle Eastern countries, where it is very hot. For centuries maybe. The modern version, as everything, is also stylish in some ways, and can also take on meanings - by the wearer and the observer, which may not actually be the same meaning.

Please read "The scarf that caused all the trouble" by Jacquie Myburgh: Fashioning Business, in The

"Keffiyeh Fashion Symbolizes Jihad?" in

"You say keffiyeh, I say shemagh" - Urban Outfitters; Can keffiyehs ever be just a fashion statement? by Karen Burshtein, National Post,


P.S. - if you're interested in how to tie a man's head wrap, here's a short (musically accompanied) YouTube video, by Feras / posted by frezphillystyle : "How to tie a Head-Wrap..."


P.P.S. - I really posted this one too soon. Just in from the Daily News - Egypt: "A dozen and more ways to tie a headscarf – for men", By Chitra Kalyani, August 1, 2008 (photo from page)

Oh, wow. Check this out. We are so ignorant in our part of the world where men are proud of their locks (or otherwise, just cut them off) - and either way, it's not usually "cool" to cover their heads, for heat, sun, cold or anything other than supporting your local union or team. Of course, these scarves serve all those purposes at the same time. Am I rambling? I find this a really interesting different lifestyle, myself.