Hi, I was just your typical 19 year old Seminary girl in South Jersey (if you don't know where I mean, you are probably on the wrong blog). We all have nisoynos, challenges, and experiences, both positive and negative. Here is where I have decided to share some of them.

Location: Lakewood, New Jersey, United States

Monday, December 18, 2006

The Tznius CD

Recently, I listened to a CD in the car (actually I was forced to listen to it) .

I was very surprised to hear what Rabbi Forcheimer was discussing as I always perceived him to be the most normal, and level-headed of the poskim in town. Now suddenly in an address about tznius to the Yeshiva he was saying that women and girls need to be careful not to swing their arms while walking in the street. I do not want to Chas V’Shalom mock or belittle any of the illustrious Talmidei Chochomin in Lakewood or elsewhere, but seriously can we get real..If girls are constantly busy focusing on how they are walking to such a degree, when do they get to grow spiritually and intellectually as Jews and people. When do they work on Middos, Betochin, Emuna, Chesed, and a myriad of other important concepts in Yahdus..

Another point in the CD was that he’s been receiving numerous phonecalls complaining that the husbands are being dropped off in front of Yeshiva, thus causing a tremendous Michshol for the bochurim and other Yungerleit.. He went on to say that although we have tremendous Zchusim for bringing the husbands to learn and supporting them, you lose it all by causing the bochurim to have bad thoughts , because then these bochurim can't learn all afternoon as a result of this.

One possible solution might be for the men to just walk to Yeshiva. The wives won't have to take them, and as a side benefit, they will get exercise in accordance with the President's council on Physical Fitness. Lately there are far too many extremely obese yungerleit littering the streets of the newly regentrified downtown area. Its a real eyesore to the neighborhood.

Another possibility, just close off the entire seventh street to women by day. Put up huge billboards in Yiddish that say all vibelach found in a five block radius of BMG between 7 AM and 8 PM will be shot on sight.

In other news, I have been informed that many elementary schools are banning all girls from third grade and up from wearing colorful banana clips in their hair.. This is a regrettably necessary measure that needs to be taken to prevent the lil boys from noticing them.

Smart girls learn how to act and what to say very early in life. Afterall, a girl's frumkeit is judged by mostly external things, such as what she wears, how she walks(poise doesn't count)etc. The daughter of my mother's friend is a prime example. She looks like a typical graduate of Bais Yacov but there's a certain gleam in her eyes. I have a very strong gut feeling that there's more there than meets the eye....another side of her that she doesn't show the world. It's nothing I can put my finger on but its definitely there. And no, I've never seen her in a banana clip....


Blogger kishmech said...


12/19/2006 5:51 PM  
Blogger ThinkingJew said...

I don't mean to belittle any talmid chochom, but now I will....

Is that it? If you are so strong in your beliefs, call a spade a spade and say that you DO mean to belittle this rabbi.

"When can girls work on middos etc. if they are busy working on their tznius?"

Huh? That's like saying I am too busy concentrating on the scale to watch what I eat. What are you looking at the scale for?

Tznius IS a midda, and like it or not, the Torah says it is the most important midda for Jewish women. I know you hate hearing this. So come out and say it. "We can't stand the Torah's restrictions, they are so old-fashioned and silly, and like G-d please just let us live a little. We'll be nice people, okay? But enough with the tznius and everything!"

Why hide behind cute phrases when you should just say what you mean?

I am no big chossid of Lakewood rabbis and I don't pretend to be. And I am no extremist, but tznius happens to be what the Torah says is very important, and maybe that's why the yetzer hora is so strong to belittle it.

The passuk says that when there is tznius and yes, men have no cause to have bad thoughts, then hashem will protect us. I know this is hard on woman and girls. For sure. So the biggest midda, the biggest act of chessed, the greatest show of mentchlichkeit would be that when there are so many sick people, so much tzaros, the arabs are arming, that a girl can say, "okay, as much as I hate this, I will sacrifice for the klal. For my neighbors sick child. For the girl or boy losing his way in yiddishkeit..." That is big.

Belittling someone who is trying in a nice way to show a better and higher path is small...

12/19/2006 6:09 PM  
Blogger G said...


I beg to differ.

12/19/2006 7:01 PM  
Blogger Chaim said...

These Rabbi's just don't get it. It's sad really.

12/19/2006 8:33 PM  
Blogger Shpitzle Shtrimpkind said...

Thinkingjew – Did you actually think before you wrote any of this?
I don’t see where your point is headed. This post did not denounce modesty at all. It touched the topic of being ‘obsessed with modesty’, which is not to be confused with actual modesty. Modesty in its old-fashioned Torahdig definition is a behavior, a way of life. A woman can abide to every one of today’s rabbinical rules and still not achieve modesty.
That’s the topic of conversation here.

12/19/2006 8:52 PM  
Blogger yeshivaguy said...

It's getting crazier all the time. I hate this stuff.

12/19/2006 10:52 PM  
Blogger J said...

Reminds me of a story I heard about Rav Shmuel Salant in Yerushalayim, whose Rebetzin was a personality in her own right.

Once a bochur came to the door and she answered it. He did not look at her and his eyes where facing downwards.

She is reported to have told him "Better you should have your eyes on me and your mind on the floor, than to have your eyes on the floor but your mind is on me!"

12/19/2006 10:53 PM  
Blogger ThinkingJew said...

Cute how people beg to differ, but have no clue how to respond intellectualy. Shows an aweful lot I'd say...

Shpitzl, you're the only one who had something to say, and I completely agree with you. Problem is that the rabbi SG quoted and the examples she gave do not show at all an obsession. Someone for whom tznius is a way of life would walk with modesty in the street and also would be sensitive not to hang around directly in front of a yeshiva where thousands of bachurim and yungerleit frequent...

Other than that, I agree that those who ARE obsessed are wrong. But not every time someone speaks about tznius - and let's face it, there is MUCH room for improvement - it is an obsession.

12/20/2006 12:47 AM  
Blogger Shoshana said...

ThinkingJew -
Yes, the examples quoted do show an obsession. If you want to go to an extreme, then yes, just tell women to wear burkas. That would be the ultimate sacrifice a good frum woman could do in order to protect the holy men from having impure thoughts. Or maybe, just maybe, you could trust women to have a little judgment and give men a teensy weensy bit of responsibility and pretend that they have a little bit of self-control in order to keep themselves from imagining mounting a woman on the street due to the fact that she is sitting in her car in front of him or wearing a clip in her hair. I mean, honestly, don't men see this as demeaning at all, that they can't be trusted to see a modestly dressed woman dropping off her husband? (Not that I think it's a bad idea for men to have to walk a couple blocks.) If you say that humans are absolute animals and have zero control over themselve, then say so. But I do believe the Torah says that we are human and we have the power to act above the level of animals. And we should trust that Hashem knew what he was doing when He made us that way.

12/20/2006 8:23 AM  
Blogger wearywife said...

Human nature being what it is, too much tznius is actually untzniusdik! My husband tells me that many jewish men dont find a shiksa in a tank top and shorts the least bit alluring. Why is that? Because two elements are missing-
1) the forbidden fruit factor
2) sometimes when more is left to the imagination it is even more alluring. (ie- a moslem woman in a veil with only her eyes showing.) Am I suggesting that Jewish women should wear tank tops and shorts c'v? No-I am merely suggesting that Jewish women act and dress in an attractive but refined lady like manner and Jewish men have more respect for women.
PS-my husband also told me that many men and bochurim find R'Falks book more titilating than secular magazines. Imagine that...

12/20/2006 9:18 AM  
Blogger G said...

-->Cute how people beg to differ, but have no clue how to respond intellectualy. Shows an aweful lot I'd say...

I'll try one more time.

--it's called irony.

12/20/2006 9:22 AM  
Blogger KiddushClubGuy said...

I can recall as young teenager becoming very aroused when I read certain parts of Kitzur Shulcan Oruch. The lifestyle that you are subscribing to resembles a fundamentalist way of thinking. I don't think it has anything to do with Judaism. Just take a look around and see what depravity it breeds

12/20/2006 11:04 AM  
Blogger kishmech said...

Thinking jew- swinging arms? i rest my case!!

12/20/2006 11:37 AM  
Blogger yeshivaguy said...

Sorry to take you guys off-topic, but I saw a really smart article relating to the previous post concerning perceptions of beauty. You can find it here:

12/20/2006 2:32 PM  
Blogger Elisheva said...

Okay, I'm late here. I find myself in middle, as usual, it seems.

I did not hear the CD or tape. I did hear a lot about the speech though, and also read the book based on it, and there was no mention of swinging arms, so I take that with a few grains of salt, especially given the attitude of the post.

I will say that I definitely think people are too obsessed with tznius, and it does not help, it makes things worse, both for men, and for us. Girls need guidance in how to feel tzanua, not rigid rules and regulations.

On the other hand, I feel that most of the kvetching is by people who simply do not like the whole tznius thing, like TJ pointed out, and yes, the agenda shows right through. The comparisons to burkas, about men being animals and what they can't hold back from doing to ladies in the street, are all examples of people going to extremes because the reality is just not that way.

Men are human, and have responsibilities. Yes. SO we can walk the streets and live our lives, yes, and they have to control themselves. As far as I know, most normal people are fine with that. (I'm sure we'll hear ppl say how this and this person in such and such place wants ladies to walk no one side of the street. Again this is an example of a totally unrealistic extreme case by those people who can't make a point realistically.) To compare walking the streets normally to sitting around in front of a yeshiva with thousands of guys is like a little stretch here. I know I, as a horny girl, could get aroused being among so many guys sometimes, and many other girls told me the same thing. So let's stop playing pretend here. No, I didn't jump out of the car on any guy, but you can't compare sitting in front of the biggest yeshiva in America to being able to walk around normally.

My younger siblings all can't bring any food with nuts to school anymore because some kids are allergic and it would make them feel bad for others to eat while they can't. It's not just cause some kids react from the smell. It's even when they won't, still the teachers feel it is not right that some kids can't eat certain snacks while others can. Most people seem to understand that.

So why is it suddenly so crazy and taliban and everything to ask ladies not to sit around right in front of the biggest yeshiva in the world, I don't know. Sounds liek an agenda to me. I agree that the reason so many women feel so angry about these issues is becuse everyone is so obsessed with tznious and this is how it backfires. So I agree that there is a problem, but I don't think all our whining is justified.

I am way over.


12/20/2006 2:53 PM  
Blogger Tova said...

How tzniusdik is it for men to be obsessing about the way women dress?

Dropping off your husband before going to work is not the same thing as hanging out in front of the yeshiva. Swinging your arms to walk isn't attractive unless you mean it to be. Or unless you're obsessed with women.

And hair clips? I actually knew it would be a matter of time before they regulate hair accessories; I said so 2 years ago, when my daughter's school in Flatbush made the Pre-1A girls cover elbows and knees in a very not yeshivish yeshiva. She's not in that school anymore. I said then if the tznius obsession with little girls isn't stopped, it's just a matter of time before they say no pink hair bows.

12/20/2006 5:31 PM  
Blogger Teddy Douglas said...

Wow, Semgirl you're a hit. Anyhoo (yuck what a sick word), remember the gemarah about the guy who said to his friend "kamah na'eh psi'oseha shel reba zu'? Look how pretty is this girl's gait. It is just like the swinging arms thing. It makes a difference how you walk. And he may not mean arms, it is just an example but women sometimes have a way of wiggling their rears when they walk, there is such a thing as a suggestive step.

As far as women outside yeshiva, it kind of reminds me a Rivka walking near batei midrash with her two unborn children... But practically, it is a huge nuisance for yeshiva bochurim, on multiple levels, to have women on "their turf".

And notwithstanding Shoshana's beautiful graphic moshal, girls don't understand boys and it is a constant war to maintain a high level of purity. The holy Chofetz Chaim would not permit a young girl in his study without long sleeves even in his later years. He was presumably not worried about an uncontrolable desire "to mount her", but was concerned with his service of Hashem.

12/20/2006 7:12 PM  
Blogger megapixel said...

a couple i know lived in lakewood many years ago, when r shneur was alive. They did not have 2 cars like every couple today, and the woman needed to get to work. So they asked the rosh yeshiva if it would be okay for her to ride her bike to work. he said it was okay, she should walk her bike through the yeshiva area, and when she gets past the frum neighborhood (which was tiny then!) she can ride it! How about that? sorry to hear i can no longer swing my arms, i guess jogging is out then?

12/20/2006 10:25 PM  
Blogger southernyid said...

I was once discussing this issue with a "world-class" rebbitzen who was a very close friend of the family.

She was in my house and telling my wife how the skirts my daughter was wearing would not be allowed in her NY neighborhood because they were too long. Yes you heard me right too long. When I got up off the floor I asked her how she could rationalize the hijacking of halacha and she responded that she did not agree with it she was simply telling me what was going on these days "in-town" and that she in fact yearned for the older simpler times when right was right and wrong was wrong but the world has changed.

I told her that in my girls' school they did not emphasize the concept of "tznius" but focused rather on what it means to be a "bas yisroel". You get to the same place but you come at it from different angles.

She thought that that was a brilliantly effective distinction but knew that it would never fly in the Lakewoods and Borough Parks of the world.

12/21/2006 10:11 AM  
Blogger Halfnutcase said...

the skirt being to long non-sense is probably one of the worst parts of the lot, and makes no sense. When your skirt is long and loose, and you have an appropriate slip under it, it reveals absolutely nothing; I almost think that the reason why they declare long skirts to be "not tznius" is because they want to show their legs and are trying to delegitimize those who are truely more tznius than they.

Kind of like the stupidity about pretending everyone to the right of you is absolutely crazy.

and elisheva, not to be harsh, but there is a world of difference between dropping someone off at yeshiva in a car, and hanging around the yeshiva chewing bubble gum; there is a reason why some poskim are concerned wih yichud in the confines of a car. Namely because noone will notice what you are doing unless they are trying to look in; the thing that shows most is not the occupant(s) but the car its self.

Further, in defense of the rabbi, he could have ment swinging you arms in an aluring way, but if he did then he phrased it way wrong. (assuming semgirl wasn't so offended at his even mentioning it, which is more than possible, and she totaly didn't listen to the rest of what he had to say in that paragraph. [it happens to the best of us])

12/21/2006 10:40 AM  
Blogger David_on_the_Lake said...

Could u imagine a woman..dropping her husband off....while swinging her arms...AND wearing a banana clip at the same time..???

The bochurim will just go on a sexual rampage...

12/21/2006 2:23 PM  
Blogger Chilled Yungerman said...

If you want to go to an extreme, then yes, just tell women to wear burkas

Don't laugh. The Pela Yoetz says somewhere (I don't remember, it's been a long time)
"Va'ani Mishabayach mihag hayishma'eilim..." regardnig the mode of dress by Arabic women.

Disclaimer: I do not promote the wearing of garbage bags or potato sacks by women

12/21/2006 2:32 PM  
Blogger Elisheva said...

Okay. Update: I asked my husband who WAS by the speech. He says that first of all the rav specifically said that dropping off in front of yeshiva is okay. It is waiting around directly in front of yeshiva for your husband to come out - which can be a while - which he felt was inapropriate.

So again, when we need to exaggerate what somneone says in order to discredit him, it does not exactly reflect well on our view.

About the swinging arms, he did not remember such a thing, but said he may have said that generally a woman should be careful how she walks. As Teddy D commented, this is a true thing.

So, as I said, there ARE problems and obsessions, and I think that SouthernYid in onto one of them, like this long skirt craziness, like puhlease! But as I also said, I think a lot of the criticism stems not from being against the obsessions which are so wrong and so do not help tznius one bit, but they are because people have a problem with being tznius and seek to ridicule it by giving extreme examples, in this case, both not what the rabbi said.

I am sure SG was so upset, being that we know she feels strongly about this, that she didn't realize the rav did not say it the way she wrote it.


12/21/2006 3:45 PM  
Blogger Tova said...

Elisheva said I think a lot of the criticism stems not from being against the obsessions which are so wrong and so do not help tznius one bit, but they are because people have a problem with being tznius...

I don't have a problem with "being tznius." I do dress tzniusdikly, but I have a problem with extremes. I don't think a preschooler or lower-elementary-age girl needs to dress like she's already bas mitzvah. I don't think women should hang out in front of yeshivas, and I don't think men should be looking out the window at who is dropping off whom if they're supposed to be learning.

I think the men's obsession with the way women dress is untzniusdik.

12/21/2006 9:38 PM  
Blogger Semgirl said...

Tova ...couldnt agree with you more.

Elisheva...I listened to it again, maybe your husb can go to Satmar, spring for the buck, lol. And you can listen to it.

Mega...Newsflash, we are all frummer then, Reb Shneur, Reb Ahron, Reb Moshe..

J...I heard that story attributed to the Gerrer Rebbe...its cute.

12/22/2006 4:03 PM  
Blogger Tzvi Meir said...

I have a soft spot for Rabbi Forcheimer so I'm not even gonna go there, but in general it is probably better if you don't use names in the future.

As far as the elementary girls not wearing banana clips...AHHHHH THAT MAKES ME CRAZY.I don't even need to say any more.

12/24/2006 11:53 AM  
Blogger onionsoupmix said...

I wish I was a guy. Life would be so much easier. I could think all kinds of bad thoughts and do all sorts of sins and then blame it on the banana-clip girls who swing their arms when they walk.

12/24/2006 3:05 PM  
Blogger Michelle said...

I still don't get the problem with banana clips. I can't figure it out. ONe person wrote to the yated that they're distracted by it falling out all the time, and fixing their hair in class, but jeez.

As far as women dropping off husbands, ummm, why are these "learners" looking at other people's wives? How much could they see through a closing car door or an open window when the wife shouts goodbye?

Wanna look at women? Go buy a damn playboy.

12/24/2006 11:06 PM  
Blogger Michelle said...


Your candidness and cogent points are impressive, TJ.

12/24/2006 11:08 PM  
Blogger Independent Frum Thinker said...

"If girls are constantly busy focusing on how they are walking to such a degree, when do they get to grow spiritually and intellectually as Jews and people. When do they work on Middos, Betochin, Emuna, Chesed, and a myriad of other important concepts in Yahdus.."

The answer to that is that the Seforim teach us that THE MOST IMPORTANT ATTRIBUTE of the Jewish woman is Tznius. Therefore, although women should have time for all the other important things you mentioned, nevertheless Tznius takes precedence as it the most important of them all.

By the way, I jusy posted a post on my blog about Tznius. All are invited to read and comment.

12/24/2006 11:43 PM  
Blogger Halfnutcase said...

um, correction: torah says that tznius is the most important midda for anyone, period.

just check out the 3rd siman of shulchan aruch (O"H)(at least in shulchan aruch harav). it's really really clear that it really doesn't matter if it's a boy or a girl, tznius is important anyway.

12/25/2006 2:56 AM  
Blogger Independent Frum Thinker said...

Halfnutcase –
I beg to differ.
First of all, I never insinuated that Tznius wasn’t important for a man. All I wrote was that Tznius is the most important attribute to a Frum woman.
The Seforim write that with all the Mitzvos that a man does his main ticket to the World to Come and Techias Hamaisim is studying Torah. The Mishna says studying Torah is the equivalent of ALL the Mitzvos.
The Seforim say that for a woman who does not have the Mitzvah of studying Torah, her equivalent is Tznius.
Yes, Tznius is her ticket to Olam Habah and Techias Hamaisim. And yes, Tznius is the equivalent of ALL Mitzvos for a woman.
Now you can properly understand why it is so emphasized.

12/26/2006 12:25 AM  
Blogger Pragmatician said...

So it does get worse...
Isn't it more logical to ask the Bachurim not to LOOK!

12/26/2006 4:38 AM  
Blogger Halfnutcase said...

I see you've flagrantly missunderstood the intention of the mishnah I'm afraid. Torah study not accompanied with good deeds will not get you anwhere, and infact from hashem wishes he had not allowed such a person to be born (shulchan aruch harav hilhchos talmud torah 4:3) further in that source it blatantly contradicts what you have asserted and says that the entire purpose of man is not to study torah but that the observance of mitzvos is the entire purpose of man.

Far from being his main ticket to the world to come, it is only part of the means for his earning his ticket to the world to come. as that citation mentions one who doesn't perform mitzvos (and the standart of their performance is higher for a torah scholar) to par but studies torah is considered wholy wicked and as it says there even his unintentional transgressions are considered willfull. He is wholy wicked.

12/26/2006 8:28 AM  
Blogger jewish philosopher said...

I am the father of two girls, one 5 years old, one 9 months old. I don't want them to ever touch a man other than their husbands. However I am uncomfortable with the idea of my daughters behaving and dressing like elderly women when they are teenagers. I'm afraid it may be depressing. It's something I'll have to research when the time comes. There should seemingly be a reasonable compromise somewhere - normal but not slutty.

And Semgirl, since when do you have something against chubby boys? Aren't your own hips a little "zaftig" shall we say?

12/26/2006 12:42 PM  
Blogger Independent Frum Thinker said...

Halfnutcase –
I hate to sound rude, but once again you completely misunderstood my comment.
Did I ever write that learning Torah without doing Mitzvos is okay?
All I wrote was that the ticket to Olam Habah & Techias Hamaisim is learning Torah.
Contrary to your statement, this is an undisputed fact. It is in the Gemorah and many Midrashim, and explained by the Maharsha, Maharal, Vilna Gaon, Rav Elchonon Wasserman, amongst others.
To help you understand, let me explain it this way.
One can buy an entry ticket to a circus, but then must buy tickets to each individual booth. The entry ticket is learning Torah. Just doing Mitzvos earns a person tickets to the various booths, but with all his booth-tickets he will still be rejected from coming in without an entry ticket. Of course, if he only has an entry ticket and not booth-tickets he will get in, but then not have much to do inside.
Obviously, it’s much more complicated than this, but since you seem to have hard time understanding the concept I’m trying to make it simple.
Now back to women.
The Seforim teach us that in place of learning Torah, (the man’s entry ticket), women have Tznius. With all their good attributes, women need Tznius to gain entry to Olam Habah and to merit Techias Hamaisim.

12/26/2006 11:28 PM  
Blogger Halfnutcase said...

I will say that not everyone consideres the entery ticket to olam haba to be torah study, most of those who do are from the litvisher community. I understand your intent; I believe you are mistaken, and missunderstood my rebuke. Debating hashkafa is not productive.

Which sefarim say that this is the primary attribute for women? I am curious.

12/27/2006 10:37 AM  
Blogger Lakewood Venter said...

The Lakewood stupidity lives on!!!! Instead of focusing on the important issues they accentuate the stupidities! "All women should be shot!!!! then all the world's problems will disappear!!!" is what they believe.


Perhaps they should educate the boys in being decent citizens, and then they won't be turned on every time they see a woman!


12/31/2006 1:20 PM  
Blogger Tipesh said...

People who are brought up in Lakewood have a serious problem. Ir HaTorah and everything, they have not really seen a serious Talmid Chochom in their lives. The distance between Rabbi Forcheimer (the top Posek in Lakewood)and the average Posek in Boro Park, let alone Yerushalyim and Williamsburg, is huge.

Additional point, the reason only women are spoken to about Tznius is that we (Litvisher) believe that talking about Tznius to bochurim makes them obsessed with these things and is counter-productive. Women on the other hand are not created with this Ta'avah of lewd thoughts and they cannot be oiver the most serious Aveiro in the Torah (yes yes not Loshon HoRa see Shulchan Aruch Even Ho'Ezer) therefore the benefit outweighs the potential trouble.

1/05/2007 10:08 AM  
Blogger Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

1/10/2007 5:26 AM  
Blogger Genevieve said...

auI think each woman knows deep down how tzniusdik she should be, whether she follows through or not.

1/26/2007 4:06 PM  
Blogger Miri said...

just for clarification; the skirts being too long thing? it's an attention attracter. anything in the extreme is noticable and therefore immodest, therefore skirts that are too long are too showy and so assur. I have also heard that it is bc they are too stylish, and this becomes an issue of chukat hagoyim; I have also heard too elegant, which argument I don't remember well enough to repeat.
have you guys done slits yet? that's a whole nother can of worms.

1/27/2007 7:11 PM  
Blogger FrumSatire2 said...

Just as a joke I wrote a post about what the Rabbis will forbid women to do next and claim that it was untznius. It seems as if they are using tznius as an issue to belittle women even more and shove them behind the mechitza as much as possible.

I brought up that they might as well ban women from walking up stairs since the skirt may tighten up as a result, or from sitting because of the same reason.

It seems as if rather then find solutions to tznius problems facing the frum community they just seek to make everything assur. This is like when they try and make more laws, arther then enforcing the ones they already have. Pathetic if you ask me.

Furthermore, I am not trying to belittle talmidei chachomim- but if you dont question peoples motives- people tend to take control and abuse their power. It happens to the best of us, just look at Tanach.

7/23/2007 10:43 PM  
Blogger Jack's Shack said...

I do not want to Chas V’Shalom mock or belittle any of the illustrious Talmidei Chochomin in Lakewood

That's ok, there are plenty of us who are happy to do so. Someone has to let the emperor know when he is naked.

8/03/2007 4:37 PM  
Blogger yael said...

As a lot of people have been pointing out so far, tznius is a middah. And just like every other middah, it is possible to have too much tznius.

Please, if you're offended or shocked by what I just said, take a second and just think about it.

This statement might seem a little bit crazy, mainly because the world we live has such a fundamental lack of understanding of tznius at all. As a result, we have lost our sense of internal tznius, and therefore keep trying to make girls less showy by creating more and more chumros, but but these chomros won't accomplish what a healthy sense of self esteem and a true internal sense of tznius will.

Going back to what I started with, I believe that it is unhelpful, even counterproductive, to create chumra upon chumra upon chumra. Do the chachamim encourage women to dress in a burka? Definitely not--women are supposed to use tznius to put emphasis not on what they look like, but on who they are, and use that to their best advantage.

Semgirl, you're great. Do you agree with what I said?

Thinking Jew, and Independent Jewish Thinker, remember: tznius is a middah. It is a way of life; it is much more about presentation than it is about inconsequential matters like banana clips. Alternatively, women should do their part but men must do theirs as well--it's a give and take between the sexes. And please seriously THINK about my comments before you respond!

Miri, what problem is there with Jewish women looking elegant? I for one thought that was the whole point--we davka should look elegant and not cheapen ourselves; tznius makes us more valuable.

8/07/2007 1:59 AM  
Blogger yael said...

To quote someone (but I forgot who),

"Only the extremes are logical, but they are absurd."

It may seem that since tznius is such a great thing there should be no limit, but that is ultimately absurd indeed.

8/07/2007 2:04 AM  
Blogger Semgirl said...

Thank you for your input Yael. That was my point exactly.. Something is inherrently very unTzniusdik, about men going to girls high schools and lecturing girl aboutTznius and ladies clothing..

8/07/2007 3:26 PM  
Blogger Yosef said...

Someone mentioned a Pela Yoatz saying that its preferable to dress like the arabs. I have been wondering why nobody ever mentiones the Rambam(aishes.25.12)that defines middas yehudis (things that if a woman does her husband can divorce her without paying her the kesuba) to be among other things,going into the streets with out a veil (redid).
The Rambam also says (aishes.13.11)that a man should prevent (I think and hope he means just verbally)his wife from going out of the house more than once or twice a month acording to the need. This is because its an embarresmant for the woman to always be going out of the house. Shain yofi leaisha ela lashave bzavios baisa The beuty for a woman is to sit in the corners of her house, because "the honour of a princess is inside".
This is getting a bit long but I think I have to say that I don't think that all woman should wear a veil. In fact since the later poskim don't say you have to we can see that this depends on the generation. In otherwords tznious means not to do things that within the present sociaty are behaviours meant to attract men. This is asside from things the Torah defines are to attract men. During the times of the gemorah prostitutes wore red to get the attention of men and to show they were prostitutes so obviously it was immodest to wear red.
The problem noweredays is that our communitys veiw on these behaviour is influenced by the outside world as it was in many generations such as the Rambams but the outside world goes to far and our definition cannot be exactly like theirs so we have many veiws and confused views. For more elaberation and a solution I guess I need to write a blog of my own.I apologise for the granner errors, I'm in a bit of a rush.

8/14/2007 2:43 PM  
Blogger Yosef said...

BTW theres an awesome GRA on a on a related subject I want to spread around. I dont have it in front of me but its in Ceser Rosh aorach chaim hilchos tshuva(in back of the siddur hagra). he says that people who walk in the streets tring to avoid looking at women are wrong cause whatever you guard yourself from will cause the yetzer hara to burn in you if you see it.IOW in the victorian times if you saw a womans ankle it was titilating, now it just wont do it. So it folish to keep on going further beond halacha.

8/14/2007 2:54 PM  
Blogger Semgirl said...

Yosef...thos are really excellent comments, unfortunately this is a very old posts and hardly anyone reads it anymore..

8/15/2007 11:16 PM  
Blogger The New Rose said...

it can still be found, even though its old...

9/24/2007 8:02 PM  
Blogger frumyeshivabochur said...

we have to stop this separation between boys and girls. I'm not saying to have physical contact but theres nothing wrong with the two genders acting normally to each other. that way boy's eyes won't pop out everytime they see a girl. when Ihear about bochurim who won't talk to their female cousins over bas mitzva I realize theres a problem. and it wouldn't hurt for girls to treat us like human beings.

6/26/2008 2:09 PM  
Blogger frumyeshivabochur said...

there's nothing wrong with girls treating boys like normal human beings. It's the separation of genders in lakewood type communities that drives guys to do aveiros. believe me I know. I'm not asking for Physical contact just that ther shouldn't be that degree of seperation. when guys aren't allowed to talk to their female cousins over bas mitzva then i know thatsomething is wrong

6/26/2008 2:39 PM  
Blogger SemGirl said...

Hello..Im surprised, to see you commenting on such an old post..

Maybe, girls act the way they do, because guys often tend to be jerks, lol...

Seriously, a good beginning would be to speak out your feelings with your mother and sisters. If every bochur who feels as strongly about it as you do, did that, you would see some changes, slowly but surely..

6/27/2008 2:33 PM  
Blogger SemGirl said...

"when guys aren't allowed to talk to their female cousins over bas mitzva then i know that something is wrong.."

Couldnt agree with you more on that... Its a very unhealthy situation..

6/28/2008 10:29 PM  

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