Covering Your Body for God

A server at a resturant yesterday had her head and neck covered.   Obviously, it had something to do with her religion.

It got me to wondering why it is so imparative that in some religions, the man and woman’s heads must be covered, in others it is the female breast, then it is everything but the female eyes and hands and in some aborigine cultures people just go naked.

A fellow blogger pointed out the other day that in marathon run in  San Fransico some of the runners were naked.  There was no such thing in the Fargo Marathon.

All of this makes one wonder why the various gods have different rules on which parts of the body are sinful to reveal and which are OK.  Whether it is our faces or our “private parts”, they are all part of our bodies.  It seems it should be no more “sinful” to uncover one part of these bodies than any other part.

We’ve gone through periods in the past few decades where undressing taboos were exposed (pardon the pun). During the Woodstock period, young people went nude in public.  Then, there was the “streaker” period.  But, except for riske swimsuits and necklines, not much has changed.

From my observation, these religion-base rules of covering various part of the body apply to women more than men.   So, my own conclusion is that the various rules on what must be covered have something to do with the exercise of power.

Avatar of Jon Lindgren

About Jon Lindgren

I am a former President of the Red River Freethinkers in Fargo, ND, a retired NDSU economics professor and was Mayor of Fargo for 16 years. There is more about me at Wikipedia.com.
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15 Responses to Covering Your Body for God

  1. entech says:

    I do think a lot of the “dress code” is cultural as much as anything. In much of the pacific Female tourists wear skimpy bikini type costumes, taking care not to expose the breasts to the locals – while local cultures mainly consider breasts as largely irrelevant but expect the loins to be well covered, exactly the opposite behaviours.

    Head covering in places of worship is interesting – covered to show respect, or, head covering remove to be humble, I can never work out which it should be and very often it is different for the sexes, men bare headed and women covered.

    Have to agree with the last paragraph, so much of covering is related to sex and that has always been a large part of the power play, whether it is male over female or church over congregation.

    • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

      entech 2:32 Yes, a lot of it must be cultural with a dose of some current or past religious influence. My reaction when I see people, men and women, wearing various stuff on their heads, is to think, “How peculiar.” Then, I try to remind myself that in my own culture we have different rules that would seem just as peculiar to others. It’s all the same, not covering some part of the human anatomy is immoral or indecent. It all seems arbitrary.

  2. Wanna B Sure says:

    I suppose it would be difficult to attract a woman on a cold day if a man wasn’t wearing pants. Conclusion; it’s all about sex. That situation could however generate some snickering, and no need for thermometers.
    Do college professors still wear those robes/stripes on commencment day? Why? Authority, honor? Demanded or deserved?

  3. entech says:

    Jon, ever consider that economics and religion have something in common?
    For a very long time the questions have always been the same, the answers just keep changing and each new answer is the ultimate truth.

    • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

      entech 6:34 Certainly, religion and what is called macroeconomics share some of that changing “untimate truth”. The problem with macroeconomics, which is about government spending to promote prosperity and manipulating interested rate via the Federal Reserve (another name in Australia), is that people anticipate a result which, in some cases, prevents it from happening. Microeconomics, the “Theory of the Firm”, however, has not changed much in 100 plus years. It has more ultimate truth than religion. :)

      • Wanna B Sure says:

        Jon; I tend to agree with you, but from possibly a different slant. We are talking here about applied philosophy. First stating that philosophy should be the “tool” of religion, rather than the “rule”. Ever since the fourteent century, scholasticism, and now it’s non identical twin, exestentialism have become the rule for a great majority of those in “religion” of all stripes. In the seventeenth century, a movement was started to reduce the errors/hazards of scholasticism, and the results were as much or more detremental due to the emotionalism involved. This movement was Pietism. Simply by osmosis, it has crept into much of (especially in America), a large majority of Christianity. Even scholarship and scholasticism have become confused, even to the point of despising scholarship, and a yearning for an emotional high.

        • Wanna B Sure says:

          Bottom line is that there are crackpots in all “isms”. In religion, and economics. Just this morning, the news stated that one of our politicians reported that there is no need to even have or present a budget for the Fed. Government. Go figure. One would think that he has the ear of economists.

          • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

            Wanna 2:21 That Congressman’s assertion that shutting down the government will have little effect on anything was a curious statement. He never said, so far as I know, he had consulted with anyone. If he had, it would be with someone who is in the field of federal budgets, etc. It would be unusual if that person were an economist. There is an entire field devoted to that.

          • Wanna B Sure says:

            As I said, “one would think he had the ear of economists”. One would also think someone in his position would be well informed in all aspects of cause/result. If he is not, this would explain a lot as to why there are problems. His bias has complicated it.

          • entech says:

            Why would you expect that simply because a politician manages to get himself “voted in” to be well informed? Anymore than a clergyman (frequently self elected) can be well informed and not have a bias!

          • Wanna B Sure says:

            I wouldn’t. They should be voted out if they are exposed .
            As for the “frequently self elected clergyman”, when that is the case, stay away from them. There are many that are not. (Where the congregation does background searches, both criminal and sexual, examination of qualifications, experience, sources of learning, and ministerial track record.)

          • Wanna B Sure says:

            Some people examine a watermellon or smell a fish more carefully than they do a pastor, or the place of worship. Discernment should be a consideration.

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