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Isn't it sexist that the laws of modesty apply only to women?

by Rabbi Tzvi Shapiro


Library » Daily Life » Clothing » Modesty | Subscribe | What is RSS?


1. Modesty is about dignity, and dignity is desirable. The fact that the Torah is concerned abut a woman’s dignity can hardly be called sexist. To the contrary, if the Torah is not concerned about your dignity, you have reason to be concerned. That’s why:

2. Contrary to popular misconception, men must also abide by laws of modesty as described in the Code of Jewish Law.1.

3. It is true that some times the Mitzvah of modesty is difficult and may feel like a burden or a restriction, but the same is true with almost every other Mitzvah. The Torah's mandates are privileges and responsibilities. Ultimately it is a matter of perspective: am I burdened with the responsibility to dress a certain way, or am I privileged to have G-d apparent in my daily appearance.


  • 1. See for example Kitzur Shulchan Aruch chapter 3


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Women & Judaism » Modesty

(pl. Mitzvot). A commandment from G-d. Mitzvah also means a connection, for a Jew connects with G–d through fulfilling His commandments.
Torah is G–d’s teaching to man. In general terms, we refer to the Five Books of Moses as “The Torah.” But in truth, all Jewish beliefs and laws are part of the Torah.
It is forbidden to erase or deface the name of G-d. It is therefore customary to insert a dash in middle of G-d's name, allowing us to erase or discard the paper it is written on if necessary.