Sunday, October 28, 2007

Why Would God Want Us To Hate Our Bodies?

It's something I don't understand: I see often see evidence that God wants us to hate our bodies. I recently witnessed an example and I wanted to voice my opinion.

The other day I was working out at Curves and I saw something that made me think.

I should preface this with the fact that I live in an area that has a high population of Orthodox Jewish families. I was raised Jewish, but no longer practice it. I have converted to the Wiccan religion, although I still consider Judaism my ethnicity.

A young Orthodox Jewish girl came in to work out. She went to the changing rooms and returned dressed in sneakers, black leotards, a midi-length pleated gray skirt, and a long sleeved checkered blouse that was literally buttoned to the neck. Although plainly and modestly dressed , as per the laws of her religion, she was pretty girl. She was obviously extremely self-conscious. Some of the machines were difficult for her to take advantage of in a skirt and sometimes she got tangled up in moving from machine to machine.
I felt for the girl as she checked her top shirt button on a regular basis and did her best to do the circuit of machines.

What is so wrong with our bodies that several religions insist on such extreme modesty? Orthodox Judaism and Islam along with some sects of Christianity (such as the Amish), come to mind first.
Can religion dictate such 'morality' over basic primal instincts? Should it?
The religion I now practice recognizes that I am a part of nature,not above it. Therefore my body, in any form, is beautiful, natural and good. I have danced naked in the moonlight and it has empowered me. It didn't make me evil, bad or disgusting. Don't misunderstand me I believe in modesty, especially for young girls these days. It's the degree of it and the teaching behind it that almost saddens me.

Just my opinion....rant over.


Nadine said...

It is a travesty when religions place the worth of their people so low...that is why I also became a wiccan many years ago; because I believed that I was merely a part of this big blue marble...

love your blog!

Alfie said...

You are so right. Who was it that said, "Good men do good things. Bad men do bad things. For good men to do bad things, it takes religion"?

HSWLOVER said...

Been to the Inn, would never go there again. Loved the pictures. Are they your work? Looking forward to the next episode of the story.

As to religion and bodies, I couldn't agree with you more. It took me a long time to move through the shamebased modesty engendered in me by the religion of my youth.

Bunny said...

I don't think that those faiths think that there is something inherently wrong with the human body ~ it is their perception of male reaction to female bodies that drives the covering up of the body. It assumes that men are so lustful and lascivious that they cannot control themselves around the female form and therefore women who reveal their form are harlots attempting to seduce these poor, helpless men. It essentially punishes women for the lustful thoughts and behaviors of somemen.

It really is a sad way to view humanity.

And shouldn't the Orthodox girl have been able to dress more appropriately for exercise since y'all were at Curves, a females-only facility? Poor kid. You'd think some tasteful workout pants would be way easier to handle.

Midwestern City Boy said...

I think its ridiculous. It shouldn't be a regular religious custom that women think they have to "protect" themselves from men. A lot of women dress comfortably and nothing happens to them. I know my wife never wears a bra, even when working out, and its no big deal.

Don said...

Why are you talking about God if you are Wiccan? I'm an athiest; I don't wander around trying to figure out some stupid religion; why are you?

Anonymous said...

I believe it's the nature of man to investigate himself and the universe he/she lives in.
Belief in god not withstanding it's important for us in the human existence to try and understand to our greatest capacity.
I am making an observation and giving an example as to why I have been disillusioned by said religions.