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« on: March 30, 2010, 09:08:49 AM »

Is it wrong for women to wear pants?  Is it considered wearing men's clothing since they are made for women?
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« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2010, 09:14:55 AM »

Is it wrong for women to wear pants?  Is it considered wearing men's clothing since they are made for women?
Not in the last fifty years.

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« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2010, 10:28:34 AM »

These things change over time. In the first centuries of the church, if you saw a guy wearing pants, you'd certainly have to question his manliness. A very girly/wimpy thing to wear, indeed! Respectable men wore a χιτών or, in more Roman areas, a tunica, same as the women.
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« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2010, 11:40:06 AM »

His Beatitude Archbishop Christodoulos of Athens and all of Greece, and of blessed memory. Once stated that he wanted to see all children of God attend church. Even if they had tattoos and piercings all over them. He asked them to attend not leaving anyone out because of what they look like. With that said I would also think that it also depends on our physical and spiritual restraints. One who is more progressed in the faith should in good conscious dress in a respectable way. Meaning that there are woman who ware pants in a provocative way and draw attention to their bodies. Distracting men in church in the process. I've also seen women who ware pants suits that look quite respectable without drawing attention to them. Discretion would probably be key in determining what type of pants is acceptable and what kind isn't.
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« Reply #4 on: March 30, 2010, 12:07:44 PM »

As a woman, I do wear pants to Church.  My husband is a priest, though, so I always wear a skirt for Sunday Divine Liturgy, because that's what the people expect of me in my role.  I wear pants, though, to other services quite frequently.  I personally have no problem with women wearing pants (neither does my husband, my spiritual father, or most of the priests I know) provided that they are appropriate.  It's perfectly fine for a woman to wear a pair of dress slacks for Church or a pant suite.  As with any clothing for man or woman, though, modesty is key. 

As well, the rules of modesty apply for men just as for women.  A man wearing pants that are sagging and bagging, busting slack, whatever you want to call it (wearing them around their thighs instead of their waists) is just as inappropriate as a woman in form-fitted pants, and is just as distracting. 

I just say aim for modesty and you won't go wrong.  And if someone says something to you about wearing pants, just reply politely and with love, "With all due respect, what I wear to Church is between me and my spiritual father.  Though I am so sorry that you were looking at my clothing and not participating in the miraculous service taking place in front of you.  You missed a beautiful service."  They'll get the picture.
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« Reply #5 on: March 30, 2010, 01:23:14 PM »

Pants can be modest? 

I don't believe the rule is modesty, its chastity, or to be more precise it is holiness.

I think Bishops have to pick their battles, and the reality is that women do not want to be told what to wear, though both the Old and New Testament inspired writers were not so effeminite as to fear women, but it is also true that men do not want to rule their households.   The feminization of Christianity has also entered into the mind of the modern Orthodox Church.

Clothes for the most part, even among Orthodox Christians, are all about fashion, fads and frills and sensuality. 

Umberto Eco wrote a great essay on the wearing of blue jeans. 

Albert Einstein once quipped in response to his wifes pestering about his apparel and what others wouild think something like...If they want to see my clothes, let them look in my closet.  He also said it is better to be shabby dressed than be shabby minded (my paraphase).

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« Reply #6 on: March 30, 2010, 01:36:46 PM »

Pants can be modest? 

I don't believe the rule is modesty, its chastity, or to be more precise it is holiness.

I think Bishops have to pick their battles, and the reality is that women do not want to be told what to wear, though both the Old and New Testament inspired writers were not so effeminite as to fear women, but it is also true that men do not want to rule their households.   The feminization of Christianity has also entered into the mind of the modern Orthodox Church.

Au contraire. Bishops still stick to their guns on gender-specific clothing: They wear robes, as any real man should.

This emasculating practice of men wearing pants in church -- not even brightly-colored tights, like in the latter Byzantine period!! -- is surely symptomatic of the feminization of Christianity that has also entered into the mind of the modern Orthodox Church.
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« Reply #7 on: March 30, 2010, 01:41:27 PM »

If this is a modesty issue, why then do priests wear their podrosnicks with belts?  Doesn't that reveal their form or shape making it intising to others?
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« Reply #8 on: March 30, 2010, 01:43:30 PM »

I don't wear a belt with mine.
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« Reply #9 on: March 30, 2010, 01:47:31 PM »

Pants can be modest? 

I don't believe the rule is modesty, its chastity, or to be more precise it is holiness.

I think Bishops have to pick their battles, and the reality is that women do not want to be told what to wear, though both the Old and New Testament inspired writers were not so effeminite as to fear women, but it is also true that men do not want to rule their households.   The feminization of Christianity has also entered into the mind of the modern Orthodox Church.

Guess I'm just an effeminate transvestite who fears women, then, for I look like this on a regular basis:



I also guess Jesus was an effeminate transvestite, because he certainly didn't wear pants.

Next question, please. 
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« Reply #10 on: March 30, 2010, 01:59:04 PM »

If this is a modesty issue, why then do priests wear their podrosnicks with belts?

In my (unscientific) experience, pretty much only Slavic clergy do that, in imitation of monks as far as I can tell. But who knows the origin of some of these things?

Modesty is very important in church, but, really, the issue here isn't that. The church has long encouraged the sexes to embrace their distinct role. Throughout history, part of that role has been wearing clothing that conveys that distinction. In other words, what matters is not the clothes but what they represent.

In the earliest centuries of the church, a guy wearing pants in an Orthodox church would be saying: "Yo. I'm a heathen, girly-man, Persian-type." Not a message one would want to send.

In the middle Byzantine period, a guy wearing a different kind of pants would be saying: "Hey. I'm a Frankish, iconoclastic heretic." Also, not a message one would want to send. Frowned upon.

Fifty years ago, people who saw a woman wearing pants in an Orthodox church would probably think she was a 60s-style feminist. Nowadays, that just isn't the case -- just like most people don't object to Frankish pantaloons, no longer associating them with barbarian heretics.
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« Reply #11 on: March 30, 2010, 04:40:45 PM »

Doesn't that reveal their form or shape making it enticing to others?

All of the priests I know are pudgy; hardly enticing!
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« Reply #12 on: March 30, 2010, 05:15:28 PM »

Doesn't that reveal their form or shape making it enticing to others?

All of the priests I know are pudgy; hardly enticing!

LOL! Since when does a belt around the waist of male body (pudgy or otherwise) cloaked in a long black robe, make it particularly enticing?   Undecided Maybe I've been missing something all these years? Undecided I would say at best it could help the man to look dignified, or a bit more "pulled together", but have never noticed anything particularly seductive about the style...
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« Reply #13 on: March 30, 2010, 05:48:14 PM »

As a woman, I do wear pants to Church.  My husband is a priest, though, so I always wear a skirt for Sunday Divine Liturgy, because that's what the people expect of me in my role.  I wear pants, though, to other services quite frequently.  I personally have no problem with women wearing pants (neither does my husband, my spiritual father, or most of the priests I know) provided that they are appropriate.  It's perfectly fine for a woman to wear a pair of dress slacks for Church or a pant suite.  As with any clothing for man or woman, though, modesty is key. 

As well, the rules of modesty apply for men just as for women.  A man wearing pants that are sagging and bagging, busting slack, whatever you want to call it (wearing them around their thighs instead of their waists) is just as inappropriate as a woman in form-fitted pants, and is just as distracting. 

I just say aim for modesty and you won't go wrong.  And if someone says something to you about wearing pants, just reply politely and with love, "With all due respect, what I wear to Church is between me and my spiritual father.  Though I am so sorry that you were looking at my clothing and not participating in the miraculous service taking place in front of you.  You missed a beautiful service."  They'll get the picture.

While I agree with some of what you say, I must take exception with the attitude that "what I wear to Church is between me and my spiritual father." The Orthodox Church is a corporate body, and our actions and attitudes inevitably affect our fellow brothers and sisters. The attitude of "It's just between me and Jesus, or me and my spiritual father" smacks of Protestant relativism. We should certainly consult our spiritual fathers and seriously consider their advice, but we should also be humble enough to consider how our actions may affect others within our ecclesiastical community.

That being said, I agree with you 100% that modesty is important for men and women. A woman in loose fitting pants is more modest and less distracting than a woman in a tight fitting dress or short skirt.


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« Reply #14 on: March 30, 2010, 06:04:03 PM »

I agree with your above post, Gebre. I think as believers, we should be accountable, not only to God and spiritual father, but to ALL our brothers and sisters! We need to watch for one another's souls.  Traditionally, Orthodoxy has not been individualistic, but collective...
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« Reply #15 on: March 31, 2010, 09:49:57 AM »

The attitude that this or that practice is only between me and my Spiritual Father ALONE is bogus, it is simply a protestant idea that this or that practice is between me and God alone. 

NOONE is saved alone, and no one works out their own salvation alone.  We are members of ONE BODY, we are not ourselves that ONE BODY.

Protestantism is very much about ME AND GOD ALONE, its entire existential experience is autocratic.  Escaping out of that delusion is something very difficult because it requires a person to restart their 'Christian' experience.  However, simply being received into the Orthodox Church (whether through Baptism or by Chrismation) does not remove this mindset, indeed, it seems that many Orthodox Christians are Churches unto themselves.  This is not healed by only going to a Priest and asking for his opinion about whether you should or should not wear pants in Church or elsewhere,  Orthodox Chrisitans are to be identified by "Their Love For One Another"  Which requires humility and submission, sometimes even to those whom we may believe are less worthy, less knowlegeable, less, less, and really less experienced than we ourselves maybe.

We are a generation without humility.  We cannot learn from the pious practices of previous generations because that was then and we are moderns and must conform to the modern-nation of our era.  Frequently I hear people justify their choices with "my spiritual Father said it was alright"  as if he is some kind of autocrat within the Parish.  Their is no healthy Parish life without submissiveness to one another, yes even to the seeming antiquated practices of our forefathers.   Many of them had it right.

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« Reply #16 on: March 31, 2010, 09:59:00 AM »

The attitude that this or that practice is only between me and my Spiritual Father ALONE is bogus, it is simply a protestant idea that this or that practice is between me and God alone.  

NOONE is saved alone, and no one works out their own salvation alone.  We are members of ONE BODY, we are not ourselves that ONE BODY.

Protestantism is very much about ME AND GOD ALONE, its entire existential experience is autocratic.  Escaping out of that delusion is something very difficult because it requires a person to restart their 'Christian' experience.  However, simply being received into the Orthodox Church (whether through Baptism or by Chrismation) does not remove this mindset, indeed, it seems that many Orthodox Christians are Churches unto themselves.  This is not healed by only going to a Priest and asking for his opinion about whether you should or should not wear pants in Church or elsewhere,  Orthodox Chrisitans are to be identified by "Their Love For One Another"  Which requires humility and submission, sometimes even to those whom we may believe are less worthy, less knowlegeable, less, less, and really less experienced than we ourselves maybe.

We are a generation without humility.  We cannot learn from the pious practices of previous generations because that was then and we are moderns and must conform to the modern-nation of our era.  Frequently I hear people justify their choices with "my spiritual Father said it was alright"  as if he is some kind of autocrat within the Parish.  Their is no healthy Parish life without submissiveness to one another, yes even to the seeming antiquated practices of our forefathers.   Many of them had it right.

john  

Then I suppose you'll be wearing a caftan-like garment like Jesus and the Apostles to Pascha this weekend?  That was, after all, the practice of our "seeming [sic] antiquated...forefathers" for hundreds of years before trousers for men came into vogue. 

You claim that Orthodoxy is a corporate body, and yet you want everyone else to adhere to YOUR opinion on the subject.  You speak of humility and, yet, you are telling others how to live as if you are God Himself.  Those women who choose to wear pants are among the least likely to castigate a woman who chooses to wear a skirt or dress.  It is only men who have a conniption about what can easily be a modest garment because their minds are in the gutter.  If a woman is wearing "sprayed on" pants that most certainly accentuate her natural figure, then, yes, perhaps she is stepping over the line and causing scandal to others in the Church.  But a woman who wears a relaxed fit pair of pants is doing no such thing objectively speaking and the sin is entirely in the mind of the person who is scandalized.
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« Reply #17 on: March 31, 2010, 10:12:14 AM »

The attitude that this or that practice is only between me and my Spiritual Father ALONE is bogus, it is simply a protestant idea that this or that practice is between me and God alone.  

NOONE is saved alone, and no one works out their own salvation alone.  We are members of ONE BODY, we are not ourselves that ONE BODY.

Protestantism is very much about ME AND GOD ALONE, its entire existential experience is autocratic.  Escaping out of that delusion is something very difficult because it requires a person to restart their 'Christian' experience.  However, simply being received into the Orthodox Church (whether through Baptism or by Chrismation) does not remove this mindset, indeed, it seems that many Orthodox Christians are Churches unto themselves.  This is not healed by only going to a Priest and asking for his opinion about whether you should or should not wear pants in Church or elsewhere,  Orthodox Chrisitans are to be identified by "Their Love For One Another"  Which requires humility and submission, sometimes even to those whom we may believe are less worthy, less knowlegeable, less, less, and really less experienced than we ourselves maybe.

We are a generation without humility.  We cannot learn from the pious practices of previous generations because that was then and we are moderns and must conform to the modern-nation of our era.  Frequently I hear people justify their choices with "my spiritual Father said it was alright"  as if he is some kind of autocrat within the Parish.  Their is no healthy Parish life without submissiveness to one another, yes even to the seeming antiquated practices of our forefathers.   Many of them had it right.

john  

Then I suppose you'll be wearing a caftan-like garment like Jesus and the Apostles to Pascha this weekend?  That was, after all, the practice of our "seeming [sic] antiquated...forefathers" for hundreds of years before trousers for men came into vogue. 

You claim that Orthodoxy is a corporate body, and yet you want everyone else to adhere to YOUR opinion on the subject.  You speak of humility and, yet, you are telling others how to live as if you are God Himself.  Those women who choose to wear pants are among the least likely to castigate a woman who chooses to wear a skirt or dress.  It is only men who have a conniption about what can easily be a modest garment because their minds are in the gutter.  If a woman is wearing "sprayed on" pants that most certainly accentuate her natural figure, then, yes, perhaps she is stepping over the line and causing scandal to others in the Church.  But a woman who wears a relaxed fit pair of pants is doing no such thing objectively speaking and the sin is entirely in the mind of the person who is scandalized.

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« Reply #18 on: March 31, 2010, 10:34:42 AM »

OH my!  The antiquated practice to which I refered was SUBMISSIVENESS ONE TO ANOTHER.  

I condemened no woman for wearing pants in or out side of the Church (though there is really no such division to a muture Christian mind).


I CONFESS the Church is one, mine or another's actual experience may vary.

In that you recognize that I was writing my opinion, why do you then exagerate and pervert my stated opinion into "you want everyone to adhere to your opinion."  Where did you read those words in my posts? The very fact that I am reading and writing in this forum ought to suggest to a humble mind that I am interested and am willing to learn from others, at least if that is why they are here.

Disagreement, even when strongly stated or wimply worded is not proof of arrogance or pride.  

Eve was lead away from correct practice by being enticed through her eyes, ears and rationalization...that was how her nous became darkened.  Darkened even as her eyes became open to her nakedness.....women who are not manly minded (in the hagiographical sense) easily have their minds swayed by outward appearances.  Men who are swayed this way are effiminate.  

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« Reply #19 on: March 31, 2010, 10:52:28 AM »

OH my!  The antiquated practice to which I refered was SUBMISSIVENESS ONE TO ANOTHER.  

Then perhaps I misunderstood you, but the sentence I bolded appears, to me at least, not to refer to "submissiveness one to another" as the "seeming [sic] antiquated practice".  

Quote
I condemened no woman for wearing pants in or out side of the Church (though there is really no such division to a muture Christian mind).

You call women who wear pants "unmanly" and the men who "allow" them to do so as "effeminate" without any backup whatsoever.  It has been demonstrated repeatedly in this thread that it is men who are "effeminate" for wearing pants, at least if one is going by the standards of the Apostles and the first few hundred years of the Church.

Quote
In that you recognize that I was writing my opinion, why do you then exagerate and pervert my stated opinion into "you want everyone to adhere to your opinion."  Where did you read those words in my posts? The very fact that I am reading and writing in this forum ought to suggest to a humble mind that I am interested and am willing to learn from others, at least if that is why they are here.

Disagreement, even when strongly stated or wimply worded is not proof of arrogance or pride.  

Perhaps I am reading into your posts a little more than I should. I have had this discussion with way too many people in my short time here on earth who agree with your opinion but who often times have a much more inflated ego than you are exhibiting and, as such, want their opinion on this subject to be law, so to speak.  It is unfair to you to put you in such a light.   Please forgive me.


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« Reply #20 on: March 31, 2010, 01:25:09 PM »

NOWHERE did I call women who wear pants unmanly...I condemened no woman for wearing pants, neither did I excuse them for wearing them.

Each Orthodox Husband must strive to rule his household as Christ rules the Church even in the wearing of clothes, maybe especially so.  The reality is that many Orthodox Christian men are as absorbed with appearances of which many seem more so than women....that is what makes them effiminate.  This is not a made up opinion, it is the assimilation of my reading of those writings which have been put forward by the Church throughout her existence as normative.

Never did I write that men who allow their wives and daughters to wear pants are effiminate.  Personally, I have always forbidden my wife to wear pants to any Liturgical service of our Parish...even when other women come in pants.  That said, I would not condemn her if she did, for the commandment is clear...wives be obedient unto your husbands in all things.  If she chose to ignore my gentle and firm commandment...what can I do?  I don't want to accuse her of sin, I want to deliver her from it...as husbandship requires.  The sin would be disobedience to me, her God chosen husband.  If she were to seek another man, even a Priest to give her another opinion and excuse for disobeying my simple command (its not difficult for a woman to wear a dress or skirt in most circumstances) then she sins against the Church and more Precisely against our Lord.  If she goes to receive communion, even if a Priest tells her its allright, she includes the Priest in her sin.


This is why I object to the idea posted at the beginning that the wearing of pants is only between a woman and her Priest.  To assert such a false notion, even if done by a Bishop is a hideous strenghthening of rebellion in the Church.  A Priest who did such a thing cannot righteously judge the household of God...wherein order is suppossed to reign paramont. 

Logic is not ever to be the rule of faith, obedience however is always the rulefor faith.

john





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« Reply #21 on: March 31, 2010, 01:32:18 PM »


A Priest who did such a thing cannot righteously judge the household of God...wherein order is suppossed to reign paramont. 

I had thought that love is supposed to reign paramount.
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« Reply #22 on: March 31, 2010, 01:39:14 PM »

I honestly don't think that you realize that your various statements in this thread implicitly state your opinion that women who wear pants are committing some sort of sin.  You may not explicitly state it, but all your posts in this thread, taken together, constitute a pretty clear view of your opinion.  You may not actively condemn a woman for wearing pants, but you certainly think there's something wrong with it, objectively speaking.  Otherwise, you would not command your wife to not wear such a garment in church.

Your point about obedience is well taken, however.
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« Reply #23 on: March 31, 2010, 02:28:37 PM »

Wrong, when my household became Orthodox, we were instructed in pious practice. Every Parish I have been in has also consistently put this practice forward, even having signs (which are often ignored) posted to the proper dress within Church for both women and men.  I follow the rule given to me without doubt, because it is how we became Orthodox.  I require my wife to keep the rule because she is my wife.

There is nothing oppressive in not wearing pants, or immoral in doing so, except the disobedience.

Modesty?  Modesty which encourages disorder and confusion is not modest...its rebellion.   A Prostitute can be modest in her apparel.  I did question the idea that pants can be modest...modesty begins with humility and completes itself in obedience.

A Priest wholly clothed can become immodest with a simple glance into a mirror. 

Furthermore, during the first 12 years of my life I grew up in an agricultural community wherein women who picked cotten, cut grapes, gathered prunes and tomatoes, harvested cucumbers, etc...etc...etc... wore pants everyday in the fields, but never to Church, or at least never on Sunday. 

My wife grew up different, but to this day she will not wear pants with a fly.

john
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Courteous is my name,
and I have always aimed to live up to it.
Grace is also my name,
but when things go wrong
its Courteous whom I blame;
but its Grace who sees me through it.
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« Reply #24 on: March 31, 2010, 02:30:22 PM »

I've said enough on this topic... I shall simply read and agree or disagree without further comment herein.

john
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Courteous is my name,
and I have always aimed to live up to it.
Grace is also my name,
but when things go wrong
its Courteous whom I blame;
but its Grace who sees me through it.
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« Reply #25 on: March 31, 2010, 03:00:13 PM »

Yes, perhaps that is the best thing for the both of us at this point.

Have a blessed Pascha. Smiley
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« Reply #26 on: March 31, 2010, 04:09:22 PM »

Thread locked to eliminate cause for bickering as we enter the holy days of our Lord's Passion and Resurrection.
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