carrieanne79 at yahoo.com
Wed Jun 30 10:30:45 CDT 2004
> Actually, the original Hebrew means something like
"ritually impure," NOT unclean. The mistranslation,
sometimes deliberate, gives the impression that a
woman who is niddah (menstruating) is dirty, but
> that's not the case at all. She's just at a
different spiritual level. The laws surrounding this
(taharat hamishpacha, or family purity) are very
interesting and beautiful; it's a pity so many people
What about these:
If a woman has borne a man child, she shall be unclean
for seven days, and she is separated for her
infirmity. She shall continue in the blood of her
purifying 33 days; she shall touch no hollowed thing,
nor come into the sanctuary, until the days of her
purifying be fulfilled. - Leviticus 12
But if she has borne a maid child, then she shall be
unclean 66 days, and she must then make a sin offering
as an atonement for bearing a female. - Leviticus 12
A woman is unclean until evening after engaging in the
sex act. She must bathe. - Leviticus 15
After sexual intercourse with a menstruating woman, a
man is unclean for seven days. So is the bed. -
(The *bed,* too, is at a "different spiritual level?"
A woman is unclean if she has any bleeding after
menstruation. Seven days of separation are required
to cleanse her, after the bleeding stops. Furniture
she sits upon is unclean, & so is anyone who touches
that furniture. That person must bathe & wash his
clothes. The offending woman must make a sin
offering. - Leviticus 15
Sounds to me like some seriously sexist men attempting
to interpret a mysterious female bodily function &, in
so doing, relegating them to a lesser status than men.
All this from the Mosaic law ordained by God through
his servant Moses.>>
That's why we have the Talmud and other books of the
Oral Law to help us to interpret what was said in the
Written Law. In the Talmud, the sexual separation was
changed to the period of menstruation plus seven
additional days, because the women insisted on it so
that their husbands wouldn't take them for granted.
Many women who follow taharat hamispacha (and I myself
will do if I get married) report they feel like brides
again when they come home after mikveh night; they
know that they can't just have sex whenever they want.
There have been a number of theories positied about
why they must abstain longer after the birth of a
daughter, but nothing conclusive. The majority of
Orthodox couples don't touch one another, sit next to
another unless something is in between them, like a
water pitcher, sleep in the same bed, handle an object
at the same time, or even pass an object to one
another; I personally feel that's horrible, but the
women who do this say it makes them feel powerful, and
makes their husbands appreciate them even more,
knowing they can only have physical contact about two
weeks out of each month, unless she's pregnant or has
It's like my ninth grade Global Studies teacher Mr.
Pierce often told us; he was very learned and had been
all over the world, a Rhodes Scholar many times over.
We can't understand what other cultures or religions
do, say, or believe in the name of faith, since until
or unless we have actually lived in that religion or
culture and understood these things that outsiders may
find crazy, outdated, or illogical, we can't have the
authority to declare it stupid when it's not ours to
judge. What seems beautiful and holy to one person
may very well be insane or archaic to another.
Anna U. Mormack
"Every wise person has enough of the simpleton in him or her."Aleksandr Isayevitch Solzhenitsyn
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