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Apr 2, 2008

Burqa woman (not that one) spotted in store

I was in the store this morning and saw a husband and wife shopping - she was wearing a Burqa, though the face was open and exposed. He was wearing at least 3 pairs of tzitzis, some with tcheiles some without, if not more.

her husband

I normally would not have posted this, but there was a funny incident that happened. She was eating a yogurt in the store - drinking it down.

My wife thought that was unusual because every Bais Yaakov girl knows that it is not considered tzanua to eat in public, let alone drinking down a yogurt like she was. At the same time, she is wearing a burqa for tzniyus purposes. My wife thought it made no sense.

My response was that these burqa women are generally not Bais Yaakov girls, but BTs who have little background and somehow end up thinking that is the right style. but just because they wear the burqa does not mean they know all the rest of the rules and behaviors of a tzanua girl.

A Mother in Israel compares her to other Burqa/shawl wearers and wonders if she is part of the same group or from a different group...


  1. Forget tznius... what's the heter to eat food before paying for it? If you ask the store, they don't usually allow it...

  2. yeah, but I think the general custom here is that it is acceptable. I see people doing ti all the time. I have never seen a clerk or manager of a store tell someone that it is not acceptable, though I have also never seen anyone ask if it is ok...

  3. Well, it's also the general custom that it's acceptable to throw rocks at the police and eggs at everyone else, but I don't think we should draw any conclusions from that ;)

    Some stores have signs up; I know Deal Vzol does (ironic given their views on choshen mishpot), and I think I remember seeing one in one of the large supermarkets earlier.

    Still, I'm not convinced one can rely on this implicit permission...

  4. what do you mean "given their views on choshen mishpat"?

  5. Well, from my experience, it appears that nezek and gezel don't both them too much... although if they think someone might be trying to cause damage to their business, they appear to prefer threats of violence rather than actual assault.

    OTOH, they sponsor lots of community events, and seem to get along well with most of their customers...

  6. Is there a chiyuv for a headless man to wear tzitzis??

    Is it just me, or does it look like the husband is headless in the second picture?

    The Wolf

  7. lol!that would have been freaky - a headless man walking around...

    his head was blocked by something in the picture...

  8. My first reaction is 'it takes all kinds'. My second reaction is 'NO, it doesn't.'

    As far as chugging down a yoghurt in the store: the preference (maybe stronger?) to avoid eating before paying was already mentioned. Now, a simple 'chaf z'chut' perspective would be, maybe this woman was hypoglycemic (low blood sugar) and needed to get something in quickly? It isn't all that unusual, and some folks will get an unexpected dump in blood sugar even though they are normally well controlled. They'll feel it coming on, especially if they get the shakes, and a quick bit of juice, milk, etc. will help reset the balance until they can eat properly. Some folks who get hypoglycemic incidents are not, technically, diabetics BTW.

  9. I'm not quite sure whether I find the situation funny or pathetic.

  10. I think it's sad, that these people feel they need to be so "in your face" with their religious beliefs.

    That kind of self-righteous, "we're gonna be stricter than you just to show you how holy we are" attitude drives me nuts.

    Re: drinking the yogurt before paying for it
    It's legal (I think, but also rude)as long as the food item is pre-packaged, and you save the package and give it to the cashier when you pay.
    Eating an apple would cause a problem....

  11. I was in the shmitta store and my 4yo was begging for a banana from my shopping cart. I asked the saleswoman to weigh them before I gave her one,but she refused. I felt a little bad but considering how much we lay out there I probably shouldn't. It's otzar beit din anyway, right?

  12. That last comment was me. I wrote it under a different gmail account that is not solely mine.

  13. right, sure. now we know your name. you can't hide it any longer.

  14. I say live and let live. I am surprised that this would draw such public comment, given that many of us as Orthodox Jews do things that others may find odd. The traditions, rituals, sheitels, black clothes, and fuzzy hats...

    It is not the place of one in the frum community to judge the other, especially since noone actually knows this particular couple or why they choose to dress as they do.

    Even if we did know some facts, it seems that big assumptions are being made without trying to understand that some people just have their own way of living. It really can be as simple as that, with no "ignorance" or motive implied.

    The only thing I find sad in all this is the mocking of this couple by other Jews.

  15. in response to the anonymous comment, I would say that there is some difference between marked Chassidic dress that has been worn by various groups for a few hundred years now and a new fangled attempt to outdo the prevailing standards for Jews who keep halacha. Also it is disconcerting to see Jewish women in what has been the identifying garment of Muslim women. There seems to be no Torah basis for this style of dress other than to form a new group, which is not necessarily a good thing (possibly a problem under lo tisgodedoo). In Israel there are many different styles of dress. I remember seeing women who wore tiaras over hats shaped to look like hair at a distance -- a very great distance. There is some basis for that, bizarre as it may appear to Americans.

  16. B"H

    I am a little late with my comment, nevertheless:

    The Burka women are mainly Sephardi Breslover Baalei Teshuva !!!

  17. pretty late :-)

    yes, a lot of them are. maybe most of them.

    I have seen very few over the course of the past year or so, and even the ones I have seen are much less than they used to be - a few layers and shawls, but no burka, for example


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