Friday, September 12, 2008

So Why Cover? part 2

Sts. Alexander (340), John (595), and Paul the New (784), patriarchs of Constantinople
August 30 Old Style
Okay, I decided to start wearing something on my head for church services at least. I had experimented with scarves and wraps before, so I had lots of fabric to work with.

The first Sunday I wore a scarf, I immediatly felt different. The church that I went to at the time was very...cerebral. The worship space was beige and sterile. The focus of worship was listening the sermon. The simple act of doing something external as a gesture of devotion was a personal revolution. It felt so right. 

Along with headcovering came the issue of modesty. The Apostle Paul had discussed this too as worship. This raised more questions: what was modest dress in modern America? Long skirts and long sleeves? I really didn't know how to approach it.

But over all I felt I was going in a newer, deeper direction spiritually. Even though I couldn't fully explain it, this was not merely about dress. It was about how I moved in the world and about an awareness of spiritual things unseen. It was about possessing or even harnessing the power of my sexuality (by God's grace) as a spiritual force and redirecting it. The headcovering is a sign of authority or power. Of course this was years before I would begin to learn about the life of monastics who are the ultimate (but not the sole) example of this concept and what the Church has always known about the power of offering our bodies as living sacrifices holy and pleasing to God as a spiritual act of worship.

I found a group of women online who also believed that headcovering and modesty were important to their own religious practice. There I "met" Alana. And Alana introduced me to Orthodox Christianity.

What was that line about angels?

6 comments:

Alana said...

I love that photo you posted!

I keep forgetting that it was my snarkyness....;-)

Kristin said...

miss you, Monica, hope all's okay with you!

Anonymous said...

Hi Monica,
I just wanted to let you know that I checked out etsy.com,as you suggested, and bought two nice rasta tams from Beehappy. I've very pleased with them. Thanks so much for recommending the site.

Blessings,
Mary

Muhala Akamau said...

I feel like I'm going through some sort of revolution, but I am out here...and I'm happy to have found you, too! Four and counting!:-)

cobweb said...

I suppose I was lucky. I never had to think too much about wearing a scarf to pray. When I was a kid my mother wore one... so it just seemed like the natural thing to do. I feel naked in Church without one.

Muhala Akamau said...

I'm a newbie to covering. I've really enjoyed your site, and hope you come back soon!