Natacha Tormey 
WRITER AND ADVOCATE AGAINST RELIGIOUS ABUSE 

Natacha Tormey

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Apostle Paul & Female Oppression

Posted by Natacha Tormey on January 26, 2016 at 12:35 PM

Have you ever wondered why nuns cover their hair?

 

With so much talk of the Muslim burqa, I was rather taken by surprise when someone asked me why nuns wear a headdress. Well, it’s not as common these days but there are still denominations that observe this tradition.

 

I decided to do some research and I was rather astounded by what I found.

 

I would like to take you through the first 9 verses of a chapter in the Bible (King James Version), to explain why Christian women began covering their hair in the first place, and why this practice is in no way connected to the man who started Christianity – Jesus Christ.

 

1 Corinthians 11:1-9

 

To give you some background, 1 Corinthians is a letter that Apostle Paul wrote to a church in Corinth, Greece. He had heard reports that they were misbehaving and that there was discord amongst its members. And so, he wrote a very long, long letter which was, in lay-mans terms, a literary spanking. Let’s take a look at the first nine verses of this chapter.

 

1 Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.

 

Here, Paul is basically reminding his disciples that he is of higher rank than them as he is ‘of Christ’, therefore everything he says should be accepted as Christ’s words. Cult leaders often instil this idea in their followers, in order to maintain control over them.

 

2 Now I praise you, brethren, that ye remember me in all things, and keep the ordinances, as I delivered them to you.

 

Just in case they hadn’t understood his point in the first verse, Paul is reminding his readers that they had better obey him.

 

3 But I want you to know that the head of every man is Christ, the head of woman is man, and the head of Christ is God.

 

Well, straight in there. According to Paul, men are above women in rank and therefore we humble creatures should allow men to think for us.

 

4 Every man praying or prophesying, having his head covered, dishonoureth his head.

 

5 But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth with her head uncovered dishonoureth her head: for that is even all one as if she were shaven.

 

6 For if the woman be not covered, let her also be shorn: but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her be covered.

 

What Paul is saying here is that, during spiritual events, men should not cover their head and yet women must...don’t worry, we are about to get heated now!

 

7 For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, forasmuch as he is the image and glory of God: but the woman is the glory of the man.

 

8 For the man is not of the woman: but the woman of the man.

 

Yes, you read correctly. Men are apparently made in the image of God and we poor women are not worthy to show our heads as we were made from men – a by-product so to speak – so we are basically subhuman.

 

9 Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man.

 

Ladies, Paul is now telling us that we were created for men. Play things? Slaves? Baby makers? He doesn’t specify, though he makes it rather clear that we were created specifically to be of some use to the male population. How interesting, considering that women are the bearers of life and therefore, without them, there would be no human race.

 

As you can see from these verses, God did not instruct Christian women to wear headdresses, nor did his son, Jesus Christ. It was in fact Paul, a man who had never even met Jesus but who converted to Christianity in his adult years, after claiming to have received a vision of Christ. This man took it upon himself to speak in the name of Christ and dish out his view that women, as inferior beings, are not worthy to uncover their heads in the presence of God.

 

I’m sure it is now apparent that Paul was a sexist pig, but just in case you need more evidence, let’s take a look at another one of Paul’s gems.

 

1 Timothy 2:11-15

 

11 Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection.

 

12 But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence.

 

13 For Adam was first formed, then Eve.

 

14 And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression.

 

15 Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.

 

And so, my fellow subhumans, as we are responsible for Eve’s terrible sin (something along the lines of eating fruit she wasn’t meant to in the Garden of Eden), we are to shut up, learn from the men around us and never, ever question their authority over us. Paul is generous enough to leave us a get-out clause though – if we are really well behaved and produce children for our masters husbands, we just might get some leniency.

 

Voila! A brief summary of the madness that goes hand in hand with organised religion.

 

 

 

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