Difference between revisions of "Tattoos & Body Piercing"

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==The prohibition of tattoos==
 
==The prohibition of tattoos==
#It is forbidden to get tattooed.<ref>Vayikra 19:28, Makot 21a. One is not chayav unless there is both writing and engraving. Pouring ash on a wound is also forbidden because it looks like a tattoo even though there is no writing or engraving(Makot 21a).</ref>
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#It is forbidden to get tattooed.<ref>Vayikra 19:28, Makot 21a; see Rashi. One is not chayav unless there is both writing and engraving. Pouring ash on a wound is also forbidden because it looks like a tattoo even though there is no writing or engraving(Makot 21a).</ref>
  
 
==Body Piercings==
 
==Body Piercings==
#There is no specific prohibition forbidding piercings as long as it doesn't interfere with one's health.<ref> There is no explicit prohibition forbidding piercings unless one's health would be negatively affected, even slightly; but that's from a health issue and not a piercing issue. However, among most Orthodox communities, it is not common for piercings besides the ears of women.</ref>
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# Body piercing per se is not forbidden. Nonetheless, since piercings involve inflicting a wound to oneself, it is only permitted if it is done for beauty.<ref>[http://www.yeshiva.org.il/ask/?id=44085 Rav Tuito on yeshiva.org.il] writes that it is permitted to have a piercing for beauty such as women have ear piercings. However, piercings which are done just as self-expression or culture such as a a belly ring, which isn't seen anyway, are forbidden.
# However, men should refrain.
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* In fact, Rivka Imenu not only had her ears pierced, but wore a nose ring as well, which was the custom at that time. (see Genesis 24:22)
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* In Jewish law, the main determination is whether a particular body piercing is done for a constructive purpose. Excessive body piercing without a constructive purpose is considered making a wound, which the Torah forbids. (Deut. 4:9, 15; Code of Jewish Law – C.M. 420:31). See Rashi Devarim 14:1 who writes that Hashem wants Bnei Yisrael to look nice without bruises or cuts.
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* As for men, if we're talking about a society where men also pierce their ears or other parts of their body for beauty, it is permitted – see "Rashi" Exodus 32:2. LACKING A HALACHIC SOURCE. If, however, it is common for only women to pierce, but not for men, it is forbidden to don a woman's attire or jewelry, and therefore is not allowed. (Code of Jewish Law – Y.D. 182:1)</ref>
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# It is permitted for woman to have their ear pierced.<Ref>Yalkut Yosef YD 182:11</ref>
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#Some forbid any piercing that resembles the non-Jewish culture. See [[Chukkot HaGoyim]].<ref>VeShav VeRafeh 3:264 writes that wounding oneself for a constructive purpose is permitted and piercings would seem to be included. However, he writes that it is forbidden because it is an imitation of the non-Jewish practices.</ref>
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# If you're considering a body piercing, the real question you should ask yourself is why you want it: If it's to be fashionable and "in," know that there are many people walking around today who regret having done things in their youth that cannot be undone. Is it a call for attention? I think there are more constructive ways to express yourself than to make permanent marks on your body.<ref>[http://www.yeshiva.org.il/ask/?id=44085 Rav Tuito on yeshiva.org.il] writes that it is very unadvisable for a person to get a belly ring even if it would be technically permitted. It is better to find another avenue to express one's individualism.</ref>
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==Links==
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[https://www.ou.org/torah/machshava/tzarich-iyun/tzarich_iyun_jews_with_tattoos/ Jews with Tattoos] by Rabbi Dr. Ari Zivotofsky
  
 
==Sources==
 
==Sources==
 
<references/>
 
<references/>
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[[Category:Between Man and Himself]]

Latest revision as of 00:57, 25 July 2019

The prohibition of tattoos

  1. It is forbidden to get tattooed.[1]

Body Piercings

  1. Body piercing per se is not forbidden. Nonetheless, since piercings involve inflicting a wound to oneself, it is only permitted if it is done for beauty.[2]
  2. It is permitted for woman to have their ear pierced.[3]
  3. Some forbid any piercing that resembles the non-Jewish culture. See Chukkot HaGoyim.[4]
  4. If you're considering a body piercing, the real question you should ask yourself is why you want it: If it's to be fashionable and "in," know that there are many people walking around today who regret having done things in their youth that cannot be undone. Is it a call for attention? I think there are more constructive ways to express yourself than to make permanent marks on your body.[5]

Links

Jews with Tattoos by Rabbi Dr. Ari Zivotofsky

Sources

  1. Vayikra 19:28, Makot 21a; see Rashi. One is not chayav unless there is both writing and engraving. Pouring ash on a wound is also forbidden because it looks like a tattoo even though there is no writing or engraving(Makot 21a).
  2. Rav Tuito on yeshiva.org.il writes that it is permitted to have a piercing for beauty such as women have ear piercings. However, piercings which are done just as self-expression or culture such as a a belly ring, which isn't seen anyway, are forbidden.
    • In fact, Rivka Imenu not only had her ears pierced, but wore a nose ring as well, which was the custom at that time. (see Genesis 24:22)
    • In Jewish law, the main determination is whether a particular body piercing is done for a constructive purpose. Excessive body piercing without a constructive purpose is considered making a wound, which the Torah forbids. (Deut. 4:9, 15; Code of Jewish Law – C.M. 420:31). See Rashi Devarim 14:1 who writes that Hashem wants Bnei Yisrael to look nice without bruises or cuts.
    • As for men, if we're talking about a society where men also pierce their ears or other parts of their body for beauty, it is permitted – see "Rashi" Exodus 32:2. LACKING A HALACHIC SOURCE. If, however, it is common for only women to pierce, but not for men, it is forbidden to don a woman's attire or jewelry, and therefore is not allowed. (Code of Jewish Law – Y.D. 182:1)
  3. Yalkut Yosef YD 182:11
  4. VeShav VeRafeh 3:264 writes that wounding oneself for a constructive purpose is permitted and piercings would seem to be included. However, he writes that it is forbidden because it is an imitation of the non-Jewish practices.
  5. Rav Tuito on yeshiva.org.il writes that it is very unadvisable for a person to get a belly ring even if it would be technically permitted. It is better to find another avenue to express one's individualism.