Why do Jewish women shave their heads?


Quick Answer

Not all Jewish women shave their heads, but the Hasidic Jewish women shave their heads once they are married because hair is considered to be equivalent to nudity, and it is a sin not to shave for those women in the Hasidic Jewish tradition. Hasidism means "pious ones" in the Hebrew religion, and Hasidic Jews are a specific movement that is a part of the Orthodox Judaic religion.

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Full Answer

Hasidism first rose to prominence during the beginning of the 19th century and had millions of followers throughout Eastern Europe and Central Europe. However, Hasidism was first developed by Jewish mystics in the middle of the 18th century. The leaders were charismatic and honed a messaged of spiritual joy, ecstatic prayer, faith, dancing and songs.

The Hasidic Jew's life is to be a hallowed life. Every single action has been sanctified in some way. The Hasidism all live within small communities called "courts" that revolve around a rebbe, which is a leader that controls the religious and political law in the community. There are many courts and rebbes throughout the world.

In the United States, most of the Hasidic Jews live in New York City throughout the Crown Heights, Williamsburg and Boro Park areas of Brooklyn. There are several courts in these areas and more than 165,000 Hasidic Jews living there.

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