Men and tznius

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  • #1990466
    MosheFromMidwood
    Participant

    I happen to see a thread elsewhere on tznius and would like to pose it here: We are aware of tznius standards for women but are there standards for men? I realize the mishnah berurah touches on proper dress for davening, but what about other times? Is it OK for men to go sleeveless, topless, shorts?

    #1990636
    johnklets
    Participant

    learn Mishna Berurah Siman 2 and you will know everything

    #1990679
    Reb Eliezer
    Participant

    Dirishu brings the Igros Moshe YD (3,47,3) who says that one should not dress in a way where if peoole would visit him at home, be ashamed to greet them.

    • This reply was modified 3 weeks, 1 day ago by Reb Eliezer.
    • This reply was modified 3 weeks, 1 day ago by Reb Eliezer.
    #1990656
    akuperma
    Participant

    Short pants that go below the knee are not really problematic (they were standard until about 200 years ago, and are still common sport wear under American men such as baseball and football players). While some Hasidim still wear them, usually with high socks, they are generally unfashionable in the US.

    #1990677
    MosheFromMidwood
    Participant

    If that is the case, why do I see frum men who wear short sleeves, shorts and other clothing? All sinners?

    #1990694
    Reb Eliezer
    Participant

    Currently, if it is a common practice to dress like that, people become used to it. See the Aruch Hashulchan O’CH 75 and the MB who argues there by women but by men he might agree.

    #1990700
    Reb Eliezer
    Participant

    When it comes to davenen infront of an uncovered women, there are two considerations, erva and hirhur. Hirhur depends on the custom privided it is within tzinus like covering her head with a little hair showing but erva is erva. By a men is much more lenient as long it is not erva.

    #1990704
    Gadolhadorah
    Participant

    Actually, very long shorts with high socks will attract much more attention (aka
    look wierd”) than a normal pair of men’s shorts just at or above the knee with a pair of sport socks and comfortable shoes. A prime objective of masculine tzinius is not to draw undue attention to yourself. A fire engine red Borselino would be as much of a concern (other than on Purim) as a socks that come up to the bottom of the shorts (in which case you might as well just ware a pair of lightweight summer pants). I’ve never seen anyone complain about short sleeve button up shirts (as distinct from sleeveless T-shirts which are not appropriate for a ben torah).

    #1990731
    The Frumguy
    Participant

    You know, Tznius also applies to men (and women) walking in the streets, in stores, in lobbies, etc. speaking excessively loudly on a cellphone speaker…

    Talk about calling attention to oneself.

    #1990734
    akuperma
    Participant

    There is a different issues of “modesty” (covering up what should be covered up), not looking like a bum (wearing a gym clothes or sleeping clothes in public), and looking respectable so people won’t think Bnei Torah are slobs (wearing respectable but dull clothes). And fashions change over time (long pants only started become standard where streets were paved and sewers installed – previously one preferred short pants with high boots). The period of the early Achronim was very cold (relative to today and to the period of the Rishonim) which would have affected fashion.

    #1990747
    Reb Eliezer
    Participant

    I will explain the logic behind not to stand out but be part of the tzibur. The Shunamis said, besoch ami anochi yosheves, I reside among my nation. Says the holy Zohar, a person should not separate oneself from the group because if anything bad happens ch’v. one will be spotted and recognized thereby getting blamed.

    • This reply was modified 3 weeks, 1 day ago by Reb Eliezer.
    • This reply was modified 3 weeks, 1 day ago by Reb Eliezer.
    #1990766
    Gadolhadorah
    Participant

    What is sometimes lost on some younger guys was noted by some of the posters above. Its more than just wearing lvush than visually appears consistent with minhag h’makom or whatever group you follow. Its also important to be sure that the clothes you wear are properly fitting and clean. Even in a sea of black, its not appropriate for ben torah to show up in public in pants hanging below his behind two sizes two large or with pant legs a few inches above his shoes andthat look like they haven’t been pressed in decades and showing stains from last week’s shalosh seudos. Some would say this falls under the broad umbrella of tzinius.

    #1990813
    🍫Syag Lchochma
    Participant

    Woops! I think you meant to post that on the judging people thread.

    #1991096
    Benephraim
    Participant

    Could you please recommend some books for men on this subject like frum women have oz vehadar and others so that we can see the contemporary approach of our leading poskim.Similarly, the YW allowed Rabbi Weiner’s sefer on beards even though Gedolei Olam like Harav Frank permitted shavers as did relatives of the Chofetz Chaim. Similarly in the alteh Mir ,Kamenetz, Novardok, etc.Chachmei Lublin .The Agudas Harabonim had many many clean shaven Rabonim.Why the nausea?

    #1991114
    Reb Eliezer
    Participant

    See Shut Chasam Sofer O’CH 159 about shaving.

    #1991122

    In all such middos, you only need books and lomdus if you want to skirt the line, such as (example from an old mussar sefer) “Q: the train ticket to my parent’s town is expensive, and halakha is that you don’t have to spend money on parents, am I exempt? A: yes, you don;t have to take the train, you should walk)

    If you rather dress impeccably, be nice to everyone, don’t take OPM, you’ll rarely need a book to consult. I am not against learning about middos, of course, just saying lack of the books should not stop you from behaving properly.

    #1991120

    dress british think yiddish, you can’t go wrong then

    #1991312
    the square
    Participant

    Some posters have conflated the idea of tznius by women, which includes not drawing attention to oneself, and tznius by men. While men are also supposed to be humble and unassuming, lacking in this area relates to bad middos, not a violation of halacha. Women, however, are in violation of halacha if their clothing or actions draw attention to themselves, just as if they would be wearing inadequate clothing, as is evident from the amorah who tore off a woman’s coat because it was red (berachos 20).

    #1991317
    rational
    Participant

    “I’ve never seen anyone complain about short sleeve button up shirts ”

    In Israel short sleeves button-up shirts in the chareidi world are frowned upon after bar mitzvah.
    I have a rebbe friend who took his high-school class to visit a major godol in Bnei Brak. When the boys came in, many in short sleeves, but all in button-down shirts, the godol asked the Rebbe why his talmidim weren’t dressed. Not surprisingly, the rebbe needed the nuance to be explained to him; he (D”L, R”L) apparently wasn’t aware of this inyan.

    #1991346
    Avi K
    Participant

    Rav Eliezer Melamed says that it depends on what are considered honorable clothes in the place. On a kibbutz shorts and work clothes are considered honorable clothes. In other places, this is not so. Rav Soloveichik rebuked rabbanm in Florida for wearing shorts. Rav Tzvi Yehuda Kook told talmidim who became rabbanim to dress in a way that would cause the public to respect them. Rambam (Hilchot Deot ch. 5) says that a talmid chacham should wear average clothes (see Shabbat 145b that over-dressing could be a cover-up).

    Regarding talmidim, part of the machloket between Slobodka and Novardok involved dress. In the former, the talmidim had to dress up so that they would feel that sin was beneath their honor. In the latter, they dressed poorly in order to break their pride.

    #1991401
    Reb Eliezer
    Participant

    The Rambam Hilchas Yisodei Hatorah (5,11) says that chilul Hashem is when talmidei chachomim don’t live up to their expectations of behavior.

    #1991493
    CTRebbe
    Participant

    Tznius is more than dress. It is about attracting attention to yourself. It is the car you drive the simchas you make the vacations you take etc. Spending $100k on a wedding and driving a tesla are not very tznius in my mind.

    #1991513
    Reb Eliezer
    Participant

    To clarify above, to live up to the expectations of people in the behavior of a talmid chacham.

    #1991535
    Gadolhadorah
    Participant

    As Tip O’Neill was fond of say, “all tzinius is local” as is politics. Several posters above correctly noted that what might pass the test in one location would be totally inappropriate in others. While there are certain “universal” norms for a ben torah to dress (aka going shirtless is not OK anywhere but the beach) short sleeves, bermuda shorts, shirts other than white, etc are more likely governed by minhag h’makom.

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