Behind Your Veil

by Hallie @ Moxie Wife on May 12, 2009

Your lips are like a scarlet strand;
your mouth is lovely.

Your cheek is like a half-pomegranate

behind your veil.


The Song of Songs 4:3




Before I became a Christian I rejected the idea that a woman should be ashamed of her body.

I still do.

The female form is a beautiful thing. There is no denying that. In fact, not only is it beautiful; it is holy. I think women who value modesty know this better than anyone. Yet, it is modest women who are accused of being repressed, ashamed and embarrassed of their bodies. It is modest women who are accused of being prudes. Of course, contrary to popular opinion, that couldn’t be further from the truth. So, if modest women aren’t cowering by veiling themselves — literally, with chapel veils and mantillas or even just figuratively through modest clothing — then what on earth are they doing? And why?

Think of those things that we commonly see veiled. In Catholic churches you will find the Holy Eucharist housed in the tabernacle and hidden behind a veil. In a Jewish synagogue you will find the Torah behind a curtain and wrapped in a mantle. Why would these treasured, holy items be veiled? Certainly not because they are shameful. Quite the opposite, in fact. They are veiled so that they will be shown the reverence they deserve.

It is human nature to start to treat those things that we have easy access to casually. It is because modest women realize just how sacred their bodies are that they insist they be treated with respect. We tend to take for granted those things that become too familiar to us and by dressing modestly, women are sending a message to the world that they are valuable and will not be objectified.

Modesty can serve as a weapon against temptation, it can be a way to honor our spouses and it can serve to keep the spark alive in marriages. But, it is also a way of respecting ourselves and demanding that we be treated with dignity.

{ 27 comments… read them below or add one }

Lady Caitie in the Pretty City May 12, 2009 at 4:48 am

Love, love, love this post! :)

Margaret May 12, 2009 at 5:50 am

This is one of the best essays I have read on modesty ever! Bravo!

Maurisa May 12, 2009 at 11:31 am

Very well expressed. Love it!

Germaine May 12, 2009 at 1:34 pm

Definitely agree! You explain things so well!

Arlene May 12, 2009 at 2:08 pm

A wonderful post! I wish more people would understand that in covering ourselves we are actually showing more respect than those who brazenly bare all.

P.S. Yes, we are looking at his return by next Friday or Saturday… of course, we don’t have an “official” itinerary yet, so we’ll see when he makes it home. I’m REALLY praying for next Friday!!! But, as long as he makes it by the 26th (our anniversary) I’ll be happy. :o)

Elaine May 12, 2009 at 5:24 pm

Loved this post. Thank you!

Jennifer @ Conversion Diary May 12, 2009 at 5:52 pm

I’d never heard it phrased quite this way — I love your explanation! Fantastic post.

Lylah May 13, 2009 at 12:07 am

oooh….do I love this! Great job! Keep up the good work…lylah

Jenaa May 13, 2009 at 3:07 am

wow,that is really great

Kate Wicker May 13, 2009 at 10:28 pm

Well said, Betty. (I’ll be using the points you make way, way, way in the future with my girls.)


Muthering Heights May 15, 2009 at 3:00 am

That is such a lovely perspective on modesty!

Glenys Robyn Hicks May 16, 2009 at 12:15 am

I love this post too! Your blog is lovely as well…thank you! :)

Jena May 18, 2009 at 2:02 am

I linked to this post from my blog.
Thank you!

Best Life May 21, 2009 at 3:42 am

Beautifully put! I enjoy your blog! Lisa~

Grateful for Grace May 21, 2009 at 4:01 am

What a wonderful and well written post! My friend, Best Life, led me to this blog and I’m so glad. You said this beautifully. I may be linking to this soon because it’s a topic close to my heart, as of late. I don’t think I could say it better than you’ve said it.

Lil Red July 2, 2009 at 6:26 pm

When I started to veil, I was pulled aside and told that I was participating in some outdated, traditionalist movement that rejected women's participation. I told her thank you for your concern and kept veiling.

Lesley-Anne Evans July 3, 2009 at 2:20 am

I so LOVE what you wrote here… after spending 2 hours in a department store this morning trying to find a stylish and age appropriate bathing suit, that didn't draw attention to my cleavage! I really don't like to show it… don't really like to have to think about it… don't know why so many bathing suits draw an obscene amount of attention to this area that is… well… starting to look like it has a permanent fold in it! Anyway, I LOVE that you find modesty to be sexy… that we don't have to run out and wear the latest to be stylish… and that you aren't afraid to say something about your opinion on this topic. Thanks for writing and letting us share your thoughts… and I share your opinion, girlfriend!

Appropriately clad for the boat and beach,

Lesley-Anne Evans

Herb of Grace July 4, 2009 at 12:39 am

Man, I just subscribed to your blog a spent a few minutes (well, longer than that actually…) browsing. Came across this post and had to comment again! Love it!

Agnes Regina July 28, 2009 at 11:11 am

BEAUTIFUL. Thanks a lot!

Amy August 31, 2009 at 2:14 pm

This is a great post.

"It is human nature to start to treat those things that we have easy access to casually." — brilliant observation!

That Married Couple August 31, 2009 at 5:05 pm

This is a fantastic post. You really inspire modesty, which is such a neat and needed thing!

This Heavenly Life August 31, 2009 at 7:12 pm

What a wonderful defining post! I wish I had heard these things when I was in high school and trying desperately to fit in with the 'cool' girls. The girls who I look at now, and am saddened by the life they led. That could have been me, had I actually ever fit in…I'm so glad I didn't. I think it's because I felt the truth of modesty back then, but hadn't heard it expressed in such a way as you just have. What a difference it would have made to my psyche if I had…

Anonymous September 1, 2009 at 10:58 am

"The female form is a beautiful thing."

I would have to say the female form SHOULD be a beautiful thing, but in this day and age it's usually a bloated, overstuffed,unused, self-abused sort of thing.

It's easier to look stylish (and thinner!) in a black turtleneck sweater and cargo pants then it is in more feminine clothes…although both would technically be modest. (one of the guilty here!)

I love your site, though…keep on giving us food for thought


Cherise September 17, 2009 at 4:35 am

Thank you thank you thank you for this post! Seriously beautiful and totally quotable!
Amazing way of proclaiming the value of modesty!

Stephanie June 14, 2011 at 4:21 am

Wonderful! Very well said! Thank you!

Georgia November 17, 2011 at 4:29 am

Congrats for the topic and the approach!
Most of modesty related ” teachings” I have read and heard throughout my life were based on assumptions – no wonder I had never been convinced (!).
This, on the other hand, is an insightful, simple and well-put comment on “why modest” , at last, based on real cultural practices and what they convey.
Thank you!

Brandi June 10, 2013 at 8:52 pm

Finally – someone perfectly described where I’m coming from on this issue! No one seems to understand, and I’ve never been able to articulate it. This is short, simple, and perfect – thank you!

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