“Is it possible or not to go to church with menstruations?” Is an important question that does not have a clear answer. He has both ardent supporters, upholding church history rules and concepts, and active opponents defending women's powerlessness against the body's natural processes. Both are right, but what should a woman do at this time?
Old Testament Ban
The history of questions and answers on the topic of visiting a church on critical days dates back deep into ancient times - the era of the Old Testament. This Holy Scripture united in itself two religions - Christianity and Judaism, and was a peculiar constitution of the Christian faith.
The Old Testament singled out a certain group of “unclean” people who had no right to take communion, to confess, to pray in the walls of the holy place, that is, access to the temple was strictly forbidden to them. The category of “unclean” was:
- lepers people
- people with purulent-inflammatory infections in the body,
- men during ejaculation and with prostate gland dysfunction,
- the people who touched the corpse, thereby desecrating themselves,
- women during bloody vaginal discharge (menstruation, postpartum fuckers and the like),
- men and women with any kind of bleeding.
Why is it impossible for women to go to church on critical days, when menstruation is considered a natural process that takes direct part in childbirth? The answer of the church is this: menstruation is the rejection by the female organism of human life, which could have originated and developed in its womb. The “uncleanness” of people in the Old Testament is associated with death. That is, roughly speaking, the main purpose of a woman is the birth of descendants. It should be in a constantly pregnant state, since the period is the death of an unborn embryo and, accordingly, a sin. The answer is unfair, but it is a fact.
This attitude of the church towards women is a bit like discrimination. Harassment on the basis of sex is observed even in the time allotted for purification after childbirth: if a boy is born - 40 days, if a girl is 80. At this time, a woman should stay at home and wait until the strictly allocated church days for bleeding will end.
The exception was considered seriously ill and dying women - faith covered their eyes to their menstrual flow.
New Testament Prohibition Correction
During the predominance of the New Testament, the understanding of a person’s church affiliation changed and the list of “unclean” was subjected to adjustment. The church began to treat women more condescendingly, and the topic of menstruation could only be considered from the point of view of hygiene.
After Jesus Christ accepted death, thereby taking upon himself all the sins committed by man, and returned to life (resurrected), his understanding of divine belonging became different - the physical body is nothing compared to the spiritual power of a person striving for union with God. . That is, religion does not look at how a person looks and in what state his body is now. For religion, there remains one important concept - the soul. Thus, female menstruation is not a prohibitive reason to visit the temple.
The church did not forbid a woman to “go to the temple, take communion, confess, pray in“ these ”days. Nevertheless, she welcomed the decision of the woman to stay at home during the menstruation days, and not to go to God's house.
Modern church view
The points of view of modern clergy, as in ancient times do not coincide. Why can I walk? Why not walk? When can and when not? Answers to these questions are stuck in time. Some believe that women are forbidden to go to the temple, others are allowed to make prayers within the walls of the temple, to confess, to communion, despite the "red" days of the calendar.
Neither one nor the other can convincingly defend their point of view, not having any arguments in defense or prosecution.
Arguments of supporters of the forbidden ritual
The “defenders” of the ban explain why it is impossible to go to church, take communion and confess on “these” days, based on the traditions of the Old Testament and the fact that during menstruation a woman's body is freed from an unfertilized and deceased egg. But they cannot unequivocally answer how the physiology of processes is related to spiritual strength.
According to them, a woman on critical days within the walls of the temple of God is forbidden absolutely everything: to enter the temple, touch the holy icons and books, put candles, communion, and confess. Desecrating the holy place with any bleeding is a great sin. Even to the injured priest the entrance to the church is closed.
Arguments of opponents of the forbidden ritual
The other side of Orthodox Christianity considers the ban on women visiting the church on critical days to be morally untenable. St. John Chrysostom (4th century) considered the propaganda of the “forbidden ritual” to be superstition and called the behavior of the church unworthy of faith.
It is also worth noting that, according to opponents of the "menstrual taboo", the ban was created during the times of paganism, and this religion has no points of intersection with Orthodoxy and cannot dictate its rules and laws.
It is possible to answer unequivocally that for God the inner purity of thoughts is more important, and the behavior of the body is secondary. If a woman came to God during menstruation, but with a pure soul and sincere faith, then no menstrual flow can prevent her from doing so. Man is created by God, and what he is made of is valuable to God. You can not shame the menstruation invented by him, and even more so to consider them a sin.
If you touch the aesthetic side, then modern methods of hygiene reliably protect the woman and the temple premises from accidental bloodshed. In ancient times, such "incidents" were very afraid, because any bloodshed within the walls of the church was considered a sin, and women did not follow hygiene properly.
What is allowed on critical days?
Very saddened by the fact that the church does not have common and common views. If faith is one — Orthodoxy — then the laws must be the same. Why, then, a dispute arises on the question “can or cannot one go to the House of God during menstruation, is it possible to take communion and, if not, why?”
Today, God's house is open to all women, regardless of their personal menstrual calendar. It is believed that for God it is not the physiological manifestations of the body that are important, but the spiritual purity and thoughts with which a woman addresses the saint in confession or prayer.
In most churches, religious women adhere to the laws of the critical days and do not attend the holy place until menstruation ends. For them, this is a tribute to the centuries-old sacred tradition.
So, nowadays there are two completely opposite truths of one faith: the answer to the first places a complete taboo on church attendance, the opportunity to take communion and pray to women on critical days, the answer of the second is all the bans common to women during menstruation days are outdated church prejudices. You can visit the temple if your soul and faith require it.
The creation of men and women
You can familiarize yourself with the moments of the creation of the Lord of the Universe in the Bible in the Old Testament. God created the first people on the sixth day in his image and likeness and called the man Adam, and the woman Eve. From this it follows that initially the woman was clean, she did not have menstruation. Conception of a child and its birth should not have been painful. In their world of perfection, there was nothing unclean. The purity was body, thought, action, and soul. But perfection was short lived.
The devil incarnated in the image of the serpent and began to tempt Eve, so that she would eat the fruit from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. He promised her power and knowledge. The woman ate the fruit herself and treated them to her husband. So there was a fall into all mankind. Adam and Eve were expelled from Paradise. God doomed a woman to suffering. He said that from now on she would conceive and give birth in agony. From that moment on, a woman is considered unclean.
Old Testament bans
Rules and laws were important to people of that time period. All of them were spelled out in the Old Testament. Temples were created to communicate with God and to offer sacrifices to him. The woman was not a full member of society, but was the addition of a man. About Eve's sin, after which she began her period, remembered everything. Menstruation was a reminder that a woman had done.
The Old Testament clearly gave an answer to the question of who could and who was forbidden to visit the Holy Temple and why. Did not visit him:
- with leprosy
- with seeding,
- those who touched the corpses,
- with purulent secretions,
- women during menstruation,
- women who gave birth to a boy - 40 days, who gave birth to a girl - 80 days.
In the days of the Old Testament, everything was looked at from a physical point of view. Dirty body was considered a sign of an unclean person. A woman during critical days was forbidden to visit the Templeas well as places with lots of people. She was far from the assembly of the people. Blood could not be shed in holy places. This lasted until the coming of Jesus Christ and the bringing of the New Testament to them.
Impurity is abolished by the New Testament
Jesus Christ focused on the spiritual, trying to reach the human soul. He came to atone for all human sins, including the sin of Eve. If a person did not have faith, all his works were considered as spiritual. The black thoughts of man turned him into unclean, even with the purity of his body. The Holy Temple became not a specific place on Earth, but was transported into human souls. Christ said that the soul is the Temple of God and His Church. Men and women become equal in rights.
Once there was a situation that angered all clergy. While Christ was in the Temple, a woman who had suffered from bleeding for many years passed through the crowd to him and touched his clothes. Christ, who felt her, turned around and said that her faith had saved her. Since then, a split has occurred in the consciousness of humanity. Some remained faithful to the purity of the physical and the Old Testament. They were of the opinion that in no case should a woman go to church during menstruation. And those who obeyed the teachings of Jesus Christ and followed the faith in the New Testament and spiritual purity, ceased to adhere to this rule. After his death, the New Testament came into force. Spilled blood became a sign of the beginning of a new life.
Answers priests to the question of the ban
So is it possible to go to church during menstruation?
Catholic priests have long decided for themselves the question of a woman attending church on critical days. They consider menstruation as a natural phenomenon and do not see anything wrong with them. Blood has long ceased to be spilled on the floors of the church, thanks to modern hygiene products.
But the Orthodox priests can not come to a consensus. Some say that a woman should not go to church during menstruation. Others say that you can come if the soul requires it. Still others allow women to come to church during menstruation, but they prohibit certain sacred ordinances:
Bans are mostly related to physical moments.
Bans are mostly related to physical moments.. For reasons of hygiene during menstruation, do not sink into the water. Not very nice to look at the blood mixed with water. Wedding takes a long time and a weakened woman's body during menstruation can not stand it. Often fainting occurs, the woman experiences weakness and dizziness. During the confession affects the psycho-emotional state of a woman. And in the period of monthly it is a little inadequate. Therefore, if a woman decides to confess, she can say something about which she will regret for a long time. That is why you can not confess during menstruation.
Is it possible to go to church during menstruation or not
Modernity has mixed the sinner with the righteous. No one knows the origins of this ban. The priests ceased to be the spiritual ministers they were considered to be in the times of the Old and New Testaments. Everyone perceives information as it is more convenient for him. The church is a room the same as it was under the Old Testament. It follows that everyone must adhere to the rules established in those times. When menstruation can not go to church.
But the modern democratic world introduced its amendment. If we consider that it was considered sinful to shed blood in the temple, then at the present time this problem has been completely solved. Hygiene products, such as tampons and pads, absorb blood well and prevent it from leaking onto the floor of a sacred place. Woman is not unclean. But here, too, there is a downside. During menstruation, the female body self-cleans. This means that a woman is still unclean, and she should not attend church during critical days.
But she comes to the rescue of the New Testament and its purity of soul. Which means that if the soul feels the need to touch the shrine, to feel divine support, then you can come to the temple. Even need! After all Jesus helps those who truly believe him. A clean body does not play a big role in this. Those who adhere to the rules of the New Testament are not forbidden to go to church during their periods.
But there are amendments. Since the Church and the Holy Temple are in the soul of a person, it is not necessary for him to come to a certain room for help. A woman can pray to God anywhere. And if the prayer comes from a pure heart, then it will be heard much faster than when visiting a temple.
No one can say for sure whether it is possible to go to church during menstruation. Everyone has their own opinion on this. The woman should give the answer to this question herself, decide why she wants to go to church.
The ban as it is, and it is not. We need to look at what intentions a woman wants to go to church..
If the purpose of the visit is to ask for forgiveness, repentance of sins, then you can go at any time during monthly periods too. The purity of the soul is the main thing.
During critical days it is best to reflect on your actions. Sometimes during menstruation you don’t want to leave the house anywhere. And during menstruation, you can go to the temple, but only if the soul requires it!
Old Testament and monthly
In the Old Testament there are some arguments about the cleanliness and impurity of the human body, says Father Konstantin (Parkhomenko), referring to the question of whether it is possible to go to church on a monthly basis.
According to the Old Testament, some human diseases, dead bodies of people and the monthly flow of blood in women are unclean. It would seem all clear and understandable. But biblical wisdom is deeper.
If a person is not clean, then he should be away from God? Impurity in the Old Testament is inextricably associated with the theme of death. And all bleeding, along with diseases, is a reminder of human mortality.
What does the New Testament say about this? Here is a cardinal rethinking of the topic. Christ is the embodiment of life, and every person, if he lives with the Lord in his heart, does not die, but remains to live after death. It means that diseases, blood and ashes lose their meaning.
Monthly in the light of the New Testament
If we recall the gospel, at that time, for the sake of recovery, a woman with monthly bleeding touched the edge of the Lord’s clothes and did not hear the words of reproach. He said: "Your faith saved you."
And the Apostle Paul said: “For every creature of God is good, and nothing is reprehensible if it is received with thanksgiving, because it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer” (1 Tim. 4, 4).
First of all, we are talking about the purity of food: there are no products created by God that are unclean. There was no talk of monthly bleeding, but the logic of the preaching of the Apostle Paul suggests that menstruation is a natural process of the body, so they are not reprehensible, and because of them it is impossible to separate a woman from the Lord’s grace.
It is possible that the ban on going to church during menstruation takes its origins in the early centuries, when, adhering to this conviction, people relied on the doctrines of the Old Testament. But there were women who, on pain of death penalty, came to church on a weekly basis, received communion, stood and prayed during the Liturgy. Nobody officially excommunicated them from this; in no written records, this is indicated as a taboo.
Church and Monthly Theme
It can be concluded: during menstruation, women are allowed to attend church, because this monthly cleansing of the body is not disgusting before God, and as natural as marriage and the birth of children. The Lord himself created such a cleansing. Holy and pure is all that is created by God. These considerations are confirmed by the words of St. Gregory Dvoeslov (6th c.), Writing that one should not forbid a woman to attend the temple on critical days, because she is not to blame for the fact that nature, besides her will, gave her. He also recalls the moment when the Lord allowed the bleeding woman to touch his life-saving clothes and thereby be healed.
In the Sacrament of the Holy Mysteries of Christ, it is also allowed for a woman to be a part of God in the days of menstruation. Если она по доброй воле откажется из великого почтения, то честь ей и хвала. Но если в критические дни она причастится, то это нельзя назвать грехом и не следует ее от этого отлучать.
Преподобный Никодим Святогорец в 18 веке объясняет причину, по которой женщина с месячными считается нечистой. В это время она не может совокупляться с мужчинами для продолжения рода.
So, today there are two opposing traditions: some priests, honoring past taboos, do not advise women to go to church and take communion during their periods, others consider these prohibitions to be prejudices.