Yamulka

Meaning & Reasoning behind Yarmulka (AKA: Kipah)

Posted on October 16, 2009. Filed under: Jewish traditions, Jewish vocabulary, Kipa, Kipah, Kippa, Kippah, Uncategorized, Yamulka, Yamulke, Yare Malka, Yarmalka, Yurmalka, Yurmalkah | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

BS”D

We found the following fascinating article from our friends at AskMoses.com:

Do you know the origin of the Kipah or Yarmulkah?

by Mrs. Yehudis Cohen

A “Yarmulka” (Also Known As: “Kippa”) refers to a Head-covering worn by Jewish Males. It serves as a constant reminder of existence of a Higher Being (meaning: G-d).

The word “Yarmulka” comes from the Aramaic “Yarei Malka” which means: “Fear (or Awe) of the King (meaning: G-d)”. It is a symbol of humility and submission to the Divine.

It is a very ancient custom which has become accepted practice among Jews. The Shulchan Aruch (Code of Jewish Law) rules that a male may not even sit without a head-covering.

Another article which answers a fascinating and everlasting question:

“Can I take off my kipah under certain circumstances?”

which was found at: http://www.askmoses.com/en/article/536,1672264/Can-I-take-off-my-kipah-under-certain-circumstances.html

[The parts in brackets were added to help us better understand the meaning of some of the vocabulary]

Rabbi Shlomo Chein: Welcome. I’ll be with you in a moment…What’s on your mind?

not sure: why do men have to wear a Yarmulka [A “Yarmulka” (Also Known As: “Kippa”) refers to a Head-covering worn by Jewish Males. It serves as a constant reminder of existence of a Higher Being (meaning: G-d). The word “Yarmulka” comes from the Aramaic “Yarei Malka,” which means: “Fear of the King (meaning: G-d)”. It is a symbol of humility and submission to the Divine (G-d)] at all times? if one wants to be religious does it have to be worn?

not sure: if its to remind us that G-d [It’s forbidden to erase or deface the name of G-d. It’s therefore, Customary to insert a dash in the middle of G-d’s name, allowing us to erase or to discard the paper which it’s written-on, IF necessary] is above, is it still needed if one is aware of that even when not wearing one?

Rabbi Shlomo Chein: when we wear a reminder on our head that is not because we don’t believe so inside. It is to reinforce what we believe, and turn it into an action.

Rabbi Shlomo Chein: in other words, the question would be similar: should someone wear a wedding ring even if they know they love their husband inside?

not sure: can a man be religious if he doesn’t wear one?

Rabbi Shlomo Chein: what is religious? it is a made up term 🙂

not sure: to be religious is to keep the laws of the Torah, [Torah is G-d teaching to man. In general terms, we refer the Five Books of Moses as “The Torah”. But, in truth, ALL Jewish beliefs and laws are part of the Torah] most importantly Shabbos [Also known as Shabbat” with its plural: “Shabbatot”. It’s the Hebrew word meaning of “Rest”. It’s a biblical commandment to sanctify & Saturday which is the Final & seventh day of the week as describe in the Torah. This commemorates the fact that after creating the world in 6 Days, G-d rested on the Seventh] and Kosher [Literally means: “Fit”. It’s commonly used to describe foods which are permitted for consumption in-accordance with Jewish dietary laws, BUT, it’s also used to describe religious articles (such as Torah Scroll or a Sukkah) which meet the requirements of the Jewish laws as described in the Torah.]

Rabbi Shlomo Chein: ok — that is one definition of religious. A more common definition of religious is someone who follows ALL the laws of Judaism which includes wearing a Kipah [Also known as a Yarmulka. It’s also sometimes, spelled as any of the following variations: “Kippah” or “Kipa”, “Kippa”. Its plural is: “Kippot”. It refers to a Head-covering worn by Jewish Males. It serves as a constant reminder of existence of a Higher Being (meaning: G-d). It is a symbol of humility and submission to the Divine (G-d).] But hey, if you are not ready to wear a kipah, don’t let that stop you from eating kosher or keeping Shabbat

not sure: what i want to know is if its as important as the other laws?

not sure: when it comes to laws instituted by the rabbis, are they as important as laws from torah?

Rabbi Shlomo Chein: For most practical purposes a law from the Rabbis needs to be adhered to like a law from the Torah. After all it is the Torah that says follow the laws of the Rabbis. In certain cases a rabbinic law can be more lenient.

not sure: in the case of a Yarmulka?

not sure: i wear a Yarmulka, but at work and if I’m in a club, i would take it off

Rabbi Shlomo Chein: the question is, if you really love G-d, why would take off the Yarmulka in certain places

not sure: so as not to have people look at Jews in a bad way

not sure: for example, if I’m at a club its not appropriate

not sure: and at work i don’t want to stand out, i don’t want to be judged just from wearing a Yarmulka

Rabbi Shlomo Chein: if you are in a club its not appropriate?

not sure: not really, so thats why i would take off my kipah

Rabbi Shlomo Chein: are you saying that it is not appropriate for you to be there

not sure: it is not, however i enjoy it and would like to go, so I take of my kipah so pl don’t know I’m Jewish

not sure: therefore its no longer not appropriate to be there

Rabbi Shlomo Chein: aha — so in G-d’s eyes it is not appropriate. So you will put G-d (the kipah which reminds you and others that G-d does not want you there) in your pocket, and at the same time you will tell me you don’t need the kipah because you love him without it?

not sure: wow, i never thought of it like that

not sure: its needed so as not to be in that situation where u would take it off

Rabbi Shlomo Chein: bingo!

not sure: 🙂

not sure: thank you

not sure: you really brought some clarity to me

not sure: thank you for your time

not sure: have a wonderful day!

Rabbi Shlomo Chein: my pleasure – and keep doing the right think, you bring clarity to the world

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*** We WANT Moshiach, Now!!! ***

By the way, You, too, can help hasten the coming of Moshiach, by doing ONE more Mitzvah. ***

*** We WANT Moshiach, Now!!! ***

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