When you think of a Hasid, you think of someone with sidelocks, black hat, and a long black coat.
But did you ever realize that there are many different variations of Hasidim? They all wear different kind of hats and some wear long coats, others short and several aspects of their garb are different.
These are subtle differences to an outsider but to us, they’re significant.
There are many different sects in Hasidism.
Some sects have their own schools, especially in big countries like the US and Israel. People usually marry within their sect and bring up their children the same way.
Each sect has its own very distinct way of dress. The men in the sect I belong to wear a spodik on the Sabbath, which is a tall fur hat.
Photo Credit: Assi Dvilanski – Photography
They are also known for their round hats on weekdays.
The bekishe (bekishe, bekeshe or beketche) is a type of frock coat, usually made of black silk or polyester, is worn mainly on Shabbos and Jewish holidays, or at weddings and other such events. (Wikipedia)
That and the long black coat are being worn by all Chasidic men, not only my sect.
Hasidim even have several ways how to wear their socks. Our sect wears their socks tucked into the pants and others wear white socks on Sabbath only.
As you can see, even between Hasids, there are differences. But those are external. Clothes alone do not make a Hasid.
If one considers himself a real Hasid, one is committed to study the teachings of the Hasidic masters and bond strongly with them, show love to every Jew and strive to fulfill G-d’s will and keep His commandments. (chabad.org)
SOME FUN FACTS ABOUT HASIDIM
They don’t shave or cut their beard. There is a significant kabbalistic meaning to the beard. From Chabad.org: Kabbalah attaches great importance to the beard, teaching that the “thirteen locks” of the beard are representative of G‑d’s thirteen supernal attributes of Mercy.
Most boys and girls marry within their sect. Those are called arranged marriages and are usually made by matchmakers. To read the story of my own engagement click HERE.
Most Hasidic men belong to a Rebbe. That is usually the Grand Rabbi and then you have several different rabbis under him. The Grand Rabbi is a holy man who is usually the son of the previous Grand Rabbi. We believe the Rabbi can see things we can’t, therefore, we ask his advice and blessing on all big life decisions. Themen travel to them at least once a year, mainly on the High Holy days to soak up the special atmosphere and to get their yearly dose of spirituality.
Yiddish is the language connecting most Hasids. A Hassid can find himself in any country in the world but he will always be able to connect to a fellow Hasid in Yiddish.