Questions From Readers
● Does what is said about dancing, on page 154 of The Watchtower of March 1, 1964, imply that dancing is not to be done within the Christian congregation or that it is completely wrong as far as unmarried single persons are concerned?
The Watchtower, on page 154 of its March 1, 1964, issue, did not say that dancing is not to be done within the Christian congregation or that dancing is completely wrong as far as single persons are concerned. However, when it comes to single persons who are minors, their parents are in position to determine whether they, as minors, should do any dancing at all. These young persons should discuss the matter with their parents and then they should follow the advice of their parents. In doing so, they will show how much they respect God’s arrangement of things, since obedience to one’s parents is a Christian requirement.—Eph. 6:1-3.
In dancing with persons of the opposite sex there is this to remember: It is not fitting for a Christian to dance close with one of the opposite sex to whom he is not married. Single persons in dancing with those of the opposite sex should certainly not dance so close as to develop some type of sensual pleasure from the dancing. That would be grossly improper. Also, it would be well to consider the possibility that one’s partner could be stimulated improperly even though you may feel that it is not close enough for you to develop sensual pleasure from the dancing.
Of course, it would be wrong for a person to dance with someone else’s marriage mate in such a way as to become sexually aroused or to cause that to happen to the one with whom you are dancing. But there is something else that must be considered here in addition, and that is the attitude or desire of the husband. If you danced with someone’s wife, her husband might not approve, so you must take into consideration his feelings and wishes in this matter of dancing and not feel you have the right to ask a married sister to dance without consulting her husband about it. As the head of his wife, the husband has the right to determine whether she should dance with someone else, just as he has the right to determine this for his minor children.
So while we cannot arbitrarily say that under any and all circumstances it would be wrong for persons who are not married to each other to dance together, quite likely, in the majority of cases, that would be true. Close dancing or any other sexually suggestive dancing by single persons, or such dancing with a person who is someone else’s marriage mate is not suitable so far as a Christian is concerned. One who is a Christian should remember that in all things he should act in a way that will honor God.—1 Cor. 10:31.
Of course, it is possible to do group dancing in which single boys and girls are not an paired off to dance with their arms around each other, which group dancing could also be shared by married persons. Such group dancing, properly conducted, can be both enjoyable and wholesome. It would eliminate the difficulty of trying to determine what constitutes dancing too close and what is not dancing too close, especially since not all individuals will see the matter the same way.
Some who are overly concerned about this might do well to ask themselves if they would be so concerned if the custom was for men to dance only with men, and for women to dance only with women. Then there would be no question of sex involved and perhaps the desire for dancing might not be so pronounced, since there would not be any opportunity at all to put one’s arms around a member of the opposite sex in the name of dancing.