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I know there's some controversy on the permissability of women wearing tefillin and that most poskim forbid it. From what I understand that is for women to wear tefillin for the purpose of the mitzvah of tefillin. Is the same true if they are worn as an amulet for protective purposes? Is it still forbidden?

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Why would anyone want to do this? – Double AA Jul 7 '14 at 21:33
The problem has to do with Kedusha (acc to some) so an amulet would have same problem – sam Jul 7 '14 at 21:38
@sam What does amulet have to do with Kedusha? – Double AA Jul 7 '14 at 21:41
If it has kedusha one needs to treat it with respect wearing it in a hanging fashion should be assir – sam Jul 7 '14 at 21:42
Please clarify what you mean by "wear[ing] tefillin as an amulet." Do you mean wearing it in the standard manner (wrapped around the arm and on the head), or rather as some sort of necklace or something? – Fred Jul 7 '14 at 21:48

The Mishna Berura (301 sk 158) quotes an argument among Rishonim and Achronim about whether a woman who finds Tefillin in public on Shabbat may wear them as amulets to "carry" them back to a safe place. The debate centers around defining normal modes of wearing clothing. He doesn't cite anyone who suggests that the Rama's exhortation (OC 38:3) of "מוחין בידן" protesting women wearing Tefillin would prevent the woman from "carrying" the Tefillin back to a safe place.

It seems from this that there would be no problem, but perhaps the Mishna Berura's case is unique as the safety of the Tefillin is at stake. On the other hand I don't know of any other case where someone would want to do this.

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I don't think it's talking about a women wearing them as an amulet, but rather about wearing them as a tachshit. Anyway, as mentioned there, typical tefillin-like amulets don't have r'tzu'os and are not worn in the usual manner (see sk 156). – Fred Jul 7 '14 at 21:56
@Fred mechon-mamre.org/i/3119.htm#14 I'm not so sure the distinction is particularly relevant here, though what exactly the OP was thinking is not entirely clear. (Tefillin amulets certainly could have straps, even if that wasn't standard among tefillin-amulet-makers.) – Double AA Jul 7 '14 at 21:58
Fair enough, the theory holds - but it doesn't seem that they happened to be discussing a scenario where someone wears them in the normal manner yet, at the same time, as an amulet. They don't seem to address using it as an amulet in that way. In other words, that's not explicitly the case under disagreement. – Fred Jul 7 '14 at 22:04
@Fred I guess it's fair to say that I don't know how anyone, whether back in the day or the OP, thought to use them as an amulet. Until I hear otherwise I only know of one way to wear them. – Double AA Jul 7 '14 at 22:07
Findings from Qumran certainly suggest using tefillin-like objects as amulets (apparently without straps), similar to what the MB (citing the Magen Avraham) mentions. – Fred Jul 7 '14 at 22:08

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