Normally I do not comment on many of the things posed in the news; however in light of recent questions posed to me by friends, clients, facebook folks, etc., I decided that I would write a more formal statement to address several of tho
I find this debate quite interesting for many reasons and on many levels.
As a minister, I am often asked about the Bible and various things related to religion, spirituality, and such.
Like this recent "Christmas" debate in the media where some argue that Christmas is in threat of being eliminated by those non-Christians who want to also weaken and eliminate Fundamental Christian values. Regarding this, I often pose to those seeking answers to go do research. Research the origins of Christmas, why is it Dec. 25, why is there a Christmas tree, mistletoe, etc. Once you see and understand you are then in a more informed position to chose what to celebrate and why rather than doing so from an ideology based in ignorance (lack of knowledge and understanding).
I also wonder why so many people state, cite, and argue their “anti-LGBT” position from a place of biblical selectivity. It is very easy to cite Leviticus and any of the other few Biblical passages as ones rationale; however, keep in mind that selectively interpreting or selectively choosing passages shows one’s lack of awareness and lack of true Christian exegesis.
If anyone is going to quote the bible as the reason they believe what they believe about LGBT people, then why select certain passages? And more so, why base it only on an English translation? Take for example the word sin; this word does not exist in the Bible, it is a translation of a concept as presented in Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek which was later transliterated, translated, and written in English. Much like the word homosexual and gay do not and have not existed in the Bible. (The term ‘homosexuality’ was coined in the late 19th century by a German psychologist, Karoly Maria Benkert.)
So if the word did not exist, then only the concept existed and if it was the concept, what words were used to convey the concept? I understand this idea of transliteration and interpreting from the linguistic point as a person who was trained as an interpreter and later certified to teach American Sign Language. When I teach workshops and such related to American Sign Language I use this as an example to help illustrate the point. In Japanese there is a kanji 愛
If you look at the kanji what does it say? Many may have no idea, so let me “transliterate” for you… Ai. Now what does it mean? Still unclear? The concept that this kanji is used to express is “Love.” Now once interpreted, 愛becomes Ai when transliterated, and love when interpreted BUT there are different ways to express love so even this one kanji does not fully convey the concept. How can we assume to do so from Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek to English?
Phil Robertson claims to believe what he believes because the Bible says it. The Bible also says things about women being put out of the home during their menstruation. Does he also follow that?
The bible is against eating certain seafoods, is he (or other conservative / fundamental) Christians also against that?
What about tattoos or piercings?
What about slavery as a biblically sanctioned system?
If Phil had spoken his opinion and said he thinks blacks were happier as slaves, since that is in the bible (loosely translated by many), what would his supporters and supporters of "free speech" then say?
Why should African Americans (NAACP) or LGBT community (GLADD) or Human Right Campaign (HRC) or A&E as a network be up in arms about this? Keep in mind that Hitler was not challenged when he first moved in to assume power in Germany and when the citizens had the chance to prevent his rise, many did nothing and so the Nazis rose to power.
When legislation follows the ideology of the uninformed, those controlled by ego, and those afraid of progressive change, we find places like Russia establishing anti-gay laws and Uganda's recent anti-homosexual laws.
(Uganda's parliament has passed a bill to toughen the punishment for homosexual acts to include life imprisonment in some cases.)
If these were based on ethnicity or color would it be tolerated?
And to that many people say no one chooses ethnicity or color.
If this were based on religion, it would not be tolerated, if it were based on what we wear, it would not be tolerated so the argument of choice is invalid as well.
Educated, enlightened, evolved men and women must speak truth to the ignorance that seems to still exist on the planet on many levels.
If an employee of a company says something that is not in alignment with the company, does the supervising staff have the right to terminate, suspend, reprimand, etc. as they see fit?
When injustices like “Affluenza” allow someone to kill people and get a "warning," when hate crimes occur daily due to such ignorance and fear is it not appropriate for people like Wilson Cruz of GLAAD or the NAACP to take a stand?
Have we forgotten things like this still occur? (Man, 22, Suspected of Randomly Stabbing 2 Men He Thought Were Gay)
If all of this is boiled down to the simplest point, what is it? Remove the comparisons of LGBT and Jim Crow and Segregation and slavery; remove the Freedom of Speech debate because it is a symptom of a disease not the disease... What is really on the table to discuss??
Intolerance of LGBT people based on fear and ignorance.
Ohhh and on the note of Free Speech... If I am understanding the argument correctly. This Georgia Republican has a right to say what he recently said. This is correct, he does have that right.
However does that mean we, the American people, let him say whatever he wants to say and to continue to represent the people as he is supposed to do as a government official?
I mean why do the liberals criticize him for his opinion? (Georgia Republican Jack Kingston wants to force poor kids to work for their food at school.)
It is time for each of us to take responsibility and wake up.
As metaphysical practitioners, light-workers, healers, life coaches, alchemists and more... It is our duty, role, privilege, and responsibility to hold the high watch! To see, realize, and affirm the Truth despite what the outward appearances display!
To continue to love and affirmatively pray that peace and love continue to manifest and demonstrate.
So as this holiday season comes and the new year approaches...
Let the lighting of the candles, lights, stars, and the New Year ball remind us that in the midst of darkness, light will always shine! Darkness recedes when light is present… Let our awareness shine light upon the darkened corners of the planet.
Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with ME!