Articles/Essays From Pagans
October 20th. 2014 ...
Thoughts on Conjuring Spirits
A Microcosmic View of Ma'at
October 5th. 2014 ...
The History of the Sacred Circle
Abandoning Expectations and Remembering Your Roots
September 28th. 2014 ...
Seeking Pagan Lands for Pagan Burials
Creating a Healing Temple
September 20th. 2014 ...
GOD AND ME (A Pagan's Personal Reply to the New Atheists)
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Deer Man- A Confounding Mystery
August 31st. 2014 ...
Coven vs. Solitary
A Strange Waking Dream
August 24th. 2014 ...
Thoughts on Cultural and Spiritual Appropriation
The Pagan Cleric
A Gathering of Sorcerers (A Strange Tale)
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To Know, to Will, to Dare...
On Grief: Beacons of Light in the Shadows
August 10th. 2014 ...
As a Pagan, How Do I Represent My Path?
The Power of the Gorgon
August 3rd. 2014 ...
Are You a Natural Witch?
You Have to Believe We Are Magic...
July 27th. 2014 ...
Did I Just Draw Down the Moon?
Astrological Ages and the Great Astrological End-Time Cycle
The New Jersey Finishing School for Would-Be Glamour Girls and Boys
July 20th. 2014 ...
Being an Underage Wiccan
Greed, Power, Witches, and the Inquisition
Malleus Maleficarum - The Hammer of the Witches
Thoughts on Ghost Hunting
July 13th. 2014 ...
A World Of Witchcraft: Belief Is Only The Beginning...
From Christian to Pagan (Part III)
My Wiccan Ways...
July 6th. 2014 ...
Keys: Opening the Portals into Other Worlds
The Lore of the Door
Leaves of Love
June 29th. 2014 ...
What Does the Bible Say About Witches and Pagans?
Are You My Familiar ?
Invocations of the God and Goddess
Everything's Alright, Yes: Mary Magdalene
Results Magic and the Moral Compass
June 22nd. 2014 ...
Witchcraft vs. Religion
Christianity and Paganism: Why All Of the Fighting?
June 15th. 2014 ...
Becoming Your Own Wise One
Canine Familiars: Role of the Alpha
June 8th. 2014 ...
Moral Relativism and Wicca
Paganism in Cebu, Philippines
June 1st. 2014 ...
Rediscovering My Pagan Faith
13 Keys: The Wisdom of Chokmah
May 25th. 2014 ...
Some Differences Between Priestesses and Witches: Duties and Trials
Awakening to our Celestial Nature (A Free 8-Day Course)
How to Work With Your Muse
10 Things I Love about my Sacred Work as a Public Witch
May 18th. 2014 ...
Finding the God (From Christian to Pagan -Part II)
The Medea Within Us All
Visits from the Departed
May 11th. 2014 ...
Breaking the Law of Return
Mental and Emotional Balance- I CAN Have it!
Karma and Sin
The Sin Concept
May 4th. 2014 ...
When to Let Go...When to Hold On
Goddessy: Sorceress Speaks On Beauty
Embracing my Inner Goddess through Belly Dance
April 27th. 2014 ...
Mental Illness in the Pagan Community
Being Pagan, Being Bipolar
World Crisis: Awaken Witches and Take Action
"Earth Day" Is A Pagan Conspiracy!
April 20th. 2014 ...
Six Rules for Safer Pagan Sex: A Guide
Safety: Let's Shift Our Focus
Morality and Controversy in the Craft
A Pagan Perspective on Easter
The Star Child
April 13th. 2014 ...
Magick and Consequences: My Experience with Sigils
Being a Worrisome Witch
Don't Talk Yourself Out of Trying Something New!
What to Do When the Spell/Ritual Flops
NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.
Evil Sex: Homophobia and the Bible
Article ID: 14776
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 902
Times Read: 3,555
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Author: Magaly Guerrero
Posted: May 6th. 2012
Times Viewed: 3,555
Has anyone ever asked you why you insist on getting involved with groups, belief systems, subcultures… you don’t belong to or apparently have nothing to do with? I’ve heard that question in regards to mental illness, Jesus, child rearing, country music, veganism, and often when addressing the issue of homophobia and the Bible.
Well, I trust most omnivores will be okay without ever finding out why vegans reject the use of animal products. Heck, the entire world might be able to lead fulfilling lives without knowing why country music rocks my world. However, I doubt that an individual can make sense of our world without having, at the very least, a basic understanding of certain issues and how they might affect the behaviors of our social majority. This is the reason why I, a heterosexual Witch, pay special attention to topics such as homophobia and the Bible.
Many individuals of the Christian faith demonize homosexual relationships. According to some, the Bible teaches that amorous relationships between same-sex couples are sinful. Much smaller, and typically marginalized, Christian groups suggest that certain sections of the Bible portray homosexual relationships as beautiful and courageous (Karnan 1994) . They also imply that the homophobic behavior of most mainstream Bible followers might be rooted in the negative ways Bible stories have been interpreted, and perhaps rewritten, over the centuries.
I asked a Baptist Minister and a Unitarian Universalist Church Pastor this question: How does the source of the Bible’s Golden Rule, “So whatever you wish that men would do to you, do so to them; for this is the Law and the prophets, ” (Matthew 7:12) explain behaviors like homophobia?”
The Baptist Minister said, “Genesis 19 shows God was so disturbed by homosexuality that he destroyed cities to get rid of the filth. I get sad when I think some people feel they must live this way, but it is still unnatural.” On the side of the argument, the Unitarian Pastor told me that “Any God loving Christian knows that one of the Bible’s most passionate love stories was that of Ruth and Naomi, ” two women.
I must say that I asked the question hoping for a miracle. Why couldn’t my Baptist and Unitarian interviewees quote the same Bible story, and make my life easier? I guess because in spirituality, like in life, different people use the same tools in very unalike ways. A heart surgeon can use a scalpel to perform the operation that saves a patient’s live; the same blade can mortally cut the person’s throat.
It seems that in the case of mainstream Christian society, most Bible followers tend to go for the throat. I read Genesis a few times, and although there is quite a bit of smiting going on, I didn’t find any specific passages saying that the Christian God wanted anyone’s body scourged to death because he was upset about their choice of bed partner. The book suggests that the population of Sodom is wicked, they are not particularly good to each other, have forgotten about their god and so on; there is nothing about homosexuality being a disturbing sin, or the reason for the Christian God’s wrath.
Someone might be inclined to argue that the same can be said about Ruth and Naomi’s story; there is no explicit statement about the two women being lovers. It can even be claimed that the fact that the Bible uses the same verb, “cling, ” to describe how Adam felt about Eve and to speak of Ruth’s feelings towards Naomi (Karnan 1994) , mean nothing. But I, and maybe a bit of ancient history, would have to disagree with that notion.
In his 1994 article, “Homophobia and the Bible, ” Robert Karnan proposes that during the times the story was written, single women depended on the male heads of their households. Ruth gave up the safety of her homeland plus the support she would have gotten from her family, in order to maintain the companionship of another woman (Karnan 1994) .
Further argument can be made over the fact that Ruth married a man and gave birth to a child, and to that I will say that people have evolved and so has society, but at the core we retain some of the same basic needs: people must eat, and they will do things for convenience too. Ruth married an old relative of Naomi’s family. This man got to keep the family’s possession—women, cows, crops, land and anything without a voice during that era—but where was that man when his child is born? The Bible story doesn’t say. Why? Probably because as Robert Karnan explains, the man isn’t important to the tale; The Book of Ruth tells the story of two lovers, and what they have to do to stay together. It is not the tale of a strong woman who finally finds a husband to care for her, or who sacrifices everything for the wellbeing of a really good friend.
I am not a Christian, I’m a Witch, but the teachings of the Bible affect our society in such a powerful way that I have taken the time to read it, and have tried my best to understand its myths. The answers of the Baptist Minister and the Unitarian Pastor, in this essay, explain how Bible knowledge, and the way its interpretation influence its followers, might be imperative in the battle against homophobia.
When I began writing this essay, I believe I titled it, Homophobia Might Be Caused by the Bible. I realized how inaccurate that statement was, made a third cup of coffee, and reconsidered my interviewees’ responses, specifically, about the focus of their answers. This close reexamination helped me recognize that Bible stories are too vague to be held responsible for its reader’s homophobic behavior.
Nevertheless, there is a connection between the Bible and homophobia. The negativity many of its followers choose to see, in the ambiguous ancient stories contained in their Holy Book, is indeed at the roots of many Christians’ intolerant—and sometimes criminal—attitudes toward individuals in same sex romantic relationships.
“Homophobia and the Bible” by Robert Karnan
King James Bible Online
Copyright: Magaly Guerrero - Pagan Culture - 2011
Location: New York, New York
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