While I may have a few minutes later today to post something more substantial–perhaps even based upon some of what I’ll deal with below–I just wanted to draw your attention to the following two recent blog posts at Whereto We Speed, the blog of Lazarus/Sr. Krissy Fiction, a Gnostic, Sister of Perpetual Indulgence, member of the Ekklesía Antínoou, and Mystes of the Antinoan Mysteries. While the blog has existed for a while, there haven’t been any new posts for many months until recently.
The first is called “Why Not Ganymede?” and deals with something I’ve addressed on a few occasions: namely, the snit many people have who come to devotees of Antinous and start asking critical questions of the “Don’t you feel pointless and stupid worshipping that crappy little god?” variety. Many good points are raised by my colleague there, so I suggest you have a look.
The other post is “One Gay Man’s Response to Gender Essentialism in Paganism”, which, while quite good, and far more thoughtful on these matters than many such discussions, has a lot in it that I don’t personally quite agree with for a variety of reasons. But, they’re not necessarily reasons that invalidate Lazarus’ viewpoint, but instead seek to nuance it or question it due to the gender status of other people (like myself) who don’t really feel much resonance with notions of everyone having “male and female qualities” (most of which are actually human qualities that can be possessed by anyone and everyone regardless of their gender or gender identity).
It isn’t so much that some sections of modern paganism are homophobic (as most of them aren’t–though not all by any means, and it’s often individuals rather than groups who are still homophobic), it’s that by their very theological nature and structure, they’re heterosexist, and unless they work to address that, they always will be.
There is also a HUGE amount of biological reproduction on this planet that has nothing at all to do with what we might think of as “heterosexual” reproduction–it occurs not only in our very bodies (through mitosis, which allows growth, healing, and replacement of cells), but also in wider nature, where many organisms are growing and expanding, but also reproducing and creating new organisms without the need for sexual reproduction. As a religion that is supposed to embrace nature on its own terms as a good and useful, and even divine, thing, it’s a bit anthropocentric (and animal-centric) to ignore the vast amounts of biomass and individual organisms out there who have no interest in nor investment with sexual reproduction as being in some way useless or invisible, when in fact they are the very basis for the food chain’s maintenance in almost all cases.
Anyway, just a few thoughts going into/out from those two posts, which you should all read and comment upon yourselves in the near future!