Saturday, November 5, 2011

Homosexuality

I'd like to start off by saying that this post isn't meant to offend any party, so if I do, I'm very sorry. What I'm doing here is sort of rambling to try to get my thoughts in order. I am very, very confused about this whole thing.


Seksualiti Merdeka ('Sexuality Independence') was in the papers today, and it was the first time I'd read about it. (I'd previously seen the #SexualitiMerdeka hashtag on Twitter, but I thought it was just some weird catchphrase someone had come up with.) It's a little weird that I'd never so much as heard of it before, it being a festival and all -- festivals aren't usually low-key, are they? Anyway, it's been banned this year, and people aren't happy. I wasn't either, but then I started thinking about the whole homosexuality thing and now I don't know what to feel.


(From the Seksualiti Merdeka website.)


I'm a Christian, so I probably should believe that homosexuality is wrong, that it is a sin. But, well, I don't. At least, I think I don't. Previously, I was so sure that there was nothing wrong at all with being homosexual (proof being this and this), but that was before I took Christianity with any degree of seriousness at all. Now that I'm actively trying to learn more about God and the religion itself, my view on a lot of things has changed, and this kind of includes homosexuality.


I say 'kind of' because I'm still unsure as to where I stand. On one hand, the Bible states on numerous occasions that it's wrong, and how dumb would it be to only follow what the Bible says when it suits you? On the other hand, how is it wrong if it's not hurting anybody? It's obvious to us why stealing and committing adultery are wrong, but homosexuality? I had so many questions and conflicting thoughts on this that I decided to turn to Google. This, unfortunately, only served to confuse me further, providing me with even more points for each side to be debated.




In CF Camp, I approached Mr. Yoshua with my dilemma of sorts. I told him I didn't know if I could fully commit to a religion that strongly rebuked something I believe in. He never actually said if it was right or wrong, but told me that God loves the homosexuals all the same, maybe even more than the others. He said that it was wrong of Christians to judge and condemn them, which is, you know, very true; let he who is without sin cast the first stone and all, right? Then he told me to focus on what was important first -- building a strong relationship with God. It seemed like a good, if temporary, solution.


Later on, I brought this up with Mr. Tee during one of our Bible study classes. He asked me to turn to the book of Romans, and together, we read Romans 1:26-27.


That is why God abandoned them to their shameful desires. Even the women turned against the natural way to have sex and instead indulged in sex with each other. And the men, instead of having normal sexual relationships with women, burned with lust for each other. Men did shameful things with other men and, as a result, suffered within themselves he penalty they so richly deserved.

From that, he said, it was pretty clear to him that homosexuality is wrong by the Bible. I had to agree. This put me into a quandary, because if I'm going to call myself a Christian, that book is my law, and I kind of have to agree with whatever it says. Now, I'm not 'indulging in sex' with any woman -- or man for that matter -- so that isn't the issue. My problem is that I honestly cannot see why homosexuality is condemned, why it's wrong.




Pastor Clement mentioned it briefly at camp (and only because Alex asked). I'm sorry, but 'the parts don't fit!' and the whole 'Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve' thing don't quite cut it for me. I would like real, solid reasons, please, not half-jokes. I don't buy those. You only throw half-jokes out when you're clutching at straws and want to divert everyone's attention with a bit of humour, so I'm kind of inclined not to believe it.


Ugh, I am still so confused. Homosexuality -- is it wrong or isn't it? If it is wrong, why? Enlighten me, please! I really, really want to understand.

15 comments:

  1. (Personally though I don't like it as well) but people have their own views and we shouldn't be racists and all..and discriminate them for their acts--and for people who are homosexual don't judge them based on their sexual relations, everybody has the right of freedom.. However if you don't like i then don't do it--but just dont't exclude others from your community..maybe if you tell them, they might be straight and all..so yeah no pressure
    Well that's my point anyways

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  2. It really depends on what identity you choose for yourself.

    If you're a Christian, or a Muslim, or anyone belonging from a religion that is against Homosexuality, understand this:

    Your yardstick, your measurement for what is right and what is wrong, depends on what God says in your respective holy books.

    You see, the masses of the people are secular, and therefore they do not have a concrete form of morality. Just a couple of decades ago, homosexuality was something that was disgusting and was a mental illness, and today it's being regarded as a right to live.

    Why did this happen? Because Americans, for the most part, are secular, and their rights and wrongs change from time to time. Their morality depends on what they watch on TV, and for the most part these are the kind of people that others describe as "sheep". They just go with whatever's popular without stopping to think about it.

    And that's fine, because that is who they are.

    The question is, who are YOU?

    If you are a Christian, or a Muslim, or anyone belonging to a faith that is against homosexuality:

    Understand that your morality is something that is fixed, and your morality is dependent upon what God says in your books.

    Not what society, TV shows, magazines says. For the most part, really, the notion that there's nothing wrong with Homosexuality is really just pure opinions, it's not like it's an absolute thing that Homosexuals should be treated with respect.

    So, really, you just need to ask yourself: when in comes to assigning an authority for your life, is God that authority, or is the popular current society the authority that dictates your opinions and views?

    And lastly, again, it goes back to identity. If you want to be a secular person, feel free to adopt these views.

    But if you want to call yourself a Christian, or a Muslim, etc... then understand that the identity of a Christian or a Muslim includes the fact that they disapprove of this act severely.

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  3. That was my advice to you.

    Now here's my take on the current trend of homosexuality being okay:

    You have to understand that these things are taking place in AMERICA.

    Whereas we ourselves live in a RELIGIOUS & FIXED MORALITY ORIENTED CULTURE AND SOCIETY.

    Obviously, for Americans, being so secular and far away from religion as they are, it's easy to push out these kinds of views.

    But for societies like us, are you kidding?! Seriously. Get real.

    Another thing I wanna mention is that people around the world need to GROW UP.

    Just because Americans are pushing out a particular lifestyle or opinion, doesn't make it the best opinion to live by.

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  4. Hey girl.

    I did a research paper on homosexuality recently. I email it to you can? What's your email address? :)

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  5. A guy named Lulu:
    Yeah, that is true. None of us have any right to judge them, and it's certainly wrong to condemn them. Most of them get really touchy when it comes to anything to do w/ religion, esp those w/ teachings saying homosexuality is wrong, so I've never worked up the courage to ask any of them about it.


    Anonymous:
    But the evolution of the society's mindset isn't always bad. Women didn't used to have rights, and lefties were considered to be...the spawn of the devil or something like that, I can't remember. I was always in support of homosexuality, even when it got me weird looks and then some from Christian and non-Christian friends alike, so I don't think my stand was influenced by my surroundings. It just never made sense to me, why it's considered wrong. I think there are practices in the Bible that we don't adhere to anymore, so who's to know that this isn't one of them?

    That was my main issue with delving deeper into Christianity. I know the Bible says it's wrong, and in order to call myself a Christian w/ no doubts or shame or anything, I need to be able to accept that. I'm just finding it difficult to understand. Then again, there are Christians who are pro-homosexuality, and even gay churches; I used to be wholly in support of them, but now I don't know what to make of it.

    People just need to learn to think for themselves. Then again, that could go both ways, since it depends on whether or not they make the right decision or not. And of course, the 'right' decision differs w/ each person you ask.


    Mei Fong:
    Hey, Mei Fong! Yes, please, I'd love to read it. huijanfactorial@hotmail.com (:

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  6. Hui Jan, I want you to realise what you're actually doing right now.

    There's a difference between asking a question, and QUESTIONING something.

    Example:

    This is a question:
    Is Einstein dead?

    This is a questioning of what happened:
    But why is Einstein dead? Why, of all times, did he have to die that way, in that place, in that situation?

    So, right now, I want you to realise what you're getting yourself into: you are questioning the basic morality of your own religion.

    ----

    I'm personally NOT a Christian, but I can tell you this:

    It really just depends on what kind of Christian you are, and what your idea of salvation is.

    If your idea of salvation is that Jesus is just gonna bear the burden of all of our sins, and as long as we believe he died for it, then we're good to go, we can do whatever we want. We can completely ignore the Bible's laws and moralities.

    If you are THAT kind of Christian, then feel free to do whatever you want, lol. You're gonna be forgiven anyways, right?

    But then we have some Christians who believe that we should actually FOLLOW the laws of the Bible - and these people, obviously, has concerns on everything they do now. They gotta make sure they live up to the standard of being a good Christian.

    These Christians have tend to have a more fixed and structured view of the world, and, duh, are against homosexuality.

    ---

    So ask yourself which of the two are you? If you're the former, then fine.

    If you're the latter, you seriously need to realise what you're doing: if you believe the Bible to be God's word that should be followed, then damn, you're questioning God.

    ---

    Good luck.

    Oh, and there's always other religions you can look into. You don't have to be a Christian all your life; just sayin.

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  7. You're right. I am questioning the principle. But I'm doing that because I want to understand it, because I've never quite liked the idea of following blindly. I want to know what I'm doing and why I'm going to believe what is right. If I'm going to take the stand against homosexuality, I want to be able to explain in my own words why I believe it is wrong, and not regurgitate the textbook 'Because the Bible says so' answer. I mean, y'know, what the Bible says might not mean squat to some people. But this isn't simply my feeling like I have to justify myself to others. Basically, I want to understand and know why I believe what I do.

    There are parts of the Bible that we don't follow anymore. In Leviticus, it states that eating pork and seafood is forbidden, but obviously that's not something we adhere to now. Oh, and it's true that Chistians can be pretty much divided into those two groups, but there are pro-homosexuality people in the second group as well. Their argument (or 'excuse', idk) is that the anti-homosexuality parts of the Bible are archaic. I mean, they have other various things to back them up, but a lot of it sounds pretty weak to me, and the more I read, the more convinced I am that homosexuality is wrong. I just don't understand why.

    Thankyou. (: And nah, pretty sure I'm rooted in this religion. If I weren't, this whole debate would've caused me to let go of it a long time ago.

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  8. If one thing from the holy book (and this includes the Qur'an) is wrong...

    ...then who's to say that anything else is right?

    As for my view on homosexuality...

    A couple having consensual sex in the confines of their own home doesn't bother me.

    I really don't see why it should bother other people as well.

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  9. Not so much wrong as no longer applicable.

    It shouldn't. That's where judging comes in. But, y'know, I'm just wondering whether or not to kick my YEAH GO HOMOSEXUALS LOVE IS LOVE GOFIGHTWIN attitude. Buttt I think I have made my decision.

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  10. Lol, okay. To rephrase - if one thing is no longer applicable, who's to say the rest is?

    Confessions of an atheist/agnostic. =)

    I have one principal rule - If whatever you do does not infringe the rights or freedom of others, it's okay. I may not like homosexuality the same way others might not like my support for pornography, but we tolerate each other.

    But even to put it in a religious context, if homosexuality is indeed a sin, then isn't that sin to be judged between them and God? Wouldn't it be presumptuous, or arrogant even for us to try and change them? I don't believe gay people are ignorant. They know what the holy books say about them. It's just the adult thing to do what you think is right and live with the consequences.

    What did you decide on? =)

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  11. Oh, I read a quote like that once! From the frontman of AFI, hahah. Basically, do wtv you want as long as it doesn't mar the happiness of others.

    What's sad is they do know, and it's because of this that they feel alienated and excluded from most religions. It's hard not to, what with them being openly condemned and all. Basically, everyone's just doing what they think is right, and they're really different things...though condemning is never right.

    I think...I've decided to agree with what my religion teaches. I may not understand it, but there are a lot of things I don't understand; I can only hope and pray that I will one day.

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  12. @Khairie:

    The thing about religion is, the values that are found in it build a foundation of social taboos that happen in society.

    Which is natural - because religion creates communities of people.

    So understand that the same way they would hate that robberies and house break-ins would happen in a neighbourhood, they would also hate it when people engage in things which they deem to be evil.

    It's a natural consequence of religion.

    Don't be all "Oh I don't get why people hate it, I mean, it's not like it hurts them or anything,".

    It does hurt them, they would hate it, and they would want it stopped.

    You know how financial corruption within the government would affect every single citizen in this country?

    Well, as religious people believe, social corruption will also affect every single citizen in this country, even if the act of homosexuality, premarital sex, etc. has nothing to do with them.

    Also, keep in mind that at the end of the day, that is someone's son, that is someone's daughter. And their parents have neighbours and relatives who will have an opinion: so like it or not, these controversial acts affect A LOT of people and cause A LOT of problems.

    Also, understand that different people have different ideas of what chastity is supposed to be like.

    If a girl is shunned because she's pregnant or living with a partner outside of marriage, it's not because she's "unjustly degraded", it's because she breached and went against the society's standards of what chastity is, and therefore, she suffers the consequences of going against society's standards.

    I'm saying all this because you have to understand the social and societal implications that religion has on a society and a country.

    Don't act all "Oh I don't see what the big deal is". Be smarter than that, please.

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  13. @Anonymous

    I don't mind having an intellectual conversation, but if you're going to be rude, at least have the decency to not hide behind anonymity. Be braver than that, please.

    I do realize that legalizing gay marriage or allowing gay parades to happen does have social consequences. I'm not saying it doesn't.

    What I'm saying is, the question of morality, short of it directly affecting others, (like murder, rape, and robbery) is a highly subjective subject. Who draws the line? You? God? Religion?

    You say homosexuality hurts religious people. Well, it's the same way religious bigots hurt gay people, but because religion is the accepted norm, the scales are tipped in their favor.

    I'm questioning whether it's right to allow the majority to set the standards for morality, given that everyone has different views on what morality is.

    In a society with a diverse set of morals, shouldn't the lowest common moral denominator be that everyone is allowed freedom of practice as long as it doesn't directly affect the freedom of another sentient being?

    You say, yes, homosexuality does "hurt" others - but it doesn't hurt them the same way one hurts another by physically harming them, or stopping them from living their lives.

    Put it in another perspective - the majority of Malaysians are Muslims. Should the rest of the non-Muslims in Malaysia be forced to wear the hijjab and cover up because it will offend the majority?

    If the entire point of your monologue was just to point out that 'homosexuality has consequences beyond just you Khairie' well, thanks, I realized that even as I was typing out the comment then.

    I realize the consequences it has on society, but I STILL don't see what the big deal is - the same way I don't see what the big deal is if a girl wants to go out in a miniskirt and have a fun night out in the club, of if she'd rather stay home and read Harry Potter fully clothed in her pyjamas.

    EITHER WAY MY FREEDOM ISN'T BEING INFRINGED, JUST LIKE YOURS ISN'T.

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  14. America is an extremely individualistic society, and therefore they spew out the same exact views as you do.

    Our country, however, is built upon local cultural and religious values, which are both informally and formally rooted within both law and general morality.

    Like I said - religion creates a community that holds on to specific values. Emphasis on COMMUNITY. You know what means?

    When a person messes up by breaching against a COMMUNITY's values, it affects EVERYONE.

    So if a person is a homo, or a girl is a whore, it affects their PARENTS. As an extension, it affects people's views on them. So on and so forth.

    I was trying to show you how IT IS A BIG DEAL. Because when a person happens to be a part of a community that holds on to specific set of values, and you as an individual BREACH those values, of course all hell will break loose.

    ----

    As for you question:

    "In a society with a diverse set of morals, shouldn't the lowest common moral denominator be that everyone is allowed freedom of practice as long as it doesn't directly affect the freedom of another sentient being?"

    The answer is No, because Malaysia is not 100% secular, and it never will be.

    America had 800 years of democracy before they reached to these kind of views.

    We've had 50+ years of a very unique kind of democracy, unlike America, and we're STILL deeply dense and rooted within religious values.

    I don't mind if someone has these kinds of views, I just find it annoying that they speak aloud about idealistic bullshit without realising the climate they're in.

    In other words, people need to grow up and get real. Tak payah nak perasan.

    You wanna have these kind of sentiments, go off to some European country, and don't act like these views are the best ones around and that every country should apply it.

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  15. You're a hypocrite anonymous.

    If you're not interested in people voicing out their views, then you probably shouldn't engage people in a debate, or be reading other people's blogs.

    And if you're all against Globalisation, then I suggest you stop using English and the internet.

    Aku paling tak tahan orang mentaliti "Oh, kalau kau nak fikir camtu baik kau balik cina/india/eropah"

    Retarded backward racist thinking.

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