How did you come to terms with your religion and being gay?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 27, 2007 3:08 AM GMT
    I have so many thoughts on this. I am going to try to keep my little blurb here coherent.

    I have been wondering about this a lot lately. It is very upsetting to me. Even if I never come to terms with it.. what about my friends that are gay. People that I care deeply about. Am I to go through life wondering and worrying about them as well?

    Nothing has kept me so repressed and afraid as the way I was brought up. This is not to place the blame on my upbriging.

    I do believe in God. There is not a doubt in my mind that he does exist. That is what really scares me.

    What I keep asking myself is, why would God create something that is wrong? Why would he make me and then allow me to lust over some guy in Austin, TX. Would some consider that free will... or a choice of right and wrong?

    Maybe I am trying to rationalize, but I am trying realy hard to keep things in perspective. That is the question that keeps coming back to me. Why was I made that way?

    icon_cry.gif
    I know Chuckystud likes to flame pictureless people and he is on to something. I wouldn't say I am full of self loathing, but I sure have some issues.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 27, 2007 3:31 AM GMT
    What makes you think God created something wrong? Read the Gospel of John. Jesus had a boyfriend. The beloved discipline. I mean the boyfriend laid all over Jesus at the last supper in John. When Jesus said that someone there would be betray him, whom did Peter ask about who it is. He asked the boyfriend...cuz Peter figures if anybody was gonna know it was the boyfriend. The boyfriend asks Jesus. Tells the boyfriend to watch to whom he gives the morsel of bread. On the cross, Jesus entrusts Mary to the boyfriend.

    Hello!!! Jesus had a homosexual relationship with the beloved discipline.

    Also, notice how Jesus discounts the biological family. The only "family" that counted with Jesus was the family of the faithful.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 27, 2007 3:33 AM GMT
    I wasn't really saying he created something wrong.. I suppose I was trying to say if society says it is so wrong.. then why would God make us feel that way...

  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 27, 2007 3:41 AM GMT
    How is it God who is making you feel that way? You just said it is Society that says it is wrong.

    First off not all of society says it is wrong. You are just listening to the part that does. Why are they right? Why are you not just as right to decide for yourself that it is right?

    Remember evil is not the actions of God. Evil is the actions taken in the absence of God. Just like cold is not something. Cold is the absence of heat.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 27, 2007 3:46 AM GMT
    I mean if God created us.. why would he create something flawed or wrong.. according to society?
  • irishkcguy

    Posts: 780

    Dec 27, 2007 4:00 AM GMT
    First off, equating what society thinks with what God thinks is a huge error in logic. Remember that about 140 years ago American society thought it was OK to own other human beings as property. Just because society says something is Ok doesn't make it so.

    This is something I read in the Bible that was a great epiphany for me. In the early parts of the Old Testament, it was believed that a woman had been cursed by God if she had not given birth to any male children. Today with the help of science, we understand that the woman has nothing to do with the gender of her child, that chromosome is suppled by the man. That society was male dominated and women were treated as property. Nobody today looks at a family with all daughters and says, "Wow that woman must have really made God mad to be curse with all those female offspring." Our understanding of the way the world works is so much more advanced now than it was back then.

    I don't see how homosexuality is any different.


  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 27, 2007 4:28 AM GMT
    I had to drop logic... icon_smile.gif

    But seriously, you are right. Society's thoughts do not equate to God's.

    But don't tell society that.

    I am just trying to figure out who I am now and what I really want to be.

    I am really feeling guilty and sad about it all. Tons of thoughts.. tons of emotions...
  • irishkcguy

    Posts: 780

    Dec 27, 2007 4:58 AM GMT
    You might want to check out this book: "What the Bible Really Says About Homosexuality." The author is Daniel Helminiak.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 27, 2007 7:47 AM GMT
    Or Christianity, Social Tolerance and Homosexuality by John Boswell. It's enlightening. I don't buy the whole "Jesus had a boyfriend" thing, btw... I find the first step in understanding how Christianity and modern society meet is by having a healthy understanding of what the Bible is and isn't. That's just my opinion. The more I learned about the Bible the more I grew to love it instead of fear it. (inversely proportional to how i feel about the church sometimes ;)).
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 27, 2007 8:07 AM GMT
    I didn't, so I dumped the religion(Christianity).

    If you want religion that's more accepting, try Unitarian Universalists. But be ready for some diversity of religious thought rather than uniformity or conformity. The congregation has a worship committee at the UU church here in Columbus. They vote on what the themes will be and the congregation votes on values that guide the message of the sermons. They don't have a bible, but rather do sermons from the bible, tora, existentialist writings, poems, you name it. As for GLBT - they have a PRIDE committee and many of the summer sermons are run by the PRIDE Committee with GLBT issues featured.

    The pastor was openly gay and a former pastor in SF.

    There were a lot of reformed Catholics at the church. Most of these seemed to want church and fellowship, but didn't want to be told they were going to Hell and were sinners - the constant negativity drove them away from Catholisism.

  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 27, 2007 10:48 AM GMT
    the Holy Bible says that if a man has a sexual relationship with another man, he should be killed...

    religions are a waste of time if you ask me...
    they are man made!!!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 27, 2007 12:27 PM GMT
    God takes care of the important stuff and ignores the unimportant stuff. Man gets all upset when God ignores stuff that Man thinks is important.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 27, 2007 1:06 PM GMT
    Religion is supposedly God as interpreted by a person or by a group of people. Therefore, it's as flawed and imperfect as its members or founders.
    Skip the middle man and try to understand God by the one thing you can be sure to attribute to Him directly:

    His Creation.

    By this I mean nature, science, your own conscience and your own life experience.

    These are the things that are not corrupted by someone else's ideas or conceptions.

    And dude, all religions, and all sacred texts were created with an immediate purpose. Study the Bible as a collection of individual books, and not as a whole, and you'll realize that each book was written in a specific historical timeframe and a specific purpose.

    Don't let the interpretations of televangelists and charlatans ruin your life. Religion is man-made, your concsience isn't.
  • coolarmydude

    Posts: 9190

    Dec 27, 2007 1:23 PM GMT
    I was born and raised Catholic. I went to Catholic school from K to 8 and went to Catechism through Confirmation.

    I denounced my association with Catholicism a few years ago when the Catholic Church denounced feminism as a threat to the family structure. Of all issues, this one broke the camel's back. Although I don't like extreme feminism, I felt that the Church's position was to maintain a patriarchal political structure and was denouncing movements to allow women to become priests. This position was announced during Pope John Paul II's reign, but do you know who authored it? YUP! Cardinal Ratzinger, who is now known as Pope Benedict XVI.

    TRUE STORIES: One day, I went to confession to confess masturbation. The priest told me to say 3 Our Father's and 3 Hail Mary's. That's it folks. That was a clue that it's not a sin. One time before, a different priest told me to imagine masturbating on the altar the next time I had the urge to masturbate.

    I don't need religion; religion needs me! I do consider myself Christian, but I don't belive in dogma.

    The Bible is derived from two things: Oral and Written traditions. Both are human stories and very little is by God or of God.

    So what is a Christian/Christianity? Read about the washing of the feet at the Last Supper. That was the message of all messages.

    "What is God's is God's and what is Caesar's is Caesar's." You have no idea how many times I wish I was running for President just to say that at a debate!!!

    Last thing. Many times growing up, I always wondered how I knew and understood things deeper and better than the average person. One day, I read about the Gift of Grace from God and understood why.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 27, 2007 1:29 PM GMT
    it concerns me that so many of you find peace of mind in using logic and reason to highlight the shortcomings of religion but then suffer so much anguish by not applying the same rigour to your belief in god?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 27, 2007 1:44 PM GMT
    All religions evolved in the same way, and for roughly the same reasons. Primitive peoples, frightened by natural phenomena that they could not control and did not understand, invented an entity that could protect them, if they pledged their fealty to him, that could explain the puzzling phenomena to them, via stories of how the world came to be; and provide solace against the random cruelties of life, including that which is most cruel, namely, that we are the only animals around that know that one day we will die.
    And being the supreme egotists that we are, we cannot imagine that a lifetime of accumulated experience and wisdom and love will just disappear, so we invent an afterlife so that our wonderful specialness will not simply go to waste. And to keep people in line, we divide that afterlife into The Place Where The Good People Go, and The Other Place.
    So...given what we have learned as a race over the last 6000 years....why do we still need this primitive "protector and explainer and comfort-giver"? Isn't it time to put this away, along with the Lincoln Logs and Erector Sets of our shared childhood?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 27, 2007 2:04 PM GMT
    Logic has little relation to religion or society. Although you can use logic in the analysis of them, both society and religion are based on what people (and not all the people, mostly the ones with influence and/or power) want and that is not a position of logic.

    As to coming to terms, you have to first determine your beliefs. Then you have to find an outlet that allows you to support those beliefs. You ought to consider, first, any beliefs you have that would ask you to do harm to yourself or others and get rid of those beliefs. The basis of many religions is a formal structure that teaches you to love others as you do your deity. However, time has allowed these very structures to be co-opted by the powers given to those who run them. Soon laws of the church, that were written by men, are assumed to be the word of God even though they were based on some sort of arbitrary societal or oligarchy pressure at the time they were written. These rules have no basis on todays society, but they are followed to the letter sometimes under the requirement of 'faith'.

    Personally.I was raised Catholic. I went through phases of varying beliefs to determine what was the best fit for me. It was clear that the Catholic Church had too many contradictions. I also determined that there were lots of faith based systems that also were more about blindly (usually referred to as faithfully) following the rules. It took me thirty years to find one where I'm accepted as I am and I have a way to become a better person and a way to help others as well that's not based on judgment. Being raised by a scientist who was Catholic and couldn't resolve the conflicts that were created by that, I tended more to the side of science.

    This is only my opinion and I don't mean to ever disparage those who choose a different path.
  • pav1

    Posts: 68

    Dec 27, 2007 3:28 PM GMT
    It has taken me half a life time to come to terms with religion and being gay. My solution... I have kept my faith and wept in sorrow for the religion.
    I am now at peace and have a deeper faith than when I was part of the church.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 27, 2007 3:43 PM GMT
    Back to the original question: This was a very tough one for me also. Personally, I don't think you'll ever come to terms with it. There are things of this world that we will never be able to reconcile with God because we just don't know. I think you have to accept that God loves you and the proof of that is that he would sacrafice his own son for you. So regardless of the guilt, confusion, what church leaders claim or any literal interpretation of the Bible may be, nothing will wipe out what you have already received as a Christian...and that is God's grace. We'll never know, in this life, whether being gay is a sin any more than eating shell fish, but you do know that the Great Commission, sent by Jesus, was to praise God and love one another. I think that if you do that and you use the other commandments as your "curb" to keep you morally on track, a yoke to keep you going straight (no pun intended) and you let all those who have issues with homosexuality carry those issues themselves, you'll do fine. God didn't create you or me wrong or bad, he created us in His own and as Christians we are called to live Christ-like in all we do, recognizing that we will fail and that we need to ask for forgiveness (even though it's already given) for the times we aren't Christ-like. Live your life caring, giving, helping and loving others...regardless of your sexuality, that is Christ-like.

    Many Christians leaders/churches have created a toxic environment, by their own interpretation of scripture, for Christians to live in. The fact that you are filled with guilt is an indication of your faith. If you didn't have faith, you wouldn't believe. Believing is your ally and having that personal relationship with God is very important, in my opinion. Remain in prayer and the Word and align yourself with others that have the same questions and you'll definitely begin to have a better understanding.

    God's blessings my friend.
  • Alan95823

    Posts: 306

    Dec 27, 2007 4:04 PM GMT
    Don't let a church's dogma interfere with your connection to divinity.

    If a church is telling you that you're wrong/bad/wicked/evil for being who you are, then it's the wrong church for you. People are fallible, capable of making mistakes. Churches are run by people, and most of society is made up of "sheeple" who just believe what they're told to believe. Loads of room for mistakes there.

    Everything in our world has a purpose and belongs, including us gay people.

    "Any religious organization that preaches hate/intolerance isn't preaching for God, they're batting for the other team whether they know it or not." - my grandmother told me that, and she was the eldest child of Baptist missionaries. She knew her bible, and she was a loving kind woman whose mother had gay friends back in the 1930s.
  • jarhead5536

    Posts: 1348

    Dec 27, 2007 4:05 PM GMT
    How did I come to terms with it? I walked away from it from the ages of 18 to almost 30. Raised fundie Southern Baptist and totally into it as a kid. I thought if I prayed hard enough and was a good enough churchgoer, I would be "delivered" of my wickedness. Yeah, right.

    Found the Episcopal Church, and never looked back. Here is a thinking man's Christianity. Social justice and tolerance are the main focus, not who is saved and who is damned for whatever ridiculous Old Testament crap.
  • jarhead5536

    Posts: 1348

    Dec 27, 2007 4:07 PM GMT
    My husband, however, is another matter, bless his heart. He was also raised fundie, and never got over it. He constantly turns to me and asks if I think we are going to Hell for being gay. I can't snap him out of it, 'cause he refuses to darken the door of any church ever again. Some serious damage there...
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 27, 2007 4:16 PM GMT
    Jarhead,

    Why does this remind me of that old Woody Allen line, "My psychiatrist asked me if I thought sex was dirty. I said, 'Only if you're doing it right'?"
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 27, 2007 4:20 PM GMT
    Jarhead...it's too bad about your husband. It's sad that with all that Jesus preached...the church has isolated anyone and then turned them off so much that they refuse to participate in the fellowship of faith.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 27, 2007 4:27 PM GMT

    kylez4me saidI have so many thoughts on this. I am going to try to keep my little blurb here coherent.

    I have been wondering about this a lot lately. It is very upsetting to me. Even if I never come to terms with it.. what about my friends that are gay. People that I care deeply about. Am I to go through life wondering and worrying about them as well?

    Nothing has kept me so repressed and afraid as the way I was brought up. This is not to place the blame on my upbriging.

    I do believe in God. There is not a doubt in my mind that he does exist. That is what really scares me.

    What I keep asking myself is, why would God create something that is wrong? Why would he make me and then allow me to lust over some guy in Austin, TX. Would some consider that free will... or a choice of right and wrong?

    Maybe I am trying to rationalize, but I am trying realy hard to keep things in perspective. That is the question that keeps coming back to me. Why was I made that way?

    icon_cry.gif
    I know Chuckystud likes to flame pictureless people and he is on to something. I wouldn't say I am full of self loathing, but I sure have some issues.


    ---------

    Dealing with my religion and sexuality was really easy for me, since I believed then as I do now that I was created the way I was supposed to be. I was a smart, nice teen with lots of self control and lots of people liked me, so thinking 'if it isn't broken, don't fix it', I accepted that whatever force created me, than I must fine. All this after my week long 'struggle' with my sexuality to the day of my 13th birthday. I simply accepted that I was gay, didn't make it common knowledge and left it at that. I struggled however with a Faith for half of my life. I went from Charismatic Christian from my birth, to Roman Catholic from my grandparents, to atheist tagging along with my older rebelious brothers in my early teens, to studying Buddhism, Wicca, Judaism, Taoism, and Native American Spirituality... I've come to pick apart religions in an attempt to understand them for myself. I believe and use universal laws in my personal spiritual doctrine, but remain mostly without a singular declaration of a religion. I don't judge others choices or point of view, and am always willing to listen to other's beliefs on their Faith. As for my sexuality; I believe that it has no barring on my spiritual path. What matters most to me is that I am focused more on the intangible aspects of relationships and not be consumed by the superficial physical aspects of love, since aesthetic beauty is fleeting and can only satisfy so much. I don't mean to sound preachy, though I'm sure many of you may think otherwise, but I've partied hard, done some drugs and had several nightlong casual relationships in the past. There's nothing special there, and I don't miss it so much. So I'm pretty much saying, "been there, done that". I'm moving foward.