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Breaking the Silence

Some of you may have noticed that I deleted my comments "Stepping Back" - I realized as I reflected on what I said, that it was not my place to stamp my feet and make demands of the powers that be in the Faith.  And when I said "nothing less than this is acceptable" regarding changing the prohibition of homosexuality to a prohibiition of pederasty, and coming to an understanding of the wisdom of blessing rather than cursing committed, long-term same-sex relationships and families within the Faith, I was forgetting that this development of the Faith has to come from within, because hearts are changed and such change compels a change of policy.  The anger I felt so keenly when I wrote what I did was at least in part due to my own grief process and a good deal of stress regarding our health concerns.  So I was hasty in my remarks, and although my opinion hasn't changed, my expression of it has.  Not because anyone has suggested I reconsider my remarks,  but because on further reflection I didn't approve of the way I had expressed myself.


We have had a bit of good news regarding health concerns, and we feel relieved and grateful for that.  Nothing is assured for the future (when is it ever?), but for now the news is good and we feel hopeful, and we are able to live more normally again, and at least for now I will be able to pay more attention here.


Regarding the ongoing conversation about homosexuality and gay Baha'is on the "Big Baha'i Facebook Page" - or whatever it's called, I for the most part have stayed out of that, although I'm glad some from the Gay Baha'is and Allies  have waded in and courageously expressed themselves.  The conversation there is often depressing, and discouraging, and since I don't need that right now, I mostly stay away.  I do think that people there who unknowingly exhibit prejudice, and yes homophobia  are for the most part not malicious, rather they are ignorant, and I do try to remember Abdu'l-Baha's words about educating those who are unaware of a particular truth.  Nevertheless, it's a bit much right now for me to deal with,  so I do appreciate those who have been brave enough to wade in on the conversation there, and am grateful for the occasional supportive voice of others there as well.


What I want to say here is that although I get discouraged with such conversations, I do remember that we are fortunate that the subject is being discussed at all.  Silence has been the great enemy of LGBT Baha'is, and that silence has been broken.  As long as the powers that be could keep LGBT Baha'is separated and silent about the truth of their lives, the prejudice within the Faith had free rein.  Once we begin talking with each other, and sharing our stories, the wall of prejudice within the Faith begins to crumble - because people are listening to those conversations which are public, and they are reading the stories, and those stories/conversations are having an effect.  I remember that old saying that it is impossible to hate someone you really know, whose story and hopes and fears have been shared with you, for it is not possible then to make that person "other."  You have to widen your circle and take that person in, and it works both ways.


So I try to take the long view, rather than focus too closely on prejudiced comments in online discussions.  Change is coming - I don't know when or how, but it will come.   Baha'i is way bigger than the AO - a spirit has been loosed in the world and that spirit will prevail, with the Administrative Order or without.



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Reader Comments (1)

"You have to widen your circle and take that person in, and it works both ways."
March 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJim Habegger

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