Every Equality March video features somebody making a short statement for justice: “My name is ____ (your name), I am ____ (your sexual orientation or gender identity), I am from the __th Congressional District of ____ (your congressional district number and your state), and I believe in full equality for all straight and LGBT Americans.”
I expected the videos to be similar because we all follow the same script. But the videos are surprisingly varied! In fact, I am one of the few who says, “I am a lesbian.” There are many variations beyond the “classic” categories of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender. Some participants identify themselves as “genderqueer” or “pansexual transman” -- and I was also pleasantly surprised to see many straight allies in the videos.
Click here to see a diverse group of “I Believe in Equality” videos.
For the video, I fulfilled my long-time dream of creating a T-shirt with the JesusInLove.org logo. I’m wearing my new T-shirt in the video -- and you can get one, too. Click here for info on how to order a JesusInLove.org T-shirt, offered in association with Zazzle.com.
The logo includes a pink triangle as the “V” in the word “love.” Gay prisoners wore pink triangles in Nazi concentration camps. Following Christ’s example, JesusInLove.org joins queer people in transforming suffering into power.
Love between two Biblical women is celebrated in “Whither Thou Goest” by Atlanta artist Trudie Barreras.
The painting shows Ruth pledging her love to Naomi.
Ruth’s famous vows to Naomi are often used in heterosexual weddings. Few people realize that these beautiful words were originally spoken by one woman to another:
“Entreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee. For whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge. Thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God. Where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried. The Lord do so to me, and more also, if ought but death part thee and me.” (Ruth 1:16-17)
Now is a good time to reflect on Ruth and Naomi because same-sex marriage is in the news and June is Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Pride Month (even officially proclaimed by President Obama this year).
"This month, the Board of Rabbis of Southern California installed Rabbi Denise
Eger as its president — the first woman and the first gay rabbi to hold
the position at the 72-year-old organization.
And perhaps what is most notable is that her gender and her gender
orientation seemed to be a non-issue for the 300 or so colleagues of
all denominations who voted her in.
“Honestly, I don’t think it was an issue at all,” Rabbi Mark
Diamond, the Board of Rabbis’ executive vice president, said of the
fact that Eger is gay. “At no point do I recall either a discussion of
that or any concerns about it.”
Eger, who founded Congregation Kol Ami in West Hollywood in 1992,
has faced down some opposition, mostly from Orthodox rabbis, since she
came to Los Angeles just after she was ordained in 1988..."
Kay Ryan, the lesbian poet who is now serving as U.S. poet laureate, speaks in a warmly insightful video portrait from the American Academy of Poets. In the video, Ryan reads and discusses her poetry -- including an excerpt that was reprinted in the popular cartoon Boondocks.
Ryan, who lives in Marin County, California, was appointed U.S. poet laureate by the Library of Congress last fall. The official announcement notes her status as a lesbian simply by stating, “Her partner of 30 years is Carol Adair.”
Ryan’s poem “Backward Miracle” offers a food for thought as Easter approaches. Ryan breathes new life into Christian themes, starting with the cup of wine shared by Jesus at the Last Supper. She also revisits the multiplication of bread and fishes, the only miracle recorded in all four gospels. The poem appears in her book “Niagara River” and is posted now at the Jesus in Love Blog.
Visit the Jesus in Love Blog to read “Backward Miracle,” plus more info and links on Ryan.
EnlightenNext (then called "What is Enlightenment? Magazine) started this deep conversation in 2007 with their first "Woman" issue, which is HIGHLY recommended reading. Click here to check out the back issue.
MyOutSpirit.com encourages lesbian, bi-attractional and trans women to join in the conversation by writing emails, comments and letters to EnlightenNext and participating in events. Whatever your gender and sex, we should ALL follow this deep work; the implications are really transformational.
The typical US religious congregation is comprised of six women for every four men. Women play a major role in lay organizations and church volunteer groups. As women are increasing in participation, men’s participation in religion is declining. Ever wonder if women clergy are more political or more liberal?
She says she’s actually not a psychic but more of a spiritual counselor or spiritual adviser.
“I’m more a shaman, an elder in a community who has visions and gives direction to people in their village. My clients and my students are my village. I take care of this community. If you sit down at my table, you have to take away a lesson and not just learn what is going to happen tomorrow. I also perform weddings—both gay and straight marriages—and house cleansings and blessings.”
Feminist, Buddhist, author and teacher. bell hooks (all lowercase) is all of these things and more. In the latest Shambhala Sun (July 2006), a lengthy interview with her explores the connection between her Buddhist understanding of dharma and her views on shifting oppressive paradigms without succumbing to an either/or, "enemy"-centered fight.
She says, "I would like to bring the work of mindfulness and awareness to everyday struggles. The most important field of activism, particularly for black people, is mental health. Activisim does not need to be some kind of organized 'against' protest. When my students say they want to change the world, I espouse an inward to outward movement. If you feel that you can't do shit about your own reality, how can you really think you could change the world? And guess what? When you're f**-d up and you lead the revolution, you are probably going to get a pretty f**-ed up revolution."