NYT: "Is God Transgender?"

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Posted

I came across this early in the morning today. Very interesting!  

Is God Transgender?

"In the 1970s a cousin of mine, Paula Grossman, became one of the first people in America to undergo sex-reassignment surgery. As Paul Monroe Grossman, Cousin Paula had been a beloved music teacher in New Jersey. She was fired after her surgery, and she subsequently lost her lawsuit for wrongful termination based on sex discrimination (though a court did rule that she could receive a disability pension). The story was all over the news back then; I’d like to think it would have ended differently today.

Forty years after the Supreme Court refused to hear Paula’s appeal in 1976, the transgender story is still unfolding. This month, a transgender high school student in Virginia lost the right to use the restroom of his choice when the Supreme Court temporarily blocked a lower court’s order. Still, for the first time it is possible to imagine a ruling from a fully seated Supreme Court to comprehensively outlaw discrimination against transgender people. There is real reason to be hopeful, even if social prejudices don’t disappear overnight."

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Posted

I can't comment on whether God is transgender, but I have to admit I find it all a little strange - and depressing - what's happening in the States with regards to 'restrooms' or 'bathrooms' or whatever people care to call them. It's all over the news here in the UK - well, in the 'pink' news, anyway. 

In the UK, there's one rule about toilets/bathrooms/restrooms, and this is it: You can't use a toilet that is designated for use by those with disabilities, unless you're entitled to use it. In other words, unless you're disabled, don't use the disabled toilet facilities.

That's it. That's the only rule. There are no other rules about who is allowed to use 'male' or 'female' facilities. Anyone is entitled to use any facility they want (except disabled facilities). And I hope, for sanity's sake, it remains that way.

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Posted

 "Gender, as Cousin Paula might have put it, is more like music: Each of us has a key and a range with which we are most comfortable. Attuned to ourselves and to one another, we can find happiness and harmony."

​Excellent quote, Veronica, thank you.  I need to try to remember that.

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Posted

Here's some comments from a couple of other rabbis regarding that NYT opinion piece. Not at all surprised that they disagreed. But I admire their deep and insightful knowledge and the respectful tone of their writing:

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/08/19/opinion/gender-identity-in-olden-times-interpreting-the-torah.html

 

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Posted

I happened to be speaking the other day about androgyny to someone that studied the kabbalah. she immediately pointed out that adam was originally both male and female. it seems that the earliest scriptures are strongly on our side even though most jews and Christians prefer to forget that. there is also a strong current of androgyny in the religious texts of india and native American traditions among others.

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Posted

I don't think the title for this position is useful to name God in anyway.  But societies and cultures can be mentioned it referenced for sure.  

As far as restrooms and change rooms are concerned, let's just think for minute, best things in life free (watch my male to female cross dresser YouTube video part 6).  It only takes 1 bad apple from our transgender community to mess it up for everyone.  That's why always enjoy certain things in moderation not abuse them.

And I am not even going to get into major issues concern my original country and transgenders!

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Posted

 It only takes 1 bad apple from our transgender community to mess it up for everyone. 

There are always bad apples in any group and yes, they can cause one step back after two steps forward. But progress, civil rights, and acceptance of transgender people is reaching critical mass. 

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Posted

So basically something has to give in terms of benefits to rights recognition to material gain for us transgenders.  I am neither thankful nor greedy waiting for things to happen.

That's why where ever my CIS gender female fails I revert back to my original male gender.

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Posted

So basically something has to give in terms of benefits to rights recognition to material gain for us transgenders.  

​I don't understand. I don't see it as a zero-sum game, where one side has to concede so that the other side can gain. Consider, for example, the black civil rights movement. What did the whites lose so that the blacks were recognized and legally granted their civil rights? Likewise for gays and lesbians, what did the heterosexuals lose so that the gays/lesbians would be acknowledged, respected, and legally awarded their civil rights? Yes, those rights are still not fully realized, but states are gradually coming around to legalized marriage. 

I don't see anyone having to lose anything to give rights recognition to transgender people.

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Posted

I firmly support in transgender/gay/lgbt rights wherever they maybe in the world.  But on the other hand not to sound pessimistic, it will take another 100 years to solidify gay/trans rights along as the likes of civil rights etc.

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Posted

Thank you for your clarification. I certainly agree that it takes a long time for the last vestiges of discrimination to die out. Remember the Irish and Italians? And today we still see remnants of bigotry against blacks, Japanese, and Chinese, at least in the US. And mysogeny, well, don't get me started! 

In all cases, I think, the initial change for the good is large and that is what we are experiencing now. 

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Posted (edited)

Most religions include both gods and goddesses. It is only in monotheism where the question even arises whether god (singular) is female or male. However, even Christianity and Judaism speak of angels that are female. Since angels are supernatural beings, it is perhaps only a matter of semantics to say they are somehow not deities or gods. There are also androgynous gods, such as the hindu ardhanarishvara, a composite of shiva (one of the main hindu gods) and his consort, parvati. Many other hindu deities change gender or have opposite gender forms. The original Hebrew word for Adam is androgynous or gender neutral and Eve was fashioned from Adam's rib or "zela," which often means a component, suggesting that Adam contained both genders before the differentiation of Eve. Perhaps the bigger question, especially in monotheism, is why god even has gender if god is supposed to be a non-biological entity or spirit. Maybe that's because gods are made in man's image (I mean maybe that's because gods and goddesses are made in humans' images).

Edited by bluemoon
i can't believe i echoed a sexist saying without even realizing it in my last sentence.
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Posted

On the subject of the Supreme Court specifically, there is very good reason to be very pessimistic about the near and distant future. Although Goresuch didn't really change anything (he replaced Scalia, perhaps the worst bigot/sexist/homophobe/transphobe the court has ever seen). But Kennedy and Ginbsburg are both at an age where retirement could happen anytime, if Trump gets to nominate for one or both of them, the Court is lost for decades to come.

After that bit of pessimism, I think that simply means having to put more effort into grassroots movements at the local and state level. And one thing that's been very encouraging in the past 6 months is the new level of activism in the country, triggered by Trump, and the intersectional nature of it! I increasingly see Black Lives Matter people, feminists, trans activists, etc. stepping up for each other's interests (in truth they're just realizing that there are so many shared interests). There will be set backs, especially at the federal level, but I still think the future will be better! Hopefully more and more cisgender, straight, white men will realize that there's a benefit to giving up their privilege and working to help everyone advance. (Hopefully Caitlyn Jenner will realize that too)

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