Friday, June 24, 2011

Gays and spirituality

It's Friday night.  (Technically it's Saturday morning where I am, but where many of you are, it's still Friday.)  I'm not used to spending weekend evenings alone, but I have today.  After class, I went to the gym, to a bookstore, to the grocery store, and arrived home before 9 pm.  Someone suggested that the place where I live is a "ghetto" part of our town, so I was glad to get home before dark.

Then, I sat down and ate a roll of grocery store sushi/sashimi (seriously, it was some kind of mix of the two) with milk and a granola bar.  When I was eating the sushi, I tried to be mindful.  I tried to eat it one piece at a time.  And I did not read.  I tried to pay attention to the taste and the flavors.  My favorite was the bright green zing of the horse raddish.

I'm enrolled in a summer Russian course.  It's full-time (8:30 am to 5:30 pm, with various breaks), and keeps me quite busy.  That is part of my excuse for not writing last week.  I've missed you.

I want to know more about gays and spirituality.  Gay Mormons.  Gay Jews.  Gay Catholics.  Gay whatever.  We're everywhere.  To some, it means being faithful and/or celibate within the bounds and strictures of organized religion.  For others, it's (merely) a heritage--something that taught a now ethereal form of general goodness, but that perhaps is sometimes heavy--sometimes threatens us with the shame and guilt we associate with that part of our past and this part of our present.  Among perhaps others, there is a third group of gay Mormons, gay Jews, gay Catholics, etc., for whom religion is part of our identity and standards, but who have also molded (if you'll permit me to say it this way) those beliefs to fit the way we live.

[There must be lots of outside and in-between here.]

What are our stories?  What do we believe?  What aspects of our lives are spiritual?  Do we yearn for spirituality?  Do we yearn for it more than others?  Are religion and spirituality synonymous at any level?  Do we feel sick sometimes thinking about the disconnect with our former lives?  Do we often end up with something syncretic and tolerant?  I think of Gerard Manley Hopkins' Carrion Comfort, of Angels in America, and--what else?  Lots of us lose the faith, but what do we replace it with, if anything?

(P.S.  I didn't watch this video tonight, but I've read a book by this woman [Pema Chodron], and liked it.  Maybe you'll like what she has to say, too?] 


  1. I want to know the details about what you believe personally. What is your spirituality? What is your story? I'd like to know your answers to your question.

  2. Thanks for asking, TD. Maybe I'll try to post about it next week. You?