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You are here: Home > Forum > A Place of Safety > General Talk > "He is a homophobe therefore he must be a closeted gay"
"He is a homophobe therefore he must be a closeted gay"  [message #77792] Sun, 02 May 2021 08:33 Go to next message
Mark

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Here is something on Reddit I thought was interesting:

https://www.reddit.com/r/gaybros/comments/n0yv6c/he_is_a_hom ophobe_therefore_he_must_be_a_closeted/
Re: "He is a homophobe therefore he must be a closeted gay"  [message #77793 is a reply to message #77792] Sun, 02 May 2021 09:54 Go to previous messageGo to next message
NW is currently offline  NW

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I've never really bought into the idea that all homophobes are closeted gays. For starters, I don't think it explains women homophobes particularly well! However, I do think that many, probably the great majority of, male homophobes (and transphobes) are people who are uncertain of their own performance of "masculinity" at a pretty deep level. Alternative ways of perfoming masculinity are therefore extremely threatening to them.

I do find it odd! What "masculinity" is is *so* culturally determined - for almost everything we in USA/Western Europe take as typically masculine , there are (or have been) societies in which pretty much the opposite has applied.



"The ultimate weakness of violence is that it is a descending spiral, begetting the very thing it seeks to destroy. ... Returning violence for violence multiplies violence, adding deeper darkness to a night devoid of stars." Martin Luther King
Re: "He is a homophobe therefore he must be a closeted gay"  [message #77794 is a reply to message #77792] Sun, 02 May 2021 10:34 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy

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"Mark wrote on Sun, 02 May 2021 09:33"
Here is something on Reddit I thought was interesting:

https://www.reddit.com/r/gaybros/comments/n0yv6c/he_is_a_hom ophobe_therefore_he_must_be_a_closeted/

--
In the seocnd half of the 1960s being homophobic and denying I was gay was a (poor) strategy for survival.

I did damage myself by that, and rather badly



Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: "He is a homophobe therefore he must be a closeted gay"  [message #77795 is a reply to message #77794] Sun, 02 May 2021 16:09 Go to previous messageGo to next message
James Matthews is currently offline  James Matthews

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I think I've met around half a dozen people who I would consider homophobes. Of them, 1 I found out years later was gay. It's an interesting theory, but a phobia, being an irrational fear of something is probably more to the mark rather than someone hiding their true sexuality.

Let's not fall into the trap of American gay films, they always start that way and I think the writers of those films don't want to do the hard work. Although as I write this, probably 70% of stories on here have the nasty straight jock who ends up kissing the shy gay guy. And hey, mine included. Haha.
Re: "He is a homophobe therefore he must be a closeted gay"  [message #77796 is a reply to message #77795] Sun, 02 May 2021 16:27 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Bensiamin is currently offline  Bensiamin

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The single most important thing I learned in grad school (seminary, LOL!) was: there are no simple answers to complex questions. That certainly includes defining the root cause of homophobia. It certainly includes all of the assertions and suggestions in the Reddit article, but I think the most important starting point is simply this: it is a learned behavior. Babies aren't born homophobic anymore than they're born anti-this or anti-that.

So, the things they learn come from family, tribe, society and culture, and it just so happens that there is a large institution with very fixed and rigid views that happens to operate across all of those space: religion.

Most people do not grow up with a complete and healthy understanding of sexuality, let alone with any meaningful support and direction in understanding and accepting their own sexuality. Out of that comes conflict which is added to the brew of beliefs and biases from family, tribe, society and culture. Ken Wilson, an Evangelical pastor who was run out of The Vineyard churches because he was too pro-LGBTQ recently wrote a very good piece on Medium about this, titled "Religious Homophobia: It's About Straight Sex, Not Gay Sex." His focus is evangelical Christianity, and while an accurate assessment of that strain of Protestantism, it also applies to most of the rest of Christianity, Judaism and Islam as well.

The problem begins with conflict over one's own sexuality, added to that is the general shame and self-loathing that most religions propagate about sex, and then transference of all that conflict onto an available and likely target: namely "a minority group with variant sexuality compared to the majority norm." This sets the stage to project your own internal self-loathing onto that minority!

Read Ken's piece on Medium here. It's a very worthwhile investment of ten minutes!




Bensiamin
Re: "He is a homophobe therefore he must be a closeted gay"  [message #77798 is a reply to message #77796] Sun, 09 May 2021 15:43 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Bensiamin is currently offline  Bensiamin

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Here's a classic response to a homophobe that appeared on Quora this week:

http://forum.iomfats.org/?t=getfile&id=5287&private=0

[Updated on: Sun, 09 May 2021 15:43]




Bensiamin
Re: "He is a homophobe therefore he must be a closeted gay"  [message #77799 is a reply to message #77798] Sun, 09 May 2021 16:44 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy

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"As  Christian" eh?

I wonder two things:
  1. Why his messiah never spoke about homosexuality at all
  2. Why he uses a capital C






Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: "He is a homophobe therefore he must be a closeted gay"  [message #77802 is a reply to message #77799] Sun, 09 May 2021 23:40 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Bensiamin is currently offline  Bensiamin

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The capital C pretty much implies not just formality, but exclusivity - as in, we're right and all the rest of you are going to hell.

As to the messiah never speaking about homosexuality at all, that one's easy. The term "homosexuality" was coined in the second half of the 19th Century as a clinical term to distinguish homo from hetero. That type of differentiation is not found in the languages of Jesus' time, and that's why it doesn't appear in the New Testament. By extension, he also didn't say anything about the subject using any of the other terms in use any the time.

On a related matter, I had a friend tell me recently that he asked his pastor if, given the doctrine of the incarnation (that Jesus was fully human and fully divine), he ever masturbated.



Bensiamin
Re: "He is a homophobe therefore he must be a closeted gay"  [message #77803 is a reply to message #77802] Mon, 10 May 2021 05:58 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy

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One might ask if the alleged one perosn atributed with being their messiah actually existed, before askkg if he masturbated.



Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: "He is a homophobe therefore he must be a closeted gay"  [message #77804 is a reply to message #77803] Mon, 10 May 2021 15:03 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Bensiamin is currently offline  Bensiamin

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Ahh! Now you're getting into a more technical area, which raises the question about the term messiah, and the contrast between Messiah (annointed one, saviour, liberator) and the historical Jesus.

There's no historical doubt that Jesus of Nazareth existed, there being some direct and much more indirect period evidence. Accepting that, though, is very different from believing that he was the promised Messiah of Judaism, come to overthrow the Romans and establish a type of divine kingdom on earth.

I'm pretty sure my friend was inquiring about the masturbatory habits of the historical Jesus!



Bensiamin
Re: "He is a homophobe therefore he must be a closeted gay"  [message #77879 is a reply to message #77793] Mon, 21 June 2021 01:10 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Mark

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"NW wrote on Sun, 02 May 2021 03:54"
I've never really bought into the idea that all homophobes are closeted gays. For starters, I don't think it explains women homophobes particularly well! However, I do think that many, probably the great majority of, male homophobes (and transphobes) are people who are uncertain of their own performance of "masculinity" at a pretty deep level. Alternative ways of perfoming masculinity are therefore extremely threatening to them.

--

Was just watching a YouTube video a few days ago about a Catholic school in Quebec whose governing board had voted 9-1 in favor of flying a Gay Pride flag for the month of June, and the person who was doing the video (a faithful Catholic) was agaisnt the idea.  Sure enough, someone in the comments section made a comment to the effect that he must, therefore, be a closet homosexual.

Now, maybe I just (for some weird reason) tend to hang out in areas where internet trolls like to make such comments (I'll admit that a lot of the other times I've personally seen that accusation was in the comments sections of articles on Yahoo, back when Yahoo allowed comments on their articles).  Maybe they don't really mean it themselves, but may give an explanation of "I don't really believe it myself, but only say that to piss off any religious people involved in the conversation."


"timmy wrote on Sun, 09 May 2021 23:58"
One might ask if the alleged one perosn atributed with being their messiah actually existed, before askkg if he masturbated.

--

A little history here:
 
Something got a group of Jews who were expecting a miracle-working Messiah to become convinced that Jesus of Nazareth was that individual.  Whatever he was doing was convincing enough to stir up enough buzz to worry the officials and get him executed for blasphemy.

Then, both sides admitted that his body had disappeared, either stolen or resurrected.  The latter group was convinced enough to preach resurrection in the temple and synagogues, and was vocal enough so that within about two years of Jesus's death, Saul of Tarsus was out hunting down the Christians as heretics, even executing Stephen at the very least.  Yet neither threat of death nor persecution stopped the apostles from preaching the resurrection or the forgiveness of sins, and Saul experienced something so powerful while travelling on the road to Damascus one day as to change him utterly and get him to instantly switch sides.

This telling you that Jesus (even if he was really nothing more than a Jewish carpenter-turned-itinerant preacher) had to have been powerful enough to convince a number of first century Jews that he was indeed the prophesied Messiah, that the apostles experienced something so incredible that they could not be silenced even under the threat of death, and that Paul had an absolutely life-changing encounter with something so powerful as to alter his life totally in one fell swoop.
Re: "He is a homophobe therefore he must be a closeted gay"  [message #77882 is a reply to message #77879] Mon, 21 June 2021 23:45 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Bensiamin is currently offline  Bensiamin

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Mark: actually, not quite! There's no doubt that the Nazarene carpenter who went by the name Yeshua existed... in spite of the fact that there's no actual physical evidence. That understanding is what is know as The Historical Jesus. A historical corollary is that there were dozens of itinerant preachers (some Essenes, some no) claiming they were the Messiah. Many of them were dispatched by the Romans the same way Yeshua was, or by the Jewish state the way Herod dispatched John the Baptist.

The fact that there was a historical Jesus is completely separate from the fact that much later Saul converted and took the Greek name of Paul and then convinced thousands of people about the life and miracles of Jesus. The 1st century expectation on the part of the Jews about the long-awaited Messiah was that he would be a metaphysical divine warrior and overthrow their oppressor (the Romans) and thus enable them once again to practice their faith as they saw fit (as in before the Babylonian exile).

The vast majority of the theological beliefs ascribed to Jesus were developed long after he was crucified. The original in the period between 55 AD to around 90 AD when the Gospel of John (the most theological) was written. A great many more theological beliefs came into being long after Paul was gone from the scene and as late as the 3rd Century, such as the Doctrine of the Trinity, the Incarnation, etc. Yes, the disciples and Saul had life-altering experiences, but none of those assure that Yeshua's claim to be a messiah is the same as the later Christian description of The Messiah with all it's associated miracles and theological doctrines.

That said, and getting back to the original question about Yeshua never speaking about homosexuality, that's easy: the term was coined in the late 1800's and the concept didn't exist in Semitic, Greek or Roman culture at the time? In contrast, I'm pretty sure the concept of masturbation did... but that's a different matter.



Bensiamin
Re: "He is a homophobe therefore he must be a closeted gay"  [message #77883 is a reply to message #77882] Thu, 24 June 2021 03:08 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Mark

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There are people who would very much disagree with that.  Yes, Saul/Paul and some of the later disciples did come along well after Jesus was crucified, but without Jesus specificall, they wouldn't have likely preached at all, much less the specific doctrines that they did.  It's a cause and effect.  The second could not have existed without the first, so to say that they're completely, totally 100% separate is inaccurate.  Jesus had to have had enough of an effect on his original followers during his 3 year ministry that at the very least Paul and others took his teachings specifically and ran with it (and that of course is going on the assumption that those of the atheistic persuation are right and there is no God, and therefore none of the miracles that Paul and others reported actually happened).  Something happened to make then choose Jesus over all others who made similar claims.

Yes, some of the doctrines that have been attributed to Jesus may or may not have been what he actually preached.  I've heard that some people even say that if the 4 Gospels are properly translated and taken at face value, then they maintain that Jesus himself never actually said that he was the Messiah at all.  Knowing who said what and when is admittedly rather difficult when working with what's available - we're talking about working with accurate written information that was always very limited to begin with (most people in that area during that time period were either barely literate or completely illiterate, and even those who were literate rarely, if ever, kept track of most day-to-day occurances; it's not like today, where it seems like people blog about everything under the sun).  Then there are normal changes in languages over time, multiple translations that aren't always very accurate, and information that is sometimes either lost or deliberately edited by people who decided for themselves as to what to consider canon scripture.

So, to tie the previous (admittedly somewhat rambling) paragraph in a bit to the original questions about what Jesus said about things like masturbation or homosexuality (and same-sex attraction and the practice of two people of the same sex making out with each other was undoubtedly occuring, and had been for a long time, even if it wasn't called "homosexuality" at the time - a rose by any other name...) - certainly Jesus didn't make any comments one way or the other on either, at least insofar as what I've seen in the New Testament.  Of course, as noted, it's always possible that not everything that Jesus said was written down in the first place (and is quite plausible, actually, especially if most people didn't view him at the time as being the Messiah), and other people in the ensuing centuries also very likely either edited or outright removed stuff from what little was written down.  So unless we develop time travel and can go back and ask Jesus directly as to what he did and didn't actually say (or unless Jesus really was God incarnate and decides to pop into this conversation and tell us), we'll probably never know (although I suppose it's also possible that some writings from the first half of the 1st century are found, a la Dead Sea Scrolls, that could shed some light on the subject).
Re: "He is a homophobe therefore he must be a closeted gay"  [message #77884 is a reply to message #77883] Thu, 24 June 2021 15:59 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Bensiamin is currently offline  Bensiamin

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Mark: I'm certainly not here to 'argue religion,' per se. My aim was just to point out that most people lose sight of the fact that there was a "historical Jesus," and that includes all those who are scandalized by the idea that the question "did he masturbate?" could even be asked. Maybe the best thing to add is the following from the introduction to Jaroslav Pelikan's classic "Jesus Through The Centuries."

Jesus of Nazareth has been the dominant figure in the history of Western culture for almost twenty centuries. Each age has created Jesus in its own image, finding its own thoughts in Jesus, and discovering in his life and teachings the answers to fundamental questions of human existence and destiny... Studying the images of Jesus cherished by successive ages--from rabbi in the first century to universal man in the Renaissance to liberator in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries--Pelikan suggest that the way a particular age depicted Jesus is an essential key to understanding that age.

As you point out, we'll never know all that he said or taught, let alone how he lived and what he did. But, he began as a historical character, subject to all that comes with it. Just like the term 'homosexual' wasn't around in the first century because it was coined in the nineteenth, likewise 'masturbation' wasn't a word either because it is an English term. The Greek word is anaphlan, and it doesn't appear in the Bible either! Of course it happened, because it always has, there are multiple views in Judaism that range from a serious sin worthy of excommunication to treating it as in the category of uncleanness, to exempting homosexuals because they are not under the commandment to procreate. Judaism generaly speaking was much more prudish than Greek or Roman culture, but it's fair to say that even for them with their religious and cultural structures, there was sex and love between people (see David and Jonathan, etc.), some approved and some not, but not the kind of labels and categories that have are used today.

[Updated on: Thu, 24 June 2021 23:54]




Bensiamin
Re: "He is a homophobe therefore he must be a closeted gay"  [message #77885 is a reply to message #77884] Fri, 25 June 2021 17:51 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Teddy is currently offline  Teddy

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I'd like to go back and address a broader aspect of the original question, or at least the title to this thread, "He is a hompohobe therefore he must be a closeted gay."

For some this is a truth. For others no, but I don't think that's even the real issue. The real issue is people's own self hatreds and the way they lash out at others as a result. A person who loves themselves will not be a homophobe or a racist or xenophobe. They will not treat others badly. They value themselves, and know themselves enough to understand that humans are all pretty much alike and as such deserve basic respect.

Sure, people will disagree about thing, religion and politics being among the most disagreed topics known to man. I disagree with atheiest on some things... And Christians on a lot of things, but still, my homophobe neighbor is still going to receive basic respect from me and if his house floods I'm going to be there along with the rest of the neighbors to help him move his belongings to higher ground. It's what good people do for each other. I'm not sure he'd do the same for me. Doesn't matter. I know who I am. I doubt he does, and I pity him.



“There's no grays, only white that's got grubby. I'm surprised you don't know that. And sin, young man, is when you treat people as things. Including yourself. That's what sin is.” - Terry Pratchett
Re: "He is a homophobe therefore he must be a closeted gay"  [message #77886 is a reply to message #77885] Fri, 25 June 2021 17:58 Go to previous message
Bensiamin is currently offline  Bensiamin

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Teddy: extremely well said.

You are what the Greeks referred to as philanthropia - a lover of mankind!



Bensiamin
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