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Author Topic: Homosexuality: Right or Wrong?  (Read 21820 times)
Letheus
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« Topic Start: November 26, 2007, 08:51:21 am »

Hey Im new to this board and an ex-christian.....I am abisexual male and I was curious as to whether Pagans think homosexulity is wrong like Christians do.....I have only been studying Paganism seriously for about 2 months now.....My first circle was on Samhain...so id like to know as much as i cn about Paganism....Im afraid to tell some of my new Pagan friends (Including my teacher whom is a Pagan High Priest) that I am bisexual for fear of not being accepted in the Pagan Community....So is it right or wrong? Please answer me this Smiley\

~~Ethan~~
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« Reply #1: November 26, 2007, 08:59:17 am »


I'd say, by and large, that Pagans /tend/ to be accepting of homosexuality.

Specifics are, of course, person by person, and I can't say what the people you know will feel, because I don't know them.

I'm assuming you're Wiccan or Wiccan-ish, from your post, so the best I can say is, I've known gay Wiccans and Wiccan-ish Pagans, and I've never heard them having a problem because of their sexuality.

Maybe you can ask in a more general way what people in the group think of sexuality?
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« Reply #2: November 26, 2007, 09:03:32 am »

I'd say, by and large, that Pagans /tend/ to be accepting of homosexuality.

Specifics are, of course, person by person, and I can't say what the people you know will feel, because I don't know them.

I'm assuming you're Wiccan or Wiccan-ish, from your post, so the best I can say is, I've known gay Wiccans and Wiccan-ish Pagans, and I've never heard them having a problem because of their sexuality.

Maybe you can ask in a more general way what people in the group think of sexuality?

Sorry bout that...Yes what I mea n is is What does the Pagan Religion ITSELF think of homosexuality? Christians believe it wrong because it says so in a book.....Do Pagans as a religion believe it is wrong?

There is that better?  Smiley

~~Ethan~~
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« Reply #3: November 26, 2007, 09:14:15 am »

Sorry bout that...Yes what I mea n is is What does the Pagan Religion ITSELF think of homosexuality?

Well, the problem with the question is that there isn't an "pagan" religion. The term pagan (and especially haw we use it here) refers to many completely different religions that fall under the pagan umbrella.
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« Reply #4: November 26, 2007, 09:19:47 am »

Well, the problem with the question is that there isn't an "pagan" religion. The term pagan (and especially haw we use it here) refers to many completely different religions that fall under the pagan umbrella.

Very well it looks like as u can see I am a misinformed newbie to the religion...the actual religion that ive been practising is Wicca....Or at least ive been praying to the Wiccan Lord and Lady....its confusing for me but im choosing to believe in the Wiccan faith...I knew that Wicca was to Paganism as Lutheran was to Christianity....but uh yeh....so do u think u could answer my question for me as its really bugging me=]

~~Ethan~~
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« Reply #5: November 26, 2007, 09:41:26 am »

so do u think u could answer my question for me as its really bugging me=]

As far as I'm aware, there isn't anything that I can think of in the Wiccan path that says homosexuality is wrong. However, I'm not Wiccan so perhaps one of our Wiccan members will give a better answer. As Shadow was saying, acceptance might vary greatly from person to person though.
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« Reply #6: November 26, 2007, 09:43:55 am »

As far as I'm aware, there isn't anything that I can think of in the Wiccan path that says homosexuality is wrong. However, I'm not Wiccan so perhaps one of our Wiccan members will give a better answer. As Shadow was saying, acceptance might vary greatly from person to person though.

Yes i can understand how it verys from person to person as in the christian faith some dont care whether u r gay or not. Im just asking does the faith as a WHOLE believe homosexuality is wrong?

~~Ethan~~
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« Reply #7: November 26, 2007, 09:54:27 am »

Yes i can understand how it verys from person to person as in the christian faith some dont care whether u r gay or not. Im just asking does the faith as a WHOLE believe homosexuality is wrong?

~~Ethan~~

Hi Ethan,

Can you please not use Netspeak ("u" instead of "you," and the like)?  We have a number of people here who find it difficult to read, which is why the rules (which you agreed to when signing up) prohibit it.

Best,
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« Reply #8: November 26, 2007, 09:58:06 am »

Hi Ethan,

Can you please not use Netspeak ("u" instead of "you," and the like)?  We have a number of people here who find it difficult to read, which is why the rules (which you agreed to when signing up) prohibit it.

Best,
Catja
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Yes I am very sorry Im just so used to it I did it without thinking. Ill try to limit its usage in the future^_^
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« Reply #9: November 26, 2007, 10:07:32 am »

Im afraid to tell some of my new Pagan friends (Including my teacher whom is a Pagan High Priest) that I am bisexual for fear of not being accepted in the Pagan Community....So is it right or wrong? Please answer me this Smiley\

Hi there! Taking your questions in order.

1) The Pagan community in general is quite accepting of a wide variety of sexualities. In general, as long as what you do involves consenting adults (and you have a reasonable view of public displays of affection), most people won't care in the slightest.

2) Within Wicca, it's a tad bit more complicated: some Wiccan traditions, especially those usually called "British Traditional Wicca" in the US (Gardnerian, Alexandrian, and a few others) have a specific focus on male and female polarity. There are *plenty* of gay, lesbian, and bisexual members of these traditions - and there are transgender ones as well.

However, people who want to work in those traditions do need to figure out how that focus on gender polarity will work for them, and need to be comfortable with some of the associations and expectations for the kind of ritual focus (including some generally gendered ritual roles). Some people are, some people aren't (and some heterosexual people aren't comfortable with those expectations either, mind you.)

3) Within more eclectic Wiccan traditions, there's a lot more variation. My HP and HPS are both non-heterosexual, and they do just fine. However, our tradition (as you might expect from some of that) works more with other kinds of polarities and focus than with gender.

It can be really interesting from another point of view: I spent a couple of years where I was fairly reliably the only heterosexual initiate in the room for a lot of discussions: it gave me a very different take on some aspects of what we were doing.

4) This is definitely a good thing to talk to your teacher about, since you're nervous about it. A good teacher should be able to tell you whether it'll be a concern in anyway, and would be able to better adapt some things while teaching you.

(For example, one of the students in the group I've been working with is transgender: a very few of our training exercises are gender dependent. We worked out ways to work around that with her. Other orientation questions are much less likely to be an issue for a long while, but eventually, who you form close connections to (and how you do that) may be a question worth serious attention if you are looking at eventual group leadership or broader community interaction. There's lots of possible solutions, though.)

I'm going to go make some comments on your other post, too.
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« Reply #10: November 26, 2007, 10:14:04 am »

Yes i can understand how it verys from person to person as in the christian faith some dont care whether u r gay or not. Im just asking does the faith as a WHOLE believe homosexuality is wrong?

~~Ethan~~

Hi, Ethan,

I'm not Wiccan, but I'm a Wiccan-ish gay pagan. As I understand it, the thing about Wicca is that there are a lot of different branches of the religion, so even if we restrict ourselves to talking about Wicca (and not paganism in general), I still don't think we can make a blanket statement about how the religion approaches homosexuality/bisexuality. But I'll try anyway.

I don't think there's much in the way of specifics about homosexuality in Wicca. The Wiccan Rede, to paraphrase and summarize, is "If it harms none, do as you will." So, since I think most Wiccans don't see how somebody is harming someone else by engaging in consensual sex with another adult, it's not a religious issue.

However, a small number of Wiccan groups put a lot of emphasis on "The Great Rite"--the sexual union of male and female, embodying the union of their Goddess and God--and I've heard that those groups frown on homosexuality, to the point of barring gays from joining. They are the exception, not the rule.

In my personal experience, Wiccans (and pagans in general), being religious nonconformists themselves, are much more accepting of nonconformity in general, including sexual nonconformity. They've been treated as pariahs themselves, so they know better than to do it to others for no good reason. But since we live in a largely homophobic society, there's bound to be a few homophobic Wiccans out there.

I hope that helps. Somebody who's Wiccan on the list, please jump in if I've mischaracterized anything.
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« Reply #11: November 26, 2007, 10:14:34 am »

Hi there! Taking your questions in order.

1) The Pagan community in general is quite accepting of a wide variety of sexualities. In general, as long as what you do involves consenting adults (and you have a reasonable view of public displays of affection), most people won't care in the slightest.

2) Within Wicca, it's a tad bit more complicated: some Wiccan traditions, especially those usually called "British Traditional Wicca" in the US (Gardnerian, Alexandrian, and a few others) have a specific focus on male and female polarity. There are *plenty* of gay, lesbian, and bisexual members of these traditions - and there are transgender ones as well.

However, people who want to work in those traditions do need to figure out how that focus on gender polarity will work for them, and need to be comfortable with some of the associations and expectations for the kind of ritual focus (including some generally gendered ritual roles). Some people are, some people aren't (and some heterosexual people aren't comfortable with those expectations either, mind you.)

3) Within more eclectic Wiccan traditions, there's a lot more variation. My HP and HPS are both non-heterosexual, and they do just fine. However, our tradition (as you might expect from some of that) works more with other kinds of polarities and focus than with gender.

It can be really interesting from another point of view: I spent a couple of years where I was fairly reliably the only heterosexual initiate in the room for a lot of discussions: it gave me a very different take on some aspects of what we were doing.

4) This is definitely a good thing to talk to your teacher about, since you're nervous about it. A good teacher should be able to tell you whether it'll be a concern in anyway, and would be able to better adapt some things while teaching you.

(For example, one of the students in the group I've been working with is transgender: a very few of our training exercises are gender dependent. We worked out ways to work around that with her. Other orientation questions are much less likely to be an issue for a long while, but eventually, who you form close connections to (and how you do that) may be a question worth serious attention if you are looking at eventual group leadership or broader community interaction. There's lots of possible solutions, though.)

I'm going to go make some comments on your other post, too.


Thank you...no offence meant to anyone else but youve actually answered my questions without stepping around the question...... If i have anymore questions I hope that you will allow me to come to you with them to answer with the best of your ability.
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« Reply #12: November 26, 2007, 10:16:58 am »

Hi, Ethan,

I'm not Wiccan, but I'm a Wiccan-ish gay pagan. As I understand it, the thing about Wicca is that there are a lot of different branches of the religion, so even if we restrict ourselves to talking about Wicca (and not paganism in general), I still don't think we can make a blanket statement about how the religion approaches homosexuality/bisexuality. But I'll try anyway.

I don't think there's much in the way of specifics about homosexuality in Wicca. The Wiccan Rede, to paraphrase and summarize, is "If it harms none, do as you will." So, since I think most Wiccans don't see how somebody is harming someone else by engaging in consensual sex with another adult, it's not a religious issue.

However, a small number of Wiccan groups put a lot of emphasis on "The Great Rite"--the sexual union of male and female, embodying the union of their Goddess and God--and I've heard that those groups frown on homosexuality, to the point of barring gays from joining. They are the exception, not the rule.

In my personal experience, Wiccans (and pagans in general), being religious nonconformists themselves, are much more accepting of nonconformity in general, including sexual nonconformity. They've been treated as pariahs themselves, so they know better than to do it to others for no good reason. But since we live in a largely homophobic society, there's bound to be a few homophobic Wiccans out there.

I hope that helps. Somebody who's Wiccan on the list, please jump in if I've mischaracterized anything.


Thank you. You're another who've answered my questions and I highly appreciate it Smiley
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« Reply #13: November 26, 2007, 11:54:08 am »


Thank you...no offence meant to anyone else but youve actually answered my questions without stepping around the question...... If i have anymore questions I hope that you will allow me to come to you with them to answer with the best of your ability.

Just a small point.  No-one was trying to step around your question.  The large number of pagan religions in existence just made it impossible to answer without narrowing down what you meant by pagan.  Wiccish religions do make up a large percentage of pagan religions but they are not the only ones out there, and they are not even all very similar to each other.

I'm glad Jennet and Altair could help, once it was clear what religious area you were coming from.

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« Reply #14: November 26, 2007, 11:56:31 am »

Yes i can understand how it verys from person to person as in the christian faith some dont care whether u r gay or not. Im just asking does the faith as a WHOLE believe homosexuality is wrong?

~~Ethan~~

I REALLY want to emphasize this point, because it looks like you're not seeing it.  (if I'm wrong, I apologize).  But Pagan does NOT equal Wiccan, and it's impossible to answer the question for *all Pagans* when there are so many different religions.  While I don't know of any off the top of my head that are anti-homosexual, that doesn't mean much of anything - it's both not something I have to worry about AND there is far more that I don't know than I do.

MY religion is open to just about anything, as long as it's between consenting adults (or, in the case of teens, consenting people close in age) and they're aware of what they're consenting to.  But my religion is not that of everyone.  In fact, it sounds drastically different from what you're practicing.  So using my experience wouldn't help you anyway.

The more specific your questions, the more likely you are to get useful answers.  Assuming that *all Pagans* can answer your question is only setting yourself up for disappointment down the line, and drastic confusion when things simply don't work the way you expect.
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