Monday, June 29, 2009


When I was going to therapy, one thing my therapist suggested is that I'm going through a mourning process - I'm mourning a life I'll never have - a life I won't let myself live - a life with the man of my dreams.

It's an interesting notion and one that I've thought some about. Truth is, my dreams at night are often "what if" sort of dreams - dreams where I go back to my younger days and make different decisions than the ones that I made. Not that the choices I made were necessarily bad - they seemed like the right decisions at the time.

If I knew and accepted then what I know and accept now, I most certainly wouldn't have chosen to join the LDS church. I doubt I would have chosen to marry, a girl. But, there would have been consequences. That was in the days before AIDS was understood - I could have chosen to live a lifestyle that led to my early demise. Alcoholism runs in my family, were I not a teetotaler, I might have become an alcoholic (as two of my siblings are). Had I not married (a girl), I wouldn't have experienced fatherhood. So, while I do not regret the choices I made - I find myself wondering what it would be like had I made different choices in my life, longing for a life where I made different choices.

But, all of that is water under the bridge. I made the choices that I did and now I must abide by those choices. The choices I made have provided me with a good life and a family that loves me. And yet, even knowing that, I still continue to mourn for a life that was not meant to be.

How do I get past this? How do I accept the choices I made and move forward?

There are some who would say that I'll never find happiness as long as I've got one foot in babylon. Maybe they're right - but I've spent most of my life rejecting Babylon and trying to be the good mormon boy.

Truth is, once I accepted my own homosexuality, I began to view Babylon in a different light; and, I discovered that Babylon isn't the evil I always believed it was. There is actually a lot of beauty in Babylon. While there is an element of Babylon that I am not comfortable with, it is also full of good, honorable, decent people. While there is certainly a dark side to Bablylon, things that are virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy can also be found there.

Perhaps most unexpected is that I feel at home when I'm with the people of Babylon. They are the family I never knew I had. They are the only ones who have an inkling of what I'm going through. They are those who've made choices that I sometimes wish I had made.

But, I can't turn the clock back - time marches forward.

Is it possible to find happiness with one foot in Babylon? Or is it all or nothing? Must I totally reject it or fully embrace it before I can find peace? I tried, unsuccessfully, for much of my life to fully reject Babylon - so is that even an valid option?

Sunday, June 28, 2009

The evolution of Abelard

Some months ago, I took the Belief-O-Matic quiz. In spite of my disagreement with "Q14. Homosexual behavior should be regarded as immoral or out of harmony." - I still came out as 100% Mormon.
1. Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (Mormons) (100%)
2. Jehovah's Witness (88%)
3. Mainline to Liberal Christian Protestants (74%)
4. Orthodox Judaism (73%)
5. Baha'i Faith (69%)
6. Mainline to Conservative Christian/Protestant (68%)
7. Islam (64%)
8. Sikhism (62%)
9. Reform Judaism (58%)
10. Liberal Quakers (58%)
11. Orthodox Quaker (55%)
12. Eastern Orthodox (46%)
13. Roman Catholic (46%)
14. Unitarian Universalism (46%)
15. Jainism (43%)
16. Seventh Day Adventist (42%)
17. Mahayana Buddhism (41%)
18. Theravada Buddhism (40%)
19. Christian Science (Church of Christ, Scientist) (39%)
20. Hinduism (38%)
21. Neo-Pagan (37%)
22. New Age (30%)
23. Secular Humanism (28%)
24. New Thought (26%)
25. Scientology (24%)
26. Taoism (23%)
27. Nontheist (17%)
For grins, I took the test again this morning, this time answering as I truly believed rather than as I thought I should answer as a good mormon boy - and the results were somewhat startling
1. Mainline to Liberal Christian Protestants (100%)
2. Liberal Quakers (82%)
3. Unitarian Universalism (75%)
4. Baha'i Faith (72%)
5. Reform Judaism (69%)

6. Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (Mormons) (63%)
7. Neo-Pagan (62%)
8. New Age (60%)
9. Orthodox Quaker (59%)
10. Mainline to Conservative Christian/Protestant (58%)
11. Orthodox Judaism (54%)
12. Sikhism (53%)
13. Jehovah's Witness (52%)
14. Christian Science (Church of Christ, Scientist) (50%)
15. Mahayana Buddhism (49%)
16. Secular Humanism (49%)
17. Eastern Orthodox (48%)
18. New Thought (48%)
19. Roman Catholic (48%)
20. Theravada Buddhism (48%)
21. Seventh Day Adventist (44%)
22. Islam (40%)
23. Scientology (38%)
24. Jainism (36%)
25. Hinduism (36%)
26. Taoism (34%)
27. Nontheist (24%)
Mind you, there is only one question that deals with the topic of homosexuality - and I answered the same both times. The bulk of the questions deal with the nature of god and our responsibility here on earth.

I think the question that was likely the biggest factor in the change was
Q12. Choose ALL statements below that represent your beliefs.
  • Adhere strictly to the rites, practices, precepts, commandments, prohibitions, laws, sacraments, or ordinances of the faith to be rewarded after life.
  • All, even the wicked, are rewarded after life (e.g., go to heaven, merge with God) as God(s) is infinitely good and forgiving.
  • Extinguish all cravings, attachments, and ignorance, or rid oneself of all impurities, to become fully enlightened.
  • Learn all life's lessons through rebirths.
  • Realize your true nature as purely spirit (or soul) and not body, as one with the Absolute, Universal Soul.
  • Live very simply; renounce worldly goals and possessions.
  • Tap the power of the Ultimate (God, or the divine) through intercessory methods such as psychics, channeling, tarot cards, crystals, magic.
  • Humankind is 'saved' through human effort rather than through religious or spiritual means.
I know, as a good Mormon boy, I should have chosen the first option - but the truth is, I just don't know anymore. Strict obedience to the rites, practices, precepts, commandments, prohibitions, laws, sacraments, or ordinances of the LDS faith require me to deny my sexuality and to renounce the homosexual actions of others. I can't do that - I won't do that. Nor do I believe or accept that God wants me to. I love my queer friends; and, I am genuinely happy for those who've found a life soul mate. "Men are that they might have joy" (2 Nephi 2:25) - and if some individuals can only find true joy in the arms of a person of their same gender, where is the sin?

So, which option did I choose? I didn't pick any of them, I left the question blank.

Now, I know this is just yet another silly internet quiz which shouldn't be taken too seriously. But, could it be an indicator that I'm ever so slowly moving to the [GASP!] left? Or maybe my inner self - the real me, if you will - is beginning to surface. What if the real me turns out to be a flaming liberal?

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Prayers for Abelard

“Before you echo Amen in your home or place of worship, think and remember, A child is listening.”
- Mary Griffith

We had a DVR malfunction when Prayers for Bobby was on the first time, I set our DVR to record it; however, when we sat down to watch it, we discovered that we had the last hour of Prayers for Bobby and the first hour of whatever show followed it.

The other day I was vegging in front of the TV watching Reba on Lifetime when a commercial came on for Prayers for Bobby that was being rebroadcast later that evening. I immediately set our DVR to record it - this time checking to make sure it was actually recording the beginning.

Tonight, everyone else was away and I was home alone - so I watched Prayers for Bobby for the first time; and, I was bawling by the closing credits. I'm kinda glad I had the house to myself as it might have freaked out the family to see their stalwart unemotional dad crying over a TV show. Now I have to do something about my red eyes before they return.

But, for a brief two hours - I allowed myself to be who I really am. I took down the facade I carry with me.

I'm gay! I'm married, I have children and even grandchildren - but I prefer men to women.

I must confess that some days I hate being gay. Not that I have anything against gay folks - it's just so damn inconvenient for a person in my position. Why can't I be like normal husbands and fathers?

Why are men so beautiful to me?

I prefer hearing men sing. I love the male voice. I especially love hearing men's choirs. A couple of years ago, I decided I wanted to have the full version of Handle's Messiah. After doing some research, I settled on a version produced by the Society of Ancient Music which produced a recording as it would likely have been performed at the time of Handle - with an all male chorus.

As an amateur photographer, I prefer taking pictures of men. When I take my camera to an event, when I'm later viewing the pictures, the number of pictures of men always outnumbers those of women. With women, I feel like I always have to take pictures that are flattering where as with men it doesn't matter - I can be more dramatic with men, even emphasizing their less than perfect features rather than trying to hide them.

When I'm checking out in the grocery store - if there are two lines of equal length, I'll more than likely take the one with the male checker over the female checker.

I've always had this weird fascination with men performing traditionally female roles. For example, male nurses intrigue me. When my children were in high school, at marching band competitions I was always fascinated when a band had a boy color guard. I've always been captivated by male flute players. However, men dressing and/or acting like women does not appeal to me.

If a couple walks into the room and you later ask me to describe them. More than likely I'll be able to describe the man in much greater detail than the woman.

Call me sexist, but I've always been intimidated by women in positions of power. For example, at work, I'm always more intimidated by female managers than I am by the male managers. Although, I don't have any problem working with women as peers and often enjoy talking to them more than with my male coworkers.

I've never been comfortable around teenage girls. This started way back when I was a boy teenager; and, it hasn't gotten any easier as I've aged. This is after having growing up with older sisters, living through the teenage years for two daughters, and working with the youth at church for most of my adult life. I've always gotten along better with the young men than with the young women - teenage girls scare me.

I like men; and, it's not just a sexual thing. There is just something about men, how they sound, how they look, how they feel, how they smell, etc. - that fundamentally appeals to all of my senses at a primordial level.

But . . . I'm married to a woman. And I never want to do anything to hurt her in any way.

Such is the life of Abelard. Forever yearning for something he can never have.

The family has returned - so excuse me while I wipe my red eyes, put my facade back on, and go downstairs.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

News from the bible belt

The Southern Baptist Convention voted this week to expel the Broadway Baptist Church in Fort Worth, Texas - a 127 year old historic church in downtown Fort Worth with 2,000 members.

Last fall the church decided to publish a directory including pictures of the families. The brouhaha started when a gay couple asked to be included. After months of negotiating, a compromise solution was reached that the church members pictures be included as small groups rather than families.

But, the Southern Baptist Convention determined that the Broadway Baptist church is too lenient on homosexuality and voted to end its 127 year relationship with the church.

See Broadway Baptist kicked out of Southern Baptist Convention article in the Fort Worth Star Telegram.

I don't know why this makes me sad - I'm not even a baptist. I guess, with all of the progress that's been made over the last 20-30 years regarding societal acceptance of homosexuals, this underscores just how far we've yet to go.

I've been following this story for a while. This is not a gay affirming church - they have simply chosen to open their doors to everyone. The gay couple even offered to have their pictures taken individually rather than as a couple in order to quell the controversy that ensued. I guess they're considered too lenient because they didn't kick the queers out on their fag butts.

Although, I find myself wondering how would a typical LDS ward would react if an openly gay couple decided to come to church regularly. I know we have, in the MoHo sphere, a few partnered individuals who are active (as active as they can be given their excommunicated status); but, I don't know of any couples. How would people react to two men sitting next to each other in church doing things that other couples do, such as holding hands?

Living in the bible belt, baptists love to tell us Mormon's that we're not Christians. With this sort of Christ-like love and considering the lack of any sort of acceptance in my own church - I'm beginning to wonder if true Christianity can even be found on the earth.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Google image search

According to my blogging statistics - people are starting to find my blog via an image search on google. The most popular image is from my post titled Harvey Milk

The second most popular image is from my post titled The Outcast

And the third most popular image is from my post titled Mama Mia, American Idol, and other random tidbits

Although, this image from my post titled Were eunuchs in the bible gay? also gets quite a few hits

So, as a public service, I'm offering them all together in a single post.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Adam Lambert is GAY ???

You could'a knocked me over with a feather when I read about his Rolling Stone interview where he admitted to being gay.

Maybe it's just a phase . . .

Monday, June 1, 2009

Sacrament meeting speaker

I spoke in sacrament meeting yesterday - my topic was "Teaching the Gospel". I posted my talk to my other blog; although, I'm not quite ready to link my blogs - so if interested in reading it, email me and I'll send you a link.