R U Gay?
Consider this, if you are male--especially a young adult male, or even an adolescent. The natural state of affairs is not to be so attracted to the opposite sex. This is a learned behavior.
What comes quite naturally to the young male is to associate with other males.
Go ahead, do a double take. The natural condition is to associate with, be more comfortable with and more attracted to the same sex.
Opposites don't really attract! Not nearly as much, anyway, as those who have so much more in common.
Men Are Attracted to Other Men
Think about it for a minute. To a young male, the person he would have most looked up to would have been an older male--like an elder brother, father, uncle, male teacher, etc.
As a playmate what would have been the preferred choice? A male classmate, the boy next door, the dorm mate in college or even a fellow competitor in sports.
Were the Greeks, who exalted the male form and whose men engaged in sport with one another in the nude the aberration or the norm?What luscious lips! But I digress.
Easy question, you say. Of course the Greeks were weird--perverts, pedophiles, homosexuals! They decorated vases with nude men performing sports and other acts. They created statuary that so realistically depicted the perfect male form.
~always yours courtesy Sri Lankan Male
It seemed to be a culture that took male idolatry to its extreme. Surely there was something wrong with that.
Well, if Greek culture was so aberrant, so odd, why did it last for so many centuries and why were the Romans, who are normally recognized as one of the most advanced and powerful civilizations ever, so in awe of the Greeks whom they had come to conquer?
Did the Romans not emulate Greek culture in nearly all its forms? Why is it that the conqueror became more like the conquered than the other way around?
Boys Will Be Boys
|...until they are told they must not be|
...that to behave as such is unmanly!
|Sun + water + boys = fun, fun, fun.|
That seems to be exactly what happened. You see, Western culture in time became perverted by the powers who realized that they could control others by instilling fear, and what more effective way to do so than instilling the fear of God. Religion, Christianity in this case, became an effective tool with which to wield one's control over others.
Perhaps by twisting men's minds into believing that what was natural was, in fact depraved, then one could leave the individual in a constant state of fear that he had transgressed the will of the righteous, all-powerful God.
One of the many consequences of this castigation of the human spirit was an Adam and Eve like loss of innocence in the realm of male love and companionship. Brothers in arms--not in armament--but arm wrapped around arm or hand holding hand, came to represent not the innocent expression of affection that it is but something perverted.
Homophobia was born and within a century or two, what was once normal came to be termed queer.
What really is queer, then?
I am old enough to remember when the normative term was homosexual, not gay.
By appropriating the term gay, those men who dared reclaim their natural affections for other men could assert that they were at ease with their choice--not their choice to love their own, but their choice to defy those who would say they could not.
But as much as they wanted to assert this, they still could not escape the stigma imposed upon the notion of male-to-male affection.
It had become necessary to some to go a step further and take ownership of the term queer in an attempt to defang what is an otherwise hateful term.
But this is, perhaps, a step too far. For the true perversion is to define as queer that which is indeed natural--the fellowship of males (and no doubt similarly the fellowship among females).
Sri Lankan dark angel
What is really queer is not homosexuality, but a heterosexualized society where men are afraid to hold hands or express affection toward other men and instead are pushed into lewd patterns of behavior where male-female sexuality becomes a thing for public exhibition.
This is really what is queer--and this is what has been hoisted upon the rest of the world through the expansion of Western civiliazation.
So Am I Gay, or Not?
Is it a question you have wrestled with, or are you more sophisticated than that?
The gay movement, as it is called, came to be only because of the restrictions and stigma which were placed on what was otherwise the natural behavior of men toward other men--to admire, respect and have feelings of affection toward one another. It was an affection that could be freely expressed as a matter of personal intimacy.
When this normal pattern of behavior came to be viewed as abnormal or profane, as happened initially in Christianized Western society, a gay movement would eventually emerge as a way to reclaim and reassert the natural condition of the male personality and male sexuality.
The gay movement and gay identity is not, therefore, a reflection of the progressiveness of Western society but rather a response to the regressive forces in Western society which had sought to use religion to create fear among the populace and thereby assert its power over it.
A gay identity, as it were, was not so much required in societies which had yet to come under the strong influence of regressive Western ethics, as concerned male-to-male relations.
One is gay insofar as he is forced to struggle with his natural male identity against the unnatural or queer norms espoused by a Western, heterosexualized society.
It happens that one is gay when his interest in another male goes beyond the artificial boundaries set by a society that is corrupted with notions of homophobia.
- I have a crush on my male classmate or hostel mate,
- I have had sex with another male--and enjoyed it,
- I like to hang out with my male friends, to hold their hands or even cuddle with some of them...
In fact, they are simply evidences of being true to one's genuine male identity.
By contrast, where innocence has not yet been lost, two young men may indulge in their crush on one another or two male friends may enjoy the intimacy that occurs naturally to them. Where alien notions of homophobia have not yet infected their own consciousness or that of the community around them, such men need never espouse a gay identity.
Increasingly, this is becoming required of men, especially younger men, in societies which come more and more under Western and puritanical expressions of religious and social practice.
Sri Lanka, india and other once more traditional societies are finding more and more that they too must address the struggles of a gay community as they modernize and Westernize.
On a bench, on a beach... where love is found and lost in Sri Lanka.
Furthermore, as Islam begins more and more to regress into a construct that restricts the freedom of self-expression among individuals, the fear of God becomes a tool for exerting one's power over others, just as had occured in the darker days of Christendom.
The Sri Lankan Male
Confident in his masculinity,
or simply unquestioning?
My conclusion is that many of you are not gay.
You are often not conflicted. You can take pleasure in the warm hand of another man and in any form of intimacy you may feel moved to engage in.
At the same time, however, many others among you do need to assert a gay identity.
What may have arisen out of a peculiar religious heritage in the West has well and truly filtered down to even the most remote of villages around the world.
Gradually the need to assert one's right to be the natural male that he is can only happen through asserting a gay identity.
An emerging point of view...
What do you, readers of the Sri Lankan Male, make of the notion?
Is it, indeed, the natural state of a man to have a greater sense of attraction and feelings of intimacy toward other males?
Isn't this, rather than overt expressions of heterosexual attraction, a truer normality.
Is it not, perhaps, heterosexual society to which the notion of queer more aptly applies?
What do your own personal experiences in life reveal?
Most of the images in this post were obtained from the networking site Technohug and have no relation to the accompanying commentary. No claims of ownership of the images are being made by this author, although many of the images have been digitally modified for artistic purposes in accordance with the theme of this post.
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