It’s that time of the year when all the christians get excited about celebrating the birth of their god, that’s the god who has alwaysÂ existed. Â Christmas is about his birth apparently.
Pope Bendydick, head of the catholics, addresses his cardinals with a christmas message, and has a bit to say about family.
The great joy with which families from all over the world congregated in Milan indicates that, despite all impressions to the contrary, the family is still strong and vibrant today.
What impression? I don’t think that families are going anywhere. Â Sure there are families that struggle, but generally society still has strong and vibrant families.
But there is no denying the crisis that threatens it to its foundations â€“ especially in the western world….So it became clear that the question of the family is not just about a particular social construct, but about man himself â€“ about what he is and what it takes to be authentically human.
Crisis? Â The ‘crisis’ isn’t named, it’s assumed that you know what it is. In the ‘western world’ Â he’s talking about marriage equality. Â You know, letting those gay people call themselves married and raising families. Â Bendydick overlooks the important piece of information that gay couples with children already call themselves families and some of those couples refer to each other as husband or wife. Â It’s been going on for years, and guess what, the world hasn’t ended. I also can’t help but notice the use of the word man, of course, Bendydick is German, speaking Latin, translated to English, so perhaps it gets lost in translation, but to talk about humanity as man is very rude.
The challenges involved are manifold. First of all there is the question of the human capacity to make a commitment or to avoid commitment. Can one bind oneself for a lifetime? Does this correspond to manâ€™s nature? Does it not contradict his freedom and the scope of his self-realization? Does man become himself by living for himself alone and only entering into relationships with others when he can break them off again at any time? Is lifelong commitment antithetical to freedom? Is commitment also worth suffering for?
Unless you’re asleep at the wheel Bendydick, people do indeed make commitments, they do so because they want to. Â People all over the world come together, have children, live and die. Â Some of them stay together, some of them break up. Â Contrary to popular papal crap, women too make commitments. Â And yeah, we all should be able to leave a relationship. Â Much better to be happy out of a relationship than unhappy in the relationship. Â Nobody wins when unhappiness abounds. Â I’m not suggesting Â that couples don’t try to maintain and nurture their relationships, one should never just give up.
Manâ€™s refusal to make any commitment â€“ which is becoming increasingly widespread as a result of a false understanding of freedom and self-realization as well as the desire to escape suffering â€“ means that man remains closed in on himself and keeps his â€œIâ€ ultimately for himself, without really rising above it.
Talk about make a crisis where none exists. People make commitments everyday. Â And I’m not sure what you mean by the desire to escape suffering, are you saying that if you make a commitment you will suffer? Â Who would willingly do that? Â If you mean that getting married means making some personal sacrifice, then that’s different to suffering.
The Chief Rabbi of France, Gilles Bernheim, has shown in a very detailed and profoundly moving study that the attack we are currently experiencing on the true structure of the family, made up of father, mother, and child, goes much deeper. While up to now we regarded a false understanding of the nature of human freedom as one cause of the crisis of the family, it is now becoming clear that the very notion of being â€“ of what being human really means â€“ is being called into question.
Things must be tough when a catholic has to quote a jew on these matters. Â Where does this persecution complex come from? Â There is no ‘attack on the true structure of family’ as far as I can tell no-one is trying to rip apart families. Â The only notion being called into question here is the question of what happens when people don’t fit the mum, dad, child scenario. Â And rightly so. Â The way the church thinks things should be is not based in reality but in a false assumption that all was created by god and written in the bible. Â We’ve moved on.
He quotes the famous saying of Simone de Beauvoir: â€œone is not born a woman, one becomes soâ€ (on ne naÃ®t pas femme, on le devient). These words lay the foundation for what is put forward today under the term â€œgenderâ€ as a new philosophy of sexuality. According to this philosophy, sex is no longer a given element of nature, that man has to accept and personally make sense of: it is a social role that we choose for ourselves, while in the past it was chosen for us by society.
By sex you mean male or female. Â It has never been an element given by nature. Â Gender identity has been around for as long as humans, we may have lacked the understanding and society has given gender roles, now we understand that someone’s gender identity may not be as black and white as previously thought.
The profound falsehood of this theory and of the anthropological revolution contained within it is obvious. People dispute the idea that they have a nature, given by their bodily identity, that serves as a defining element of the human being. They deny their nature and decide that it is not something previously given to them, but that they make it for themselves.
If the theory of gender identity is false, science will sort it out with more research. Â I don’t think that people dispute the idea that they have a natural gender identity. Â It’s not given, its innate. Â While some of us don’t understand how you can be born with one set of equipment but feel like you should have the other set, that doesn’t mean that it’s any less real. Â I have no desire to have sex with lady llamas, my straight friends don’t understand why that’s the case, but they don’t try to deny me my innate nature. Â Why would they? Â I’m not denying my nature any more than someone who is finding their gender identity is denying theirs. Â In fact, I would say that they are trying to throw off theÂ societalÂ expectation that they behave the way society expects based purely on the parts that dangle off their body.
According to the biblical creation account, being created by God as male and female pertains to the essence of the human creature. This duality is an essential aspect of what being human is all about, as ordained by God. This very duality as something previously given is what is now disputed.
Stop taking everything the bible says as gospel. Â Wait…never mind. Â Brace yourself, Bendydick. Â The bible isn’t to be used to describe the nature of man. Â It was written so long ago, long before people began to seriously look at the world. Â It’s just out of date and wrong. Â You can no longer claim things as being ordained by god without providing some research or evidence to back that up. Â The duality of male and female is what you expect, it’s not what being human is all about. Â And yes, that duality is disputed, and it’s disputed because the one size fits all no longer fits, we know this for two reason, science indicates it and people are better able to articulate who they are.
The words of the creation account: â€œmale and female he created themâ€ (Gen 1:27) no longer apply.
They never applied in the first place. Â Gay people, transgender people, intersex people have always been part of our genetic make up as a species. Â At last we recognise the diversity of our nature.
No, what applies now is this: it was not God who created them male and female â€“ hitherto society did this, now we decide for ourselves. Man and woman as created realities, as the nature of the human being, no longer exist. Man calls his nature into question.
You’ve got it the wrong way around. Â Society created them male and female. Â Now people are free enough to face the reality of their being. Â For me, my reality is how much I love my love llama. Â I didn’t create that reality. Â I accepted it.
From now on he is merely spirit and will.
The manipulation of nature, which we deplore today where our environment is concerned, now becomes manâ€™s fundamental choice where he himself is concerned. From now on there is only the abstract human being, who chooses for himself what his nature is to be. Man and woman in their created state as complementary versions of what it means to be human are disputed.
Around the wrong way again, it is the duality that was the manipulation of nature. Â Trying to get people to play the role of male or female based purely on the expectations of society and the bits of a person when they are born. Â Some men and women are ‘complementary’, some men and men are ‘complementary’… you get the picture. Â Again, the thing in dispute here is your expectation that humans should conform to your duality because it says so in the bible.
But if there is no pre-ordained duality of man and woman in creation, then neither is the family any longer a reality established by creation.
At last, a sentence that makes sense. Â Duality of gender identity and the notion of family are all human constructs. Â Nature, if it could care, doesn’t give a flying duck fat crap about you, me or anything else.
Likewise, the child has lost the place he had occupied hitherto and the dignity pertaining to him.
Some children are also girls. Â And this is such rubbish. Â A vast, overwhelming majority of births result in the love of one and sometimes two parents. Â Without question, because of our nature, we protect and care for our offspring. Â We do. Â We would do anything to protect them, to suggest otherwise is to miss the point of evolution. Â We are ‘made’ to breed, to continue the line of humanity. Â We are indeed driven by our innate desire to breed.
Bernheim shows that now, perforce, from being a subject of rights, the child has become an object to which people have a right and which they have a right to obtain. When the freedom to be creative becomes the freedom to create oneself, then necessarily the Maker himself is denied and ultimately man too is stripped of his dignity as a creature of God, as the image of God at the core of his being. The defence of the family is about man himself. And it becomes clear that when God is denied, human dignity also disappears. Whoever defends God is defending man.
Families don’t need defending. Â Families are what people make them out to be, not some pre-conceivedÂ notion derived from your insanity. Â People will continue to bring children into the world, we will continue to love and protect them, to nurture them. Â If your god is denied then so be it, perhaps finally it will be relegated to the pile of useless humanÂ endeavours, and in true papal authority we are told that defending god is defending man, not woman, but man.
For us to survive, we need to ditch the god rubbish. Â It’s had it’s day and it’s holding us back. Â Having ageing virgins, who live only in communities surrounded by other virgin men isn’t at all healthy.
If anyone is denying their true humanity, it’s that lot.
Bendydick goes on to talk about interfaithÂ dialogue, I’m going to have a go at that one in my next blog.