What's Ironic

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Also on this website:

Toby Johnson's books:

GAY SPIRITUALITY: The Role of Gay Identity in the Transformation of Human Consciousness

GAY PERSPECTIVE: Things Our Homosexuality Tells Us about the Nature of God and the Universe

SECRET MATTER: updated, revised & expanded edition from Lethe Press with Afterword by Mark Jordan

GETTING LIFE IN PERSPECTIVE: A romance novel set in the 1980s and the 1890s.

THE FOURTH QUILL, a novel about attitudinal healing and the problem of evil

TWO SPIRITS: A Story of Life with the Navajo, a collaboration with Walter L. Williams

CHARMED LIVES: Spinning Straw into Gold: Reclaiming Our Queer Spirituality Through Story


About ordering

Books on Gay Spirituality:

White Crane Gay Spirituality Series

  Articles and Excerpts:

Read Toby's review of Samuel Avery's The Dimensional Structure of Consciousness

Funny Coincidence: "Aliens Settle in San Francisco"

The Simple Answer to the Gay Marriage Debate

Why gay people should NOT Marry

Wedding Cake Liberation

Gay Marriage in Texas

What's ironic

Shame on the American People

The "highest form of love"

Second March on Washington

A Bifurcation of Gay Spirituality

 The cause of homosexuality

The origins of homophobia

Q&A about Jungian ideas in gay consciousness

What is homosexuality?

What is Gay Spirituality?

My three messages

What Jesus said about Gay Rights

Queering religion

Common Experiences Unique to Gay Men

Is there a "uniquely gay perspective"?

The purpose of homosexuality

The Reincarnation of Edward Carpenter

The Gay Succession

Interview on the Nature of Homosexuality

What the Bible Says about Homosexuality

Mesosexual Ideal for Straight Men

Varieties of Gay Spirituality

Waves of Gay Liberation Activity

Why Gay Spirituality: Spirituality as Artistic Medium

Easton Mountain Retreat Center

Andrew Harvey & Spiritual Activism

The Gay Spirituality Summit in May 2004 and the  "Statement of Spirituality"

"It's Always About You"

The myth of the Bodhisattva Avalokitesvara

Joseph Campbell's description of Avalokiteshvara

Avalokiteshvara at the Baths.

You're Not A Wave

What is Enlightenment?

What is reincarnation?

How many lifetimes in an ego?

Emptiness & Religious Ideas

Experiencing experiencing experiencing

Going into the Light

Meditations for a Funeral

Meditation Practice

The way to get to heaven

Buddha's father was right

Advice to Travelers to India & Nepal

The Danda Nata & goddess Kalika

Nate Berkus is a bodhisattva

John Boswell was Immanuel Kant

The Two Loves

Curious Bodies

What Toby Johnson Believes

The Joseph Campbell Connection

Campbell & The Pre/Trans Fallacy

The Nature of Religion

What's true about Religion

Being Gay is a Blessing

Drawing Long Straws

Freedom of Religion

The Gay Agenda

Gay Saintliness

Gay Spiritual Functions

The subtle workings of the spirit in gay men's lives.

The Sinfulness of Homosexuality

Proposal for a study of gay nondualism

Priestly Sexuality

 "The Evolution of Gay Identity"

"St. John of the Cross &
the Dark Night of the Soul."

 Eckhart's Eye

Let Me Tell You a Secret

Religious Articulations of the Secret

The Collective Unconscious

Driving as Spiritual Practice


Historicity as Myth


No Stealing

Next Step in Evolution

The New Myth

The Moulting of the Holy Ghost

Gaia is a Bodhisattva

The Hero's Journey as archetype

Marian Doctrines: Immaculate Conception & Assumption

Teenage Prostitution and the Nature of Evil

Allah Hu: "God is present here"
Adam and Steve

The Life is in the Blood

Gay retirement and the "freelance monastery"

Seeing with Different Eyes

The mystical experience at the Servites'  Castle in Riverside

The Great Dance according to C.S.Lewis

The Techniques Of The World Saviors

Part 1: Brer Rabbit and the Tar-Baby
Part 2:
The Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara
Part 3:
Jesus and the Resurrection
Part 4:
A Course in Miracles

The Secret of the Clear Light

Understanding the Clear Light

Mobius Strip

Finding Your Tiger Face

How Gay Souls Get Reincarnated

In honor of Sir Arthur C Clarke

Karellen was a homosexual

About Alien Abduction

What are you looking for in a gay science fiction novel?

The D.A.F.O.D.I.L. Alliance

More about Gay Mental Health

Psych Tech Training

The Rainbow Flag

Ideas for gay mythic stories

Kip and Toby, Activists

Toby's friend and nicknamesake Toby Marotta.

Harry Hay, Founder of the gay movement

About Hay and The New Myth

About Karl Heinrich Ulrichs, the first man to really "come out"

About Michael Talbot, gay mystic

About Fr. Bernard Lynch

About Richard Baltzell

About Guy Mannheimer

About David Weyrauch

About Dennis Paddie

About Ask the Fire

About Arthur Evans

About Christopher Larkin

About Sterling Houston

About Michael Stevens

Our friend Tom Nash

Book Reviews

Be Done on Earth by Howard E. Cook

Pay Me What I'm Worth by Souldancer

The Way Out by Christopher L  Nutter
The Gay Disciple by John Henson

Art That Dares by Kittredge Cherry

Coming Out, Coming Home by Kennth A. Burr

Extinguishing the Light by B. Alan Bourgeois

Over Coffee: A conversation For Gay Partnership & Conservative Faith by D.a. Thompson

Dark Knowledge by Kenneth Low

Janet Planet by Eleanor Lerman

The Kairos by Paul E. Hartman

Wrestling with Jesus by D.K.Maylor

Kali Rising by Rudolph Ballentine

The Missing Myth by Gilles Herrada

The Secret of the Second Coming by Howard E. Cook

The Scar Letters: A Novel by Richard Alther

The Future is Queer by Labonte & Schimel

Missing Mary by Charlene Spretnak

Gay Spirituality 101 by Joe Perez

Cut Hand: A Nineteeth Century Love Story on the American Frontier by Mark Wildyr

Radiomen by Eleanor Lerman

Nights at Rizzoli by Felice Picano

The Key to Unlocking the Closet Door by Chelsea Griffo

The Door of the Heart by Diana Finfrock Farrar

Occam’s Razor by David Duncan

Grace and Demion by Mel White

Gay Men and The New Way Forward by Raymond L. Rigoglioso

The Dimensional Stucture of Consciousness by Samuel Avery

The Manly Pursuit of Desire and Love by Perry Brass

Ironic, isn't it?

What's ironic about the right-wing fight against Gay Marriage is that it works in favor of creating a positive vision of gay life, and it shows the "Christians" to be very unchristian.

In the 1980s, when AIDS was devastating the gay male population in American's big cities, the right-wing emphasized how prodigiously promiscuous some gay men had been: they quoted figures showing that homosexuals had thousands of sexual partners in their lives. They gave the public reason to be judgmental and resentful of gay men who seemed to be getting so much sex. They said AIDS was a punishment for promiscuity.

In the early 2000s, the right-wing is attacking gay people
for wanting to be monogamous!

What's really happening is that the public--and especially gay teenagers (for whom this is important, life-shaping information)--are seeing that gay people are happy, long-term, successful couples who found love and happiness.

The gay people who are politely asking for the benefits and recognition of their relationships as parallel to straight people's marriages appear sweet, well-meaning, harmless. Some are attractive and sexy; many are middle-aged and dumpy.

The people who look deranged and narrow-minded and mean-spirited are the "Christians" who proclaim themselves offended by gay marriage.

(If you're offended by somebody's else harmless behavior, in a democracy you're supposed to turn your attention--change the channel--and look elsewhere. If you're offended, it's YOUR problem.)

Why would people go out of their way to oppose somebody else's happiness?
Can you imagine Jesus doing that? Or Buddha? Or Thomas Jefferson?

The behavior of the right-wing Christians simply shows they don't understand the basic teachings of Jesus. They apparently were more interested in reading the rules in Leviticus, saying who to hate and who to stone, than in reading the Sermon on the Mount or Jesus's revelation that the "New Commandment" is to love other people, recognizing them as other manifestations of your own self.

"Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for justice's sake, for they shall be filled."
That saying of Jesus seems to refer to gay people's struggle for acceptance and understanding.

What's ironic is that if they just shut up and let gay marriage be accepted quietly, a small of gay couples who really needed the legal and health benefits would take advantage of the opportunity, and the whole issue would disappear from the public's attention. But because the right-wing has chosen this as THE wedge issue--which they identify as "morality" itself--they keep forcing the quite gay couples in the suburbs to come forth and declare themselves. And the public gets to see that for many homosexuals gay life means settling down into a stable couple just like straight life.

The more the right-wing tries to demonize us by showing we want to get married the more normal WE look!

What else is ironic

You know what else is ironic in this battle of the right-wing to turn American democracy into a Christian theocracy is their great reverence for these stone engraved monuments of the Ten Commandments that are scattered around the country on government property.

In the first place, those monuments were created and given to the states as a movie promotion for Cecil B. DeMille's The Ten Commandments. They are hardly sacred monuments or historical treasures; they were an advertising gimmick for Hollywood.

Besides--and more important--the first of the Ten Commandments forbids the making of graven images! Not only are these monuments a potential violation of separation of church and state in a modern liberal democratic society, they are self-contradictory. Even God didn't want graven monuments to his commandments!

And the last commandment of the Ten forbids covetuousness. What else is covetuousness except the aim of advertising? Advertising is designed to make people want things they don't have and other people do. That's coveting.

The basis of American business these days is advertising, encouraging people to covet the goods big business is offering them in a seldom-fulfilled promise to make them happy.

If devout Christians really want to honor the Ten Commandments shouldn't they change something about their own lives, rather than try to foul up gay people's lives?

Shouldn't Christians be picketing against advertising? And about graven images, for that matter!  What could be more Judeo-Christian than an iconoclastic purge of religious images in the name of spiritual purity--and obedience to the First Commandment?

More Irony

The priest pedophilia scandals of the last few years clearly show that there's something about priesthood and religious indoctrination that makes adult men incapable of leading mature sex lives.

The scandals are about the error of popular religion in dealing with sex.

But the irony is that it was the priests' homosexuality that was blamed, not their priesthood.

That it was priesthood that was the problem and not homosexuality is demonstrated by the large (but generally invisible) proportion of priestly sexual misbehavior that was heterosexual. Nearly half the victims in the victim organizations are women. It was NOT the priests' homosexuality that got these women abused.

Read more:

The Simple Answer to the Gay Marriage Debate

Why gay people should NOT Marry

Wedding Cake Liberation

Gay Marriage in Texas

Shame on the American People

rainbow line

Toby Johnson, PhD is author of eight books: three non-fiction books that apply the wisdom of his teacher and "wise old man," Joseph Campbell to modern-day social and religious problems, three gay genre novels that dramatize spiritual issues at the heart of gay identity, and two books on gay men's spiritualities and the mystical experience of homosexuality. In addition to the novels featured elsewhere in this web site, Johnson is author of IN SEARCH OF GOD IN THE SEXUAL UNDERWORLD and THE MYTH OF THE GREAT SECRET (Revised edition): AN APPRECIATION OF JOSEPH CAMPBELL.

Johnson's Lammy Award winning book GAY SPIRITUALITY: The Role of Gay Identity in the Transformation of Human Consciousness was published in 2000. His Lammy-nominated book  GAY PERSPECTIVE: Things Our Homosexuality Tells Us about the Nature of God and the Universe was published by Alyson in 2003. Both books are available now from Lethe Press.

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