Table of Contents
Also on this website:
TWO SPIRITS: A Story of Life with the
Navajo, a collaboration with Walter L. Williams
SPIRITUALITY: The Role of
Gay Identity in the Transformation of Human Consciousness
Things Our Homosexuality Tells Us about the Nature
of God and the Universe
MATTER: updated, revised & expanded edtion from Lethe Press
with Afterword by Mark Jordan
LIFE IN PERSPECTIVE
A NOVEL ABOUT HEALING.
CHARMED LIVES: Spinning Straw into
Gold: Reclaiming Our Queer Spirituality Through Story
Books on Gay Spirituality:
Toby's review of Samuel Avery's The
Dimensional Structure of
Coincidence: "Aliens Settle in San
Simple Answer to the Gay Marriage Debate
A Bifurcation of Gay Spirituality
Why gay people should NOT Marry
Wedding Cake Liberation
Gay Marriage in Texas
Shame on the American People
The "highest form of love"
cause of homosexuality
The origins of homophobia
Q&A about Jungian ideas in gay consciousness
What is homosexuality?
is Gay Spirituality?
My three messages
What Jesus said about Gay
The purpose of homosexuality
Interview on the Nature of
What the Bible Says about
Mesosexual Ideal for Straight Men
of Gay Spirituality
of Gay Liberation Activity
Why Gay Spirituality: Spirituality
as Artistic Medium
Easton Mountain Retreat Center
Andrew Harvey &
"It's Always About You"
The myth of the
Joseph Campbell's description of
Not A Wave
What is Enlightenment?
Emptiness & Religious Ideas
Experiencing experiencing experiencing
Going into the Light
Meditations for a Funeral
The way to get to heaven
Advice to Travelers to India
Nate Berkus is a bodhisattva
John Boswell was Immanuel Kant
Toby Johnson Believes
The Joseph Campbell Connection
Campbell & The Pre/Trans Fallacy
The Nature of Religion
Gay is a Blessing
Gay Spiritual Functions
The subtle workings of the spirit in gay men's lives.
The Sinfulness of
for a study of gay nondualism
"The Evolution of Gay Identity"
"St. John of the
Dark Night of the Soul."
Avalokiteshvara at the Baths.
Let Me Tell You a Secret
Religious Articulations of the
The Collective Unconscious
Driving as Spiritual Practice
Step in Evolution
Prostitution and the Nature of Evil
Hu: "God is present here"
The Life is in the Blood
retirement and the "freelance monastery"
Seeing with Different Eyes
are you looking for in a gay science fiction novel?
experience at the Servites' Castle in Riverside
Great Dance according to C.S.Lewis
The Techniques Of The World Saviors
Part 1: Brer Rabbit and the
Part 2: The
Part 3: Jesus
and the Resurrection
Part 4: A
Course in Miracles
Secret of the Clear Light
Understanding the Clear Light
Souls Get Reincarnated
About Alien Abduction
In honor of Sir Arthur C Clarke
about Gay Mental Health
and nicknamesake Toby Marotta.
Harry Hay, Founder of the gay movement
About Karl Heinrich Ulrichs, the first man to really "come out"
Michael Talbot, gay mystic
About Guy Mannheimer
About Dennis Paddie
About Sterling Houston
About Michael Stevens
Our friend Tom Nash
Second March on
What is Reincarnation really about?
fascination with "Eastern religions" in the 60s and early 70s, our
generation got exposed to reincarnation myths, especially the naive sort
of reincarnation that was described in Madame Blavatsky's Theosophical
variation on Hindu Vedanta and that got popularized by Timothy Leary
with the Tibetan Book of the Dead and the myths of the "bardo."
In the naive understanding,
reincarnation offers solace in the face of death by assuring that you
will come back in another life. Just wait. It'll be OK.
Orthodox Buddhism has a much grimmer
notion of reincarnation. For Buddhism imagines the universe as
infinitely long in both directions. So, for them, human souls have been
reincarnating for billions and billions of years, a Cantor set of
previous lifetimes all besot with suffering and longing to get off the
wheel. So the Buddhist aim is nirvana, which means extinction and an end
of the cycle of reincarnation. Of course, this notion of an
infinitely old universe has been disproved.
I think the way you would experience
reincarnation as solace and reprieve from death is by remembering your
LAST lifetime now. Reincarnation of your soul isn't going to be any good
for you in the NEXT lifetime; it's only solace in THIS lifetime.
So one of the things the Buddha is
supposed to have experienced during the 21 days after he was enlightened
under the Bodhi Tree was the recollection of his past lives.
I think what the myth of "recollection
of one's past lives" means is the realization that you now are the
leading edge of all the accumulation of human experience. We are the
present culmination of all previous lives human beings have lived. And
so when I think back about people who've lived before--relatives,
mentors, figures of history, etc.--I can understand that that was "me"
in an earlier life.
I am one with the Mind of All Humankind.
Personal survival in an afterlife isn't very relevant to spirituality.
In fact, the belief in heaven and hell
has allowed Christians to put off social justice and solution to
problems into a time after death, and kept people dependent on the
priestly caste for exoneration from Hell.
I say we only experience change.
Experiencing creates time. At the level of human brain, experience IS a
change in the polarity of the surface of a neuron. At the level of the
cosmos, change is gravity. The universe IS the propagation of activity
across the surface of spacetime, and the lines along which change
happens most smoothly warps space, and the "force" that shapes the
universe of matter is gravity. Gravity and change are indivisible and
both are a result of experiencing.
What is having the experience of the universe?
In a twist on the Abbot and Costello
routine, maybe the answer to that question is "What." I mean, it is
asking the question "what?" which causes experience to happen. The
cosmos develops life and consciousness in order to ask the question
"What?" and asking the question is what causes the universe to develop
life and consciousness.