Homosexuality and an Hermetic Path
>> Is homosexuality an Elemental imbalance? <<
It is only we humans who divide sexuality into hetero-, homo- and bi-. This has nothing to do with sexuality itself since all species that express sexuality, naturally express all three of these human-defined types. Sexuality is sexuality, period, and its sub-type is not a matter of differing Elemental balances.
Sexuality is an aspect of the mental body. As the mental body incarnates, it seeks out a life circumstance that best expresses its nature and which will lead to the learning of the lessons needed during that incarnation. It is fundamental and not a matter of mundane choice that arises during the incarnation itself. With the human being, each type of sexuality brings a specific set of life lessons because we are social creatures who live within the context of specific culture. In human culture, a homosexual faces a very different experience than a heterosexual.
Sexual orientation is not an issue of Elemental balance. Where Elemental balance comes into play is in the individual's response to, and enactment of, their sexuality, whether that be hetero-, homo- or bisexuality. This is the arena of concern so far as the impact of sexual orientation upon the Hermetic path.
A heterosexual person is no more or less suited to spirituality and Hermetics than a homosexual and vise versa.
>> Can a Homosexual person advance in the path to perfection or is that something they have to overcome? <<
Homosexuality, like hetero- and bisexuality, is not something to be overcome. The path of self-perfecting is built upon being your true self as completely and as clearly as possible. Since sexuality and sexual orientation are fundamental qualities that an individual possesses, striving for perfection would necessarily include manifesting one's sexuality in a self-defined positive way. This is true regardless of one's sexual orientation, and the specific type of sexual orientation makes this process no harder or easier than another. In other words, homosexuality itself presents no unique barriers to following a spiritual path. A bi- or homosexual individual faces the same basic issues of positivizing their sexual expression as does a heterosexual individual.
>> It's only a recent judgement that homosexuality is something to be "overcome"... In many cultures (native American, Hindu) homosexuality was either accepted without comment or considered a spiritual asset. In particular, the berdache (cross-dressing homosexual) of the native Americans generally took the roll of diviner, healer, or shaman. <<
This is true of the majority of earth-based cultures. I know of one such culture on the African continent who consider homosexuals to be the spiritual "gatekeepers". The impact that Gay people have had throughout the ages upon human culture is largely unrecognized by the heterosexual majority. Gay culture and Gay people are a powerful force in human mimetic evolution. ["Mimetic evolution" is a scientific term for the evolution of ideas and culture. For humans, this aspect of evolution plays an especially important role in the survival of our species and is, in many cases, now superceding our genetic evolution.]
>> So in my "opinion" I suggest not only is homosexuality not a sin to overcome, but perhaps even that many homosexual people are more spiritually centered and complete in their nature. Likewise the fear based fundamentalist show a real lack of spiritual maturity. <<
In my experience, one's sexual orientation has little to do with their centeredness or their sense of completeness. One advantage that the Gay person does have however, is a direct experience of the ugly under-belly of society. The advantage here is that there's perhaps less to un-learn! But the same can be said of anyone who lives with a barrage of constant prejudice and discrimination, such as women, the "over-weight", the physically deformed, people of color, etc., etc. The ones at a true disadvantage in this regard, are white heterosexual men! ;-)
>> Is homosexuality in some cases not originating from a chemical or genetic imbalance of some sort to begin with (please excuse me if this is a really ignorant question, I haven't studied this in depth)? <<
No, there is no physical cause of homosexuality, nor is it an imbalance.
>> I've often also heard that approximately 10% of the male population has homosexual tendencies. And I think it is interesting to note as well that even within homosexuality there appear to be different classifications or patterned behaviour types as for example as some people who are clearly more dominant or more passive than others and they tend to find homosexual partners of the opposite type... It almost seems to me that they are trying to find a male/female balance within their homosexual relationships. <<
At this point, I think it's appropriate to say something about the distinction between 'homosexual' and 'Gay'. Much of the analysis of homosexuality in this discussion has been based on a fairly uninformed heterosexual image of Gay culture and this analysis has then been applied, inappropriately, to the question of Elemental balance, polarity, etc. So a bit of clarification is in order.
Not all men who have homosexual "tendencies" or experiences define themselves as Gay. Likewise, there are heterosexuals who participate in Gay culture.
Gay culture is the creative response of homosexuals in the face of living in the midst of a greater culture that is inimical to their survival. In essence, Gay culture is a matter of self-preservation since it allows a space for true self-expression (and thus movement forward along a path of self-perfecting). The sexual roles that manifest within the Gay culture cannot be understood from a purely heterosexual standard. They are, shall we say, a Gay version of the same urge for partnering, occurring within a sub-culture of the heterosexualized majority-culture, and as such they reflect certain familiar parts of the greater culture. But they ARE of a different culture and are not defined by exactly the same attitudes.
>> What about the concepts of polarity which Hermetics speaks about? From this point of view, would Homosexuality not be seen as an existence without proper male/female polarity since they seek same polarity type partners? (or am I grossly misunderstanding this concept of polarity?) <<
The Hermetic concept of polarity is very difficult to understand if you base it upon culturally dictated gender-role norms such as you have here. Physical gender (which is a separate issue from sexual orientation) is one manifestation of polarity but it is perhaps the least important so far as a spiritual path goes. Sexual coupling between a male and a female does not assure spiritual balance.
>> I can not help but wonder. Have there been any highly evolved spiritual people that were homosexuals in our human history in the various major religions.. and what about the hermetic path? <<
If you're truly interested in the answer to these questions (and I think those answers will greatly surprise you), I suggest you do an internet search on Gay History. Or go to the library system or even a good bookstore.
>> To be brief and to give a personal opinion, I do believe that homosexuality, and bi-sexuality are aberrations and as such would not a part of an enlightened beings make up. <<
I disagree with the basis of your logic in coming to this conclusion.
Sexual orientation and, for that matter, sexual desire are not expressions of *physical* polarity. They are expressions of astra-mental polarity. Sexual desire is driven by the mind and emotions, not by physiological structure. Physical gender is transitory and the genderless mental body incarnates into both male and female bodies throughout the course of time. So the type of unification that you're speaking of is a spiritual thing and it can thus occur within ANY body. This spiritual union is not foreclosed to the homosexual.
Furthermore, two people of the same gender can achieve the same depth of emotional union and fulfillment that a heterosexual couple can. This is not a matter of physical gender.
You also seem to be assuming that the energetic body is gender specific, however this is not the case. The polarities within the human energetic body are primarily determined by mental and emotional factors. [This is the same natural mechanism we employ in magic to manipulate our energy bodies -- with our minds and emotions, combined as will.] Since this is also the seat of sexual desire and orientation, the energetic body of a homosexual is structured somewhat differently than a same gender heterosexual's energetic body. It is the subtle perception of these energetic polarities that attract us to another person.
So, a homosexual coupling is also based upon the same interaction of polarities in the energetic body and the result is pretty much the same as a heterosexual coupling, at an energetic level.
In another one of your comments you mention that you have known Gay people, however I would caution you against basing your assumptions about the emotional stability of ALL Gay people, upon the artistic crowd you described. ;-) Would you make similar assumptions about heterosexual emotional stability based on a hetero artistic crowd? ;-) ;-)
Be that as it may, Gay culture can seem very foreign to someone unfamiliar with it. It is intentionally threatening to the heterosexual psyche of the greater culture. From the hetero male perspective this looks like inherent emotional (and thus Elemental) imbalance, but this is only because the most notable thing to a hetero man are the Gay men who affect a greater femininity than is culturally "normal". Gay culture, in general, nurtures *self* expression of the whole emotional self and this often violates the culturally accepted gender-role norms.
Furthermore, emotional and Elemental balance have nothing to do with sexual orientation itself. They have EVERY thing to do with how a person thinks about themselves and how their thoughts, words and deeds manifest their true self. It is no less difficult, nor any more difficult, for the true Self to shine through the life of a Gay person than any other sort of person. Homosexuality, in and of itself, is not an impediment to the pursuit of Hermetics.
My best to you,
:) Rawn Clark
03 Jul 2002