It is late in the afternoon of what has been deemed this year’s commemoration of National Coming Out Day, and I am reflecting on what this really has to do with me and on what my current relationship is to my sexual orientation and in how it expresses in the world of my making. This is a day that is designed to encourage people that are lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgendered to step out of the fearful hiding that is a prison for so many marginalized individuals, and to claim the freedom that self-referral and courageous authenticity provide. While the majority of people who will read this blog are people of proclaimed inclusivity and heartful acceptance, the ravages of race consciousness are insidious and often unrelenting. The race unconsciousness works in the shadows and is partly perpetuated by suppression and denial of what is really going on beneath the surface. There are many times when I feel as if this is a non-issue in my life, and then some situation or interaction will occur that reminds me that I am still plugged into a collective brain that states that LGBT people are second class citizens at best and spiritual abominations at worst. I am a gay man living in a world that is still dominated by a thought system that says that there is something wrong with who I am by virtue of a part of my human expression. My life has been in many ways shaped and molded by my sexual orientation, and countless choices have been made to compensate for the way I am viewed by the populace at large. I know that my ultimate acceptance and celebration must come from the way I behold myself internally; I am also called to do my part in expanding the critical mass consciousness and leaving a legacy of greater freedom and equality for the generations that come after me.
While in just the past few weeks we have finally seen and celebrated the repeal of DON’T ASK DON’T TELL it is still a hard fought battle with a distant finish line to the repeal of the DEFENSE OF MARRIAGE ACT which makes it impossible for me to enjoy the 500 + liberties assumed by my heterosexual married counterparts. Religious equality or even tolerance is still rare in all of our world’s organized religions, and the alarming number of teen suicides related to sexual identity issues is beyond despairing. I am the first to recognize that there is a Soul-agenda component that cannot be denied or ignored by those of awakening consciousness, and I have certainly embraced how my own personal journey has been enhanced by realizing this aspect of my journey. I know beyond logic or reason that I came into this earthly experience to traverse a landscape that would lead me to the highest of spiritual realizations. Part of my awakening has come from living in a world in which I didn’t fit simply by virtue of a sexual orientation that I had no choice in aligning. These facts do not in any way however condone the continued bigotry and violence that are waged against the LGBT population. While there are still those who despite the science will posit that being gay or lesbian is a choice I can assure you it is not. With my religious upbringing and my life long passion for a true and deep connection In my Source I would never have chosen a sexual expression that I was taught was contrary to all things spiritual. I know today that there is not an iota of truth in that theology, but I suffered for many years the effects of that unconsciousness. I guess part of my coming out this day is to end my personal silence when it comes to these damaging dogmas. I was once denied my place in ministry by an evangelical seminary I attended, a school that after thirty years has begun soliciting me for contributions. I am grateful to be able to embrace the irony, and I also see how I consciously avoided informing the school of why it is I will not accept an invitation to return to the school to perform musically for a reunion. Apparently a change in staffing has returned me to the roster of eligible alumni. The invitation to come and to sing at a reuniting seminary event included a hospitable offer to accommodate me and my spouse for the duration of the conference. Something tells me that a gracious acceptance for me and my husband would have drastically altered my place on the program. And I do not have to judge or make wrong what is for them a theological belief. I do, however, feel compelled to be clear, committed, congruent, and articulate about what is Truth for me down in the heart of my hearts. Those theological views once led me to seriously contemplate suicide in my youth, and I simply must be a voice for those who feel they have no choice and no voice at this point in our evolution.
And so I guess I too again come out on this National Day of Coming Out, as I will most probably continue to do on every day of this incarnation. I come out in the name of freedom and liberty for all people of all walks. I come out in the name of a democratic Universe that gives volition to all of Its inhabitants of every expression. We have the choice of how to behold the other, and the choice to either reject or embrace that which perhaps we don’t fully understand. I come out in the name of self-referral and inner identification, regardless of the tribal dictates. I come out in the name of allowing this challenging journey of mine to be an opportunity of maximal growth and expediential evolution. I come out in the name of the Source that celebrates Loving expression in all of Its Infinite forms. Though being gay is not my total expression, it is a valid, important, and beautiful part of who I am. Though I do not yet enjoy equal rights in the country of my birth, I know that I am equal to all people everywhere. I come out this day in the name of love. Love for all people, even those who are consciously working to rob me of my freedoms. No one can take away my freedom in how I choose to see myself and how I choose to express and to love my world. For me and for all those who lived to give me this level of freedom, I come out. And for all those who will follow me on this path to equality and liberation, I come out. Yes indeed. I come out.
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