Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Gay Muslims

Here's a different perspective on homosexuality (one we are hearing more and more from). Give it a read. What's it like to be both a practicing Muslim and a homosexual? It sounds like it's deeply conflicted:

Khalid says that as a British Muslim, he feels gay men have yet to find answers to some very difficult questions: "If it is wrong to be gay, should we force ourselves into heterosexual marriages?

"And in doing so, should we lie to the women we get married to? Or should we go for marriages of convenience with lesbians? Or, should we just remain celibate?" he asked.

Of course, from my secular perspective, his initial premise that homosexuality is wrong is, in itself, wrong. So I don't even understand the questions he then poses. But those are issues that come from his faith perspective so valid to him.

Of course more interesting to me is their perspective on equality:

In fact, there is some evidence to suggest that those who dare to come out and seek long term same-sex relationships are sometimes not content with the idea of civil partnerships.

They desire religious recognition of their union, with some reportedly taking the daring step of entering into nikkahs (Muslim marriage contracts).

Different organisations are trying to tackle the taboo
Mr Qureshi said he was aware of couples who had opted for such nikkahs but stressed that these were performed by imams in absolute secrecy.

Muslim gay activist Ibrahim Ismail has been working on sexual health issues for many years.

He said: "Some of their families and friends may even attend these nikkahs, but they would never publicly admit it for fear of being ostracised by mainstream Muslims.

"They are very much invisible."

Yet another sign of religious freedom being curtailed by civil partnerships and forcing practicing Muslims to get non-legally binding religious ceremonies. (Although I concede their privacy issues may well be affected if the nikkahs became legal)

All very interesting.

If you feel benevolent and particularly generous, this writer always appreciates things bought for him from his wishlist

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