I feel sorry for Benjamin in several ways.
1. He works for Channel 4. A once great an noble news channel, now a sad reflection of its former glory. Which I now never watch.
2. His parents on hearing that he was gay, were more concerned with whether or not Bejamin’s gay lover is Jewish or not.
3. He believes he was blessed twice. For being gay and jewish and presumably a third time for being a minor TV celebrity.
Many people spend a lot of money of diets, dietary advice, joining gyms and plastic surgery but they still remain fat because they keep on eating too much, not because the diets don’t work or because they were born fat.
Do you mean that gays should just pack it in – then they’d be cured?
Well, Allah knows best about His creation. He created humans with desires and some of the things we desire He made good for us and some things that we desire He made forbidden to us. The test of the believer is to avoid that which is forbidden.
Benjamin Cohen makes perfect sense to me. There are degrees of blessedness. To be ‘blessed’ is to be special. You have to be a dumb Goy (a pleonasm perhaps) not to grasp it.
–If you are gay (AND Jewish) in this world you should not aspire to be treated equally by the world at large, to have people just shrug off your sexual orientation as of no interest to them. You will have to be special: hence, once blessed.
–If you are gay AND Jewish in the gay “community” you cannot be just one of many in the undifferentiated throng, because the “community” is a fractal of the Jewish world view. You need walls, safe Jews-only gay shtetls. There, you are special once more. Hence, twice blessed.
Pity the poor GGs (gay Goyim), but even more pity the poor NGGs (non-gay Goyim) twice rejected by g-d, I presume.
It then makes sense also that his parents were more dismayed by his ‘mesalliance’ with a GG than by his unexpected “coming out.”
Perhaps even the coming out is a less traumatic event for the doubly blessed gays because they don’t really come out, they just quickly dart into another special enclave.
There is a third blessedness, that of belonging to the moneyed class.
There was an old Jewish joke about two Jewish mothers talking about their sons and one telling the other that her son surprised them all by coming out. “Well,” mused, the Jewish mother, “at least he is dating a doctor.”
Wonderful comment, ariadna. So much to think about. Thank you.
Thank you, Mr. Eisen. Nothing much that Gilad hasn’t thought about first.
I owe him.
Hi Laura, I would be interested if you would expand on your thoughts about homosexuality.
On your first post, if one substituted the word ‘fat’ with the word ‘homosexual’ the analogy about diets seemed to say:
“People who are homosexual should try and stop being homosexual, but cannot unless they stop homosexual acts.”
Your second post, does it mean:
“God knows what is best. God made everyone and is testing everyone all the time to do what God thinks is right. So, the believers have to be vigilant and make sure they pass the tests. To believers, homosexuality is a forbidden temptation and if you participate in homosexual acts or identify as a homosexual, then you have failed the test.”
What would be the penalty for failing the test in your opinion?
I guess the point of religious laws is that we don’t have to have an opinion. Allah made certain things forbidden to us and if we believe in the punishment in this life or the next then we stay away from that which is forbidden even if we desire it.
“I guess the point of religious laws is that we don’t have to have an opinion.”
Laura, I struggled to phrase this question, hope it isn’t too clumsy.
Over time the interpretation of religious laws changes as different opinions are voiced. Depending on whose opinion/interpretation is being heard, can be the difference between life or brutal persecution/death.
For instance, the different outcomes to the question of homosexuality in Somalia, Jordan and Turkey.
Are the “opinions” you post on this site, not “Laura’s opinions”, but an extension of Allah’s will?
Turkey is not ruled by Shariah and neither is Jordon, Somalia is not ruled by anyone. There is no country at this time ruled by Shariah although some have laws based on Shariah. Saudi probably has the closest to Shariah however because of corruption at leadership level it would likely depend on who you are or who you know whether the laws were applied to you.
Just like Israel which wants to the the Jewish state yet is secular and not governed by Jewish law.
@ Laura, thanks for your reply.
Even though a country may or may not be ruled by religious laws, yet the majority of the population is of one religion, the interpretation of that religion can and does have disturbing outcomes for certain members of the community.
Interpretation is the key to the outcomes.
For example: Mild, moderate or extreme as in Turkey, Jordan, Somalia. Prejudice and persecution through law or community approval are very similar, as I’m sure you are all to very aware.
My point is not restricted to Islam, as all religions face the same challenge in interpreting religious texts in such a way as to avoid persecution of the innocent.
I’m personally not religious and prefer to try and have my own thoughts and opinions, rather than going along with any organized religious group.
There is, what could be loosely described as a debate, involving “interpretation” on this link:(the relevant bit starts at 22.25 mins – interesting view put forward by muslim Dr Taj Hargey at 33.40 mins)
As is all too common with government and religion, the Golden Rule applies – “The man with the gold, makes the rules”.
Sure, but doesn’t all that you say apply to all ideologies, not just religion?
Hi Paul, yeah agreed. I was sticking to the religious angle, as Laura had mentioned Allah in her answer regarding homosexuality, to your question:
“Do you mean that gays should just pack it in – then they’d be cured?”
Her response, made me question more what Laura’s “religious ideology” was.
I suppose all power-trip ideologies, whether political or religious, are controlled by the ruling/priest classes, who try to make sure they retain that power through gradual adjustments in their ideology to accommodate external influences.
The “forbidding”, to me, of victim less, personal behaviour seems to be on dodgy ground for a mass ideology.
What do you think?
(I find that reading the “aspiration” of the posts and comments, subjective and spend a long time re-reading them in the hope of understanding the writers true meaning – hopefully I’m learning something.)
I wouldn’t count myself as a religious believer but I do see the possibility of God. So, I have to entertain the possibility that Laura’s belief isn’t a ‘power-trip ideology’ but is rather simply
Also, some people believe that homosexuality isn’t victim-less and does involve more than the people directly involved. Permitting homosexuality does certainly affect others so it all depends whether you think that’s a good thing or a bad thing.
So all in all, I think I’ll have to abstain.
“Also, some people believe that homosexuality isn’t victim-less and does involve more than the people directly involved.”
I’m not sure I understand this. Who could the other victims possibly be?
Homophobia is definitely not victim-less…..
Well, if some people believed that homosexuality was corrosive of the type of society they held dear, they could be said to be victims.
I certainly agree that homophobia is definitely not victim-less
Hmmm – the belief that it is corrosive is usually linked to religion* Yet it can be changeable – note the pink-washing of the Jewish state – despite Sodom and Gomorrah.
In the end it should be between the indiviual and their God – it seems to me that all too often religion is used as a form of social control.
*(although I also suspect that the most virulent homophobes are usually fighting their own impulses…..)
I agree with a lot of what you say here.
Thrice blessed – oh to be Jewish and Gay and Black
Interesting look at an early Gay Jewish activist
Gay Marriage’s Jewish Pioneer
Interesting. is this another example of Jewish revolutionary (disruptive) activity?
Living With Two Identities -
Gay Orthodox Jews Talk About Merging Two Lifestyles
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