Total Posts:13|Showing Posts:1-13
Jump to topic:

God the Hermaphrodite?!

charleslb
Posts: 4,740
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/23/2011 5:51:21 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
Here's a controversial theological question for you, is God a hermaphrodite? Well, I suppose in the technical, physiological sense of the term the answer would be have to be no, since a hermaphrodite is medically defined as someone with the sexual organs of both genders, and it would be rather vulgar anthropomorphism to assign such anatomical attributes to one's deity. However, we needn't be so crudely literal-minded in regard to conceptualizing the Divine, nor in our understanding of the meaning and signification of our sex organs. Let's then first ask the somewhat risqué-sounding question, what are man's and woman's genitalia?

Let's begin with the penis, what is a penis? Beyond the obvious answer that everyone learned in their junior high sex ed class, beyond a mundane functional understanding of what it does in the act of intercourse, and at the risk of sounding New Agey, the good ole penis is nothing less than a physical objectification, focus, and conduit of the male, "yang" aspect of reality! That is, in the act of procreation the penis channels more than just seminal fluid and spermatozoa, it channels masculine energies, i.e. drives that are of action, of hitting a goal, so to speak, and of fecundation. The penis represents the male impetus to insert and assert oneself into the cosmic process, the cosmic process of expressing the intrinsic potentialities of the transcendental mystery of existence. The heterogametic sex, i.e. those of us with XY chromosomes, literally embody this male impetus, and the penis could be said to be its anatomical, phallic effigy, as it were. In short, the penis is a hard (no pun intended), material symbolization of life's, reality's, and God's will to creative assertiveness.

While God then of course doesn't have a proper, flesh & blood penis, any more than God has a flowing white beard, the nature of Nature, and the godhead of God does include the masculine qualities that are concretized in and coitally conveyed through the penile member. Figuratively speaking, and at the risk of sounding blasphemous, we can actually say that God is well-endowed with "manhood".

But no, not so fast, this doesn't make the Divine a dude or a dad. For women's "plumbing" also physically objectifies and symbolizes the female dimension of the cosmic process, aka the Ewig-Weibliche, the eternal feminine. The vagina and womb are every bit as much anatomical concretizations of divine drives and gates of access to transcendence as are the male organs of reproduction – "yin" is just as well-represented by human genitalia as is "yang"! Unfortunately our patriarchal faiths often make the sexist error of egregiously privileging "yang" over "yin", of emphasizing the masculinity of God to the total exclusion of God's womanly side. But the feminine values of nature, the feminine capacity for nurturing behavior and compassion, for gentleness and the nonaggressive resolution of conflict, etc. also derives from divinity, and complements and completes the "machismo" attributed to God by the Judeo-Christian tradition.

Sure, once again we have to state the laughably obvious, that in the strictest sense God doesn't possess female genitalia per se either. But in the allegorical sense that a woman's genitals emblematize and instrumentalize feminine principles whose ultimate origin is in the ultimate mystery of being, in this explicitly allegorical rather than ambiguously anthropomorphizing sense it's perfectly legitimate to speak of the universe's and God's endowment with female attributes.

So, non-literally speaking divinity and reality arguably do indeed have male and female "parts". Even in a more down-to-earth, though admittedly still a mystical sense, the body being a temple of God and materialized from the numinous mystery that is reality, our own sexual organs could be said to be Transcendence's penis and uterus. Yes, Transcendence does somewhat literally have an outy and an iny, yours and mine!

At any rate, God is not transcendentally sexless. No, God is genuinely gendered, gendered both male and female, which does after all make God a sort of a hermaphrodite. Well, again, not quite literally a hermaphrodite. As I understand it, a human hermaphrodite has underdeveloped and non-functional genitalia of both sexes. That is, a hermaphrodite is sterile. But God's hermaphroditism does not render Him/Her dysfunctional and barren. Just the opposite, the fecundity and creativity of reality is largely a matter of the interaction of its divinely sourced male and female energies. The productive interplay of opposing "binaries", such as the one's given form by the bodies of man and woman, is a fundamental part of the modus operandi of Creation.

But of course this interplay of "yin" and "yang" is brought about by their separation, which is necessary for their fruitful rejoining to take place. Quite simply, the mystery of reality becomes boy and girl, and then boy meets girl resulting in the dynamism and procreativity of life. So it turns out that our libido is not just a blind biological impulse, an instinct with no deeper level of meaningfulness. Rather, man and woman's sex drive is nothing less than the yearning of reality, of its divided masculine and feminine natures to reintegrate, to again realize their transcendental unity. The experience of this transcendental unity is the carnal beatitude called "orgasm". Which is to say that sex is pleasurable because sex is the joy of making a creative connection. And, to reiterate, what's connecting are the physically separated but metaphysically interdependent natures of existence.

And yes, this all applies even in the case of homosexuals. For research shows that the cause of same-sex attraction, of gayness may very well be the prenatal feminization of male brains, and the masculineization of female brains by the overproduction of the wrong hormones in the body of a homosexual's mother at certain stages of fetal development. This means that a homosexual's attraction to other men, or a lesbian's preference for other women is entirely natural for them, for in the case of a homosexual man it's still a feminine brain that's experiencing an attraction to men, and vice versa for lesbians. "Yin" is still pulled to "yang", even when we're talking about gay love! Judgmental homophobes who only see two male bodies or two female bodies in an unnatural relationship have a thoroughly superficial view of what's going on.

Well then, all of reality, including male and female energies are fundamentally and primordially interconnected, constantly parting company and reuniting so as to "mutually originate" and perpetuate the world. And God is of, not an alien above reality; God's own nature and MO partakes of and promotes reality's creativity through the fertile interactivity of things and the cross-pollination of opposing principles. Reality and God are a paradoxical hermaphrodite in which masculine and feminine exist together, and yet are apart and always being drawn back to one another. One and yet not one, dualism within a non-dualistic ground of existence, a metaphysical mind-boggler kind of like the Christian dogma of the Holy Trinity.


The conclusion is located directly below
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
charleslb
Posts: 4,740
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/23/2011 5:52:14 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
Conclusion

This just means then that the "hermaphroditism" of God, rather than being a sacrilegious concept, theologically dovetails nicely with the profound paradoxicality and mysteriousness that most thoughtful and non-dogmatic people of faith attribute to transcendence. No doubt though fundamentalists, to name one group, won't buy this, they're comfortable gendering God into a traditionally male mythological persona but knee-jerkily balk at any "heretical" talk of divine hermaphroditism, even if one doesn't use the word. Nope, not everyone is at all ready for the image of the Divine as a cosmic He-She, but does one-sidedly and sexistly emphasizing one facet of God's nature to the neglect of the other really advance our ability to relate to, appreciate, and worship the Sacred?
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
InquireTruth
Posts: 723
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/23/2011 6:34:07 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/23/2011 5:52:14 PM, charleslb wrote:
Conclusion

This just means then that the "hermaphroditism" of God, rather than being a sacrilegious concept, theologically dovetails nicely with the profound paradoxicality and mysteriousness that most thoughtful and non-dogmatic people of faith attribute to transcendence. No doubt though fundamentalists, to name one group, won't buy this, they're comfortable gendering God into a traditionally male mythological persona but knee-jerkily balk at any "heretical" talk of divine hermaphroditism, even if one doesn't use the word. Nope, not everyone is at all ready for the image of the Divine as a cosmic He-She, but does one-sidedly and sexistly emphasizing one facet of God's nature to the neglect of the other really advance our ability to relate to, appreciate, and worship the Sacred?

Androgyny would fit your point better.
baggins
Posts: 855
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/23/2011 8:41:22 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
The idea would be have that male and female have been created by God. The concept does not apply to God.
The Holy Quran 29:19-20

See they not how Allah originates creation, then repeats it: truly that is easy for Allah.

Say: "Travel through the earth and see how Allah did originate creation; so will Allah produce a later creation: for Allah has power over all things.
charleslb
Posts: 4,740
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/24/2011 10:54:27 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/23/2011 8:41:22 PM, baggins wrote:
The idea would be have that male and female have been created by God. The concept does not apply to God.

You're ontologically privileging God above reality, which is a common error since most people think of God in terms of being a supernatural entity existing separately from existence. However, there's another theological point of view on this that I hold, that God is actually an aspect of reality. Yes, you read correctly, an aspect of, not the originator of reality. And, moreover, an ubiquitously integral aspect involved and sharing in the nature of everything that makes up our reality. Ergo the qualities that define masculinity and femininity are not something beneath God, something that God can create and have no truck with. Well, you begin to see that our concepts of the Divine are fundamentally different. Perhaps if you challenge yourself to think outside the theological box your mind was raised to be comfortable in, a second reading of the post might be a more edifying experience.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
charleslb
Posts: 4,740
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/26/2011 8:32:43 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/23/2011 6:34:07 PM, InquireTruth wrote:
Androgyny would fit your point better.

Well let's see, Webster's definition of "androgynous" includes the following: "neither specifically feminine nor masculine" and " having traditional male and female roles obscured or reversed". Neither of these definitions really fits with my fundamental thesis that the nature of the Divine subsumes both feminine and masculine principles. However, Webster's definition of "hermaphrodite" does work somewhat better with my thesis. Webster's defines "hermaphrodite" as follows: "something that is a combination of diverse elements". All in all, I think that "hermaphrodite" was the better choice, although "androgynous" would probably have less off-color and theologically radical connotations. Moreover, the problem with "androgynous", in addition to it not being quite as apt for my purposes as "hermaphrodite", is also that it seems to continue to disassociate God from that aspect of reality we call gender and sexuality. That is, it fails to suggest clearly enough that Transcendence includes both female and male natures – which of course puts the word somewhat at odds with the whole point of the post.

(Btw, thank you for your reply.)
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
InquireTruth
Posts: 723
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/27/2011 3:51:04 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/26/2011 8:32:43 PM, charleslb wrote:
At 5/23/2011 6:34:07 PM, InquireTruth wrote:
Androgyny would fit your point better.

Well let's see, Webster's definition of "androgynous" includes the following: "neither specifically feminine nor masculine" and " having traditional male and female roles obscured or reversed". Neither of these definitions really fits with my fundamental thesis that the nature of the Divine subsumes both feminine and masculine principles. However, Webster's definition of "hermaphrodite" does work somewhat better with my thesis. Webster's defines "hermaphrodite" as follows: "something that is a combination of diverse elements". All in all, I think that "hermaphrodite" was the better choice, although "androgynous" would probably have less off-color and theologically radical connotations. Moreover, the problem with "androgynous", in addition to it not being quite as apt for my purposes as "hermaphrodite", is also that it seems to continue to disassociate God from that aspect of reality we call gender and sexuality. That is, it fails to suggest clearly enough that Transcendence includes both female and male natures – which of course puts the word somewhat at odds with the whole point of the post.

(Btw, thank you for your reply.)

I would try the first definition of androgynous on Merriam-Webster.com

1. having the characteristics or nature of both male and female
feverish
Posts: 2,716
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/27/2011 3:59:04 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
On a related note Inquire, would you be kind enough to point out for me the biblical passage that describes God as a mother that you referred to in another tread recently.

Thanks.
J.Kenyon
Posts: 4,194
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/27/2011 4:08:15 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/27/2011 3:59:04 AM, feverish wrote:
On a related note Inquire, would you be kind enough to point out for me the biblical passage that describes God as a mother that you referred to in another tread recently.

Thanks.

In Genesis 17:1, God refers to itself as "El Shaddai," which some translate as "the breasted one."
InquireTruth
Posts: 723
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/27/2011 4:08:33 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/27/2011 3:59:04 AM, feverish wrote:
On a related note Inquire, would you be kind enough to point out for me the biblical passage that describes God as a mother that you referred to in another tread recently.

Thanks.

As a mother comforts her child,
so will I comfort you;


Isaiah 66:13
feverish
Posts: 2,716
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/27/2011 4:19:52 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/27/2011 4:08:15 AM, J.Kenyon wrote:

In Genesis 17:1, God refers to itself as "El Shaddai," which some translate as "the breasted one."

Nice, athough there are such things as man-boobs of course :)

At 5/27/2011 4:08:33 AM, InquireTruth wrote:

As a mother comforts her child,
so will I comfort you;


Isaiah 66:13

Hmm, I think there's a big difference between comforting someone in a maternal manner and actually being a mother. Cheers for the citation anyway.
baggins
Posts: 855
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/27/2011 4:34:36 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/24/2011 10:54:27 PM, charleslb wrote:
At 5/23/2011 8:41:22 PM, baggins wrote:
The idea would be have that male and female have been created by God. The concept does not apply to God.

You're ontologically privileging God above reality, which is a common error since most people think of God in terms of being a supernatural entity existing separately from existence. However, there's another theological point of view on this that I hold, that God is actually an aspect of reality. Yes, you read correctly, an aspect of, not the originator of reality. And, moreover, an ubiquitously integral aspect involved and sharing in the nature of everything that makes up our reality. Ergo the qualities that define masculinity and femininity are not something beneath God, something that God can create and have no truck with. Well, you begin to see that our concepts of the Divine are fundamentally different. Perhaps if you challenge yourself to think outside the theological box your mind was raised to be comfortable in, a second reading of the post might be a more edifying experience.

I consider God as the creator of the physical world or reality as we know it. In that sense, I do consider God as 'supernatural' and everything else (including 'miracles') as natural.

I associate masculine and feminine nature with the reproductive organs of human body - and as such I am not prepared to apply them to God.

It is true that some characteristics are more predominant among human females and other among human males. But this cannot be the basis of defining sexual identity. This is because there may be exceptions to this rule. Some females may possess large amount of 'masculine qualities' and vice-verca. In any case, these both kind of qualities are present in everyone in small or big amount.

My way of looking at this is simplistic. However, till date I have not come across any evidence that the biggest philosophers have any better understanding on these issues.
The Holy Quran 29:19-20

See they not how Allah originates creation, then repeats it: truly that is easy for Allah.

Say: "Travel through the earth and see how Allah did originate creation; so will Allah produce a later creation: for Allah has power over all things.
charleslb
Posts: 4,740
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/27/2011 3:31:10 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/27/2011 3:51:04 AM, InquireTruth wrote:
At 5/26/2011 8:32:43 PM, charleslb wrote:
At 5/23/2011 6:34:07 PM, InquireTruth wrote:
Androgyny would fit your point better.

Well let's see, Webster's definition of "androgynous" includes the following: "neither specifically feminine nor masculine" and " having traditional male and female roles obscured or reversed". Neither of these definitions really fits with my fundamental thesis that the nature of the Divine subsumes both feminine and masculine principles. However, Webster's definition of "hermaphrodite" does work somewhat better with my thesis. Webster's defines "hermaphrodite" as follows: "something that is a combination of diverse elements". All in all, I think that "hermaphrodite" was the better choice, although "androgynous" would probably have less off-color and theologically radical connotations. Moreover, the problem with "androgynous", in addition to it not being quite as apt for my purposes as "hermaphrodite", is also that it seems to continue to disassociate God from that aspect of reality we call gender and sexuality. That is, it fails to suggest clearly enough that Transcendence includes both female and male natures – which of course puts the word somewhat at odds with the whole point of the post.

(Btw, thank you for your reply.)

I would try the first definition of androgynous on Merriam-Webster.com

1. having the characteristics or nature of both male and female

Yes, I noticed that definition in my dictionary; however, the other definitions still get into the act and make the word less felicitous for my semantic purposes.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.