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The Abominable Abomination
by Leah Sellers
2014-06-02 08:51:43
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Questioner:  “So, you Think that you’re an Abominable Abomination ?”
Questioned:  “Well, I didn’t start out Thinking or Feeling that way, but when the People you Care about in the Places that you Care about keep throwing those Words and Actions out around you, and Knowingly or UnKnowingly at you, the Labeling, and the Shaming, the Humiliation, the Alienation, the Fear Inducing of the Intentional, UnIntentional Words and Actions begin to stick to you like gooey glue.”
Questioned:  “So, yes, after a while, you begin to Feel and Think that you Are an Abominable Abomination.”
Questioner:  “What makes you an Abominable Abomination ?”
Questioned:  “Well, I’ve always been UnSettled in the area of Sex and Sexuality.”
Questioner:  “Are you Gay ?”
Questioned:  “Not exactly.”
Questioner:  “Are you Straight, but kinky ?’
Questioned:  “Not exactly.”
Questioner:  “Well, just what Are you, exactly ?”
Questioned:  “Well, I’ve been Celibate for years now, out of Choice.  I don’t want anything to do with Sex.  But before making that decision I was Bi-Sexual.”
Questioner:  “You like both Men and Women.”
Questioned:  “Sort of.”
Questioner:  “What do you mean when you say ‘sort of’ ?”
Questioned:  “Well, I Think that I would have much better off if I had not had anything at all to do with Sex.  Sex only complicates things between Folks.”
Questioner:  “How so ?”
Questioned:  “I can only tell my Story, because everyone’s story is different for a variety of Reasonings and UnReasonings.  So, here it goes….”
Questioned:  “I was a Raised in a Home with a Father who was consistently and aggressively Emotionally and Physically Abusive, and a Mother who was a Gentle Spirit and Passive.”
Questioner:  “What do you mean when you say Emotionally and Physically Abusive ?”
Questioned:  “He would regularly whip me with leather belts.  And if the leather belts broke, he’d rip extension cords out of the wall to finish the whipping session out with.  And if he couldn’t find an extension cord to use, he’d tear through the closets for an empty wire coat hanger, and stretch it out length-wise keeping the hook in tact at one end, and finish the whipping session with that.”
Questioned:  “Often, Daddy would leave me bleeding on my legs or back.  He’d tell me that he was whipping me for my own good.  That I needed to mind better, and to stop crying, and go get cleaned up.”
Questioned:  “Then he’d give me a Hug and a Kiss and tell me that he Loved me, and that he had to whip me for my own good.”
Questioned:  “I thought that everyone’s Children were Raised that way, so I didn’t think much about it.  But when I accidentally overheard a conversation between Mom and Dad one evening about his cheating on Mom with another Woman, and spending money on that Woman and her three Children, I decided to become my Mother’s Advocate.”
Questioner:  “How old were you ?”
Questioned:  “I was eleven years old.”
Questioner;  “How did you become your Mother’s Advocate ?”
Questioned:  “I decided to ask Daddy why he was cheating on Mom.  And told him that when he cheated on Mom that he was cheating on the whole Family.”
Questioned;  “Daddy got so mad at me.  He called me a Belligerent and DisRespectful Child, and then he whipped me harder and longer than he ever had before.  For weeks after that, Dad hardly gave me any Attention at all.  He always avoided my Eyes, and would leave the room if I tried to address him.”
Questioner:  “So, I learned pretty quick not to automatically Trust In Authority figures and Systems.”
Qusstioned:  “Why Systems ?”
Questioned:  “Our Family was a System.  A System made DysFunctional by my Father’s constant Betrayals of Mom, MySelf and my Siblings.  I Learned early on that DysFunctional Leaders create DysFunctional Systems.”
Questioner:  “Dad was well thought of and respected in our Church.  He was well thought of and respected in the Business World at that time.  He was a very handsome and charismatic man.  He could have done great things, but Money and his own Vanity became his Religions and his gods, and it eventually negatively impacted and influenced everyone who truly Cared about him in one way or another.”
Questioner:  “How did it effect you ?”
Questioned:  “I Learned that fine upstanding men can be lying, deceitful Cheats.  That some men don’t think anything of breaking Vows, and Sinning against others as long as they’re getting something out of their Destructive, purely Selfish Behaviors.  I learned that some forms of Love are Transient, and that Transience can be used as an excuse to Negatively Effect and Impact the lives of others through varying shades of Betrayal and Abandonment.  I learned that I did not Trust the Institution of Marriage.”
Questioned:  “My Mom stayed with Dad for years, because that is what Women did during that day in time to Protect their Children, and because it was Shameful to be a Divorced Woman.  And Dad just kept right on constantly Cheating on Mom with new Lovers.  They were always calling Mom up, and telling her that she needed to give Dad up to them and their needs.”
Questioned:  “Dad would tell Mom that he loved her, too, as the Mother of his Children, and his Wife, but that he had other Needs that just had to be met.  And yet he fully expected her to be Faithful and Loyal to him.  To be Silent and Tolerant of his extra curricular activities.  He was very much about ‘Do as I Say, but not as I Do’.”
Questioner:  “That situation sounds abominably intolerable.  So, what made you the Abominable Abomination ?”
Questioned;  “Well,  Dad, and my Religion at the time made it implicitly clear that Women were to be SubServient to Men.  That Women were Raised to be Wives and Mothers.  It was a simple formula that women were to adhere to without Question.”
Questioned:  Problem was, that because of the background I had been Raised in, and because of my basic nature and intelligence,  I thought that all of that gobblety-goop was nothing but a bunch of hog swallop.”
Questioned:  “I enjoyed dating, when I was finally old enough to do it, because I am normally a very Social person, but I truly did not want have anything to do with Sex.  My experiences had taught me that Sex made you Think, Feel and Do stupid things, and I didn’t want any part of that.  But I also didn’t want to Live my Life alone.  Sooo….”
Questioner:  “So what ?”
Questioned:  “Well, for a long time I was protected by my Religion, and my Mama’s strict upraising.  I couldn’t even double-date until I was sixteen, and then that was primarily with boys from my Church.  So, Sex never really entered into anything much past hand holding, hugging and an occasional quick kiss on the lips.”
Questioner;  “When do you Feel that you became Bi-Sexual ?”
Questioned: “At college.  I was on the pill, but accidentally got pregnant anyway.  I was horrified.  The Man I was considering marrying at that time was five years older than I was.  I had met him through a mutual friend.  He was a Singer-Songwriter, like me, and we sang all over the local area at various dances with his band.  We did a lot of traveling together, and had a lot of fun.  I thought that I was In Love, but then I got pregnant, and everything changed.”
Questioned:  “He wanted to go to Nashville to become a Country-western Star, and he had wanted to do that with me, but my getting pregnant altered everything, and changed him.”
Questioned:  “He shocked me by trying to give me money for an abortion.  I refused it.  Then he tricked me into a unexpected, set-up, situation with his Dad, and had him talk to me about having an abortion, so as not to ruin our future prospects.”
Questioned;  “His Father was an Authority figure, and even though I didn’t trust Authority figures, I had learned to ‘obey’ them.  So, I took the money, and got the abortion.  I refused to ever see the Man-I-Loved again, and I have never been able to forgive myself having the abortion.”
Questioned:  “I just wasn’t thinking straight at that time.  I was Afraid to say anything to my parents, because I was really invested in being ‘A Good Little Girl’, and I didn’t want Dad beating on me over it.  So, I kept it a Secret from everyone but my Best Friend, who helped me through that very rough period of time.”
Questioned:  “So, I guess that I began to think of myself as a partial Abominable Abomination during that period of time.  And my Feeling that way about myself led to other Actions and Non-Actions which would make me Feel even worse about myself.”
Qustioned:  “In many ways, I think that I allowed myself to have Sex with my first woman, because I did not want to get pregnant, and I really wanted to connect intimately with someone who wanted to connect with me Sexually, because I was young, my hormones were jumping all around, and I was Curious about Sex. But with SomeOne with whom the pressure of getting pregnant would not exist.”
Questioned;  “Sex was more relaxing and unconstrained with a Woman.  It didn’t matter whether or not my Pill was working or a whether or not a condom was fully intact.”
Questioned:  “But I never felt comfortable with it.  I always felt as though I was doing something wrong.  So, even when I was intimate with women who wanted to live with me, some part of me could never fully commit to building a Life with them, because I always Felt and Thought that I was Living in Sin.  My upbringing kept getting in the way.”
Questioned:  “No matter how wonderful they were or how much I enjoyed our Lives, and the things we did together, it never felt Right to me.  And that created underlying problems that always bubbled up, and eventually sabotaged and ended things, making me Feel and Think even worse about myself.”
Questioned:  “Another bad habit that I got into during this part of my struggle with being an Abominable Abomination, is that I got to where I could not have Sex unless I was high.  I had to get almost drunk or completely drunk before I could give myself to another Human Being.  It was just something else that made me feel badly about myself.”
Questioned;  ‘I didn’t Trust men.  I couldn’t find a woman who would just Live with me like a Sexless Sister-Friend.  I hated Living with such a huge Secret, and keeping almost everyone else at arms length, just so that they would not discover my Secret.  It‘s a huge waste of Energy and Time keeping a Secret that big.”
Questioned:  “Most of the People in the World I was Raised in did nothing but condemn Gay folks as Abominable Abominations.  So, I lived in constant fear of being found out.  I could never feel relaxed or fully Known.  That is an absolutely terrible and crazy way to be forced to Live your Life.”
Questioner:  “You said ’forced to live your Life’.”
Questioned:  “Yes, I felt as if I was being forced fed the Life of an Abominable Abomination.  Even though that made no sense to me at all.  I have always Believed in the Unconditional Love Christ Taught.  I truly Believe that We are on this Planet to Practice the very difficult Disciplines of Agape Love.  That we are to Work to Love everyone and Treat and Respect everyone as we would like to be Treated and Respected.“
Questioned:  “I have always believed in Living for Others, and Living for Causes larger than yourself.  I have never hated or discriminated against anyone, that I am aware of, especially not Gay Folks.  Although I Felt and Acted that way against myself, because my knowing that I was a part of the Abominable Abominations Club made me Feel like a worthless failure and hopeless sinner.  I hated and wanted to punish myself before anyone else got the chance to do it to me first.   How’s that for crazy ?  How’s that for Reverse DisCrimination ?  Ha !”
Questioned:  “The real kicker is that Intellectually and Spiritually, I think that being Gay is a scientifically natural occurrence of the Natural World.  Homosexual tendencies have always existed in Humans and other animal species probably since the beginning of time.  Unless there’s indiscriminate promiscuity involved, homosexuality not a Sin.  It is a State of Being.”
Questioned:  “But I was Raised to Think and Feel something quite differently about such things.  So, I was always in Conflict with myself.  Always at Conflict with the world around me.  Always finding myself in the Role of a Sin Eater.  Always the Abominable Abomination.  So, finally, to find some semblance of Peace-of-Mind, Heart and Soul, I elected to be Celibate.  To live Alone with my Abominable Abominationhood.”
Questioned:  “But I wasted a lot of Time, Energy and Opportunities hiding My Secret.  It held me back from really Fully Expressing myself.  I don’t Feel as though I ever became Fully Realized.  It takes a lot out of one’s Life to hide a Secret that big, that volatile, that potentially damaging.”
Questioned:  “I watched all of these other Folks come Out and Live these Fully Realized Lives, and others be destroyed or destroy themselves because of the simple fact that they were Gay.  The complicated fact that they were an Abominable Abomination.”
Qustioned:  “But I had one foot in one World and another foot in another World.  I could never fully commit to either one, and as a result you wend up living a Half-Life.  A confused and confusing Abominable Abomination’s Half-Life.”
Questioned:  “It’s not a Life I would Choose for anyone to Live, much less myself.  And yet, that’s exactly what wound up happening to me.  Just because we still live in a World that wants to punish and destroy Folks like me on both sides of the spectrum.  There is no Friendly Neutral Zone for In-Betweeners.  We’re hated and Abominated by some on both sides.”
Questioned:  “So, there you have it.  The Confessions of an Abominable Abomination.”
Questioner:  “But the World is Changing with every New Generation.”
Questioned:  “Yes, but not My Generation.  However, I do wish the Gays and In-Betweeners of the Future well.  I wish for them the Fully Lived Life.  The Shame-free, Guilt-free, Big Secret-free, Fear-free, Barrier-free Life I have never known.”
Questioned:  “I wish for them the Individual and Societal Enlightened Illumination of Minds, Hearts and Souls that will never even EnVision or Conceptualize the Existence of an Abominable Abomination to shun, hate, and destroy, just because they Are the Different Human Beings that they Are for whatever Natural Circumstances or Environmental Happenstances or Reasonings.”
Questioner:  “Do you ever wish that you could start all over again ?”
Questioned:  “Is that Question rhetorical ?  Now, who’s being Abominable ?  Ha !”

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Emanuel Paparella2014-06-02 18:23:39
No doubt the issue of sex within Christianity is a thorny one. In the West, it originally begins with Plato who posits a duality between body and soul and considers the body (in a cave) the prisoner of the soul which dwells in the realm of the intelligible and the spiritual.

Augustine likes the idea of a spiritual soul destined for heaven and a material body who eventually rots away under the earth. We are like butterflies waiting to exit our cocoons.

Enter the Puritan a bit later who considers anything associated with the body somewhat dirty and suspect, leading to sex, and anything associated with the soul pure and spiritual, suggesting the avoidance of sex as much as possible, especially outside of marriage; sort of angels in waiting. Sex is a necessary evil to be engaged in only for procreative purposes with the sacrament of marriage.

Enter the Playboy and the hedonist who, to the contrary, says sex is natural and good for one’s psychological health: the more the better. Both groups lose sight of the deep interpersonal dimensions present in the intimacy of sex.

Enter the Catholic nun and priest who renounce sex for a Freudian kind of spiritual sublimation and spiritually marry the Church. It gets quite complicated, yet the solution is not so complicated.

How about returning to the source of the problem and consider the body and soul as distinguishable in theory but one and indivisible in practice, as indeed the Old Testament seems to consider them. Even Christian doctrine which derives from Hebrew doctrine seems to confirm this notion (see Michelangelo’s Last Judgment in the Sistine Chapel) since it proclaims that we will not resurrect as ghosts, or as spiritual angels, or as disembodied souls but as human being with a body, whatever altered state of being such a body will assume. After his resurrection Christ does not appear to the apostles as a ghost, but as a human being with a body.

For an exploration of this intriguing theological-philosophical-psychological conundrum see the recent Oscar nominated movie The Sessions starring Helen Hunter as a sex surrogate, and William Macy as a good Catholic paraplegic poet who asks his confessor's permission to have sex (which he can still do) without having to marry, which of course is contrary to Catholic principles regarding the nature of sex and marriage. The readers are advised to see the movie, that is, if they are curious about the priest’s response and solution to the problem…

Emanuel Paparella2014-06-05 14:00:52
Errata: in the second line of this comment it should read: "... considers the soul the prisoner of the body..."

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