Saturday, January 31, 2015

The YouTube Interview with President Obama

Michael Hill. We're For Love.

VIa JMG: Today in Republican Lesbain Bullshit

Mary Cheney: Drag Is Like Blackface

"Why is it socially acceptable - as a form of entertainment - for men to put on dresses, make up and high heels and act out every offensive stereotype of women (bitchy, catty, dumb, slutty, etc.) - but it is not socially acceptable - as a form of entertainment - for a white person to put on blackface and act out offensive stereotypes of African Americans? Shouldn’t both be OK or neither?" - Mary Cheney, writing on her Facebook page after seeing an ad for the upcoming season of RuPaul's Drag Race. (Tipped by JMG reader Scott)

Reposted from Joe Jervis

A Message to Mary Cheney from RuPaul's Drag Race

Stephen Fry on God | The Meaning Of Life | RTÉ One

Via LGBT Interfaith Group / FB:

Flor do Dia - Flor del Día - Flower of the Day - 31/01/2015

“Trabalho para criar união, e a união só é criada através do amor. É através do amor que dissolvemos os conflitos, pois ele é o solvente universal para todos os males.”
Acesse o Satsang Completo:

“Trabajo para crear unión, y la unión sólo es creada a través del amor. Es a través del amor que disolvemos los conflictos, pues él es el solvente universal para todos los males.”

“I work towards creating union, and union can only be created through love. It is through love that we dissolve all conflicts, for it is the universal solvent for all evil.”

Via Daily Dharma

The Dharma of Action | January 31, 2015

We are good at studying, publishing, and spreading the word of Buddhism. Where we have not been very successful is showcasing the compassion and selflessness of the dharma by our actions. We have written many more words in our books than what few kind words we have spoken to the poor, lonely, and desperate. We have built so many more temples than orphanages.

- Ajahn Brahm, "Putting an End to Buddhist Patriarchy"

Friday, January 30, 2015

Flor do Dia - Flor del Día - Flower of the Day - 30/01/2015

“Se existe lamentação, existe ingratidão. Mas, para evoluir no processo de cura é preciso encontrar a gratidão. Se você não está podendo ser grato, trate de investigar por que. Trate de encarar seu ódio, seus ressentimentos e seus medos. Somente assim você poderá ser iluminado pela sagrada compreensão que te leva ao perdão, que por sua vez te liberta do passado. E não perca o seu mais valioso tesouro - o tempo - com reclamações, julgamentos, comparações e acusações. Isso é somente distração. A vida neste plano é como uma bolha de sabão, quando você menos espera... Foi.”
Acesse o Satsang Completo:

“Si existe lamento, existe ingratitud. Pero para evolucionar en el proceso de cura es necesario encontrar la gratitud. Si no estás pudiendo ser agradecido, trata de investigar por qué. Trata de encarar tu odio, tus resentimientos y tus miedos. Solamente así podrás ser iluminado por la sagrada comprensión que te lleva al perdón, que a su vez te libera del pasado. Y no pierdas tu más valioso tesoro - el tiempo – con reclamos, juicios, comparaciones y acusaciones. Eso es solamente distracción. La vida en este plano es como una burbuja de jabón, cuando menos lo esperas... Fue.”

“If there are complaints, then a lack of gratitude also exists. In order to evolve in the process of healing, it’s necessary to find gratitude. If we’re unable to be grateful, then try to investigate why this is so. We must try to confront our hatred, our resentments and our fears. By doing this, we may be illuminated by sacred comprehension that leads us to forgiveness, which in turn frees us from the past. We mustn’t waste our most precious treasure, time, with complaints, judgments, comparisons and accusations. All of this is just a distraction. Life in this realm is like a soap bubble: when we least expect it, it’s gone.”

- Sri Prem Baba

Via Daily Dharma

Student Creates Teacher | January 30, 2015

In order to work with a teacher, there needs to be a student. We often skip over this: It’s easy to waste time going through the motions of entering the room for a face-to-face teaching, but to not really be a student—to just be someone who wants to debate, or to prove something. Often, a real spiritual meeting is not available even though the bows have been made. Yet once a student develops, it is inevitable that a teacher will appear in their life. They create each other.

- Bonnie Myotai Treace, Sensei, "The Sword Disappears in the Water"

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Via Rawstory: Famed biologist: Religion ‘is dragging us down’ and must be eliminated ‘for the sake of human progress’

"Plos wilson" by Jim Harrison - PLoS. Licensed under CC BY 2.5 via Wikimedia Commons.

Via Mahtab Parsa / FB:

Flor do Dia - Flor del Día - Flower of the Day - 29/01/2015

O serviço acontece quando você doa seus dons e talentos, pois eles são a maneira que o amor encontra para se expressar através de você. E quando o amor é colocado em movimento, isso gera contentamento e alegria na sua vida e na vida dos outros. O amor e a felicidade passam por você para chegar aos outros. Esse é o poder do serviço; ele te coloca dentro desse fluxo e você se torna um elo na corrente da felicidade.”
Acesse o Satsang Completo:

“El servicio sucede cuando entregas tus dones y talentos, pues ellos son la manera que el amor encuentra para expresarse a través tuyo. Y cuando el amor es colocado en movimiento, eso genera contentamiento y alegría en tu vida y en la vida de los otros. El amor y la felicidad pasan por ti para llegar a los otros. Ese es el poder del servicio; él te coloca dentro de ese flujo y tú te tornas un eslabón en la cadena de la felicidad.”

“Service happens when you give of your gifts and talents, for they are the ways that love finds to express itself through you. When love is put into motion, it brings contentment and joy into your life and the lives of others. Love and happiness pass through you in order to reach others. This is the power of service. It places you in this flow and you become a link in the chain of happiness.”
- Sri Prem Baba

Via Daily Dharma

What’s Happening | January 29, 2015

Any sudden loss of bearings, within our multitasking, overcommitted lives, can leave us breathless and insecure for a moment. But it is also an exhilarating relief to tumble through the prefab words and concepts and to enter the always welcome reality of what’s happening.

- John Elder, "Dust of Snow: Awakening to Conversation"

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Via JMG: CHILE: Civil Unions Are Now Law

Via the Washington Blade:
A bill that would allow same-sex couples to enter into civil unions in Chile on Wednesday received final approval in the South American country’s Congress. The Chilean Senate approved the measure by a 25-6 vote margin with three abstentions. The bill passed in the country’s House of Representatives by a 78-9 vote margin. “A historic step against discrimination and for the advancement of human rights has taken place today with the passage of the civil unions bill,” said the Movement for Homosexual Integration and Liberation, a Chilean LGBT advocacy group, in a statement. President Michelle Bachelet has said she will sign the bill — under which unmarried heterosexual couples would also receive legal recognition — into law. Bachelet’s spokesperson, Álvaro Elizalde, on his Twitter page described Tuesday as a “historic day” in Chile.
(Tipped by JMG reader Eduardo)

Reposted from Joe Jervis

Via JMG: SCOTUS Urged To Televise Marriage Case

A coalition of journalism organizations and NGOs today urged the Supreme Court to allow cameras in the courtroom during the coming landmark same-sex marriage case.
In a letter to U.S. Chief Justice John Roberts, the Coalition for Court Transparency today requested “that audio-visual coverage of oral arguments in the same-sex marriage cases be broadcast live, enabling the world to witness history as it happens.” “We hope that the Court takes this historic moment as an opportunity to move into a new era of openness by permitting live audio-visual coverage of the arguments in the same-sex marriage cases,” said Mickey H. Osterreicher, general counsel for the National Press Photographers Association.

In addition to the historical nature of the cases, the Coalition highlighted how this act of transparency could burnish the Court’s reputation. “In our modern era, an institution’s legitimacy is often driven by the public’s perception of its openness and transparency,” the letter said. “When decisions are made in cases that provoke strong emotions, transparency allows the public to be assured that the process was fair and that the institution is functioning properly. Simply put: televising the oral arguments will ultimately strengthen the public’s perception of the Court by imbuing its result with greater legitimacy.”

“Recent polling shows three-quarters of Americans support televising Supreme Court proceedings,” said Alex Armstrong, spokesperson for the Coalition. “Oral arguments in the upcoming marriage cases will be historic, and the whole nation will be eager to follow along. There’s no better time to turn on the cameras.”
Read their letter. Just two days ago Justice Antonin Scalia dismissed the idea.

Reposted from Joe Jervis

Flor do Dia - Flor del Día - Flower of the Day - 28/01/2015

“O dinheiro é um poder que precisa ser tratado de forma adequada. Se você souber usá-lo, ele pode te ajudar a atravessar a existência terrena com mais facilidade. Mas, se você não souber lidar com ele, ele te destrói. Por conta das imagens, crenças e condicionamentos que carregamos, damos ao dinheiro um valor emocional, e assim fazemos dele algo muito diferente do que ele realmente é: um instrumento que possibilita a troca. Ele é um instrumento que deveria estar a serviço do seu coração, para você poder realizar sua jornada com mais conforto e tranquilidade.”
Acesse o Satsang Completo:

“El dinero es un poder que necesita ser tratado de forma adecuada. Si sabes usarlo, puede ayudarte a atravesar la existencia terrenal con más facilidad. Pero si no sabes lidiar con él, te destruye. A causa de las imágenes, creencias y condicionamientos que cargamos, damos al dinero un valor emocional, y así hacemos de él algo muy diferente de lo que realmente es: un instrumento que posibilita el intercambio. Es un instrumento que debería estar al servicio de tu corazón, para que puedas realizar tu jornada con más confort y tranquilidad.”

“Money is a power that needs to be treated appropriately. If we know how to use it, then money can help us pass through this earthly existence with more ease. However, if we don’t know how to deal with it, then money can destroy us. Due to the images, beliefs and conditionings that we carry, we give money an emotional value. In this way, we turn money into something that is very different from what it truly is: a tool that allows for exchange. Money is an instrument that should be at the service of our hearts so that we can make this journey with more comfort and tranquility.”
- Sri Prem Baba

Via Daily Dharma

Awaken with Joy | January 28, 2015

As one of the seven factors of enlightenment, joy is not only a fruit of awakening but also a prerequisite. Joy creates a spaciousness in the mind that allows us to hold the suffering we experience inside us and around us without becoming overwhelmed, without collapsing into helplessness or despair.

- James Baraz, "Lighten Up!"

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

VIa JMG: UTAH: LDS Church Backs LGBT Rights In Return For Stiffer Religion Carve-Outs

Via Salt Lake City's Fox affiliate:
In at least one big and bruising culture-war battle, the Mormon church wants to call a partial truce. Convening a rare press conference on Tuesday at church headquarters in Salt Lake City, Mormon leaders pledged to support anti-discrimination laws for gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgender people, as long the laws also protect the rights of religious groups. In exchange, the Mormon church wants gay rights advocates — and the government — to back off. “When religious people are publicly intimidated, retaliated against, forced from employment or made to suffer personal loss because they have raised their voice in the public square, donated to a cause or participated in an election, our democracy is the loser,” said Elder Dallin Oaks, a member of the church’s Quorum of Twelve Apostles. “Such tactics are every bit as wrong as denying access to employment, housing or public services because of race or gender.”
At today's press conference Oaks cited Houston's subpoenaing of pastors as a recent example of Christians being oppressed. In 2009 the Mormon Church backed an LGBT rights ordinance in Salt Lake City and while they say they still oppose same-sex marriage, today's announcement is meant to indicate support for similar legislation elsewhere. With one condition.

UPDATE: Openly gay Utah state Sen. Jim Dabakis just sent us a statement.
"I am proud that the LDS Church has seen fit to lead the way in non-discrimination. As a religious institution, Mormons have had a long history of being the victims of discrimination and persecution. They understand more than most the value and strength of creating a civil society that judges people by the content of their character and their ability to do a job. Since serving as a Senator, and as the only LGBT member of the Utah legislature, I can say one of the joys of the job has been to meet and enjoy the company of LDS officials. I know that together, we can build a community that strongly protects religious organizations constitutional liberties and, in addition, creates a civil, respectful, nurturing culture where differences are honored and everyone feels welcome. Now, lets roll up our sleeves, get to work and pass a statewide Non-Discrimination Bill."
Dabakis is the co-founder of Equality Utah. Hours after same-sex marriage became legal there in December 2013, he married his husband in a ceremony officiated by Salt Lake City's mayor.

Reposted from Joe Jervis

Via JMG: ABC Greenlights Dan Savage Sitcom

ABC has approved the production of a sitcom pilot based the life of Dan Savage. Via the Hollywood Reporter:
The untitled Savage comedy is a single-camera semi-autobiographical entry based on the LGBT activist/boundary-pushing columnist's life. It centers on a picture-perfect family that is turned upside down when the youngest son comes out of the closet. What seems like the end of their idyllic life turns out to be the beginning of a bright new chapter when everyone stops pretending to be perfect and actually starts being real. Savage is responsible fororganizing the It Gets Better photo campaign following the passage of Prop. 8 and numerous other anti-gay legislation. Galavant, Trophy Wife and Don't Trust the B alum David Windsor and Casey Johnson will pen the script. Savage, Hypomania Content's Brian Pines and DiBonaventura Pictures Television's Dan McDermott will produce.
The wingnuts will totally lose their minds.

Reposted from Joe Jervis

JMG POLL: 7% Of All LGBTs Oppose Marriage Equality, 19% Of Gay Republicans Do Too

Via the Washington Post:
If you thought everyone in the LGBT community wanted gay marriage, you would be wrong. It's much more nuanced than that. A new chart from Pew, based on 2013 data, shows that 7 percent of LGBT Americans said they oppose same-sex marriage. And another 18 percent said they favor it, but that they didn't feel strongly. Perhaps most striking, 39 percent of the LGBT community said the marriage fight was taking focus off other issues of import to them. Opposition to gay marriage in the LGBT community, such as it exists, is driven by three groups: LGBT blacks, LGBT Republicans, and bisexual Americans. While 12 percent of the black LGBT community opposed gay marriage, nearly one in five (19 percent) Republicans did, too. Only 45 percent of LGBT Republicans said they strongly favored gay marriage -- the lowest of any group. Fifty-eight percent of LGBT blacks said they strongly favor it.

Reposted from Joe Jervis

Flor do Dia - Flor del Día - Flower of the Day - 27/01/2015

“É preciso compreender o significado mais profundo da palavra “iniciação”, pois seu significado foi sendo distorcido ao longo do tempo. Iniciação é um compromisso com a divindade que te habita e que pulsa em tudo o que é vivo. É um compromisso com a Verdade, pois significa romper com as máscaras, e com o falso eu. Iniciação é um movimento em direção à entrega; um movimento em direção ao seu coração.”

“Es preciso comprender el significado más profundo de la palabra “iniciación”, pues su significado fue muy distorsionado a lo largo del tiempo. Iniciación es un compromiso con la divinidad que te habita y que pulsa en todo lo que está vivo. Es un compromiso con la Verdad, pues significa romper con las máscaras, y con el falso yo. Iniciación es un movimiento en dirección a la entrega; un movimiento en dirección a tu corazón.”

“It’s important to understand the deeper meaning of the word ‘initiation’, since its meaning has been distorted over time. Initiation is a commitment to the divinity that inhabits us and that pulsates in everything alive. It is a commitment to the truth, which means breaking away from our masks and the false self. Initiation is a movement towards surrender, a movement towards our heart.”

Via Daily Dharma:

Highest Kind of Happiness | January 27, 2015

Neither the coarse feeling of unpleasantness nor the agitated feeling of pleasure, equanimity, the Buddha said, is one of the highest kinds of happiness, beyond compare with mere pleasant feelings.

- Shaila Catherine, "Equanimity in Every Bite"

Via LGBTQ Baha'is and Allies / FB:

Monday, January 26, 2015

Via Queerty: Gay Marriages Took Place In The Christian Church Nearly 2,000 Years Ago


Historian John Boswell’s seminal book on the roots of gay marriage, Same-Sex Unions in Premodern Europe, comes out for the first time in a digital edition next month. The timing seems perfect in the wake of the death of DOMA and Prop 8, though Boswell himself died from complications from AIDS before he saw that momentous day.

Author Annalee Newitz profiles Boswell, a Yale scholar and religious Catholic, as well as his work on i09. Newitz recalls how Boswell dedicated the majority of his scholarly life to researching the late Roman Empire and early Christian Church which yielded some remarkable findings:
There were dozens of records of church ceremonies where two men were joined in unions that used the same rituals as heterosexual marriages. (He found almost no records of lesbian unions, which is probably an artifact of a culture which kept more records about the lives of men generally.)
The poor lesbians — always getting the figurative shaft, for lack of the literal. Anyqueer, Boswell argued that the Church tried to sweep these same-sex unions under the holy rug and redefined marriage — sound familiar — in the 13th century “to be for the purpose of procreation,” as conservatives loudly like to remind us at every turn. But if the Church — not to mention the Oxford Dictionary — can redefine marriage once, what’s wrong with doing it again?

The unions, Newitz points out, don’t necessarily fit the definition of marriage we have today. Taboos against homosexuality, which as a social construct is relatively new (the love that dared not speak its name went unnamed until the late 19th century), as well as the original purpose of matrimony — wealth/land sharing — have changed over time. But many of these unions in Boswell’s research involved the love of two people of the same-sex, which were in turn consecrated by the Christian Church.

King Felipe VI of Spain becomes world's first monarch to appear on gay magazine cover

King Felipe VI of Spain becomes world's first monarch to appear on gay magazine cover - See more at:

Via JMG: ALABAMA: Gay Lawmaker Threatens To Reveal Colleagues' Adulterous Affairs

"I will not stand by and allow legislators to talk about ‘family values’ when they have affairs, and I know of many who are and have. I will call our elected officials who want to hide in the closet out. It is pretty well known that we have people in Montgomery who are or have had affairs. I just want them to be careful what they’re saying, some of it might come back to stick on them." - Openly gay Alabama state Rep. Patricia Todd, speaking today to the Montgomery Times-Daily.

Reposted from Joe Jervis

Via JMG: GREECE: Atheist Prime Minister "Politely" Rebuffs Clergy For Swearing-In Ceremony

Via the Economist:
Greece's new prime minister, Alexis Tsipras, made history within hours of his victory by informing the Archbishop of Athens, very politely, that clerical services would not be required for his swearing-in ceremony. An avowed atheist who has nonetheless made a point of dealing courteously with senior clergy, Mr Tsipras lost no time in making known that his oath of office would be a secular procedure. It was also explained that when the whole cabinet was sworn in, a more junior cleric (but not the archbishop) would be invited to assist those who wished to take a religious oath.

It's hard to overstate what a rupture this marks with the ceremonial culture of Greece. For as long as anybody can remember, every senior office-holder, from socialists to right-wing dictators, has assumed the post with a ritual involving Bibles, crosses and often holy water, sprinkled about with a sprig of basil. The opening words of the Greek constitution recall the theological formulas of the early church which predate by the Hellenic state by more than 1,300 years: "In the name of the holy, consubstantial and indivisible Trinity......"
An Orthodox Christian leader praised Tsipras for declining to take a "false oath." (Tipped by JMG reader Rob)

Reposted from Joe Jervis

Via JMG: POLL: 73% Back Gay Athletes

Via the Public Religion Research Institute:
Roughly three-quarters (73%) of Americans say they would support a professional sports team signing a gay or lesbian athlete, while about 1-in-5 (19%) say they would oppose this action. There is broad support for a professional sports team signing a gay or lesbian athlete across demographic and political groups, including 66% of Republicans, 75% of independents, and 79% of Democrats. A majority of all religious groups would support a professional sports team signing a gay or lesbian athlete, although white evangelical Protestants register lower levels of support. Roughly 8-in-10 white mainline Protestants (77%), Catholics (78%), minority Protestants (66%), and the religiously unaffiliated (84%) favor teams signing gay and lesbian athletes. In contrast, a significantly smaller majority (54%) of white evangelical Protestants say they would favor a team signing a gay or lesbian athlete, while 36% would oppose such a move
Embiggen the image above or go here for more..

Reposted from Joe Jervis

Via JMG: Alabama Advances To Cerulean

Three color changes in three days. Is that a record?

Reposted from Joe Jervis

Politician Wants Arrests After Gays Marry: Jan 26 MNW

Via Collective Evolution / FB: