jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)

Think back on all the books, movies, and TV shows you've seen. Think of the families you've seen in them, that you thought were ideal; that you wouldn't mind being a part of; that you really feel there should be more like them in the world.

Now ask yourself: What does the word "family" mean?

  1. A group of people tied together by invisible bonds of love, who will support each other no matter what; try their best to understand and relate to each other no matter how much they change; and sacrifice for each other if necessary.

  2. A person with male-coded genitals and a person with female-coded genitals who get a license from God or the government to use said genitals to produce as many more people as possible, all under the unquestioned rule of the oldest male-coded person.

I always thought #1 was the right definition.

My parents of origin told me that. The church I was born into told me that. The mass media, in the country where I was born, told me that. Everything was love and acceptance and babies and children, and the latter didn't have to come out of the womb of a family member. Adopted children were always, always, true family members. And caring for them was ennobling because they were fragile and vulnerable.

Somehow, while I was growing up, things started to change. A group of people with power, money, and a political agenda tried to redefine marriage and family, to make them more like #2.

Suddenly, we couldn't let kids get adopted, because they deserved to have parents.

Suddenly, we couldn't let people get married, because marriage is super important.

Suddenly, those bonds of love meant nothing, because family is everything.

The worst part is that they don't really believe any of it. Because when they try to defend definition #2, they use #1 for all their examples.

But it's easy to prove that the two aren't the same. All you have to do is talk to one committed same-gender partner, one child with two same-gender parents, or one person who was abused and rejected by her "traditional" family. Because in order for it to be right, no one who doesn't fit in can exist. Everyone has to be faking, or lying. The same way that many of them lie to themselves, telling themselves that they have to get through another day of their miserable lives because this is the only right way, and if they try any other they'll really be miserable.

That was my life for twenty-odd years. That was the fear which kept me bound to it. And which kept me from seeing the real monsters trying to tear down my family of origin were not outside it.

Today is Mother's Day. As a holiday, I'm not sure I like it. I feel like it's another excuse to pretend #2 is the real definition, and to make women and girls feel inferior by giving them impossible role models. Maybe it isn't to everyone, but it's wrong to pretend no one's hurt by how we observe it and talk about it, or accuse them of spoiling things for speaking out.

Having said that, there's no one I'd rather spend it with than my real family. My partners, [personal profile] rev_yurodivy and [personal profile] aliaspseudonym; my sister, [personal profile] cfmv; and my mother especially, [personal profile] burning_ground.

She's been there for me for the last couple years, helping me talk through ideas and see what is really important. She's been nothing but supportive of me, through everything I've had to go through, and has provided material help when said materials were hard to come by. She's also great at creative writing and spiritual / theological musings.

In our personal belief system, feeding another person is an act of worship and gratitude, and a way to honour Inari. We're grateful to have been fed by [personal profile] burning_ground, in more ways than one. And whatever the future holds, we hope to make her proud of us.

(2015 Update Edit: Yuro is no longer partnered with us, and cfmv has cut us off after converting to a conservative religion. It hurt us to lose each of them. We hope to someday find new family members.)

jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)

Content note: Describes religious bigotry and homophobia.

So I was playing an RPG called Cthulhu Saves the World, where the titular squamous horror awakens only to be deprived of his powers. And now he has to go on a quest and become a "true hero," so he can get his powers back and destroy the world.

And it's funny. Not laugh-out-loud hilarious but cute. It helped distract me from the crisis I'm going through right now. Until I ran into this part in the "Hall of Heroes" where one of the characters is rattling off a list of "true heroes," and one of them is Alma the Younger.

Read more... )

jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)
Because I keep running into people I want to tell this to.
Every day that I read religious blogs, I see comments and posts by atheists that I think they would find offensive if they were aimed at them by religious conservatives.

Don't get me wrong; I'm not saying you don't have the right to be upset about how you've been treated. I've blasphemed my parents' religion all over the place, in profound and insightful ways and in more juvenile ones as well. I think the world needs more blasphemy. There are a lot of awful and inhumane teachings, that are ruining real people's lives and that not nearly enough people are challenging.

The thing is, atheists aren't in this alone. It's not a battle of "freethinkers versus religion." It's a battle of "oppressive conservative religion versus minority belief systems." Most atheists, Buddhists, druids, Wiccans, or neopagans wouldn't outlaw competing belief systems if they somehow got to be in charge. The petty tyrants who run conservative Christianity and Islam would.

So I realize it seems ironic to say this to atheists, but this is bigger than who's right about unprovable metaphysical stuff. Quakers, Unitarians, UCCers, people in the belief systems I just mentioned; few of them are your enemies, and all of them can be your allies.

You're not the only ones who are being oppressed, or who've had to face angry parents and family members who think you've been led astray by the devil. You're not the only ones who've read lists of logical fallacies, and applied them to the church you grew up in. And the fact that you feel you came to the "right" conclusions regarding God and the afterlife doesn't make you better than liberal believers. It just makes you a religious supremacist, the same as your conservative enemies.

If you don't like that idea, then here's some advice for you.

Read more... )

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~ Fox | Gem | Rei ~

We tell stories, paint minis, collect identity words, and share them all with our readers. If something we write helps you, let us know.

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