Wednesday, March 2, 2016

The Topic of Transgender people and Transitioning

It occurred to me, tonight, as I was sharing yet another post on facebook related to transgender awareness, that this is a reoccurring topic of personal growth/understanding and realization that I think is worth sharing on my blog here.

It all started one day when I stumbled upon this youtuber: Stef Sanjati.
I happen to know a number of transgender people, although I was never very close to them. And over the years, despite feeling like I had respect for them and their decisions to identify as the opposite gender, I kept getting stuck. I did not get it. Why? How? And so, when I stumbled across this youtuber, and I saw this video. I decided to watch it.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Ynvhmk_zgA

I was blown away. This person, Stef, come across to me, quite clearly, as an extremely genuine, honest and emotionally mature person. Although, I will never know her, and I don't even do a whole lot with makeup or makeup tutorial videos, it was clearly fate that I came across this video in particular.
Learning how to understand something is the best way to learning how to accept, love, appreciate, or even in some cases, reject something with true sincerity.

In this case, however. My eyes were truly, simply opened. The way she told her story and described her feelings and expressed the differences between her feelings and other explanations really helped me to dive deep into the understanding, and accepting of transgender people in a way that I never felt that I could before.

Since then, I have done a bit of research on my free time (mostly out of mere curiosity) and I stumbled upon this article. Which I shared to facebook.

http://brainspongeblog.com/2015/10/29/boy-or-girl/?utm_source=facebook

And today, I saw this video, and it also stuck out to me and I shared it too:

https://www.facebook.com/Upworthy/videos/1202345336472989/

I hope these resources can give you some perspective and insight on the topic of transgender people. I think learning to understand and accept people is the key to start learning how to be kind and respectful to them.

The bottom line I want to say about what I learned is this: being transgender is not having a mental illness. This is not a body-image issue or an issue with gender as Stef pointed out. Rather, this is a biological affect and difference. It's not a choice. A male to female trans person really is a female always has been and vice versa.  Gender is more complicated than just sex organs. Male and female brains form differently. What's to say that there isn't a female brain in a male body for example. Or,  for those religious folk,  the energy that runs through us; our soul or spirit, who we were intended to be. It appears that for some people it just doesn't line up the way it was supposed to. It was a birth-defect like any other. This is a kind of awareness I hope to bring to the topic. Every person deserves respect. In  the car of Transgender people, it is  a bit more complicated  because I  believe it would be disrespectful to say that who they know they are is  a mental illness or am illusion. I think these are all very different things.  We will always have more to learn as humans. We can not act arrogant like we know how the world or people work. It  is  not  black and white and this is a topic which clearly needs an open mind to truly understand.


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Update:
I ran across two interesting articles on this topic from the perspective of both the orthodox church and the catholic church and I want to link them below just to add something for thought.

http://www.patristics.co/2016/05/19/st-basil-and-the-gnostic-philosophy-of-transgenderism/

http://catholic-link.org/2016/04/27/catholic-teaching-on-transgender/?utm_content=bufferb76b2&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer

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