Hey, come take a seat! As usual, people have drifted into opposing camps on this topic, neither of which appeal to me. I’m not trying to hurt anyone’s feelings, or push an agenda. How is it that every group feels like a victim? My family is religious and rather opposed to many of the things that I do. But I still love them in spite of it all. (most of the time!). it’s sad to think such silly differences can tear us all apart.
So, with that being said, Let’s get to it! Some people insist that there are only 2 genders. Personally, I’m inclined to disagree. Rather than 2 binary genders, I think there are 2 poles of gender.
On the other hand, there are people who claim there are ‘millions’ of genders (or 63, apparently. ) or suggest that gender is merely a social construct and so on. I have to admit there is some truth the idea. Part of what we consider male and female is cultural, while other aspects are ingrained.
Gender roles vary from culture to culture, and from era to era. Some of it is frankly rather bizzare. Take High Heels as an example. They were designed for riding horses- and were once a symbol of masculinity. Long hair wasn’t always derided as feminine, and crying was perfectly manly during the ages of antiquity.
Also, homosexuality wasn’t considered some kind of evil sin against god. People tolerated it, though it was never exactly encouraged. And more to the point, hermaphrodite is an old term for a reason. Traditionally there were entire social classes of ‘gender deviant individuals. Although in modern times they are a dying breed.
India and thailand are some of the few places left where “gender deviant” individuals openly exist. The kathoey or “ladyboys” of thailand are often the butt of many a joke, but it is no laughing matter. There are complex social issues at work.
In india, it is the hijaras. They are at the bottom of society often forced to become prostitutes, in spite of being considered sacred. And it gets stranger: According to Classical Judaism there are 6 genders!
1. Androgynous – having both male and female sexual characteristics
2. Tumtum – a person whose sexual characteristics are indeterminate or obscured
3. Ay’lonit – someone who identified as female at birth but develops male characteristics at puberty and is infertile
4. Saris – someone who is identified as male at birth but develops female characteristics at puberty and/or is lacking male genitalia.
The strange thing is that some people developing change genders at puberty for reasons as of yet unknown to us. We don’t understand how the human body works as of yet. And that’s not even mentioning how intersex people seem to get shoved under the rug.
Why did people suddenly decide that these things never existed? It shows a staggering amount of short sightedness! These things have only been suppressed in recent years, which is incredibly unhealthy. And now it all comes apart at the seams. Like anything suppressed. Some people will mention sexual Chromozones at this point and attempt to say that a male has XY and a female XX. That’s yet another cultral myth. It’s not that simple. If Have you heard of chimerism?
The binary model can’t cut the mustard when faced with reality.. shades of grey start flooding in. After studying eastern philosophy, I realised the west has this massive problem where it tries twist the world to fit into black and white, and will cut away until it fits. You get paradoxes and seeming contradictions because the mindset insists that something must be one or the other.
The real world doesn’t work in absolutes. Things are always a matter of degree. I can’t get this line out of my head, even after all these years: “opposites are identical in nature, but different in degree” The Kybalion.
Think about the idea of hot and cold. You can bring something from a gentle chill to absolute zero, up to a Blazing inferno then back to a gentle sizzle. but can you say where heat ends and cold begins? You can’t.
Gender is like that as well. That’s androgyny. Think Gender as a scale or spectrum and you’ll be on the right track.
In the end, The binary model needs to be scrapped. We also don’t need to invent a million labels. It isn’t healthy. People need to learn a sense of self that comes from within. Gender ‘deviancy’ Is nothing new. As the old saying goes,: there is nothing new under the sun.”
Classical Judaism 6 genders