Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Some comments of mine about liberal views of sexual behaviour in the West

For readers to have the full context of my comments about liberal views of sexual behaviour in the West, they would have to visit the linked public Facebook posts.

Given below are my recent comments (slightly edited; dated on or a day or two before 13th Feb. 2018) from public Facebook post-comment thread here, https://www.facebook.com/terry.reiskennedy/posts/10215715094329172?comment_id=10215744890514058 :

I prefer to follow Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba's teachings in this regard which conform to rather conservative Hindu traditions. I think those traditions have survived the test of time over millennia.

I don't know how to view the attitude of significant part of Western society today which you have referred to and which I think is referred to as liberal views. As a non-Western man, a Hindu Indian man, I am respectful of these views of the liberals for which they have fought in their society, in the judicial system and in the political field, and won significant gains.

But I have to say that I am glad that so far most of India is still traditional with the kind of views that you mentioned being limited to small communities in big cities, as far as I know. As this is a super-sensitive topic especially among Western readers I do not want to say much on this.

But I think I must say that we have not had such communities in significant numbers such that they are given certain recognition in society, in the past history in most of the world. So one wonders whether such communities may survive the test of time and continue to have significant numbers and have special recognition in the societies that they live in.

As I wrote earlier, I am respectful of such liberal views of some sections of Western society. So there is no question of me condemning them.

However, I do think that I was fairly accurate when I wrote above, "we have not had such communities in significant numbers such that they are given certain recognition in society, in the past history in most of the world."

Yes, especially male homosexuals have been around in many past societies in history including India (don't know whether there was much of female homosexuality in past societies), transgenders too have been around in past societies in history including India. But I don't think they had the kind of recognition and rights that they have today in some countries in the West. That's new, I think. Now I am not saying that's right or that's wrong. I simply respect the choice of Western countries to make those decisions.

And, of course, I do not condemn any such LGBTQ individual of the West or of India or of other countries. I would though have some concern about introducing LGBTQ rights in India like it is in the USA now, as I wonder how it will impact Indian society. That does not mean I condemn them.

BTW one of the top academic scholars of Hinduism today, in my considered opinion, is Prof. Diana Eck of Harvard University, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diana_L._Eck. I was simply blown away in admiration by her book: India: A Sacred Geography, https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/12063922-india. What a superb understanding of Hinduism Prof. Diana Eck has! She had lived in Benaras for many years. Perhaps that helped her get this superb understanding of Hinduism. She is an open lesbian. That does not reduce any admiration that I have for her great scholarship and knowledge about Hinduism.

I was not sure whether your comment partially referred to my comment. In any case, I am glad to have expressed myself in more detail, on this sensitive and pretty complex issue. Thanks for engaging in this conversation.

Given below is my comment dated 13th Feb. 2018 from public post titled, "THE INFLUENCE OF USA SEXUAL BEHAVIOR ON OTHER CULTURES", https://www.facebook.com/terry.reiskennedy/posts/10215759121829832 :

Very interesting read! Thanks.

As a Hindu Indian living in rather conservative rural India over the past one and a half decades, I do have concerns about some of these views from this conservative rural Indian context and impact such views would have if adopted by large sections of rural India.

But I think the West, in particular the USA, has had extraordinary freedoms, including freedom of thought and imagination, backed by extraordinary prosperity after a decade or so after World War II. That, in the USA, has created so many alternative lifestyles related to sexual behaviour, with significant sized communities living it and/or backing it who fought and ****won**** legal rights to lead those lifestyles, which I think was never seen before in human history!

I mean gays have been around in human history in the ancient times too with documentation of their presence in literature of those times (parts of it which survived for modern scholars to study it). But I don't think gay marriage with rights to raise children as their legal children would have been part of big kingdoms or empires in Asia or in Europe in the past centuries and millennia (before WWII)!

Of course, as I mentioned elsewhere, I fully respect the hard-won rights of these alternative sexual behaviour lifestyle people in the West.

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