Regarding Texas Governor Rick Perry’s recent comments on Homosexuality at a San Francisco event, consider:
Many claim extending marriage to same-sex couples is naturally just, but “…justice is not, as Ortega [y Gasset] put it, “an instinct but a specifically human creation―like literature. In both, the most important factor is imagination…The sexual instinct…in man…is almost always found to be indissolubly united, at least, with fantasy.” Too, he observes, “The notorious disproportion between the sexuality of man and woman, which makes the normally spontaneous woman so conservative in ‘love,’ probably coincides with the fact that the human female usually enjoys less imaginative power than the male”―which, let me [Lukacs] add, may explain why male homosexuality is almost everywhere more frequent than is Lesbianism, lust being a product of the imagination, and men being more imaginative than women.[i] To this I should add that sexual perversion may be often not the result of a hormonal or physical imbalance but of existential and historical conditions, involving a disease of imagination.”[ii] Nevertheless, as DSM-5 notes, “…in recent years we have seen the exclusion of homosexuality from the classification of mental disorders in ICD-10[iii] and some national classifications, whereas in other classifications, homosexuality is still seen as a mental disorder that requires psychiatric treatment.”[iv]
Leading intellects among the ancients, like Philo of Alexandria, went beyond the clinical. He wrote that The Law precludes homosexuality in any form: “It begins with the men who belie their sex and are affected with effemination, who debase the currency of nature and violate it by assuming the passions and the outward form of licentious women.”[v] He went further, observing that “…one who plans to bring them into abnormal companionship is unjust because he upsets a law of nature. In fact, the transformation of the male nature to the female is practiced by them as an art and does not raise a blush. These persons are rightly judged worthy of death by those who obey the law, which ordains that the man-woman who debases the sterling coin of nature should perish unavenged, suffered not to live for a day or even an hour, as a disgrace to himself, his house, his native land and the whole human race. And the lover of such may be assured that he is subject to the same penalty.”[vi] Further, and in accordance with the then widespread belief that secular life cannot hide from divine judgment, he concluded: “The bad man thinks that God is in a place, not containing but contained; and for this reason, he imagines that he can hide from Him, fancying that God, the Author of all things, is not in that part, which he has chosen for his lurking-place.”[vii] Placed on paper 2,000 years ago, these words accord well with the teachings of the Holy Qur’an, to wit: “‘(Is it not true that) of all the people you alone approach males (for sexual satisfaction), ‘And leave that (abode of love) which your Lord has created for you in your wives. ‘Nay, (the real fact) you are a people who know no limits.’ They said, ‘If you desist not (of admonishing us for sodomy) O Lot! You shall indeed be one of the banished ones.’ He said, ‘I surely abhor your practice (of going to males), My Lord! Save me and my followers from (the evil consequences) of their deeds.’ So we saved him and his followers, all of them, Except an old woman (- wife of Lot), who was among those who stayed behind, Then we destroyed the others. And we pelted them with a terrible rain (of stones). Look! How terrible was the rain (that descended) upon those who were warned. There is a great sign in this (episode), yet most of them would not be believers. And indeed your Lord, He is the All-Mighty, the Ever Merciful.”[viii]
Christianity preceded this with: “Do not lie with a man as one lies with a woman; that is detestable. Leviticus 18:22. If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them.” Leviticus 20:13.
Bernanos, that singular Roman Catholic writer and polemicist writes of this: “the charade will go on until, on the other side of death, that first glance from the Judge will make it all fly into smithereens.”[ix] For Bernanos it is clear: reform while there is still time, for as the ancients understood, “…when the body is wrecked with the mighty strength of time, and the frame has succumbed with blunted strength, the intellect limps, the tongue babbles, the intelligence totters, all is wanting and fails at the same time.”[x] What recourse then is left?
[i] Historical Consciousness, Copyright © 1968 by John Lukacs, Harper & Row, Publishers, Page 240.
[ii] Historical Consciousness, Copyright © 1968 by John Lukacs, Harper & Row, Publishers, Page 240.
[iii] The International Classification of Diseases (ICD) is the standard diagnostic tool for epidemiology, health management and clinical purposes. This includes the analysis of the general health situation of population groups. It is used to monitor the incidence and prevalence of diseases and other health problems.
[iv] The Conceptual Evolution of DSM-5, Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition, American Psychiatric Association, Copyright © American Psychiatric Publishing, Inc., Arlington, VA, Page 63.
[v] Philo, Volume VII, edited by G. P. Gould, The Loeb Classical Library (LCL 320), Page 289, year 1998.
[vi] Philo, Volume VII, edited by G. P. Gould, The Loeb Classical Library (LCL 320), Page 499, year 1998.
[vii] Philo, Volume I, Book III, edited by G. P. Gould, The Loeb Classical Library (LCL 226), Page 305, year 1991.
[x] Lucretius, De Rerum Natura, with English translation by W. H. D. Rouse, revised by Martin Ferguson Smith, Copyright © 1975, 1992 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College, Loeb Classical Library (LCL 181), Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Massachusetts; London England, Page 223.