Divine Androgyne: Transexuality and Spirituality
Our current society has a hard time accepting transsexual persons at all, let alone accepting the unique spirituality that often emerges from transsexuality. But time and time again, in culture after culture, we can find historical reference to transsexuals being given a right to be openly transsexual in the context of their societies. And in some cases, they were even given special status, usually because they were perceived to embody the union of male and female.
In Rome, there existed the Gallae: men willingly castrated for religious reasons who then became openly female in society. In India the Hijiras are considered neither man nor woman but a special "third" gender and are given special status as bestowers of blessings. Several Native American peoples considered transsexuals as two-spirit people, unique beings, often with a duty to serve their community as a shaman. In several African cultures, to this day, the transsexual is often considered a magician or healer.
The society in which we live determines much of what we take for granted as "the truth." However, as most transsexual persons would tell you, things aren't always what they seem. When we can step back from our commonly accepted societal judgments for a moment, another view of the transsexual emerges, that of the Divine Androgyne: a visual human representation of a kind of perfection; wholeness; autonomy; integration; synthesis.
Whether you want to look at the phenomenon of transsexuality from a spiritual viewpoint or not, it's safe to say that our modern culture has a lot to learn - not only from the spirituality of modern transsexuals, but from the historical examples of the societal status of the transsexual.
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