Author Topic: Transgender Jesus  (Read 2037 times)

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Offline Even Then

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Transgender Jesus
« on: October 13, 2015, 09:47:14 am »
So I came across this thread on Tumblr and it lodged itself into my brain thinky place. If you don't feel like clicking through the link, the post goes a little something like this: tongue-in-cheek shitposting blog just-shower-thoughts posits that if Jesus was born from a virgin birth, that would make him physically female. A few blogs (earnestly or not, I can't tell) latch onto this idea and express their approval for "trans Jesus". What follows is dissent and rage about blasphemy and reducing Jesus to cutesy headcanons, with some posters positing that it's disrespectful to Christians and to Jesus to associate Jesus with transgenderness. Also transphobia in the form of calling transgender people "an empty movement".

Now, I'm not religious. I can only incompletely understand the umbrage these people take. However, it occurred to me after reading said post that perhaps the people who want a "trans Jesus" don't want that for the sake of "cutesy headcanons", but because this person, this divine figure means so much to them on a personal level that maybe they want to feel a deeper connection with him? To not be alone with the confusion and the isolation they feel from mainstream society? To find comfort in the fact that this leader, teacher, parent, friend, guardian knows how they feel and has felt the same struggles? And maybe this extends to other religions as well? To my understanding, the divine is often presented as heterosexual and cisgender entities, implying that there is no place for things that fall outside that restriction in the world beyond our understanding. To want oneself to have a place in that world, to not want to be alone... is that so bad?

And "headcanons"? Isn't every sect of Christianity just a headcanon on the nature of God and Christ? The Bible has become estranged from the original text, spun this way and that to the point where the first "canon" is lost to the ages. Christianity, and all religion, is humans speculating and expanding on the limited, infrequent glimpses that the "divine" presents. So is this speculation only wrong when the gender or sexuality of the divine is speculated to be anything other than cishet? Is the cishet the model of divinity, and to dare hint to the contrary, is it blasphemy?

I don't know. I can't answer. I just have questions and errant ponderings. But I thought I'd share it with you guys, because despite my embarrassing conduct, I still feel like this is a place where people can express their thoughts openly and earnestly. I might be overly optimistic about that, but eh, that's just the way it is.

So... what do you think?
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Offline guizonde

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Re: Transgender Jesus
« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2015, 10:26:37 am »
according to dogma (the movie), angels don't have a gender (or the fun bits). from there we can extrapolate and say the divine is agendered, rendering a divine birth by default agendered.

a devout person can say a divine birth doesn't obey the laws of man or conventional biology, making the question irrelevant.

a cynic can say that since jesus never expressed gender disphoria, nobody knows or should care because it's erasing what he did say (some pretty ok groundrules for the most part) in favor of what he didn't say.

a troll could say mary was intersexed so it could go either way (xy or xx).

an anti-theist could say jesus never existed, rendering the point moot.

my view? a combination of the first three, but mostly that the second. despite the fact that jesus is both divine and human in equal parts in one body according to the myaphisitist doctrine (pre-council of chalcedon in 451 ad), it's a bit more complicated than that since, christologically speaking, the orthodox church (and later, the catholic church) adopted the dyophisite school of thought. basically, it means that jesus is indisociably divine and human, both parts being so thoroughly mixed as to be indisociable.

really, to get a clear answer, you'd better trawl wikipedia's portal of christology (the study of the nature of god and by extension jesus) and make up your own mind. please keep in mind this has been a touchy subject since the church's creation, basically. but yeah, the answer will change based on your faith, dogma, and upbringing.

basically, coptics, armenians, and a few other sects of eastern orthodoxy follow miaphysitist doctrine, whereas the orthodox and catholics are dyophisite.

tl;dr: who knows for sure? the argument's two thousand years old.
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Offline TheL

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Re: Transgender Jesus
« Reply #2 on: October 13, 2015, 12:05:22 pm »
Frankly, all sacred texts are fanfiction about a specific religion's god/s.  And since Jesus is already depicted as lots of different races to match the believer's race, I see no problem with going that next level and having transgender Jesus-concepts floating around.

After all, wasn't the whole point of the incarnation supposed to be "He became like us and experienced life as real humans do?"
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Offline Barbarella

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Re: Transgender Jesus
« Reply #3 on: October 13, 2015, 01:39:30 pm »
Frankly, all sacred texts are fanfiction about a specific religion's god/s.  And since Jesus is already depicted as lots of different races to match the believer's race, I see no problem with going that next level and having transgender Jesus-concepts floating around.

After all, wasn't the whole point of the incarnation supposed to be "He became like us and experienced life as real humans do?"

Agreed. Jesus can be ANYTHING.


I personally like the idea of Jesus & Mary Magdalene being an "item", myself....complete with an active sex life.

As for Transgender Jesus....it's an interesting theory, considering the process of parthenogenesis.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parthenogenesis
Offspring in these cases are always female.

Besides, Deity isn't bound by gender. Deity can be both genderless & androgynous.

If there's a Supreme Being, it's likely a vague, dual-gendered, genderless, gender-trascending, universal Pantheistic thing rather than some "big guy in the sky". All deities are merely anthropormorphic archetypes with a spiritual element tossed in. I apply this to YHVH, Brahman, Wankan Tanka or whatever.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2015, 02:27:37 pm by Barbarella »


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Offline Svata

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Re: Transgender Jesus
« Reply #4 on: October 13, 2015, 02:12:54 pm »
Personally the idea just makes me giggle at how much it'd piss off fundies and other transphobes.
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Offline Barbarella

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Re: Transgender Jesus
« Reply #5 on: October 13, 2015, 02:28:08 pm »
Personally the idea just makes me giggle at how much it'd piss off fundies and other transphobes.

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Offline Askold

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Re: Transgender Jesus
« Reply #6 on: October 13, 2015, 03:19:03 pm »
I assume that this line of thought came from those lizards that give "virgin birth" as all the males died out after one of the lizards mutated into basically giving birth to clones of itself.

...And as I was Yahooing to find the name of those lizards I stumbled into this wiki page (Even though Barbarella already provided the same link. I hadn't updated the page after seeing the original post...) and found out that there are actually several species that can give birth without a male: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parthenogenesis Some of them can even give birth to male offspring.

Anyway, if we believe that God can create miracles believing that the birth of Jesus was a divine miracle then having him be a male isn't any crazier than the other miracles Jesus has been described doing in the Bible. (Healing sick, turning water to wine, multiplying food, RAISING THE DEAD etc.) I suppose if you go with a theory that the miracles in the Bible have mundane explanation then parthenogenesis is slightly less plausible theory than simply assuming that Jesus wasn't born from a virgin birth.
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Offline guizonde

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Re: Transgender Jesus
« Reply #7 on: October 13, 2015, 03:35:52 pm »
Anyway, if we believe that God can create miracles believing that the birth of Jesus was a divine miracle then having him be a male isn't any crazier than the other miracles Jesus has been described doing in the Bible. (Healing sick, turning water to wine, multiplying food, RAISING THE DEAD etc.) I suppose if you go with a theory that the miracles in the Bible have mundane explanation then parthenogenesis is slightly less plausible theory than simply assuming that Jesus wasn't born from a virgin birth.

to be fair, all you need to turn water into wine are grapes...
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Offline Askold

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Re: Transgender Jesus
« Reply #8 on: October 13, 2015, 03:41:16 pm »
Anyway, if we believe that God can create miracles believing that the birth of Jesus was a divine miracle then having him be a male isn't any crazier than the other miracles Jesus has been described doing in the Bible. (Healing sick, turning water to wine, multiplying food, RAISING THE DEAD etc.) I suppose if you go with a theory that the miracles in the Bible have mundane explanation then parthenogenesis is slightly less plausible theory than simply assuming that Jesus wasn't born from a virgin birth.

to be fair, all you need to turn water into wine are grapes...

...And the good old "let's hire a guy to fake being sick and/or dead" trick is also possible and often used by charlatans who sell snake oil.

And don't get me started on trays and baskets with a hidden compartment. Maybe he simply hid enough fish and bread to feed a huge mass of people?
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"If you strike me down, I shall become more powerful than you could possibly imagine."
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Offline Ultimate Paragon

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Re: Transgender Jesus
« Reply #9 on: October 13, 2015, 03:45:08 pm »
You know, I've actually heard some interesting speculation that Jesus may have been intersex.

Offline mellenORL

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Re: Transgender Jesus
« Reply #10 on: October 13, 2015, 03:57:09 pm »
The whole virgin birth thing was just a Mithras bias selectiveness of texts by the Council of Nicaea. Emperor Constantine wanted a version of Christianity that would be palatable to the people he ruled. Hence all the story points that coincide to pagan deities' and mythical heroes' life stories, going all the way back to Gilgamesh. If there was in fact a radical roving Rabbi preaching peace and tolerance from village to village, the chances that more than an inkling of what he actually said and did surviving Nicaea are about zilch.
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Re: Transgender Jesus
« Reply #11 on: October 13, 2015, 07:12:06 pm »
Frankly, all sacred texts are fanfiction about a specific religion's god/s.  And since Jesus is already depicted as lots of different races to match the believer's race, I see no problem with going that next level and having transgender Jesus-concepts floating around.

After all, wasn't the whole point of the incarnation supposed to be "He became like us and experienced life as real humans do?"

...Jesus is a Vorlon?

Online davedan

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Re: Transgender Jesus
« Reply #12 on: October 13, 2015, 07:39:43 pm »
Parthonegenic Jesus. Would have to be female. And a clone of Mary - so the Catholics were right to venerate Mary - as she was genetically identical to Jesus.

Offline Sigmaleph

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Re: Transgender Jesus
« Reply #13 on: October 13, 2015, 08:53:50 pm »
Going up a level, is it ever OK to have headcanons about religious figures?

Yes. Trivially so, a headcanon is, y'know, a thought. Thoughts are never morally wrong.

Is it ever OK to publicly talk about your religious headcanons?

Contextually dependent. I mean, if on Sunday during my grandmother's birthday I start talking about how Jesus was clearly a con artist, she's not going to take it well, will be upset, make everything awkward, etc. If instead I post it here, nobody is going to be upset, might spark an interesting discussion, etc.

Religious people can understandably be offended when their religion is not treated with proper sacredness, and I guess to an extent they have a right to say "don't say such things about Jesus in front of me, it's rude". On the other hand, they do not have the right to demand I treat their religion with respect when I'm not talking to them. I happen to know people who prefer to treat Christianity as a fandom rather than a religion (because, y'know, Tumblr) and so if I'm talking to them and I want to headcanon Jesus as a trans pansexual genderqueer who liked to use zir omniscience to spoil movies for the apostles, nobody is going to stop me.

But if I do that, I'm not gonna tag it "Christianity", because the sort of person who follows that tag probably does not want to see it.


TL;DR: Headcanon religious figures however you like, just don't do it where people who might be offended are looking, 'cause it's rude.
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Offline Sylvana

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Re: Transgender Jesus
« Reply #14 on: October 15, 2015, 04:19:27 am »
Interesting thought about Jesus being Trans.
If there was no male sperm involved that would technically make Jesus genetically female. However, if you consider that God would require his Representative on earth to be male, as women were property, would back up said genetically female Jesus living and acting masculine.

I prefer a much simpler theory.
IF any of it was real, someone either Joseph or Maries uncle had sex with or raped her leading to the birth of Jesus. Jesus was male and very likely gay.
But really that's just my personal take on the 'evidence' in the bible.