Don't have time to find today's hottest health-related (or just plain inspiring) headlines? Here's what making news as we speak (we opt for the upbeat or amusing, when at all possible). After all, you can find all the bad news on CNN, right?)... Enjoy your day!
How's this for empowering? Renowed "Eat, Pray, Love" author Elizabeth Gilbert unleashed a stunning (and totally inspiring) response to those who use religion to demean and hate the LGBT community. You'll want to read the entire Facebook post, but here's the guts of Gilbert's post, in response to a lesbian woman in her 60's whom she met after a taping for a new Oprah (OWN) show in South Carolina.
The tearful woman (a pillar in her church and community) was tired of hiding her true self, and her loving relationship of over 30 years with another woman, but was certain she would lose everthing (and "go to hell") if she came out. An enraged Gilbert had this sizzling response, a brave and very personal warning to bigots and religious bullies:
Then I was hit with a spike of rage: How DARE someone tell this beautiful, kind, loving, grace-filled, faithful, decent, suffering woman that she is going to hell?
I don't even believe in hell, but I believe there's a special place in hell for people who tell other people that they are going to hell.
It enrages me.
Who do we think we are, to condemn our sisters and brothers to burn? For shame, for shame. (And don't anyone dare throw scripture at me here, to defend their condemnation of a suffering fellow human being — I won't take it. I won't buy a word of it.)
The great irony here, of course, is one of the simplest of all spiritual lessons -- love they neighbor as thyself -- is so often lost, or deliberately ignored. We say, you go Elizabeth, for reminding everyone to stand up to religious bullying that completely ignores the most human of all instincts: love.
What do you think of Gilbert's post? Does it help you feel more empowered if/when you face this kind of situation in your life? Leave your comments!
Is being part of the gay community sometimes as fraught with disapproval as being suddenly thrown into the middle of a Tea Party convention? With so much historic, high-profile good news on gay marriage, it's easy to forget so many LGBT people still feel like outcasts within the gay community.
The internalized shame I feel about my weight is largely a credit to society, where all fat people are treated like second-class citizens. But adulthood should be about repairing those wounds and learning to love myself as I am. Instead, I’m surrounded by people who, despite having faced the same oppression I have as gay men, largely refuse to embrace me at my current size. The end result is that I’ve been out for nearly a decade, and I still feel like an outcast within the gay community. I wish I had faith in that getting better any time soon.
Reflecting on this heartfelt essay, the questions echo loud and clear: Why can't we all seem to get past the weight thing, the six-pack thing, the youth thing, the perfection thing? Or is this merely one person's experience, that in no way reflects on the gay community as a whole? Post your thoughts and take our poll!
The original queen of empowerment (and strong LGBT community supporter) Alanis Morissette also has a soft, spiritual side (check out her chakra-themed website!). So it's no surprise that Alanis is slated to appear on Oprah's Super Soul Sunday program this month, just check out the lyrics to this little known Morissette gem "You Own Me Nothing in Return" featuring this enticing line:
"I'll give you countless amounts of outright acceptance if you want it..and you owe me nothing in return."
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