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Identity issues and their implications for broader society.

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posted on Nov, 21 2014 @ 05:58 AM
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originally posted by: Walsh
a reply to: James1982

sorry james in advance for any flaming you might get for posting your thoughts .

same thing happen to me for asking a question about "transgender " in an intro thread .


regarding your OP , i am curious to know how a "transgender " makes the transition . is it really something that happens from birth ? or is it something stemming from a traumatic incident. i am curious , maybe a "transgender" can give us some inn-site .

thanks for the thread


The only insight I can give into that is that a friend who works at the VA has mentioned that he sees a very large number of older transgender service members go through, and due to the Military's ban that means they transitioned after serving. I understand how suggesting that trauma could cause a person to have those feelings could be seen as offensive, as some accusation that they are "broken" but if we believe that sexuality is a result of brain-wiring, then it would stand to reason anything that changes your brain's wiring could also change your sexuality. We know the brain reacts physically to non-physical (meaning things other than head injuries) things, so actual trauma might not be required.

There is the example of how those who were sexually abused are more likely to go on to abuse others, so there is evidence that our environment can play a part in our sexuality, although that could just be our environment causing changes in our brain that manifest in different sexuality. To be clear, I'm not saying transgender people are abusers, I'm just using that as an example of how life events can shape who we are.

Being "born that way" would imply that whatever part of your brain responsible for your sexuality was present and in place at birth, but that clashes a bit with other evidence. My personal opinion, for what it's worth, is that who we are is dictated by how our environment interacts with our genetics, and that neither is solely responsible for what/who we are. Some sort of trauma might cause something to manifest, but only if they have certain genetics, for example.




posted on Nov, 21 2014 @ 06:11 AM
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I think men are men and female are female and they can be much alike mentality, we are humans after all and its still natural and normal but when they start sexual experiences between same genders its not so much natural and normal, there aint nothing wrong with men feeling much more sensitive than other man or wise verse with female feeling much more manly than other female. But obviously its made like its a huge problem and one must be gay or at very least soul grew in from gender body... Ofc its already so far gone that things gona roll how they rolling but i think something normal and natural had been made to b tool of destruction amongst human spiritual development and its not only thing either, there are many things i feel are nothing but spells and illusions infiltrated to our societies and their ways of thinking.



posted on Nov, 21 2014 @ 06:11 AM
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a reply to: James1982

Interesting thread btw, i get some of what you are saying here. While i recognise/believe whatever that being transgendered is a genuine thing i do wonder if in some cases trauma may be a deciding factor.

You mentioned earlier about how it was more prevelant nowadays, or at least in the sense of people feeling as if they were born the wrong gender. No doubt that is in part due to some positive changes in the way LGBT folk are accepted, but also due to modern media's ability to let people know that there are others who feel the same way.



posted on Nov, 21 2014 @ 06:11 AM
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originally posted by: skalla


I expect it's more than just an affinity with blue over pink, or trains over barbie.

And i'd hate to look at my bits and pieces and feel that they were all "wrong" and that i wanted nowt to do with them. I have a name for mine and everything, we're very close.



This is very true. It's obviously much more complicated then trains verses barbies. If you are comfortable with your gender identity, then the idea of having an operation to change your genitalia to the other gender should seem horrifying to you. For example, just the idea of changing my vagina to a penis freaks me out. Not that I have anything against penises, as I am a heterosexual female, but I just don't want one, thank you.

Those of us who feel comfortable with our gender identities have a hard time understanding those who don't. I don't know if we will ever truly understand what it's like to be in their shoes, so the best way to handle it, in my opinion, is to respect all individuals and allow them to be whomever they want to be - as long as they are not hurting anyone else.



posted on Nov, 21 2014 @ 06:18 AM
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originally posted by: skalla
a reply to: James1982

I suppose that the obvious start to this is to listen to someone who is transgendered and find out in detail how they would describe these feelings.

You know, i'm not sure i ever have.



Neither have I. I'd love to get that perspective, my only reservation about asking someone in person would be the obvious touchy nature of the subject. I feel like I might be unable to ask the questions I really want to out of fear of offending that person, so it might just end up as a superficial exercise. Also, as I don't know any transgender folks I'd have to resort to asking a stranger which would make the whole situation pretty uncomfortable for both of us I'd imagine.

I agree completely when you mention how if someone is willing to go through that much suffering to become a man/woman I'm not going to question their honesty about it. I'm not questioning anyone's honesty in that regard, I'm not denying they have these feelings, I'm just not convinced these feelings always mean what we think they do.

Thinking of one's own genitals as foreign and out of place would seem to be an obvious indicator of something being "off" about the mind/body connection, but the specifics of what that means seems more vague to me.

I'm reminded of "Body Integrity Identity Disorder" where people feel that parts of their body are not their own, and seek to have them removed. The person feels like they are an amputee even though they are not, which seems to have some similarities to feeling one gender but being another.

South Park did a skit awhile back about one kid becoming black and his father becoming a dolphin because that's what they felt like. That seems totally ridiculous to us, but the idea of a man becoming a woman did to most people too. As times continue to change, will people start feeling like 2-headed zebras with robot legs? Again, sounds ridiculous, but how do you judge a person's feelings?

To come back to the idea that if a person knows they will face social abuse by changing their gender, and still do it, that must mean they are very serious. Which I agree with, but if society starts being more open and stops judging those types of things, then doesn't that open it up for people who aren't actually very serious to start wearing a new identity? If that day comes how do we determine who is being "real" and who is just wearing a popular fashion? I'm not suggesting we continue ostracizing people to avoid that from happening, I'm just genuinely curious how these types of things will play out.



posted on Nov, 21 2014 @ 06:34 AM
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originally posted by: kaylaluv

originally posted by: skalla


I expect it's more than just an affinity with blue over pink, or trains over barbie.

And i'd hate to look at my bits and pieces and feel that they were all "wrong" and that i wanted nowt to do with them. I have a name for mine and everything, we're very close.



This is very true. It's obviously much more complicated then trains verses barbies. If you are comfortable with your gender identity, then the idea of having an operation to change your genitalia to the other gender should seem horrifying to you. For example, just the idea of changing my vagina to a penis freaks me out. Not that I have anything against penises, as I am a heterosexual female, but I just don't want one, thank you.

Those of us who feel comfortable with our gender identities have a hard time understanding those who don't. I don't know if we will ever truly understand what it's like to be in their shoes, so the best way to handle it, in my opinion, is to respect all individuals and allow them to be whomever they want to be - as long as they are not hurting anyone else.


I wasn't trying to limit it to specifics like blue over pink, but could only use those types of examples because I really don't know what it means to feel like a man or a woman. I'm a man, my body doesn't feel foreign to me, but I don't feel like a man I just feel like myself. Maybe I do feel like a man, and I Just don't realize it because that's all I've ever felt, but when I think about myself I don't think "this man right here" I just think "me" as a separate entity from both male and female. Not in the sense that I don't recognize myself as being a man, but just that aside from my genitals the concept of "man" doesn't really mean much to me. The only other concepts I have of "man" are just cultural ones.

That was kind of rambling, sorry, but what I basically was trying to say is that I used the stereotypical examples of boy/girl because that's the only way I could really describe it, but I do understand it goes deeper than that.

I agree on respecting individuals, I'm not trying to discern whether transgender people are OK for me to like or not. The whole concept is just fascinating to me, from the causes, meanings, to implications on consciousness and society, it's a really loaded subject even if you ignore all the political aspects of it.



posted on Nov, 21 2014 @ 06:48 AM
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originally posted by: skalla
a reply to: James1982

Interesting thread btw, i get some of what you are saying here. While i recognise/believe whatever that being transgendered is a genuine thing i do wonder if in some cases trauma may be a deciding factor.

You mentioned earlier about how it was more prevelant nowadays, or at least in the sense of people feeling as if they were born the wrong gender. No doubt that is in part due to some positive changes in the way LGBT folk are accepted, but also due to modern media's ability to let people know that there are others who feel the same way.


I'm not sure if it is more prevalent I was curious what others opinions were, although I think most would agree it's more visible.

As far as people connecting, do you think there is any possibility of a homogenizing (seriously not trying to be clever) of peoples thoughts and ideas? In the sense that people who have similar feelings will connect, and then after forming a community the different members slightly change to more closely match each other?

This type of behavior is common in pretty much any setting, where you join with a group and over time you loose a few of your own ideas and gain a few from other people. I'm not suggesting that someone is going around tricking people into becoming transgender, but perhaps some people who have a unique feeling of "my body is wrong" will subconsciously slightly alter or direct those feelings in a way that allows them to better relate to the other members of the group?

I'm just spitballing here not trying to accuse anyone of being a fake transgender, I just think it's a far more nuanced and complex situation than the simple wrong body scenario, but then again I believe the vast majority of things in life are far more complex and nuanced than we think, so there's that


I want to truly thank you guys for your posts, it's almost 5am here and I've got things to do tomorrow so I should probably be heading to bed!



posted on Nov, 21 2014 @ 07:03 AM
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originally posted by: James1982


South Park did a skit awhile back about one kid becoming black and his father becoming a dolphin because that's what they felt like. That seems totally ridiculous to us, but the idea of a man becoming a woman did to most people too. As times continue to change, will people start feeling like 2-headed zebras with robot legs? Again, sounds ridiculous, but how do you judge a person's feelings?

To come back to the idea that if a person knows they will face social abuse by changing their gender, and still do it, that must mean they are very serious. Which I agree with, but if society starts being more open and stops judging those types of things, then doesn't that open it up for people who aren't actually very serious to start wearing a new identity? If that day comes how do we determine who is being "real" and who is just wearing a popular fashion? I'm not suggesting we continue ostracizing people to avoid that from happening, I'm just genuinely curious how these types of things will play out.



There is quite a bit of evidence that there have been men wanting to live as women (and vice verse) since ancient times. I don't believe this is a new or recent issue. Many cultures accept transgenders. Those cultures don't seem to have an overabundance of people wanting to live as strange creatures (like 2-headed zebras with robot legs). I just don't see that this is going to play out in any way other than how it has played out since recorded history. A very small percentage of men see themselves as women and want to live that way, and a very small percentage of women see themselves as men and want to live that way.


Every society in history has had some name, role or way of relating to the transsexual, from ancient Canaan and Turkey to India, even to the present day.

Examples abound. For instance, in ancient Rome existed the 'Gallae', Phrygian worshipers of the Goddess Cybele. Once decided on their choice of gender and religion, physically male Gallae ran through the streets and threw their own severed genitalia into open doorways, as a ritualistic act.
The household receiving these remains considered them a great blessing. In return, the household would nurse the Gallae back to health. The Gallae then ceremoniously received female clothes, and assumed a female identity. Commonly, they would be dressed as brides, or in other splendid clothing.

In India, ritual practices for transsexual individuals continue to the present day. Called Hijiras, this sect also worship a Goddess, and undergo a primitive sort of sex reassignment surgery. The Hijiras are treated in a rather hypocritical fashion within Indian society however, in that they are both despised and revered at the same time. Hijiras often are paid to attend a bless weddings, and to act as spiritual and social advisors, but are also shunned as less than worthy eunuchs. Yet in other circumstances, such as social situations, they are accorded the status of true females.

The Dine, or Navajos of the southwest United States, recognize three sexes instead of only two. For the Dine, there are Males, Females, and Nadles, which are considered somewhat both and neither. While those born intersexed or hermaphroditic are automatically considered Nadle, physically 'normal' individuals may define as Nadle based on their own self-definition of gender identity. The Nadle once possessed far greater respect before the Navaho were conquered and their culture all but obliterated by the forced assumption of Catholicism.

Among the Sioux, the Winkte served much the same function, and individuals could assume the complete role of their preferred gender. Physical females lived as male warriors, and had wives, while physical males lived their lives completely as women. In Sioux society no special magic was associated with this, it was just considered a way of correcting a mistake of nature. Winkte would also perform primitive reassignment operations of a sort, and history records the process used by physical males: riding for days on a special hard saddle to crush the testicles and thus effectively castrate the individual.

Whether it is the Sererr of the Pokots of Kenya, the Xaniths of Islamic Oman, the Mahu of Tahiti, or even the Sekrata of Madagascar, the story is essentially the same: transsexuality was a fact of life, and a place in society was made for the gender dysphoric to be themselves.


transsexual.org...



posted on Nov, 21 2014 @ 11:20 AM
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originally posted by: James1982

South Park did a skit awhile back about one kid becoming black and his father becoming a dolphin because that's what they felt like. That seems totally ridiculous to us, but the idea of a man becoming a woman did to most people too. As times continue to change, will people start feeling like 2-headed zebras with robot legs? Again, sounds ridiculous, but how do you judge a person's feelings?

To come back to the idea that if a person knows they will face social abuse by changing their gender, and still do it, that must mean they are very serious. Which I agree with, but if society starts being more open and stops judging those types of things, then doesn't that open it up for people who aren't actually very serious to start wearing a new identity? If that day comes how do we determine who is being "real" and who is just wearing a popular fashion? I'm not suggesting we continue ostracizing people to avoid that from happening, I'm just genuinely curious how these types of things will play out.



This reminds of Iain M Bank's Sci-Fi novels about The Culture. Humans can live indefinitely if they so choose. Some change sex for what we would see as a life time, and change back and forth as they wish, both fathering and mothering children. Others take on alien forms of the strangest types, and it seems that many of the population are a really quite jaded. In a sense they do it simply because they can and their life lacks any excitement or scarcity.
I really don't think that transgendered folk would be jaded with a lack of social stigma though, as it is clearly not a motivating factor in their wish to "right" their body, merely the agency by which you and i have in part measured the seriousness of their intent. Indeed, many surely hide their feelings from others due to the stigma and it prevents earlier treatment and support in such cases.

a reply to: James1982

Yes, rather than "it is more prevelant", i really meant "seems more prevalent". I do think that people can homogenise to an extent, i've seen it happen in various sectors of society.
From what little i know of the process required to receive transgender surgery here in the UK, it's a long road of over two years iirc. This involves a long period of "living as a woman" (in the example of someone born male) and counselling prior to any operations. On this basis, one would have to be very strongly motivated and convincing to get through. I did read of a case though of someone who had their surgery reversed, but that's just one.

edit on 21-11-2014 by skalla because: clarity



posted on Nov, 21 2014 @ 11:31 AM
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a reply to: kaylaluv

Indeedy, this news report covers the discovery of a 5000 year old burial of what may be a male transvestite:




The male body – said to date back to between 2900-2500BC – was discovered buried in a way normally reserved only for women of the Corded Ware culture in the Copper Age.
The skeleton was found in a Prague suburb in the Czech Republic with its head pointing eastwards and surrounded by domestic jugs, rituals only previously seen in female graves.
"From history and ethnology, we know that people from this period took funeral rites very seriously so it is highly unlikely that this positioning was a mistake," said lead archaeologist Kamila Remisova Vesinova.
"Far more likely is that he was a man with a different sexual orientation, homosexual or transsexual," she added.





"What we see here doesn't add up to traditional Corded Ware cultural norms. The grave in Terronska Street in Prague 6 is interred on its left side with the head facing the West. An oval, egg-shaped container usually associated with female burials was also found at the feet of the skeleton. None of the objects that usually accompany male burials  such as weapons, stone battle axes and flint knives  were found in the grave.
"We believe this is one of the earliest cases of what could be described as a 'transsexual' or 'third gender grave' in the Czech Republic," archaeologist Katerina Semradova told a press conference on Tuesday.
She said that archeologists had uncovered an earlier case dating from the Mesolithic period where a female warrior was buried as a man.



posted on Nov, 21 2014 @ 08:19 PM
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a reply to: James1982

My opinion is that "gender" in the context of things associated with a particular sex but not necessarily caused by the genitalia itself is simply a performance. It is social conditioning that is related to ones genitalia. If you are born a male or female you are automatically going to lead a very different life just based on having different anatomy. That's why, in my opinion transgender people feel they are "male" or "female". They are associating with the performance of social conditioning that is linked to a particular genitalia. For that reason they feel the need to transition to become the gender that they do not feel they are inside. Boys don't cry and girls like pink...right?

I don't know much about the transgender community other than they get murdered quite a bit compared to the general pop and have read some on their feelings on why they changed, but I am sure that if it were something to where men and women were raised differently those individuals might not feel the need to change their genitalia. The reason I say this is that from what I can tell male and female anatomy is actually very similar. A lot of the things associated with each sex are actually caused by social conditioning. An example of this would be aggression in men or women automatically covering up their chests(breasts are taught to be sexual objects even though they are pretty much same as guys just with more fat). Those are just examples.

Edit:
edit on 21-11-2014 by OrphanApology because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 21 2014 @ 08:35 PM
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off-topic post removed to prevent thread-drift


 



posted on Nov, 21 2014 @ 10:35 PM
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If you are curious a great modern (modern in that they exist today, they have been around for ages)example is the Thai lady boys. They are a (mostly) accepted part of Thai culture.
edit on 21-11-2014 by tavi45 because: auto correct mistake



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