Homosexuality and Article 377: A Chance to Reclaim our Culture

In a very progressive judgment, Supreme Court of India scrapped Article 377 of the Indian Penal Code, which was introduced by Britishers in 1861.

Though it took independent India, around more than 70 years to term it unconstitutional and irrational, nevertheless it was a step in the right direction

Indian culture since time immemorial accepted sexual relationships between the same-sex. Then wonder, why did we as a nation took so long to get rid of the Victorian era hypocrisy?

Our scriptures say the truth is without attributes and form. It is absolutely pure, genderless, bodiless, and exists everywhere equally.

Then how come we got entrapped in the notions of morality that are not even ours regarding sexual relationships?

When the river merges into the ocean, there is no distinction between the two. Similarly, Avadhoota Gita says there is no distinction between Purusha and Prakriti. And this very union of the two is manifested in the universe.

Then why create artificial divisions of natural/unnatural, good/evil and correct/incorrect?

We have gods whose sexual identity is fluid, we have temples that have carvings that depict both men and women engaging in homosexual acts, and our scriptures, myths, folklore, rituals, and culture have also given a place to the alternate gender preference. Our ancient culture has been quite accommodative (though didn’t provide sanction entirely) to a different notion of love and relationships.

In our culture, the divine is the harmonious union of Shiva and Shakti. The Ardhanrishwar, the androgynous god who is half Shiva and half Parvati, is the perfect fusion of Purusha and Prakriti. It is half male and half female.

Our dear Lord Ayappa, who is in the midst of different controversy and war between men and women was born from the union of Shiva and Vishnu.

Similarly, there are many references made to homosexuality in our Vedic and other scriptures.

Let’s the free people from the burden of notions of morality, crime, and sin. We belong to the land of seekers who aim for much higher goals in life.

Let’s free people from the cages of conventions and traditional gender boxes.

Let’s reclaim our ancient culture and our values that are far more progressive, inclusive and diverse.

Image: From Khajuraho temples

Image Credit: By Aotearoa [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)%5D, from Wikimedia Commons

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