The Dark Side

I know how it feels to love the night, but only because we’re all perfect in the dark. It’s comforting to be wrapped in the pitch as though no one could see the emptiness where your soul should be, or the stains on what’s left of it. It feels safe like camouflage, like home. And solitude is preferable for the same, and other, reasons: out of sight, out of mind are the happy people living in the daylight who remind you of things you don’t have and can’t even feel; like being a beggar clad in rags and shoes with holes, peering through the window of a warm home as a family sits down to eat a holiday dinner in their Sunday best, but more than the sensation of peeking into another world there’s the sensation that this is the natural order, the way things belong.

The longer you remain in the darkness the more it warps your mind. Fear, anger, hatred, jealousy, all become oversized drives until they burn everything else away. When your dreams are dead only your nightmares can be brought to life. So instead of prioritizing properly clothing a beggar the priority becomes everyone else must know the same suffering and hardship. Your focus is on the punitive rather than the reformative. To say nothing of their merit, schools of thought exist as proponents for justifying, reinforcing, and expanding upon every disturbing worldview. Eventually the right philosophy meets the right depressed and anxious mind and suddenly the world makes sense, horrible sense.

Every time there’s another school shooting, or a white nationalist commits an act terror someone inevitably shares a meme declaring that we don’t have a gun problem, “we have a people problem”, or “a heart problem.” Usually they entail a bit about putting God back in school as if terrorists never had religious motivations. But, despite their religious overtones, and despite the fact we have a gun problem too, we do indeed have a “people,” or “heart” problem. We have too many lonely, isolated individuals doing their best to struggle and cope with a cold, indifferent world made worse by unrelenting stress from social standards of perfection, of normal, and bleak financial prospects.

Interestingly, in “Star Wars” it’s said the Dark Side is addictive and whenever you use the Dark Side of the Force it gets the user high which is why Vader was able to defeat the Emperor so easily in the end of “Return of the Jedi.” And in real life the brain itself is wired to release pleasurable chemicals when we witness, or experience, acts of cruelty towards those we perceive as deserving, or as “others.” Depressive thoughts can become familiar, comforting, and addictive in their own right. Meaning not only are we susceptible to dark thoughts, but we have a biological reward system for them. And if we’re not getting pleasure from healthy socializing then unhealthy socializing will have to do.  With the right environmental and biological variables it’s easy to create maladjusted minds.  It reminds me of a scene from “The Walking Dead” when someone is explaining what happened at Woodbury and how the Governor tried to make brothers fight to the death: someone asks “What kind of man would do something like that?” To which Herschel replies “The kind this world creates.” It’s often no less true in this world.

The Dark Side is a part of all of us and try as we might to banish it from our minds entirely it’s likely both impossible and unnatural. While I found my way back, the darkness discovered on that path never really goes away, or at least so far it hasn’t for me. There’s still a rage in my bones, feels like there always has been, and I’ve accepted that as part of who I am. And that’s okay. The trick is to just let it be; don’t put time, or effort towards those thoughts; let it become unnoticed like a static fixture you see every day, but can’t recall any details of.

In the end, there’s nothing in the dark, there’s nothing to sustain, or fulfill you, but it can seem like that’s just the default setting of life. Not everyone who enters The Dark Side and embraces the comforts of the night comes back to the light, but it is possible. The first step is realizing you’ll bear no fruits if you salt and burn all the fields.

~David T.K.~

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But I Really Have To Pee

Five months so far. What a journey so far. Every day is a new day and I couldn’t be more happy, or more at peace with myself. It’s truly amazing to see all the changes, even the subtle ones. There is definitely a change in the voice, deeper and still a ways to go. I actually like talking on the phone now. The other day I heard myself on the phone and geeked out a little ha. Hair growth is very, very, very slow. We bought my first razor and shaving cream for the face to help stimulate more black hair versus the peach fuzz I have so much of. Fat is redistributing to a more “male” shape and muscles are more defined, especially in my arms. Once I lose some more weight, it’s back to the gym for me, need to release all of this energy I seem to have a lot of lately.

Bet you’re wondering what the heck is up with the title? Bathroom dysphoria: most transgendered persons suffer from this, especially in the beginning of their journey. Which bathroom do I go in? Am I safe? Using the restroom in public absolutely terrifies me. I’m scared that using the women’s restroom will result in someone harassing me to the point of police involvement. I’m scared of using the men’s restroom for fear they will realize that I lack the equipment to be in there. In some public male restrooms there is not even a stall to use, or the stall is missing the door, or god knows what happened in that stall. So, I look for a family restroom. Either they’re in such an obscure spot you will never find it, or they are being used, or they don’t have one.

A lot of the time, I will either hold it, or take a chance in the female restroom. Pretty soon though I will pass as the gender I am and going into the female restroom will no longer be an option. But I ask myself, why in the hell is it anyone’s business which one I use. If I have to go I go. Are you really in fear for your life if there is a “tranny” using the restroom? Are you yourself going to check what’s going on in all of our pants to make sure we meet the requirements of male or female restroom? Personally I will bite your hand off if you come anywhere near me. I will use whatever bathroom I damn well want to because I will not risk a bladder infection over someone’s comfortability.  Harassment and prejudice are still alive and well in this day and age. Until people can treat each other with respect those of us that fall outside of what society sees as “normal” will continue to be fearful of being ourselves.

 

~Jay Barnette~

Original content from: https://thepadiwanjourney.blogspot.com

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I Fear The Winter And Dream Of Spring

I fear the winter.  I have nightmares where I wake up and the green leaves of Summer have given way to bare trees and snow; conversely, I also dream of Spring and return of life and color. By mid-Fall the declining light begins to take a toll on my mood and psyche.  Then in the depths of true winter it feels like there’s nothing to keep me going except the fact that the days are lengthening and eventually they’ll melt the snow; thaw the ground; the ice on the rivers will break; small buds and sprouts will peak out from the mud and branch tips; the varying hues of grey will be illuminated by what looks similar to Fall foliage at first, but then erupts into vibrant flowers and lush leaves.

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It also helps that I know my seasonal deficit in mood and productivity is just that, seasonal. Recognizing it’s not a personal failure, or indication of backsliding into extreme depression and anxiety is helpful in, and of, itself and allows me take steps to alleviate and better manage this seasonal malady. Before identifying an annual upswing in depressive and anxious thinking it just felt like more chaos, more uncertainty, and less hope of ever finding anchor, or compass. But now I can predict it, plan for it, and actively find things to counter it; it’s just another variable to be accounted for.

Yet, I have days where nothing gets done and still endure protracted periods of apathy and lethargy; things that should be joyful become chores and chores become a no less titanic task than Sisyphus eternally rolling a boulder towards the peak of a mountain and equally in vain.

Winter also makes me think and marvel at the ancient cultures around the world of extreme latitudes and how people to this day still manage to live in places in and around the Arctic Circle. I’ve lived in a few places around New England and just a few hours’ distance increases the longevity of the Winter season by a few months. And through my fear I feel a connection to humans long past who braved blizzards without electricity, or any other modern convenience, for they too must have felt the same fear, perhaps more strongly. For most of human history people lived entirely off the land whether hunting and gathering, or agriculture and domestication. Their lives revolved around the seasons and so did their religions, it makes sense such a powerful natural process would be mythologized. Contemporary stories too, from The Long Night in “Game of Thrones” to historical events like The Year Without A Summer, certainly elicit a sense of apocalyptic anxiety in me.

But it also serves to remind me of my humble place in a much larger environment, surrounded by forces that forge, mold, and break us and we’d all be wise to listen to what these forces, our environment, are trying to tell us. Because if all the signs of the seasons herald the coming of Winter you can prepare, or likely perish.

 

~D.T. Kukulkan~

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Family Is Everything…. Except When It Comes To Being Yourself

It’s been awhile since I posted, been a bit crazy with the new job. I love it. Finally I get to be out in the open and be myself. Everyone there is super supportive and always has a ton of questions. Good, I love questions. The more people are educated about the transgendered community the easier it is to understand us.

First an update on my progress, next week will be 3 months on testosterone. I’m at 100 mg every 2 weeks and my testosterone levels are at 354. Normal range for a cis-gendered man is approximately 300-1000 so I am on my way. Depending on how I respond will determine if there is an increase. Slow and steady is my motto. There is definitely a drop in the voice, a little cracking too. Hair on legs is darker and peach fuzz on face is increasing. Fat around body is redistributing to a more box like appearance or “more masculine”. Even my nurse says I walk different. I feel different most definitely, but different in a good way. I feel stronger, less depressed. Even my wife has noticed my mood is brighter.

So with that said, what family wouldn’t want to see their child happy? I know I’ve talked about this before, but something’s really been irking me. According to a study done in 2014, the Williams Institute and the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention reported that 46% of trans men and 42% of trans women had attempted suicide. I am among them. Yes, at one point in time I thought suicide was a better option than having to face the fact that my family may not accept me.

When I came out as transgender to my family I was told “I have one son and one daughter, not two sons”. Fair enough, I expected that reaction. It’s not easy to hear something like “I am transitioning” coming from your child, or your sibling. I’m not denying my past as Jessica. I am still that person that shared those memories with them. But, what I hope one day for all parents of trans-kids is that they educate themselves rather than go into denial, ignore the child, or drive them away. There are tons of resources out there for trans youth as well as their families. It’s a transition for everyone not just the person taking the hormones.

I didn’t choose this life, no one chooses to be transgender. Why would anyone want to have an uphill battle to being their true self? I may not be everything my parents wanted me to be. Just because you have a set of plans for your child when they are born, doesn’t mean they are going to end up following that blueprint, as a matter of fact nothing ever goes according to plan. What I do know is that I am a good person and I accept my family the way they are, misguided sure, but accepted nonetheless and I am here whenever they may have a question. I’m going to stand by my convictions and respond when they say she or Jessica. But it’s gonna get really weird when I do walk in the room and I got the beard or 5 o’clock shadow and some bass behind my voice.

 

~Jay Barnette~

Original content from: https://thepadiwanjourney.blogspot.com

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Are Humans Innately Good?

There’s a lot of discussion, debate, and memes surrounding the nature of man and I decided to write out my thoughts on a specific question I find myself pondering sometimes and again: are humans innately good, or evil?

But this phrasing presents a false dichotomy between two extremes whereas the truth is probably somewhere in the middle and more nuanced. Some people are driven to commit heinous acts and compelled beyond reason by their own biology, which essentially makes them inherently evil by nature.

Yet, some twin studies have shown that amoral compulsions may manifest differently depending on their environment: the compulsion to cut, for instance, could lead one twin to become a serial killer and the other a surgeon.

Instead of asking “What is the nature of man?” or “Is human nature inherently good, or evil?” some psychologists believe it may be more productive to ask “What is the nature of power?” The Stanford prison experiment and similar psychological experiments along with the historical hindsight, documentation, and subsequent analysis of events like the Holocaust share the commonality of a top-down progression of evil: those with authority and power can more easily persuade, or command subordinates to commit acts of cruelty.

Interestingly though, more recent studies have revealed that the neurotransmitter oxytocin, which is important in the formation of trust, mother infant bonding, and intimacy during sex, is also released when committing, or watching an act of cruelty against someone from an out-group. This certainly seems to suggest that human beings are biologically coded to enjoy sadism in at least some capacity. But remember, we’re also biologically coded to love.

The evidence indicates we have the innate capacity for both good and evil; our brains are wired to enjoy love and intimacy along with cruelty. But, to what degree? Is the average human being 60% good and 40% evil? Is it 50/50? While it’s difficult to quantify, it may be enlightening to ask if other animals are innately good or evil, since we are just animals after all. Observations have shown creatures ranging from ants to primates are able to perform acts of altruism for fellow group members, but also violence and seemingly actual cruelty towards out-group members. Many animals compete for things like mates and social influence within in their own group, but these actions are usually limited to aggressive displays of dominance, or at the very least the conflict subsides before lethality. It makes sense to occasionally compete with in-group members while limiting the mortality as it allows more favorable traits to be passed onto to future generations without diminishing the genetic diversity of the group as a whole. At the same time it makes sense to lethally compete with out-groups over limited resources needed for survival.

So what does all this mean? Well the answers aren’t as simplistic as the question. We’re animals, we’re innately capable of altruism and cruelty, and we’re easily manipulated and often situationally dependent.  Perhaps one reason it’s difficult to see the good in this world is because the good isn’t often a spectacle; it’s the default setting of civilization where nothing is really going on because most people are good enough to the point where they just want to live and let live. But every time the terrorists inevitably shoot up another school, or church, or whatever, there are literally hundreds of thousands of people willing to aid, comfort, or to help the injured and first responders however they can.

Unfortunately, the situationally dependent and easily manipulated parts of us are being exploited and the regular quiet of the world seems to be eroding. Otherwise good people are following the examples of their respective leaders and advocates who have made it acceptable to openly mock children who were shot. The Parkland Students and those who’ve taken up the same cause have been dehumanized as political enemies: liberals, leftists, snowflakes, libtards, cucks, and the list goes on. When a good chunk of the population and people in charge have not just a lack of empathy, but disdain for kids were who gunned down during school that’s dangerous.

Mankind’s inherent moral flaw isn’t that we’re inherently evil, or even that we have a dualistic nature, it’s that we’re mostly neutral until the winds of fate push us one way or the other.

~David T.K.~

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He Works Hard For the Money… So Hard For The Money

I know it’s been awhile since I posted, but I started a new job and was a little, ok a lot, distracted for the last 2 weeks. I’ve been on testosterone for 2 months now (5 shots so far) still at 80 mg and will probably go up next visit, depending on my bloodwork.  Physical changes: most noticeable is my voice, getting deeper every day… I LOVE IT. Before I hated the sound of my own voice, now I talk just to hear myself :). Peach fuzz on the face increasing and definitely some hair on my belly….. Woo. My waist is starting to appear more “box like,” less hour glass and the acne is still there, UGH. Mentally, well, I feel this giant weight has been lifted off my shoulders and I can live how I always wanted to…. As myself because as someone once told me “I’m beautiful in this way, because God makes no mistakes, I’m on the right track baby, I WAS BORN THIS WAY”- Lady Gaga

Speaking of work, coming out at work….. It scares me to death. Although gender identity is protected under equal opportunity RI is an “at will” state meaning that your employer can fire you for any reason, and not tell you. I cannot confirm this happened to me because I don’t have any hard evidence, but then again if they don’t need to give you a reason it would be hard to have any evidence. Coming out to your family and friends is one thing, but coming out at work WHOLE DIFFERENT BREED. Like any other red-blooded adult, the transgender person has bills to pay. Hard to do with no job.

Just to put it into perspective here’s some fancy facts for you:

2017 Workplace Equality Fact Sheet

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) Workplace Discrimination at a Glance:

Well, I thought new job, new start. Yes that’s right I came out at work to my boss, who was completely cool with it. I told him he would start to notice changes, since I am already. Most of my coworkers know but not all, and that’s ok, in time they too will notice something is not quite the same anymore and I am fully prepared for those conversations. But I’m still scared to death. “At will,” what a horrible loophole.

Coming out at work, there really is no advice I can give. Other than stay strong, stand by your convictions, and never apologize for who you are. And yes, you will have to come out more than once at work, it’s ok sometimes it takes a second, or a third, or a fourth, time to sink in. I work hard, no matter the industry I am in. Working is what drives my day, and yes, pays my bills. Working is a part of who I am.

There is no right way or wrong way to do it. All I can say is I’m glad I did it.

 

~Jay Barnette~

Original content from: https://thepadiwanjourney.blogspot.com

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The Royal Harvest And Other Updates

034As this Long Night continues, especially now as more than half of each day is consumed in darkness and still drawing shorter, as cold winds howl in the night, I find it difficult to continue existing amidst constant adversity, financial instability, fascism, and mass extinction.

Still, We persist! So, I shall now share with you the summary of our first harvest and any updates of note!

Through the Spring and Summer We maintained a total of five garden beds and a number of large pots at two locations constituting the Royal Multi-Locational Urban Farming Cooperative.  Most plants did well, so well, in fact, We could not consume all the produce and recycled into compost for next season. We harvested tomatoes, cucumbers, green beans, zucchini, a few corn stalks, basil, carrots, chives, pickled some of the cucumbers (though we’re still waiting to try them), made pesto from the basil,  fried the green beans as a side for dinners, and made some corn chowder too. The experience had its challenges as well, like keeping wildlife and pets out of the gardens, learning what does well and where, and watering much of it without a hose.

 

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Royal Recycling Boxes

The Royal Recycling Initiative has been slow to develop, but successful to date. This season We crafted small planters from old tin cans and decorated First Hearth while nurturing Spring seedlings from the yard to see what they grew into along with some flowers and herbs. After the completing the first batch of cans We found ways to refine the process further by utilizing paints and waterproof coating already purchased for other projects, but rarely completely used, thus minimizing the resources required and wrapping the cans in newspaper to recycle/upcycle more materials while creating a smoother surface to paint images upon instead of monochrome.

023Another aspect of the R.R.I. has been the collection of aluminum cans to be melted down and cast into various object. After a number of attempts and forge designs We have managed to melt over 100 cans into bar shaped ingots of (mostly) pure aluminum.  We’re always refining the process: switching from briquette charcoal to all natural lump charcoal; improving forge design and efficiency; reducing and recovering as much aluminum from waste dross.

However, work and rest take the most time while life and bills makes it difficult to supply funding to the Royal Treasury. Too few fires, only one short yard sale, and less than both expected and desired growth while disappointing, We still feel incredibly proud of the amount We did accomplish. And though it’s growing slowly, the amount collected for the treasury has funded a number of projects and acted as a personal, low interest bank which seems to have added some legitimacy to this project in the eyes of a few family members when it came in handy for meeting bills on time.

Now, with roughly a year of experience, of seeing what worked, what didn’t and how We can do it all better, We shall plan out the coming year through the winter while the temperatures , snow, and darkness force all work to require more effort and draw us indoors towards hearth and flame. The Revolution has already begun and come the Spring We’ll be ready to do more and do it better!020

~Justonius Rex~

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Transgender And Religion

FaithSymbolsToday was my 4th shot of testosterone. As of right now I am dosing every 2 weeks at 80 mg. It’s not much, but they start you small. We don’t need any incredible hulk monsters running around now do we?

I’ve noticed some physical changes: voice cracking a little and slightly lower pitch, more peach fuzz on my face, oily skin and some acne. Mentally I feel a huge weight has been lifted off my shoulders. I’m not walking around with a “doom and gloom” cloud over my head all the time.

Ok, onto the serious stuff: transgender and religion. Once upon a time I was told that there were “no religions that accept changing of the sexes”. Hmm, good point, so I did what I do best, RESEARCH. I was raised Catholic after all, but don’t worry I will go through every religion I can think of for my curiosity and because I love proving a point.

There are a lot of religions out there. The most dominate being Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.

The Abrahamic religions, also referred to collectively as Abrahamism, are a group of Semitic-originated religious communities of faith that claim descent from the practices of the ancient Israelites and the worship of the God of Abraham. The term derives from a figure in the Bible known as Abraham.

Abrahamic religions have creation stories in which God creates people, “male and female” (Ref: 1,2). This is sometimes interpreted as a divine mandate against gender variance. The Torah contains specific prohibitions on cross-dressing (3) and damaged genitals (4).

  1. Genesis 1:27–1:27 “So God created humankind in his image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.”
  1. Quaran 75:39 “And made of him a pair, the male and female.” 
  1. Deuteronomy 22:5–22:5 “A woman shall not wear a man’s apparel, nor shall a man put on a woman’s garment; for whoever does such things is abhorrent to the Lord your God.” 
  1. Deuteronomy 23:1–23:1 “No one whose testicles are crushed or whose penis is cut off shall be admitted to the assembly of the Lord.”

Ok Jay, fancy stuff, but what does it all mean? I’ll start with Judaism. Orthodox Judaism views the sexes as two separate categories, male and female. There is no room for transgender. Sex-change operations involving the removal of genital organs are forbidden on the basis of the prohibition against “anything which is mauled, crushed, torn or cut” (Lev. 22:24).  Cross-dressing is seen as a crime against god (see above Deut 22:5). Hasidic Judaism has gender specific roles and therefore transgendered are not recognized. Conservative Judaism has mixed views. In 2016 the Rabbinical Assembly, which is the international association of Conservative rabbis, passed a “Resolution Affirming the Rights of Transgender and Gender Non-Conforming People”. Reform and Reconstructionist Judaism have had positive views on the transgender community, even allowing them to become members of the clergy.

Christianity, oh my favorite, I was raised Catholic but am no longer practicing and you will see why in a second. While answering questions about marriage and divorce, Jesus says that “there are eunuchs who have been so from birth, and there are eunuchs who have been made eunuchs by others, and there are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom of heaven.”(Matthew: 19)

Christian Denominations that allow transgender clergy: there are 30.

The Old Catholic Church has been affirming and welcoming of transgender members. Old

Catholic and Independent Catholic churches have been accepting of the LGBT community in general, (https://www.advocate.com/politics/religion/2013/10/03/alternative-way-be-catholic-and-lgbt).  In 2014, one of the first transgender priests was ordained in the Old Catholic Church (https://religionnews.com/2014/11/17/living-authentically-transgender-priest-christian-church/).

Now, I’m no priest, nor do I claim to be a theological expert, BUT, I don’t see anything to validate the lack of belonging to a denomination if you are transgender. Yes, those silly Catholics, so judgmental aren’t they? If your catholic I apologize. According to the Old Testament (Deuteronomy 23:1) you are forbidden from religious assemblies.  Other denominations that welcome transgender members and ordain transgender people in ministry are the Episcopal Church, United Church of Christ, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, and the Presbyterian Church (USA).

In 2015, the Vatican declared that transgender Catholics cannot become godparents, stating in response to a transgender man’s query that transgender status “reveals in a public way an attitude opposite to the moral imperative of solving the problem of sexual identity according to the truth of one’s own sexuality” and that, “therefore it is evident that this person does not possess the requirement of leading a life according to the faith and in the position of godfather and is therefore unable to be admitted to the position of godfather or godmother,”

(http://www.newsweek.com/vatican-transgender-godparents-368142).

I know what you’re going to say, MOST Christian denominations do not accept gender transition. And you’re right, MOST, BUT NOT ALL. So we are both right in that sense that there are some religions that accept me and some that do not. I have options.

So what about Islam?

I found some interesting reading to answer that question:

The Effeminates of Early Medina, Everett K. Rowson, Journal of the American Oriental Society, Vol. 111, No. 4 (Oct. – Dec., 1991), pp. 671-693

“In Islam, the term mukhannathun is used to describe gender-variant people, usually male-to-female transsexuals. Neither this term nor the equivalent for “eunuch” occurs in the Quran, but the term does appear in the Hadith, the sayings of Muhammad, which have a secondary status to the central text. Within Islam, there is a tradition on the elaboration and refinement of extended religious doctrines through scholarship. This doctrine contains a trans-positive passage by the scholar and hadith collector Al-Nawawi: A mukhannath is the one (“male”) who carries in his movements, in his appearance and in his language the characteristics of a woman. There are two types; the first is the one in whom these characteristics are innate, he did not put them on by himself, and therein is no guilt, no blame and no shame, as long as he does not perform any (illicit) act or exploit it for money (prostitution etc.). The second type acts like a woman out of immoral purposes and he is the sinner and blameworthy.”

Ok that’s a lot to take in, and I could keep going on the Dharmic Religions (Hinduism, Buddhism) and African Religion, Chinese, Neopaganism, Shinto, but I won’t as I am long-winded enough already.

I will say this about Buddhism:

“Ananda is a beloved figure in Buddhist cultures, noted for having been handsome, charismatic, and sympathetic to women, as well as for his tender emotionality. Among Thai Buddhists, he has long been regarded as having been a transgendered person in a previous life, and also to have taken a number of births as a woman,” (https://books.google.com/books?id=nGoag6b3JvYC&pg=PA303#v=onepage&q&f=false).

Buddhists do not distinguish between heterosexual and homosexual identities as they can be conducive to spiritual growth. For them it is about creating your path to enlightenment and doing unto others as you would do to yourself.

Am I religious? For the most part I believe in karma. I believe that God exists for the simple reason that I have seen the existence of evil while serving in the military. Logically if there is evil, there must be good and vice versa. I don’t believe that God hates me, nor anyone in the transgender community, Jesus preached love. For me, love is love, and who I am does not change how the big man upstairs will judge me. Anyone that thinks otherwise, well you can answer to God when you see her.

 

~Jay Barnette~

Original content from: https://thepadiwanjourney.blogspot.com

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The Gaslit Generation

Never before in human history has a generation experienced gas lighting on the scale millennials have.

Our parents and teachers told us we had go to college and that everyone has to take out some loans, but we’d get a good job and make more money overall.

Millennials are infantilized by the media despite nearing their 30’s and 40’s then dismissed as teenagers who don’t know anything.

When we don’t get married, don’t have children, don’t buy a home it’s because we’ve failed to mature and adjust to the real world, not because of stagnant wages, wage theft, internships, trickle-down economics, profit hoarding coupled with rising costs and massive debt.

Businesses cry murder by millennial, but don’t pay their millennial workers enough to shop, or eat where they work, let alone pay rent.

Climate change is decried a hoax and flatly ignored by mainstream networks while we are now living in the beginning of the 6th mass extinction and extreme weather is the new normal.

There’s never enough money for healthcare, or education, and we’re selfish for asking, not the Fortune 500 CEO’s and their billion dollar tax cuts.

When a cop shoots an unarmed man in the back, or in their house, or chokes them to death, and we demand justice, we’re told the officer is a victim and that police are afraid to do their jobs because they might go viral.

When rapists are caught on video in the act, or lying to cover it up after the fact, we need to think about their futures on the college swim team, the Supreme Court, and how hard these allegations have been for them and their families.

There are men trying to kill us and take everything we’ve ever worked for, a genocide by attrition of minorities and the poor, and we’re told we need to stop being tribal.

 

~D.T. Kukulkan~

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My Reflection And Rejection

MulanJB“Look at me.

I may never pass for a perfect bride, or a perfect daughter.

Can it be,

I’m not meant to play this part?

Now I see, that if I were truly to be myself,

I would break my family’s heart.”

I identified with the character of Mulan in ways, at the time, I didn’t think possible. I never had a name for it, you know, transgender. Unhappy as a girl and the role set out for her because of her gender you see Mulan come into her own when she poses as a man. Now, I know what you’re thinking, Mulan is not transgender, what the hell you getting at Jay? Bear with me on this, I’ll get to it. No she’s not transgender, but the movie is up for interpretation. My interpretation, then and now, is that it’s about having to live up to expectations of family even though nothing represents who you are as an individual person; having to go along with their wishes and hiding your real identity because you’re scared they may not accept you for who you are; always having this nagging feeling within you every time you see yourself in a mirror or a photo. Who is that? That’s not me. I don’t want to be that person anymore.

Coming out to your family and loved ones is not easy. There is no right, or wrong way to do it. Rejection is something we all fear. Human beings are social creatures and the fear of loneliness can keep us awake for days. Hiding who I really am literally sent me to the hospital three times. I was having chest pains and no cause was found. So, I went to the next best thing, my therapist. Sometimes your stress can manifest itself in the body, ignore it long enough and it will show itself in ways you never thought possible. Stress, depression, and anxiety can be toxic. Being told “We do not accept you as a transgendered man,” is probably the hardest thing to hear. I don’t expect acceptance overnight. I hope one day all of those in my life can look at me the way I see my reflection in the mirror, as a loyal, honest, and good man.

My advice, it may or may not work, is to sit your family down and talk to them. Just be honest, don’t sugarcoat it, no sarcasm, straight to the point. The most important thing to remember is to be true to yourself. Not everyone in your life will accept you. Maybe one day some of them will come around, maybe not. I am open and honest with all around me. If they don’t like it, well too bad at this point, I’m tired of hiding and I’m awesome!  Why would I want to hide that? Hiding led to depression, and like I said in earlier blogs, suicidal ideations. Suicide is the number one cause of death in the LGBTQ+ community. Never be ashamed of who you are, be proud. If your family rejects you – and yes, it’s possible that people who raised you may not accept you – surround yourself with those who do love you no matter what, people who see you for who you are.

As of May 22, 2018 (my first shot of testosterone), I will not hide who I am anymore. Come what may, I am a transgendered man just writing a blog about my journey and random stuff I like to talk about it. A friend of mine in the Army once told me something about holding a grudge, holding onto the anger. He said “If they don’t sleep with you, and they don’t pay your bills, they don’t matter.” I heard this again from Rupaul, one of the best drag queens ever, “Unless they paying your bills, pay them b@#$% no mind” So, to heck with the haters and surround yourself with positivity and love.

 

~Jay Barnette~

Original Content From: https://thepadiwanjourney.blogspot.com

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