It pays to keep things simple in your life, otherwise you can cause yourself a lot of mental grief.You can tie your brain up into knots attempting to convince yourself that molasses is salt and vice -versa.That kind of thing appears to have exercised the minds of some out there .On one hand Mashida Manjoo, the UN special reporter on violence against women, has said that Britain was the world’s most sexist country with a “Boy’s Club” culture that is so in your face…so pervasive”…. as to be almost anti-female. That’s hardly surprising when you consider the patriarchal nature of our Tory -led government and the establishments most of its members were mostly educated in and the churches which offered them moral and religious instruction.Had you been educated in an all-male school from the age of seven or eight, you might think that the world was like that too.
On the other hand some women clergy in the Church of England want to challenge the exclusively male language and male imagery in the Lord’s Prayer, hymns, the general language in the church’s services and especially in artistic depictions concerning the imagery associated with the belief in god and the Church of England’s version of Christianity ..These things have been ingrained in the established order for a very long time and it will take time to change them..
It is a long , slowly weaving and evolving road ,from the time of the Church’s inception some thousands of years ago …indeed it is an even longer road since mankind stirred first in the African continent and spread throughout the world.This is where all that long history leads to in the end.
Well …all these women have a point, even though they are asking themselves the wrong questions. The church has been all about the males up until now. It’s a control mechanism.The “masculine” has been given all the best deals ..even when it comes to God. It’s built-in to the deal. Now with all the societal changes in this past century and particularly in the past thirty or forty years, people are beginning to look a little deeper at the sexual imbalances and women especially, are easily finding them everywhere and are asking why that is the case .
Of course if you have to believe in a god in the first place, things will get even more complicated when you dig into the origin story , the ethnicity and colour of your god and now …even the sexual bias of said diety. Does God have cojones and a fine, luxurious beard or is a surfeit of oestrogen the real driver here ? Pre-menstrual tension might explain a lot of the anomalies in the creator’s sometimes strange and errant behaviour, if you wanted to look at all of it in a light-hearted way..Okay..it’s no joke for women , I’ll grant you that.
It had to come to this sometime , of course. It was only a matter of time before women started wanting to feminise … even god. It’s the next step after botox and plastic surgery , isn’t it? The skin colour of the Christ , who plays such a great role in the story, was always a notional point of debate . After all , why would a man who was born a Jew, in a particular part of the Middle -Eastern world , be depicted with blue eyes like Paul Newman’s and a straight aquiline nose when that couldn’t possibly be the case in ethnic reality. If mankind came out of the Savannahs of Africa , why wasn’t god seen as a diety with black skin in any case? There are artistic and social reasons for all of that , of course but we’ll not go into it here, save to say that for much of the Church’s history most people couldn’t read but they could understand an artistic interpretation.
Like I said, now the womenfolk want their god to have a more feminine side. Maybe they’ll get rid of the beard and give him a bit of eye-liner and a little rouge and foundation. He might end up looking like the latter-day Michael Jackson or Michael’s sister.The argument for female bishops has been won but some claim that women see themselves as less worthy…less “holy” and feel that the female side of the diety should be in balance with the male. This is what happens when you take a line for a walk.It can lead you into some very odd places.I find myself wondering where hermaphrodites see themselves in this unravelling equation.To be politically correct in these delicate ,changing times, that should be the “intersex”…those born with the ambiguous sexuality of both male and /or female sex organs.What about them? Where do they fit in this universe of masculine gods?
Maybe that’ll be a tussle for another day. We’ll never, ever be bored …that’s for sure…