Sunday, 5 August 2007

A Sweet Triumph

From January 1999 through August of 2006, I lived in Nashville, Tennessee — 'Music City', USA. It was a series of profound events that led me there — a place I never would have imagined living in a million years! Yet, I was there and embraced by some truly wonderful and warm-hearted people who became dear and special friends — friends that I'm still in contact with on a regular basis.

Think about the kind of person I am (and many of you are very well familiar with me now ... and the way I think, etc.) and the fact that I was living and working in the centre of the 'Bible Belt' in America! Of course I had no 'day job' and, instead, was running my own business giving readings as a psychic and medium, doing energy healing work with Reiki ... plus doing the support work centred on near-death experiences and more! Gratefully, I was never a victim of any 'hate crimes', nor was I threatened in any way.

It was here that I ended up on radio and television because of the work that I do ... and it was all very positive. I was blown away by that fact. So many doors opened up for me in Nashville.

Furthermore, in the different places I lived, most of my landlords were gay or lesbian — as it turned out — and we all were as family to one another. It was magical and so uplifting. I seemed to attract people from the GLBT community to me — perhaps because I, too, am 'different' and it was within the realm of this particular group of people where I was the most naturally embraced just the way I am. They were very kind and caring souls and I always felt loved and looked after.

Is it any wonder, then, that I discovered and joined a city chorus that was centred on GLBT individuals and their friends and supporters? I joined Nashville In Harmony in August 2005 and reporting to rehearsal every Sunday from 4-6P was the absolute highlight of my week! To be with such a special group of souls with voices raised in song and hearts connected to one another was something I came to treasure very deeply.

Alas, on 9th July 2006, we performed at the historic Ryman Auditorium — the most coveted stage in all of Nashville!

NIH at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tennessee USA

Being a member of NIH made me aware of a lot of things — not only in the GLBT community — but with regards the human condition in general. Being in the centre of the Bible Belt made it very clear to me just how deep the issues and struggles go — especially when it comes to religious intolerance of homosexuality. I had had an acquaintance (who actually was a catalyst for getting me to Nashville in the first place, since she ran a music company) who kept telling me that being gay was 'wrong' and 'a sin' when we were talking about someone we knew who was gay. I was gob-smacked. She meant it and she was taking herself very seriously! How can you be so mean and intolerant of someone strictly on the basis of one's sexual orientation? — I wanted to ask her. I also wanted her to provide me with where she got the notion that she was at liberty to judge someone in the first place!

How is it that, when you find people who are so kind, intelligent, talented, hard-working, having integrity and strong ethics, being devoted to their loved ones and friends and who wouldn't hesitate to help you if you were in some kind of a crisis, they could be regarded as 'wrong' or 'sinful' strictly on the basis of their sexual orientation? Something about this has never sat right with me.

I've written a bit in this blog about the horrors of religion. Just a few days ago, I received this video where our music director, Don Schlosser, was interviewed and he talked about his having been fired from a job he worked at for ten years at some Christian music publishing company in Nashville, strictly because he was gay! That's it! There was absolutely no other reason for his being dismissed from the job. Don is one of the most precious friends to me. He's an amazing musician and an amazing individual with a heart as big as the sun. I worked very closely with Don, because I was on the repertoire and media committees and never failed to feel such love and admiration for this man — not to mention awe. I wrote articles about him and NIH as well. (See articles here.)

In an article I wrote specifically about Don, I noted the fact that he was fired from his job and even barred from other related institutions — only because of his being gay and for absolutely NO other reason! It made me cry; it made me livid ... but you know what? It just made it all the more clear how insidious and mean-spirited and full of lies religion and religionists are, that's what!

Don's got the 'last laugh' and I'm pleased that this little video reveals a sweet triumph for Don. He's a happy and contented man — with lots of people everywhere who love him. In fact, he was honoured as the 'Gay Nashvillian of the Year' in 2006. He's a bright and shining example of how those of us who are truly individuals who've got the audacity and heart to think for ourselves and be true to our own authentic self ... can triumph over the greatest odds.

Religion is a lie, Friends! ALL religion is a lie ... and is only here to keep us locked in a stranglehold of fear — as I've stated numerous times before. No one has got the right to judge or condemn someone because of one's sexual orientation, one's race, one's being disabled or poor or for being a female or from another country or whatever nonsensical reason some religious moron may come up with. That's strictly ego-driven and has got nothing to do with Source. And when there's a special triumph such as in Don's case, it just gives me more faith that the Light is breaking through all this insane darkness and liberating us from the lies and deceit that have held us in servitude for all these thousands of years!

The joke's on you, oh dark ones, and we're going to dance in the Light and come to realise, indeed, that only love is real.

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