Trigger warning: religion and religious laws
Let's start of with something seemingly completely unrelated. I speak 11 languages by now and people often admire that. You cannot force anyone to speak so many languages, or even any language at all, but if you really want it, it's not out of reach. It's a struggle with what people tell you, and accepting reality, to get to that point. It's also copying what others do, and learning to know how you learn best. You can fake learning most things, but learning a language is different: if you don't speak a language, people will know, and at the same time it's completely worth it to learn a language badly, even just 3 words.
Now what does this have to do with being straight? The common story nowadays is that being straight is normal, being gay is deviant, but you are still born this way so we should accept that. On the other hand we have all religions in human history, up to my religion the Bahá'í faith, that mention something about homosexuality, and not in a way that is all that flattering. Is there a way that this all makes sense?
The most common way to go about this is to say that the religions are wrong, and God doesn't exist, and this is discrimination. Another way to go about this when you are religious is to appeal to the love of God and say that there is nothing wrong. And yes, every religion says it's wrong to judge people and that we should love even our enemy, so this is a very good place to start.
I am probably going to be lynched here, but I think it's wrong to religious LGBT to discard the possibility that religion has something sensible to say here. But also I think that most religious people are unjustifiably hating to LGBT people, even if they say that we should love the people, hate the sin.
So what do you want to say here, Joop? This is all very confusing...
Well, for example `Abdu'l-Bahá explains our nature as being two-fold: our animal, physical nature, and our spiritual nature, and the meaning of religious education is to go above the physical to reach ever improving spiritual values.
Let that sink in. Yes, homosexuality, or any kind of "deviant" sexuality is perfectly normal. The whole animal kingdom has it, and so do we. However, the contrary spiritual value is not heterosexuality. Heterosexuality is a very recent invention and not at all natural, it basically justifies going all in on our sexual desires as long as it's on a woman. Basically, heterosexuality is rape culture and objectification of women. We don't discard this so easily, because we don't see any alternative.
So what is the real spiritual value we should be working to, and for which we receive the loving council to abstain from homosexual relations? The education of mankind, bringing progress to the world. When we chose to stick to our animal nature, we ignore what we are destined to be as human beings: loving examples that educate the next generation to become even better than we are.
My opinion is that religiously we should treat LGBT-issues like any other religious law: being full of love to each other. It's a personal religious issue to any believer of any religion to handle this spiritual growth, and we should be fully open to each other to improve in this, but also accept it if we are stuck. Admit it, there are so many issues we are all stuck on ourselves.
Also, we hugely need to finish with the celibate bullshit in the catholic churches: those priests have their sexual needs too, and it's absolutely disgusting that children have to suffer under this. I think this is the first and most important aspect of homosexuality that is forbidden by Bahá'u'lláh in the Bahá'í faith, nothing else is literally mentioned in the writings: we need to protect our children. Not by avoiding gay couples and everything in society, I think we need consensual sexual relations of any kind to create the right culture. No, we need to have zero tolerance for sexual abuse of any kind, and God be my witness that this is what any of the oft despised laws mean to accomplish. Let's make the world a better place and use our critical thinking and honest communication to accomplish this.