While I am not an environmentalist in any traditional sense, I am concerned about climate change as a social justice issue. My hope is to share some of this leading I have while hearing from others who are also engaged in climate work. I will also perform a scene from my performance lecture, Transfigurations—Transgressing Gender in the Bible.
Speaking of which, an article about the Transfigurations movie appears in The Blaze this week. I had not heard of this on-line newspaper before, but it is the digital news site created by Conservative pundit, Glenn Beck.
I am grateful for the opportunity to share a little about how there are people in the Bible who transgress and transcend gender for their time. While it is never appropriate to impose modern notions of gender on ancient texts, what I have found is that based on the strict gender norms in the Bible, some of the most important characters broke out of these roles and norms. It is in breaking these that they are often able to do extraordinary and unexpected things. Perhaps the silliest statement in the article is by the person they interviewed to counter my views.
You can read the article, New film depicts Bible characters as gender non-conforming. But what does the Bible say? You may want to avoid the comments. And for the record, my last name is spelt Toscano. Unless it is a vowel-fluid name and sometimes presents at Tuscano, as it does in the article in some paragraph. You can see my performance schedule here. Feel free to say hi over on Twitter or Facebook. The road can get difficult at time, and I love to hear from friends. These days I am spending a lot of time assessing my role in the world.
Seems there are concerns about justice on every front. Partly what I am doing to sort all of this out is to hear from ancestors and experts.
There is a documentary that accompanies the book. Recently I spoke with Eileen Flanagan. Currently she is teaching activists about how to organize and to understand their role. She also shared with me the four roles that change agents have traditionally taken:. I also speak with Amani Thurman, a college freshman with experience as a rebel and who has begun stepping into the role of an advocate.
Understandably some people feel today marks the beginning of the end of America and the rule of law in this country leading to devastating global effects. I go into this weekend feeling focused and determined, inspired to be more disciplined in my work and more open to connecting with comrades and co-laborers.
I am not looking through rose-tinted glasses; we face real risks, for some more than others, but I DO NOT feel defeated at all. And it is not like we have been living without the need to address multiple oppressions and oppressors, although some people have felt these more sharply than others. Today we continue work as we begin anew. This is an Inauguration for artists and activists as we serve a new term of action. Some people struggled to understand why I also sought to humanize the promoters and providers of these failed and dangerous treatments.
No doubt having become a Quaker in also shaped the way I saw these issues and even my opponents. Some gay bloggers wanted me to portray them as evil, hateful homophobes. In this clip from the Tyra Banks Show, ex-gay survivor Steven Fales and I share our stories and the trials we faced at the hands of religious and secular leaders who tried to cure us.
Sitting in the audience is the head of Love in Action, the notorious residency program I endured for two years. At the end the segment Tyra asks me about what I learned from my experience. This gave me a moment to find common ground with my former oppressor. We used blogs, YouTube, podcast, interviews in print, radio, and TV, and public speaking to communicate a simple message: Conversion Therapy Causes Harm. We added other messages like, the people running these programs usually intended to help us but their efforts caused suffering and pain that has lasted for years.
As a result, we were able to change the public discourse so that people understood that these gay-to-straight conversion treatments and ministry were ineffectual and dangerous. And on this very basis we have seen a dramatic decrease in the number of these programs in North American and there have been laws passed in various US states protecting young people from the same type of treatment we suffered.
I am a climate advocate. I desire to open up conversations and to break the collective silence around climate-related issues. I plunge into the murky and swirling political waters of climate change policy and the lack of policy. And I am constantly discovering and celebrating common ground. Like with LGBTQ issues, I have developed new ways of talking about climate change drawing on comedy, storytelling, and personal narrative.
I also offer presentations at universities, conferences, theaters, and places of worship including my shows, A Quirky Queer Quaker Response to Climate Change and Everything is Connected—An evening of stories, many weird, most true. I have interviewed over 30 people, including Republicans, Conservatives, and Evangelical Christians, all concerned with making the world a stable place with clean air and a healthy climate. Yes, I want people to think, but I also want them to feel—no not fear and shame—these seem to be the go-t0 emotions for people doing environmental work.
No, I want them to feel empathy, longing, courage, hope, and determination. I recently sat down with Jon Watts over at Quaker Speak. He creates wonderful videos about Quaker life and practice. They are all so thoughtful and insightful. I have watched it three times already. You can also learn about Discernment or about the famous Quaker, John Woolman , or testimonies of people talking about their first time in Quaker meetings. My form of queer performance art goes down well with Quakers, but I did not think that it was a good fit for this sober, reflective wonderful web series.
We tried again. Jon really wanted me to perform some of my monologues from my shows, but I resisted. Maybe because I like to be in control of my theater and to perform it in front of a live audience. While the content of shows may not change from performance to performance, each one is tailor-made for an audience. So in our interview I only answered his questions and kept my characters and monologues to myself. He then asked permission to view my autobiographical play about my ex-gay experiences.
It is something I have long ago retired and only now perform one short scene from it. It made sense to me that he go back and view it and see if it can be part of the interview. Jon Watts then wove in the play with the interview. For the Quaker Speak video Jon asked me lots of questions about my years trying to de-gay myself through all sorts of conversion therapy programs and ex-gay Christian ministries. He was especially interested in how I survived. Ah, the role of Quakers in my life along with theater helped bring me back to like.
Thank goodness she did because I was desperate for a spiritual home even as I was completely unsure of my faith. Recovery from trauma takes time. Sharing our stories can be liberating. It can also traumatize us anew. I find I speak less and less about my conversion therapy experience, but I do recognize the importance of the story and especially the lessons I learned in unpacking it. Visit the Quaker Speak Site for full transcript.
I have been invited to preach the sermon at St. One of the texts for Sunday is Acts It is a passage about women, widows in particular, and the loving care of bodies. Dorcas, a disciple of the early church, famously did good words in Joppa and helped the poor. She gets sick and dies, and through it all her friends care for her through the illness and wash her body after her death, as was the custom.
Peter arrives and these women show Peter some of the handiwork of the beloved deceased disciple. This is a visual display of goodness.
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I love this detail—displaying the robes and other clothing Dorcas made. It gets me thinking about legacy and what we leave behind. There are many issues in the world worthy of our attention and good work. This gets me thinking of loved one who have made an impact in my own life, the legacy they have given me of love, freedom, affirmation, and physical, practical support.
These days I feel a lot of gratitude as I think about the multiplying factor of receiving and giving all these essential things. This gets me singing an old song by the Swedish pop singer, Doris. Doris makes a warm, slightly grizzled, throaty appeal:. Tag: Quaker. New Year and New Projects for your eyes and ears Glen in a tight squeeze as we travel in a tricycle. Freshly caught and cooked fish. Also check out the Bisexual Resource Center The community deepens as it becomes more diverse and educated.
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In addition to creating deliciously whimsical characters based on shapes found in maps, Joey recently started a comic book series for the Quaker organization, FCNL. Arthur Fink writes about dance, not something that one imagines happens much in a quiet, still Quaker meeting for worship. Applying the practices of freedom of expression and of being self-aware that Arthur experiences in Quaker meeting for worship, Arthur worked with dancers in a studio and photographed them as they moved without choreography.
Instead the dancers created their own movements that emanated from within. Maggie Nelson writes about an intergenerational Art Camp. And what does it mean for the Quaker community when its members start experimenting with art and worship? Marta first asked: Who inspires you and the work that you do? Marta then digs into Transfigurations specifically: Your latest film, Transfigurations , examines variations of gender in the Bible. Spanish moss action in Tampa.
Travel in comfort with famous passengers? Come book with us with a tour leaving Nuevo New York in three weeks! A tour? I hmmmed, then sat back in my newsreader chair. Our itinerary includes the thrillingly romantic Alpha Centauri colonies, the Pegasus colonies, the third failed Jamestown colony, and touches on the ancient world of the old Republic, with a possible sighting of an old Republican.
Peterson Toscano » Quaker
I paused that, had that repeated; being a. This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue? Upload Sign In Join. Save For Later. Create a List. Summary A man discovers that the past follows him, no matter how far he travels. Read on the Scribd mobile app Download the free Scribd mobile app to read anytime, anywhere.
Publisher: Lorraine J. Anderson Copyright L.