Thursday, 4 February 2010

NIMMONS, David: The Soul Beneath the Skin, The

The Unseen Hearts and Habits of Gay Men

St Martin’s Griffin, 2003

031232040X, 9780312320409

255 pages

“Among the most acclaimed books on the gay male experience, "The Soul Beneath the Skin" explores the wide variety of social and ethical experiments in gay men's lives, and their implications both for gay men and society at large. David Nimmons radically reinterprets gay men's sexuality, intimate relationships and ethics by looking at seven patterns of behavior widely practiced by gay men but rarely acknowledged: non-violent public culture; high rates of altruism, service, and volunteerism; robust sexual caretaking; friendship patterns of diffuse intimacies; friendship with women; diverse forms of sexual union; and unique forms of bliss and pleasure seeking.
These social innovations, striking similar to the teachings of the great spiritual traditions, suggest a new and profound public ethics, a stirringly optimistic vision of a social revolution as radical as it is unnoticed.”


MOORE: A Question of Truth

Christianity and Homosexuality

[Photo] (Continuum Books, 2003)

(Scripture, Theology, Sexuality)

Fr Gareth Moore was a Dominican priest, and lecturer in theology and philosophy at Oxford University. The title of this volume draws on the motto of his Dominican order, “Veritas”(“Truth”) and is also a reference to the Vatican’s chief document in condemnation of homosexuality, “Homosexualitatis Problema”, which concludes with an approving quotation of the verse from Scripture, “Speak the Truth in Love”.  This document argues that this opposition is grounded in the clear lessons of scripture and natural law.   Moore carefully and convincingly shows that these claims are deeply flawed – that in fact no scriptural texts condemn all such acts, and the argument from natural law is deeply flawed.

The strength of this treatment is that approaches the Vatican argument on its own terms – as theology.  Fr Moore’s impeccable academic credentials as philosopher and theologian are used to develop a comprehensive, relentless refutation of the traditional arguments – and along the way provides a great deal of useful additional information from history and anthropology. He warns early on against responding to the Vatican arguments with criticism or suspicion of the persons making them. Instead, he urges, we need to replace a “hermeneutic of suspicion” with a “hermeneutic of charity”.  In doing so, he does exactly what “Homosexualitatis Problema” claims to do, but singularly does not:  “Speak the truth in Love”.

From the back cover:” A near incontrovertible demonstration that the antipathy of the Roman Catholic Church to homosexuality has no basis in scripture or the natural law. Cogently argued, elegantly written and brilliantly researched.” (Ben Summerskill, CE, Stonewall)

“In “A Question of Truth”, Gareth Moore, a Dominican priest, challenges the teaching of the Catholic Church on its own grounds. He scrutinizes the Church’s arguments, which are based on both the Bible and natural law, and finds them wanting. He subjects the Church’s beliefs to a meticulous and scholarly examination and concludes that there are no good arguments…against what have come to be known as homosexual relationships”.




Closeted Queers in the Vatican
Materialism of pro-gays

  1. A Question of Truth
    The fortune and misfortune of gay Christians
    Truth and Tradition
    Truth and Authority
    Overcoming Scepticism
  2. “Homosexuality” “Homosexuality”, physical and psychological
    The inadequacy of the CDF’s definition of homosexuality
    Homosexual person
    Homosexual desire and intentionality
    The intentionality of desire
    The intentionality of condemnation
  3. The Bible Against Homosexuality?
    I: Introduction and Old Testament Texts
    Use of the Bible in discussing homosexuality
    The logic of condemnation
    The concept of homosexuality in the Bible?
    Genesis 19: 1-11
    Leviticus 18:22 and 20:13
    Back to Genesis 19
    Cortese and the men of Sodom
    What about the women?
  4. The Bible Against Homosexuality?
    II: New Testament Texts and Summary

    Romans I
    I Corinthians 6: 9-10
    I Timothy 1: 10
    Further remarks
  5. The Bible for Heterosexuality
    Genesis I
    Lawler, Boyle and May
    The Image of God
    Genesis 2
    Difficulties in the Standard view
    An alternative view
  6. The Bible, Love and Experience
    Can gays love?
    Can gays love without struggling against being gay?
    Is homosexuality a tendency ordered towards an intrinsic moral evil?
  7. Aquinas, Natural Law and Sexual Natures
    Thomas Aquinas
    Sex, Nature and Nurture
    Natural sex, natural language
    The Bible again
  8. Homosexuality, Purpose and Happiness
    The emblematic importance of penile-vaginal intercourse
    The purpose of human sex
    Homosexual acts and homosexual happiness
  9. Some Modern Arguments
    Germain Grisez