Does Homosexual good or bad? Accepted or unaccepted?

-Fakhirah I. (Staff of Kajian Strategis Jama’ah Shalahuddin UGM 2015)-

The disclosure of homosexuality reaches the peak as the US prime court legalized same sex marriage in all US federation state. However, if we trace the history, we will find that being homosexual is still criticized in many cultures around the world. Moreover, a number of countries still reluctantly accept homosexuality as a normal behavior, including Indonesia. However, since secularism and liberalism comes to the body of our society, it changes our mind and behavior, and the impact is lots of deviant movements dare to show their teeth, such as LGBT.

Although, they have been brave to depict their self in the surface of society massively in the last twenty years, they still receive many complaints and accusations from society, such were pointed as a mental nuisance sufferer. Therefore, lesbian and gay people are working hard on this current twenty years to encounter negative issues towards them by conducting many researches to object the opinion based on empirical studies. The goal is to prove that they are normal, both mentally and physically like many others. The highest goal is for society to accept them so they could live a normal life in the community and have a normal family like the rest of us.

Sadly, we can see the moral friction among our society nowadays. People are being more pragmatic than any previous years ever in history. Pragmatic style impacts the way human think and act. The pragmatic generation, generally, tend to accept and believe things only if they could sense the fact. Besides, our society also frequently demand the whole thing should be proven by empirical bases, which can be sensed by our senses. On the other hand, our policies are mostly leaned towards an empirical foundation rather than a philosophical foundation/foot. Furthermore, these social facts are likely to cause them to try proving all of the things empirically through many research evidences, proving that LGBT is fine and a norm just like any other, so they can build a family and educate their children well just like heterosexual parents.

A Summary of Research Finding In Advocating LGBT

More than three decades, there are significant movements that strengthened the homosexuality motion, which mostly rely on research findings. Unfortunately, lots of research proved that LGBT is not a kind of deviation. They also tried to be against the contra argument by these findings. So, here were the summary of the arguments that spread in the society and the research findings that tried to oppose those arguments.

The first prejudice that was objected by them is “They were pointed as having a mental disorder. By these judge, many academicians who support them or they themselves attempted to conduct researches in the beginning of 1950-s to give an empirical basis that homosexuality is not a mental disorder (Gonsiorek, 1991; Hart, Roback, Tittler, Weitz,Walston, & McKee, 1978; Reiss, 1980 in APA, 2005).

Following on, according to the findings, the main causes of mental disorder in LGBT are not coming from the biological disorder, but mostly because the compression of society towards them. Because, unlike heterosexual people, homosexual people are often subjected to prejudice because of their sexual orientation which sometime result in negative outcomes, such expulsion or loss of physical custody, restriction on visitation and an excommunication (ACLU Lesbian and Gay Rights Projects, 2002; Appell, 2003; Patterson, Fulcher and Wainright, 2002 in American Psychology Association, 2005).

So, from that point, assuming that stress comes after pressure, omitting the pressure was the alternative. It leads to the conclusion we were asked to clean out the stigmatization toward LGBT. To make them happy and mentally healthy. Moreover, the peak of the struggle was when LGBT was taken out from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorder (DSM) III by the American Psychology Association (APA) in the 1980 (American Psychology Association, 2005)

Second, they wanted to tackle the assumption that they are not capable of becoming a good parent. Then, they conducted researches to prove that people are having wrong assumptions. Then, several years later, numerous researchers appeared stating those homosexual parents are more often to meet a psychologist to consult about their children welfare than heterosexual parents. Other researchers also compared the style of parenting for both heterosexual and homosexual parents. The results showed that homosexual parents adopt a more democratic parenting style and many of their children have a normal sexual preference even though they are more open to any sexual preference than other children who was nurtured by heterosexual parents (Anderssen, Amlie, & Ytteroy, 2002; Brewaeys & van Hall, 1997; Parks, 1998; Patterson, 2000; Patterson & Chan, 1996; Perrin, 2002; Stacey & Biblarz, 2001; Tasker, 1999; Victor & Fish, 1995).

Third, they tried to be against the claim saying that lesbian mothers have loss the feeling of having a mother that cared. This suspicion is also disputable because some researchers arose in recent years comparing between a mother from a heterosexual relation and a lesbian couple that has no significant differences in ability to nurture their children (Bos et al., 2004; Brewaeys et al., 1997; Chan, et al., 1998a; Ciano-Boyce & Shelley-Sireci, 2002).

Moreover Flaks, Fischer, Masterpasqua, and Joseph (1995) stated that the nurturing ability in a homosexual parent might be a superior match with a heterosexual couple. They reported that homosexual parent couples’ parenting awareness skills were higher than heterosexual couple. In another study which was conducted by Brewaeys and friends find a more favorable pattern of a parent child interaction among lesbians as compared to heterosexual parents, but mostly showed greater similiarities (Vanfraussen,Ponjaert-Kristoffersen, & Brewaeys, 2003). According to those findings, Flacks et.al (1995) argued some reasons, firstly, for homosexual couple’s decision of having children is a conscious decision so they would face whatever risks after the decision. The data also said; as compared to heterosexual parents 56% of them reported having children out of prediction then homosexual parents. Secondly, as the conscious decision was made, they were prepared to take all the consequences. Thirdly, because they also faced a difficult condition among society, it had made them concern more toward the development of their children, including their children’s mental health by coming regularly to the psychologist.

 

Be Careful To Just Stop At Empirical Level

What is empiricism?

Empiricism can be defined as the doctrine that all knowledge are generated only or primarily from a sensory experience (Markie, 2014). It is stated that all hypothesis and theories must be tested by observations from our sense rather than reasoning, intuition or revelation. In some points, it is not recommended to rely our behavior based on an empirical level only. Especially when the things we value either good or bad, stand from the evidences of empirical inquiry only. This is due to the fact that evidence of an empirical study is drawn from any positions based on the newest finding. Besides, not everything in the world can be proven by an empirical study only, such as the existence of God. The existence of God is relied on rationale methodology, not through empirical analysis. We reason God by many evidences that are displayed within the world. This can therefore be concluded that there is a creator of this universe. Subsequently, if we limit ourselves at an empirical level to evaluate LGBT it will result in fatal consequences.

Empirical method is one of the ways to understand how nature works and to comprehend reality. However not all phenomenon can be evaluated by an empirical study.

As a result, people who glorify empirical study as the sole way of thinking will be the one who states, “Do you have any sensed evidence of the value you brought?” or “ Where is the evidence of your argument? You must prove them by empirical study, then I will believe you.” This way of thinking will not be practical to prove the existence of Allah because Allah cannot be proven by any empirical inquiry. As I stated before, we believe the existence of Allah by assessing many nature evidences provided right in front of us. We reason the facts and reach the conclusion that Allah does exist. Such as, we do not have to see an artist to recognize a painting that is drawn by him/her? So, if we believe that every painting is made by an artist, likewise we could believe that Allah created everything without having to see Him or sense Him. The way we believe we could categorize as a rational reasoning methodology.

There are several ways to think; both of them are scientific and reasoning methodology. By this article, I do not mean to judge that scientific methodology is totally wrong. Scientific method, as many other methods, is one of the paths to interpret realities. But, it does not mean that it is the only way to understand realities surrounding us, including LGBT phenomenon. The empirical way can only be applied to the sensed object such as nature. As in psychology, we recognize neuropsychology which uses this method to examine how the brain works. Because brain is the object that can be sensed by our senses, then empirical study suits it. But, the weakness is, neuropsychologists usually does not believe in those that cannot be proven by inquiry, such as the existence of the soul. Neuropsychologists hardly believe that the soul exist; however, if they do believe, usually they cannot explain the evidences.

Empiricism in its concepts consequently makes everything that cannot be sensed by our physical senses and cannot be proven or does not exist. Meanwhile, much life wisdom cannot be sensed by the five senses.

According to An-Nabhani (1973, page 28) in his book The Thought, he explained the weaknesses of the empirical method and its incapability. It explained that the empirical method is not the only way of thinking. Besides, if we just examine and comprehend the values of homosexuality based on empirical study, it’d be really hard to set it steady and speculative. Why? Because, scientific facts are always changing, based on how the newest findings are said. Many years back, researchers supported the status of mental disorders towards LGBT, today the facts are change. But, who knows what kind of finding will be found tomorrow? The scientific world is always developing time to time. Newest findings will replace the previous study. This characteristic makes it really fragile to be set as the only thinking foundation.

THE URGENCY DISCUSSING HOMOSEXUALITY ISSUED

Besides the disclosure about homosexual around the world, as Moslem, we have to see ‘what happens’ beyond this issue. If we examine the LGBT phenomenon keenly, we could find that this movement is reinforcing secularism and liberalism among our society. This movement tries to deconstruct the moral values that had existed to keep from generation to generation and reconstruct it by ambiguous individual standard, which today is called liberalism, which is guarded by an individual human right agreement. The impact begins to arise in the middle of the society, such as many deviant movements bravely showing up their toes by the name of liberty of human right. We should realize this movement is positively correlated to the moral value among society that is usually rooted from religion, especially in Indonesia. As the consequence, religion will be put in the corner of life; the role of religion will be depressed and packed into little space of life or even destroy all the value inside. Moreover, the concept of freedom in the Human Right Agreement is really ambiguous and has double standards of implementation.

Marriage and Homosexuality

By the success of LGBT proposal to legalize same sex marriage in the US Prime Court, this event also deconstructs the concept of marriage in the community. Previously, marriage is a sacred and holy event to born and nurture the next generation. Especially in Islam, marriage is the concept to born the taqwa generation which can establish bright civilization (Ba’darani, 2013). Marriage is also the way to fulfill the half of the deen (religion) to reach Allah’s willingness. But, nowadays it changes.

THE AIM of ALLAH’S RULES

The direction of Allah rules (Maqashidus Syari’ah ) consists of at least two principles, justice and God’s mercy. Homosexual parents, one of the many things that they must understand is loving their children, while providing love under normal family construction. There is always a hollow space in the children’s life that cannot be fulfilled by homosexual parents, but can be provided by heterosexual couple. Because, Allah has created natural tendencies among human to marry heterosexually. He has also created in every sex, both male and female, a natural tendency. Such as woman having a tendency to nurture her children.

According to the book entitled Mafahim Islamiyah or Islamic Comprehension, Syekh Muhammad Husain Abdullah (1996) stated that the expert of Islamic rules (fuqohaa ) explains that the directions of Islamic rules are keeping the religion (hifdzu ad-diin), keeping the soul (hifdzu an-nafs), keeping the mind (hifdzu al-‘aql), keeping the offspring (hifdzu an-nasl) , keeping the wealth (hifdzu al-maal), keeping the dignity (hifdzu al-karamah), keeping the security (hifdzu al-amn), and keeping the country (hifdzu ad-daulah).

However, even though Islam has many benefits of its rules, we must not lose faith to Islam because of its benefits (maslahat) only. Because, some day if we find rules that does not suit ourselves because we cannot see the benefit of the rules, then we could easily draw out (murtad).

Allah’s Law and Empiricism

Where there is an Islamic law, there is benefit. That’s how the Islamic principle of rules is said. It may not be reversed, where there is benefit, sure it contains Islamic rules. So, in such way, if the impact of homosexual among society is hardly seen today, it does not mean anything useful for His creature. Truly, Allah has promised that Islamic rules will bring goodness both here and the hereafter. “And if only the people of the cities had believed and feared Allah, We would have opened them blessings from the heaven and the earth; but they denied [the messengers], so We seized them for what they were earning,” (Al-A’raf verse 96)

Conclusion

“This is the Book about which there is no doubt, guidance for those conscious of Allah,” (TQS. Al-Baqarah verse 2). There is no doubt that the Al-Quran is the most complete guidance, likewise with the previous Books that has been given to the previous messengers. Al-Quran, as the sayings of Allah, has given us guidance to guide ourselves in this life. The Al-Quran has also told us the story of the previous community that was destroyed by Allah because of their rebellious such as Luth’s society as the Sodom community.

LGBT is a behavior that is forbidden by Allah. Allah’s rules for the gay and lesbian will not change because the fact (based on empirical data) changes. If Allah has abandoned thing, definitely it has advantages, whether we do know or not. The faith of a Moslem towards Allah and Islam should not rely on any material principle. As a moslem we ought to make our faith productive in many elements of life, whether we understand the benefit beyond it’s rules. Believe that the most profitable business is towards Allah. Allah never makes any rules mistakenly. Because Allah knows what’s best for His creature

Wallahu al-Musta’an wa Huwa Walliyu a-Taufiq

This paper is a development of the productive discussion with the lecture of Faculty of Psychology UGM, Mrs. Dian Nasrah Marissa M.Sc., Ph.D. Barakallahulaha

-Fakhirah I. (Staff of Kajian Strategis Jama’ah Shalahuddin UGM 2015)

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