I just came across this short article, and the information contained in it was new to me...
I'd like everyone who has some interest in either native believes/paths, bi-tri-whatever-sexuality, human rights, gays, transgenders, etc etc... to read this. Please do, it won't hurt. Or maybe it will.
"The Two-spirited person is a native tradition that anthropologists have been able to date to some of the earliest discoveries of Native artifacts. Much evidence indicates that Native people, prior to colonization and contact with European cultures, believed in the existence of three genders: the male, the female and the male-female gender, or what we now call the Two-spirited person. The term Two-spirited, though relatively new, was derived from interpretations of Native languages used to describe people who displayed both characteristics of male and female.
Traditionally, the Two-spirited person was one who had received a gift from the Creator, that gift being the privilege to house both male and female spirits in their bodies. The concept of Two-spirited related to today's designation of gays, lesbians, bisexual and transgender persons of Native origins. Being given the gift of two-spirits meant that this individual had the ability to see the world from two perspectives at the same time. This greater vision was a gift to be shared with all, and as such, Two-spirited beings were revered as leaders, mediators, teachers, artists, seers, and spiritual guides. They were treated with the greatest respect, and held important spiritual and ceremonial responsibilities.
The arrival of the Europeans was marked by the imposition of foreign views and values on Native spirituality, family life and traditions. The missionary churches' views on sexuality, for example, created many new taboos. Many traditions, including that of the Two-spirited were eradicated or at least driven underground from many (but not all) tribes of North America. Once honored, some of today's Two-spirited people have been shamed, beaten, killed, isolated and driven from their homes. Dr. Terry Tafoya, a sexologist, storyteller and diversity educator from the Taos Pueblo Nation has warned, "our communities cannot survive if we cut off parts of ourselves". Along with others he has called for the restoration of the inclusion of Two-spirited people back into the circle of original belonging. It is not an accident that Two-spirited people are once again emerging in their communities at the same time and in the same way that the drum, the pipe, the sweat, the medicines and other sacred aspects of community and cultural life are returning.
As a result of the impact of colonization, most Two-spirited people, their families, and the knowledge keepers in their communities today, hold little or no knowledge of the many rich and diverse traditions which recognized, valued and benefited from the special gift these individuals had been given. In consequence, Two-spirited people are not able to take their rightful place in their communities. This is a loss to all Native people."
These modern-days humans, all those people who lost their paths... can make me so, so sad...
Humans really do make me sad.
I miss my kind.