Go the Way Your Blood Beats: James Baldwin on Homosexuality, the Trap of Labels, and His Liberating Advice on Coming Out

Illustration from The Harvey Milk Story, a picture-book biography of the slain LGBT rights pioneer

“Loving anybody and being loved by anybody is a tremendous danger, a tremendous responsibility.”

“Every person of ordinary sex endowment has a capacity for diffuse ‘homosexual’ sex expression … according to the temperamental situation,” the influential anthropologist Margaret Mead wrote in a visionary 1933 letter that framed human sexuality as a matter of fluid attraction to temperaments, not a fixed attraction to genders, eight decades before the modern plight for marriage equality ushered in the universal dignity of love.

This conviction made Mead the perfect conversation partner for James Baldwin (August 2, 1924–December 1, 1987) when they sat down for their remarkable dialogue about identity four decades later. By then one of the most celebrated writers and thinkers in the world, Baldwin was among the era’s handful of openly gay public intellectuals and someone whom the legendary interviewer Studs Terkel aptly described as “one of the rare men in the world who seems to know who he is today.”

No book since Virginia Woolf’s Orlando would do more to enlist art as a force of empathic insight into same-sex desire than Giovanni’s Room, which Baldwin wrote in his early thirties against enormous resistance from American publishers, at a time when the DSM — the Diagnostic Manual of Mental Disorders, psychiatry’s Bible — classified homosexuality as a “sociopathic personality disturbance.” But although Baldwin had devoted his entire life to defending human dignity in all its guises, it was only in his final years that he addressed the question of sexuality and the dark specter of homophobia directly, thanks to Village Voice journalist Richard Goldstein — one of the generation of gay people who had found in Giovanni’s Room what Goldstein considered “an early vector of self-discovery.”

Appalled that a lengthy interview with Baldwin in the New York Times Book Review had swept its subject’s sexuality under the rug, Goldstein decided to take matters into his own hands. He persuaded the beloved writer, “a man who traced much of his acuity and pain to the nexus of racism and homophobia,” to meet with him for a conversation that would become Baldwin’s most personal interview, eventually included in James Baldwin: The Last Interview and Other Conversations (public library).

jamesbaldwin
James Baldwin

From the very beginning of the conversation, Baldwin exerts a lively resistance to all the labels within which we confine the expansiveness of human love. He tells Goldstein:

Giovanni’s Room is not really about homosexuality… It’s about what happens to you if you’re afraid to love anybody. Which is much more interesting than the question of homosexuality.

[…]

The question of human affection, of integrity, in my case, the question of trying to become a writer, are all linked with the question of sexuality. Sexuality is only a part of it. I don’t know even if it’s the most important part. But it’s indispensable.

Reflecting on what gave him the courage to release the novel in Europe despite American publishers’ vehement refusal to publish it, Baldwin considers the deepest societal seedbed of the malady of homophobia, symptoms of which we’ve begun to see anew all these decades later. Echoing Rilke’s assertion that “for one human being to love another: that is perhaps the most difficult of all our tasks,” he tells Goldstein:

It’s very frightening. But the so-called straight person is no safer than I am really. Loving anybody and being loved by anybody is a tremendous danger, a tremendous responsibility. Loving of children, raising of children. The terrors homosexuals go through in this society would not be so great if the society itself did not go through so many terrors which it doesn’t want to admit. The discovery of one’s sexual preference doesn’t have to be a trauma. It’s a trauma because it’s such a traumatized society…

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Sound of the Sun – The Voice of Universal Consciousness

by Christina Sarich, Staff Writer, Waking Times

Most of us are familiar with the Sun as the main source of visible light and energy on our planet. There is another phenomenon of the Sun – it’s magnetic influence on us, and every living thing on the planet – which fewer are familiar with. The domain of the sun’s magnetic influence (also known as the “heliosphere”) extends billions of kilometers beyond Pluto. This magnetic field has profound effects on all living things on Earth and strongly affects human consciousness. You could say the sun is changing its tune, but we need to know how to listen so that we can harmonize with its music.

We can see this influence created by solar activity throughout certain periods of human history, often marked by social and psychological unrest.

However, the sound of the Sun, which has been compared to the sound of OM, can also be recreated into a musical harmony, as discovered by a team of astronomers at the University of Sheffield, headed by Professor Robertus von Fáy-Siebenbürgen. These scientists have been studying the magnetic loops on the outer layer of the Sun’s atmosphere – known as coronal loops – and have discovered that they behave like sound vibrations of musical instruments creating a musical harmony. Fáy-Siebenbürgen states,

“The coronal loops vibrate from side to side because they are “plucked” rather like guitar strings by the blast waves from explosions on the surface of the sun.”

The scientists have also found that “the loops vibrate backward and forward in a way that mimics the acoustical waves in a wind instrument.”

The sound of the Sun is not something that we can easily hear, because of the composition of the space between the Earth and the Sun and because of the limitations of the human ear. Human beings only hear in a range that includes sound frequencies from about 15 to about 18,000 waves, or cycles, per second. The general range of hearing for young people with good hearing is 20 Hz to 20 kHz.

Though all objects in space have their own sound, since they also have their own frequency of vibration, we are unable to discern them. You can even hear some intriguing radio waves that NASA’s Cassini spacecraft collected near Jupiter, or the earth’s “song” created by plasma waves hitting a radiation belt, but they had to be altered to put them within the human range of hearing.

Audible sound cannot travel through the vacuum of space, however, so the scientists at Sheffield had to recreate visible vibrations generated by the sun’s coronal loops using satellite imaging.

Then, they turned the vibrations into noises and adjusted the frequency so that they could be heard by the human ear. The result was a sort of musical harmonics.

In many ancient religions, the sound of the Sun is considered the most sacred sound of the Universe. It was described by the ancient Hindus in the Vedas thousands of years ago as a mantra that can be intoned with human speech to result in “Aum.”

Although the sound could not be heard audibly by the Vedic scribes, they were still able to identify its existence thousands of years ago, possibly through an elevated consciousness achieved through meditation or yogic practices. Were these humans able to tap into the Universal consciousness and perceive the sound of “all creation”?

Astronomers believe that coronal loops are involved in the production of solar flares, which in turn disseminate highly-charged particles out into space. Increased sun activity can have interesting effects on Earth, including affecting electronic equipment, overheating power grids, and damaging satellites, but they also have an intriguing effect on human consciousness.

 

Particularly after X-class solar flares, most people experience a host of psychological and physiological symptoms which can include:

–       Headaches
–       Heart palpitations
–       Nervousness
–       Agitation
–       Emotional overwhelm
–       Nausea

Some assert that as the coronal energy hits our biological form – our cells – it awakens deeply held memories and wisdom. This solar energy affects our thoughts, our emotions, and our actions because it is igniting our own conscious ascension. Because the energy of the sun (in the form of massive amounts of photons) is a much higher frequency than what we are used to, it can trigger the release of old, stored emotions, thus causing the symptoms (and others) listed above. Some have called these “ascension symptoms” but essentially we are receiving the same influx of energy which knocks out power grids and messes with WiFi signals.

By understanding the patterns in the “music of the sun”, Professor Fáy-Siebenbürgen believes we can start to better understand, and perhaps even predict, solar flare activity, but we can also predict human unrest and put it into perspective.

These changes will hit us fast, too, because photonic light, or photons (quantum energy) moves at least 10,000 times faster than the light we can see with our eyes. This doesn’t mean we should panic, though, but instead prepare for these psychological and physiological changes and know that they are being instigated by the deep wisdom of the sun’s energy as it too, expands.

The earth receives only one half of one billionth of the sun’s output, and on average, it takes about 100,000 years for a photon to travel from the sun’s core to the surface, but as the sun’s coronal ejections become more intense, we will feel the sun’s “sound” in the form of transformational energy, and its music harmonizes with our own personal frequencies.

The Sun is playing a secret melody, hidden inside itself, that produces a widespread throbbing motion of its surface. The sounds are coursing through the Sun’s interior, causing the entire globe, or parts of it, to move in and out, slowly and rhythmically like the regular rise and fall of tides in a bay or of a beating heart.” ~ Kenneth R. Lang

About the Author

Christina Sarich is a staff writer for Waking Times. She is a writer, musician, yogi, and humanitarian with an expansive repertoire.

This article (Sound of the Sun – The Voice of Universal Consciousness) was originally created and published by Waking Times and is published here under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Christina Sarich and WakingTimes.com. It may be re-posted freely with proper attribution, author bio, and this copyright statement. Please contact WakingTimes@gmail.com for more info.

http://www.wakingtimes.com/2017/05/08/sound-sun-voice-universal-consciousness/

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