Wednesday, November 26, 2014

What is Trans*? What is Pagan?

 A memo that started out as a short message to the other members of Beyond the Binary became an unfolding exploration I'd like to share with you all.

This week has given me much food for thought in the realm of our studies and service in Beyond the Binary—from the PACO panel discussions on POC, gender and the intersections of identities, to the Rainbow Moon (a seedling CAYA group) Circle's brainswarm on Monday to spending all of yesterday in the company of P. Sufenas Virius Lupus (birther of the Tetrad++ group of gender-variant deities)! WOW.

What is becoming clear to me is that it is important to acknowledge that many gender identities (if not most, if not all) are inherent, and deserve to be recognized as primary and central to each individual's experience— rather than in their relation to the binary, cisgendered cultural "norm." In that context, using the word Trans* no longer feels correct as the term to use in my events listing, or in my description of whom I serve. Trans* is included, yet still not the central focus, nor the umbrella term that works for me. Many people who identify as Trans* also identify as binary, besides. There are ritual spaces for women or men. This is not where I serve.

I have been questioning the usefulness of my Trans*/Pagan events listing for a few months now, wondering if it is necessary to include every all-gender event that is Pagan, or focus only on events that address variant-gender inclusiveness, though many are binary-oriented. Are Buddhist sanghas, yoga classes, healing clinics and workshops that focus on or include the needs of Trans* people appropriate to list on a Pagan events announcement?

What is Pagan? What is Trans?* That could be (and will be) the title of the blog post this is clearly becoming. (Though I won't be opening the can of worms called "Pagan" at this time. It's about as useful as "Trans*" is to me these days.)

Frankly, I included all of those aforementioned options because I haven't found very many events that could be considered Trans* AND Pagan. If my service as a public Priest/ess is to minister to the needs of nature-based spiritual practitioners who do not identify with the gender binary, then WTF do I call it? C'mon, Hermes, give me the language!

The intersection of personal identities within an individual is difficult— perhaps impossible— to sort out into neat sections. The phrase that seemed to resonate with brilliant intensity this week was "Gender is a holographic experience. Identity is a holographic experience."

While I sort this all out, my events listing will go on hiatus. Is it transitioning to a new identity or simply recognizing what it was all along?

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Trans*/Pagan Events in November 2014

Welcome to this monthly listing of events that celebrate the sacred and honor gender diversity. This November marks a year since the members of Beyond the Binary introduced ourselves to the public. It has been a year of searching, learning, discovering, and a growing assortment of questions and possibilities to explore.

We chose Transgender Day of Remembrance as our date of embarkation (Nov 20, 2013), in part to honor our Beloved Dead as the source of our inspiration and widom, and also to bring more awareness to this worldwide observation of those who were murdered because of transphobia— a pandemic disease that needs much more attention and action in order to bring healing to us all. In that spirit, all of the listings for this November will focus on TDOR.

For other events of Trans*/Pagan interest, please check out the calendar in the sidebar of our blog's homepage. And please send me info about any events that might belong in this listing. Thank you! Blessed be.

#transgenderdayofremembrance #tdor #tdor2014

Maintained by Jaina Bee, a Priest/ess of CAYA Coven, San Francisco Bay Area, CA, USA, Earth.


TDOR SF 2014 from Trans March on Vimeo.




TDoR Main Site:

Transgender Day of Remembrance 2014
This page includes information about TDOR events happening around the world, including Sweden, Australia, Netherlands, Canada, Italy, Singapore, and West Point!

The Trans Rite of Ancestor Elevation
Wed, Nov 12-Thurs, Nov 20 (TDoR)

We are radical trans activists and spirit workers holding a nine-day international ritual to honor our beloved transgender dead.

Join us.


 TDoR San Francisco: 

Thursday, November 20t, 6:00 to 8:00PM
San Francisco LGBT Community Center; 1800 Market St, San Francisco, CA 94102
FREE—donations appreciated!

San Francisco Honors Transgender Day of Remembrance 2014
Please join us at the SF LGBT Community Center on the of 16th annual Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDoR) on Thursday, November 20th, 2014. Transgender Day of Remembrance is a genuine tribute to those who have lost their lives to anti-transgender hatred or prejudice. This day serves a purpose to raise awareness of the threat of abuse and violence faced by the transgender community, as well as their families and friends.

What is TDoR?
The number of reported cases of trans-phobic based hate crimes has more than doubled since 1999 when the first TDoR was held in San Francisco on a cold and rainy night. TDoR occurs globally on the 20th of November. This day also acts to bring visibility and momentum to a call to action to end the hatred and ignorance that the transgender community faces daily.

The Transgender Day of Remembrance was founded in 1999 by Gwendolyn Ann Smith, a trans woman who is a graphic designer, columnist, and activist, to memorialize the murder of Rita Hester in Allston, Massachusetts. Since its inception, TDoR has been held annually on the 20th of November, and quickly evolved from a local gathering started by Smith into an international day of action. In 2013, TDoR was observed in over 200 cities throughout more than 20 countries. The SF TDoR will include local community advocates like Miss Major Griffin-Gracy and Jewlyes Gutierrez. The SF TDoR will also include performances by trans youth, an altar created by El/LA Para TransLatinas, a special Hawaiian chant by local trans legend Kumu Tatianna Kaneholani, a ceremonial release of balloons accompanied by opera sung by the angelic Breanna Sinclaire. The TDoR will be hosted by the SF LGBT Community Center and emceed by local trans youth Alex Bergeron and Rexy Amaral.

For further information and to make a donation in support of the SF TDoR please visit:
(415) 865-5555
Providing: ASL, Spanish translation, Light beverages and snacks


TDoR Oakland/East Bay:

Wednesday, Nov 19, 2014, 7-9:30 PM
Oakland City Hall Council Chambers; 1 Frank H Ogawa Plaza, Oakland, CA 94612
Honorary Co-Host Senate Majority Leader Ellen Corbett

Very Important, this is not TransVision/Tri-City Health Center event this year

It is Tiffany Woods and the TransVision Team, Terry Washington, Lorena Martinez, Janet Halfin, Kayla Moore, Roman Flintroy, Erikka Palafox, Avee Meals, Charlie Wilson, Perla Nolasco, who annually put on TDOR and other community members, Deanne, Austin Bruckner and others, on our own time and anybody else who wants to help/be involved

Please share the event and invite community, allies, supporters.

For official info and participation Contact Tiffany Woods:

Resistance and Remembrance: A Transgender Day of Remembrance Shabbat
November 14, 2014, 7:00p
Kehilla Community Synagogue; 1300 Grand Avenue, Oakland, California

Join Keshet and Glitter Kehilla for a special Shabbat observance focused on the remembrance of the victims of transphobia. Services at 7:00 pm: vegetarian potluck dinner at 8:00 pm. We will be collecting tzedakah for the Transgender Law Center.
Please note that this is a scent-free event. This event is geared toward young adults, but folks of all ages, genders, and orientations are welcome.




Check out these links!

How to host your own TDOR Event

Transfaith TDOR Toolkit for Faith Communities