More Thoughts on Assessing the Implications of One Aspect of The Guide’sTeachings on Homosexuality

By Paul Paquette, President of the International Pathwork Foundation

In the December 2020 edition of this newsletter, I wrote about the fact that the Board of the International Pathwork Foundation had invited helpers and other community leaders to discern how to respond to criticism of the Guide’s treatment of homosexuality, particularly lecture 53 where the Guide discusses homosexuality as a sickness. Based on feedback and discussion, a further meeting of the committee, and my reflections, I want to address this again today.

Let me say though that I am speaking for myself. I see my role as President of the Foundation as engaging in the topic under discussion and to share what I see, hear and feel. But as far as any action that might be taken in the name of the IPF, it’s my responsibility to support the finding of a consensus. It’s not my choosing; it’s the choosing of those that invest in the process – the process is of course the Pathwork. The objective of the Pathwork is to mold the inner creative life substance that we channel to act with love and care rather than hate and mistrust. The cornerstone to do this is to face oneself in all honesty (see lecture 181 the Meaning of the Human Struggle). This is said in many ways throughout the lectures as is the Guide’s intention which is to develop our inner authority to conscientiously make the loving choices.

The topic of how to handle criticism of the Guide’s commentary on homosexuality has become a lightning rod for many issues in our community.

On this issue there are people who:

  • — are not concerned that homosexuals feel offended by the Guide’s commentary; and those who see systemic and cultural oppression based on questionable thinking;
  • — cringe in anger if you suggest that Guide said something that is suspect or discriminatory; and those for whom questioning and even disagreeing with the Guide, when it comes from an honest self-examination and development of one’s positive inner authority, is the cornerstone of the Pathwork;
  • — believe God’s plan for sexual relations is limited to heterosexual relations because that is how babies are made; and those who see that 95% of the expression of human sexuality is about relationship and or recreation, not reproduction, and it is in this expression that we should ask what God intends. Then related issues quickly emerge.

There are people who:

  • — believe the Pathwork is Christian and those who believe it is non-denominational;
  • — are dumbstruck that the Pathwork, which is largely non-denominational, suddenly becomes denominational and Jesus is held up as the most evolved spirit;
  • — have a profound sense of Jesus and those who do not know of him or are confused about him;
  • — wonder why it’s assumed the Guide is a “he” and those for whom the Guide is a “him.”

At our second meeting on this topic on February 18th, we did the Pathwork; we could have confronted and fought, but we were guided to hear, understand and empathize with each other. The pain felt by the LGBTQ community over being the target of the Guide’s comments, and that that language could be used to justify homophobia, was felt by all.This was a real gift since the issue was no longer academic. It is about real people following the impulse of their hearts to love and care, yet always having that diminished, disrespected, trivialized away. Also expressed was the fear for the future of the Pathwork and its relevance to younger generations if it can’t evolve as the culture is clearly evolving. Where is the good inner authority of the Pathwork community in 2021? Can we engage in a process that allows us to make a conscientious decision? The decision may be to do nothing or it may be to offer a lot more guidance to people questioning the Guide on this topic and on other topics also. But we need to hear each other and support each other to find and express what is truly honest for each person. Of course, we don’t turn a blind eye to criminal acts and acts of violence. But if it is someone expressing “in this way I am able to love and care,” we need to hear that and see the other as a brother, sister or non-binary sibling in this amazing spiritual community known as the Pathwork.

I honestly do not know how we will be proceeding but we will be proceeding with our process of listening to each other. I hope at some point that we can act in the way of offering more guidance and support to LGBTQ people, so they are able to benefit from the wisdom of the Guide which is present in so many areas. However, that is also something we all have to choose and support, and it may mean also offering support to those who are troubled by this—all is possible.