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Alexander the Gay?

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Poll Question: Do you think Alexander the Great was gay?
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34 [26.98%]
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  Quote red clay Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Alexander the Gay?
    Posted: 15-Oct-2006 at 11:14
Originally posted by pinguin

The concept that gay behavoir is a sin comes from Jewish culture and religion.
 
Christianity was the one that spread it when tried to change the decadent mentality that existed at the end of the Antiquity and the decline of the Middle Ages. Now, it seems Barbarians and Christians agreed in the topic homosexuality was a sin, or at least a disgusting activity.
 
Greeks on this topic, and many others are closer to the ancient oriental mentality. Greeks and Romans have lots of homosexuals in theirs ranks, phylosophers included. Arabs of the times of Harun Al-Rachid were also quite tolerant to that behavoir.
 
Today's gays should take the time machine and leave for those times LOL
 
Intollerance has been particularly strong in both Catholic and Protestant countries up to recent times. In Catholic countries is still a widespread notion that gays are defective people, like handicaped; abnormal people, anyways. And it is still believed gay relations is an activity against nature.
Killings of gays, particularly travesties, are relatively common in Latin America, for instance.
 
Pinguin
 
 
 
I do not find any of this amusing, particularly the suggestion about gays leaving for a distant time.  How about people in this time adopting a more relevant and intelligent attitude.  Closed minds and medieval attitudes do not belong on this forum. 
 
 


Edited by red clay - 15-Oct-2006 at 11:15
"Arguing with someone who hates you or your ideas, is like playing chess with a pigeon. No matter what move you make, your opponent will walk all over the board and scramble the pieces".
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  Quote Seko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-Oct-2006 at 12:10
pinguin should get on that time machine he's so fond of. His prejudism and narrow mindedness is evident on many AE topics.
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  Quote flyingzone Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-Oct-2006 at 12:48
Seko, I am not too familiar with pinguin's other posts but I don't think this particular post of his is prejudicial. I may be wrong, but I think he's merely trying to state the fact that homosexuals are being unjustly persecuted in many countries noawadays. The "time machine" statement is "humour" badly executed - I think what he really wants to say is that homosexuals may find a much less hostile environment back in the antiquity when homosexuality was much more tolerated, if not prevalent.
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  Quote Seko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-Oct-2006 at 13:12
Well, if this is his way of sarcasm then he appears a bit rusty. As he showed questionable tendencies in the 'how can we eliminate racism' and 'pope's gaffe' threads.
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  Quote Komnenos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-Oct-2006 at 13:26
Sorry guys, I must defend pinguin here. I think his point is a clear stance against the homophobic tendencies of Christianity and other societies. The advice to for gays to leave by time machine to more enlightened times is simply ironic. Maybe not terribly funny, maybe he's German.
 
 
PS: I haven't participated in this thread so far and haven't got the time to read through all this, so could someone please explain to me, why the question if Alexander was gay or not has any signifance what so ever in relation to his historic achievements?


Edited by Komnenos - 15-Oct-2006 at 13:29
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  Quote Seko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-Oct-2006 at 13:34
An overtly flammable topic title has turned up some interesting posts. The terminology used in describing gayness may have more to do with how the ancients viewed sexuality then any proof of Alexander's possible bisexual desires.

It still doesn't show a clear bearing on his achievements though.
    
    

Edited by Seko - 15-Oct-2006 at 13:35
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  Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-Oct-2006 at 14:06
Originally posted by Seko

Well, if this is his way of sarcasm then he appears a bit rusty. As he showed questionable tendencies in the 'how can we eliminate racism' and 'pope's gaffe' threads.
 
Well, in "how can we eliminate racism" I wrote what I really believe: racism can only be eliminated by admixture, assimilation and national pride. I believe the very idea of "multiculturalism" plays against assimilation.
 
In the "Pope's gaffe" I just say I agree with the Pope, before he step back, of course.
 
And in here, I just describe how homosexuality has been treated in the past and in the present and why. Yes, I insist gay people could feel a lot better in more tolerant societies rather than the ones of the present. I did not judge the value of modern society in that, and I have not expressed what I believe in that topic.
 
If we live in a democratic world, we have to accept opposing views. Otherwise, everyone think the same and the world would not be democratic anymore. simple.
 
Pinguin
 
 
 
 
 
 
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  Quote Seko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-Oct-2006 at 15:18
Yes, on one hand you have shown the desire for assimilation and tolerance and on the other you have some unique opinions of your own that are objectionable.

So spare me the democracy speech. We all admire a good mixture of values and opinions. Generalizing and making statements without proof is one of your strategies that have garnered complaints my way.
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  Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-Oct-2006 at 21:40
Originally posted by Seko

Yes, on one hand you have shown the desire for assimilation and tolerance and on the other you have some unique opinions of your own that are objectionable....
 
Please state point by point which opinions are objectionable and why.
 
I just want to say I have the right to express and opinion, and I accept yours even if I don't share it. Now, If there is something we don't agree we can't discuss it.
 
However, nobody has the right to attack the person instead of the idea.
(example: You can say "communism" is wrong, but you shouldn't say communists are perverted)
 
Otherwise, it is just an Ad Hominem attack.
 
I'll wait.
 
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  Quote Vivek Sharma Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16-Oct-2006 at 02:02
It's time we stopped considerin alternative behaviour as insane so long  as it is human & compassionate.
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  Quote HistoryGuy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-Oct-2006 at 21:02
Good thing someone is on my side..Wink  I am actually quite open about my orientation, I am bisexual myself and there were great people whom were (mostly men)..LOL
هیچ مردی تا به حال به شما درباره خدا گفته.
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  Quote IrishNation1 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30-Oct-2006 at 16:48
It is most Liely Alexander was Bi sexual. Many Ancient Greeks(and not Just Greeks but a load of other Ancietn Nations and Countrys to) were Bisexual. It was more accepted back then. There was no Chirch to sondem it or anything like that. No one really cared.
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  Quote unicorn Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04-Nov-2006 at 03:02
The issue of how ancients looked at what would be called today homosexual behavior is complicated and
we need to examin not only blunt ad litteram resources but also read through the lines. It is yet simple
to understand, once we gain some insight of how ancients looked at a person as member of the society (citizen),
that they actually were as human as we are and prone to humanize behavior in respect to accepted social values.

Roman society is a sort of mirror for the Greek one, with some habits changed, some deteriorated, some
accentuated. We can find good insight about roman "scene des moeurs" in Petronius' Satyricon. Satyre
was a deity personizing (amongst other) sexual promiscuity. To satyrize meant to subject to ultimate
derrogation a promiscuous conduct.
As such, ancients were not so tolerant to promiscuous behavior. Yet, as today, they accepted that some
personal choices can be tolerated and ultimately also respected if they didn't contaminate the social status
of that person.
From blunt descriptions taken as such we can infer that a) there was some ridicule to which those who
indulged in homosexual behavior were exposed to b) it was of lesser degree for persons of high social status
IF it did not affect too much their duty and the way into which the citizenship service to the public wellbeing
was performed. c) it was of sarcastic degree if it was apparent that it is a vice. Ancients were as us, somehow
hypocritical (if the man is powerful and does well for the city, who cares), somehow "PR-skilled" (it is a bad
idea to get in conflict with the strong man of the day based on opening his closet stories), somehow
sophisticated, to an extend we'd be surprised to get in knowledge of.
A citizen was owning "numen" and "stain his name" is an expression we owe to the very Latin grounds of
our culture. "Of bad omen" is almost a literal translation of the identical expression of the Romans. If the
citizen's social prestation and prestige were not affected by a private conduct, he could be subject of sarcasm
(especially by those around him who could anyhow not stomach too well his person) and that was that.
In extremis, if he contributed (as the very status of citizenship highly demanded) to the well being of the city's
and society's "numen", then he could also be respected and he could "pretend" he was not doing what he
was actually doing. Ancients were instead much more strict with the duty of a citizen towards his family,
gens, tribe, city. It was said here in a previous posting that a family head was actually owning the members.
True, but he was to the same extent "owned" by the duty towards society, he was supposed to act "of good omen",
to pass this to the heir and to provide with the whole of his behavior to the society consolidation. This and nothing
else was the moral ground. To a certain extent - pragmatic and hypocritical. To a human extent, ancients
were aware that no human is perfect and that it is useless to stirr sh*t (pardon my swahili) around private
life business if that private life was held as such to provide for the social wellbeing. Instead, those who fell
across with this conception were regarded as abominations, irrespective of what was the transgression
in itself. Losing the numen, staining the mystical aura of what was the spiritual sense of being a citizen was
abomination.
Providing for restoring the public wellbeing by personal example and sacrifice was "the" deed to make a
citizen respected. It is cited that during early Republican Rome, a pit opened in the soil of the Pomerium
(likely by earthquake) and the priests declared it was a stain on the city's sacred soil and it will not close
unless Romans will throw inside what they value the most. There was argument about what would be that
thing when a youngman rose and said that Rome's utmost value is its youth and as such threw himself
in the pit, which is said to close itself at once. He was revered till late in Roman history as almost a half-god.

Thus, even if Freud's word "catharsis" doesn't describe exactly what the ancients deemed it to be, it is
likely that they tended to interprete the social "destiny" of a person rather than the immediate moral impact
of a deed, should the behavior not harm social wellbeing. We actually do pretty much the same now, for
same basic reasons, even if with other apparent justifications. We can accept that an exemplary destiny
(say - Rimbaud, Ceaikovski or perhaps Shakespeare) can share some traits of weakness, but we don't deny
that these are nevertheless rising destinies, not falling ones. 
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  Quote unicorn Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04-Nov-2006 at 03:18
Now coming to the matter of the debate, we can infer (without getting out of the "perhaps" territory) that
Alexander had some homosexual drive. It was not impossible. As such, we can deem he was carefully
to the utmost not to make this interfere with his immense (unprecedented) prestige and of course duty
as a leader. We can deem that a part of the entourage was compliant, a part of it was hiding ill thoughts,
all the intrigue behind a powerful character's status. It is likely that we will never know. Monarchs of later
ages had symmilar stories. In a very homophobic society, James the 1-st of England was actually known
to be homosexual, as well as the famous Henry the 3-rd of France (nicked "Le vert gallant" - "the gallant
vermin" !). Yet the society, in those days as in all others, satyrized the weakness of the ruler and not
quite actually the conduct. Society, then as always, was driven by its own interests. Monarchs who
performed better could be much more respected and actually people would have played the game of
pretending all is ok inasmuch as much stronger bonds were inciting people to consider that the ruler
is profitable for public wellbeing. Instead, Edward the 2-nd of England (son of "Longshanks") was not
only satyrized, but fell victim to his bad name, and rumors say that he had a terrible death, being stabbed
with a hot iron rod in the errrm "evil place". But again, this happened because he was not only a weak
monarch, he was bluntly incapable. James and Henry were gay, and weak personalities, but were brilliant
intellectuals and very cunning politicians. We owe to James the very theory of the absolute monarch.
Edward instead was just a corrupted weakling. Society was bold in getting rid of his dangerous behavior
because it affected social wellbeing.
As we can all imagine, it was the very opposite case for Alexander. He performed to a hardly to equal
degree the role of the inspirated leader. It is deemable that people was trying to respect this and
eventually they left him alone with his private options, whatever they were. Hadrian was such an inspired,
valiant and good emperor, that the tragic end of his beloved Antinous became rather a romance story
than a reason to reprimand his behavior... 
At corpus non terminatur cogitatione, nec cogitatio corpore (Spinoza, Etica)
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  Quote Stephanos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-Dec-2006 at 15:38
They are none evidence that Alexander had sexual affairs with men. They were rumours in the ancient that  he was feminine but not gay. Hephastion were his best friend and not a FB.
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  Quote pekau Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30-Dec-2006 at 21:22
I think he was just homosexual. Just because he married to women does not mean he was interested in women. There were many homosexual males that married to women to make sure that they were not seen as homosexual to protect their reputation, jobs, etc. In Alexander's time, homosexuals were quite rare, and so it may have looked as if Alexander was cursed, defying to the Gods/Goddess or something along that line.

"Male friendship" term may have been used because despite the fact that Alexander was homosexual, he was the most powerful king at that time. Remember, winners make the history. It almost always does.
     
   
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  Quote Hellios Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31-Dec-2006 at 01:03
Well, the fact so many devote their attention to his private sex life shows how significant he was. LOL
 
Personally, I couldn't care less about his personal sex life because it has nothing to do with his historic achievements.
 
Another thing is that in ancient Greece, homophobia wasn't a problem - you can call it one of the first societies accepting bisexuals as normal people, which they are.
 
Also, what people today call 'gay artists' were accepted - you can easily find ancient Greek erotic same-sex artwork.
 
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  Quote pekau Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07-Jan-2007 at 20:04
Originally posted by Hellios

Well, thefactso manydevote their attentiontohis private sex lifeshows how significant he was. [IMG]height=17 alt=LOL src="smileys/smiley36.gif" width=17 align=absMiddle>


Personally, I couldn't care less about his personalsex life because it has nothingto do with hishistoric achievements.


Another thing isthat in ancient Greece,homophobia wasn't a problem - you can call itone of the firstsocietiesacceptingbisexuals asnormal people, which they are.


Also, what people today call 'gay artists' were accepted -you can easily find ancient Greekerotic same-sex artwork.


    

Hellios, sex life is very significant that could change the world. You need example? Cleopatra.
     
   
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  Quote Nomad2006 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-Jan-2007 at 13:22
I wouldnt know, but I have to say the film Alexander was an insult to him.
 
He conquers half the known world before he turns 30, is probably the most legendary commander in history and all the director can do is waste an entire film obsessing over his sexuality.
 
Sad really what people will do to make movies! 
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  Quote Athanasios Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04-Feb-2007 at 07:24
Doesn't worth any discussion. Get off your " glasses of modern perception of things "  and then you'll realise that it is an incompatibility of being both  gay and  general ,who fights in the first line . Gay people probably have a totaly different temperament.
I also have to mention that being gay or not, has nothing to do with the importance of his achievements .
 

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