Thank you Mufti Sahab, for helping me out of the closet

Published: October 8, 2011

Gay people do exist in Pakistan. And they come from all classes of society. This is not a Western phenomenon as many contend but a natural one.

From every angle, I am your typical Pakistani middle class urbanite twenty-something. There is nothing about my mannerisms, wardrobe or grooming that differentiates me from anyone in my social circle. However, even some of my best friends don’t know my deepest darkest secret, a secret that I have been suppressing for far too many years now: I am gay.

This is a story of what made me come out to my best friends: a Mufti sahab.

On Sept 6 2011, on the show Frontline, which is hosted by Kamran Shahid some panelists were discussing personal freedom in an Islamic society.

The debate touched upon a get together held at the US Embassy in Islamabad to celebrate Gay Pride on June 26, 2011. Being in the closet, I was interested in how the panelist viewed sexuality. Two of the commentators, Orya Maqbool Jan and Mufti Abdul Qawi, both of whom represent the ideological right of the country made some rather hurtful remarks about gay people. However, when the Mufti sahab referred to gays as “worse than animals” something snapped in me. In an epiphany, I realized the absurdity, the ridiculousness, the ignorance of the people who think they are the moral compass of the society. Suddenly, my self-worth was independent of their narrative. I got my ‘gay pride’. The very next day, I came out to my best friend, and then to another one, and then to another one.

I had been repressing my sexuality throughout my teenage years. I remained sane and out of trouble by ignoring my urges, and compartmentalizing my life. However, I always ended up facing questions about my sexuality, time and time again. Even though I knew I was gay I could not bear the shame of admitting it – not even to myself. Not to mention, my concept of piety and my basic belief system would have been challenged as well.

I am not the only one with that predicament.

Lesbians, Gays, Bisexual, and Transgendered (LGBT) individuals do exist in Pakistan. And they come in all shapes and sizes, from all walks of life, from every background, from different classes in the society. This is not a Western phenomenon as many contend but a natural one. Given that homosexuality is found in every culture, in every part of the world, throughout history, calling it ‘unnatural’ is a bit naïve. Nobody chooses to be in a minority, especially in an intolerant society like of Pakistan’s.

For most Pakistani LGBT individuals, reconciling their upbringing, social background, religious beliefs, and sexuality, causes mental anguish. The question that faces Pakistani LGBT individuals is, essentially, how much to suppress their inherent instincts, and comply with the societal rules regarding sexuality. Our society is too communal, too conservative, too compliant to be conducive to accepting anyone who is a bit deviant from the heteronormative lifestyle. For the majority, defying these norms is essentially considered an invitation to be ostracized from the community. Many suppress their sexuality, get married, and continue living the lie.

Hence, the hardest thing for me was to accept I was gay.

Usually, LGBT individuals, everywhere, tend to either somehow try to reconcile their beliefs and sexuality or reject their beliefs straight away. In any case, that acknowledgement of self is the first step, very much like with any other problem.

But thanks to one Mufti sahab’s ignorant hate speech, I suddenly became emboldened enough to reject false moral values, with my own.

Mufti Abdul Qawi’s “worse than animal” comment hit a nerve.

Why would I, as a middle class urban individual, choose to be gay? I cannot live that lifestyle openly in Pakistan, so how could I choose to be in that confrontational position? The learned Mufti Sahab did not even consider qualifying his sweeping statement, like a learned man is supposed to do.

Can I live life as an openly gay man in Pakistan? No.

Do I envisage a Pakistan with a tolerant attitude towards its LGBT citizens, which guarantees them equal freedoms and rights?No.

Did I do something revolutionary? No.

Yet, he had called me “worse than an animal.” He denigrated my existence on the basis of something that I have no power over.

I had to take my identity back from these bigots. They shouldn’t have any bearing on what I feel about myself. I needed to reclaim my own identity; as a Pakistani gay man I shouldn’t be ashamed of who I am. Why should my self-worth be based on what someone with no sense of perspective applies to most society who shared his beliefs? I was finally a free man.

The response I got from my friends was far more than I could have imagined. Not only did they understand where I was coming from, but they were also very supportive. Their reaction to my coming out further strengthened that sense of pride within me. For me, it was a cathartic experience, mentally. I was finally starting to go towards a relatively happy place in my mind.

Now, not only do I have support of my friends, I also have people who have my back. When they hear a homophobic rants it might not go unchallenged from now on, as they also have vested interest in this debate now. I would like to believe that this makes a small, albeit important, difference to the people around me, as well.

We are a society obsessed with conservatism, where people rarely come to a common platform especially for liberal causes. How would this society react to someone standing up and demanding rights and recognition for LGBT individuals? Not great, I’m presuming. However, these small steps help, in one’s own personal space.

Thank you, Mufti sahab, for empowering me with your ignorance.

Tamash.Been

Tamash Been

The blogger wishes to remain anonymous.

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • http://insidedisillusion.wordpress.com Minerva

    Be who you are. Don’t give a thought to these prejudiced, conservative, ignorant, small-minded mullahs.Recommend

  • Rahela

    good story. a bit defiant. but that works too. Recommend

  • http://lonepkliberal.wordpress.com Loneliberal PK

    Sir, I salute you.
    To me the ones who are truly “worst than animals” are the pompous, self-righteous creeps who believe they are ordained to judge and regulate what people do in the privacy of their own bedrooms.Recommend

  • http://www.nerdcrunch.com Moderate

    There is no place for gays and lesbians period. Now you people cant even say that Hadith is two hundred years old and we dont accept it since what happened to nation of Luut is mentioned in Quran and how Allah destroyed them.

    Existence of homosexuality in culture dosnt makes it right.Women are treated badly in our society and that is there for tens of years, does it make it right? NO!Recommend

  • Ali

    You were obviously sexually abused at a very young age repeatedly that has brough you to this conclusion and sexuality.Recommend

  • http://www.thehrdesigns.com Hassan Raza

    Well i do believe that everyone has a right to live their life the way they like it. Being a gay, i have nothing to say in favor or against it. If that is how you want to live your life, sure go ahead. What matters is how your acts effect the nearby people, the society, the families involved. Often we indulge ourselves in unnecessary criticism, no one is implying any restrictions on gay people, you are free to do whatever you want as long as it remains personal and not public. So live a free life, why publicizing when you can or you are doing everything possible in this country. Its a law-less country. Recommend

  • http://insidethegreycells.wordpress.com/ sidra

    good for u?Recommend

  • http://www.thehrdesigns.com Hassan Raza

    Well i do believe that everyone has a right to live their life the way they like it. I have nothing to say in favor or against your sexual preference. If that is how you want to live your life, sure go ahead. What matters is how your acts effect the nearby people, the society, the families involved. Often we indulge ourselves in unnecessary criticism, no one is implying any restrictions on gay people, you are free to do whatever you want as long as it remains personal and not public. So live a free life, why publicizing when you can or you are doing everything possible in this country. Its a law-less country.Recommend

  • Shayan

    Are you kidding me. Sodomy is unnatural. Can’t believe why freedom of expression is confused with immodest. Listen gay pal you have a freedom of expression not the freedom of immodesty. Either treat yourself or stay in the closet.Recommend

  • Bumble Dee

    PATHETIC! …Recommend

  • faris

    mufti sahab is not ignorant rather it’s the writer who is ignorant. perhaps the writer doesn’t know that Qaum e Lut was tormented for the same reason (homosexuality). so there’s no question regarding the prohibition of homosexuality in Islam and hence such events on public places shouldn’t take place in a country where majority is of Muslims.Recommend

  • Ali

    Good for you brother. Pakistan is a country full of fanatics and to be very honest this coming from a molvi do not astonish me atall. Molvis can always rape kids in the madrassas, why would they approve of two adults having relationship regardless of their gender? Recommend

  • Faria Syed

    Thank you for your sharing your piece with us. I admire your courage.

    Recommend

  • Baba ji

    Now, not only do I have support of my friends, I also have people who have my back. – Author

    Few things are best under ” Don’t ask, don’t tell ” policy !Recommend

  • Dooni

    I do not support or condone LGBT people, while at the same time I do not hate them for how they turned out to be. I might be a bit harsh in saying that I consider this unnatural and draw them parallel to people with learning disabilities, but I do not consider them any less of a human nor does anyone have a right to insult someones personal beliefs and activities. May you remain safe in our intolerant society. At least you are not brainwashing hatred in the minds of the youth against fellow human beings!Recommend

  • NotInDenial

    Just like nobody chooses to be in a minority, nobody ‘chose’ to outlaw something for the heck of it. Mufti Sahab may not have chose to right words for it, but the ban comes directly from the Quran and has not been put together by ‘crazy mullahs’ or being based on someone’s personal tastes. The law on outlawing homosexuality, its punishment (wordly and eternal) and the story of the punishment on Prophet Lut’s tribe in Surah Namal (27), Surah Ankabot (29) and Surah qamar is in literal undisputed words stipulated in the Quran. It is upto people if they dont agree with the law, and make different choices, but you cannoy deny it’s existence or look for a religious excuse which is not there.Recommend

  • e.

    Mr Orya. Allow me to define pornography for you – “Pornography or porn is the explicit portrayal of sexual subject matter for the purposes of sexual arousal and erotic satisfaction” .
    Now what i want to know is how in the world could you possibly equate this with a gathering of fully clothed people not involved in any sexual acts ? Recommend

  • Talha Minhas

    I support you, Tamash. You are fascinating to me, and I wish you a happy life. Love and peace.Recommend

  • Muhammad

    Let the haters hate. If they want someone to blame, blame straight people for having gay babies!!
    Be proud, brother. U r not alone :)Recommend

  • Maria Lucia

    First off, I’m offering some hugs to you. But that’s not permitted in your culture too, right? Geez!! :).. Oh well.. I grew up in a more liberal culture, a more open lifestyle where LGBTs are (more often than not) accepted already. Maybe because of that environment, I personally do not give a hoot about the sexual orientation of my family, friends or people in general. Because how could I? Why should I? LGBT is not something an individual decide on. It’s not like one wakes up in the morning and decide that “from here onwards, I will be gay!”. It comes naturally. And if that Mufti sahab doesn’t know this, or have chosen not to understand this, I feel sorry for him. That is the kind of thinking and rationalizing – - worse than animals.

    Oh, I can go and on and on and defend you in particular and all LGBTs in general but, look, there will always be these type of people all over the world. So.Just.Be.YOU! You don’t even need to tell anyone just so you’d feel that you are ‘coming out’. Just be happy. Stop suppressing your true feelings. If people will not understand, hey, it’s not the end of the world. And it’s a vast place to explore!

    To people like Mr. Mufti? That’s his place, that his thinking, that’s what he is made of. Stop caring about this kind because you will never be able to change anything.. So go and start caring about YOURSELF!.. Again, hugs to you :) Recommend

  • Ignorant Idiot

    Go study Islam first (Of-course, If you are Muslim).. It’s not allowed in Islam. You’ve to fight against your will. May Allah Help you and guide youRecommend

  • M Ali Khan

    To all those mard-e-momin homophobes out there, lets not forget one of your favourite “Islami leaders” and “mujahids” (i.e. invaders and looters) of the past was also gay:

    Mahmud Ghaznavi and his love affair with his Turkic slave Ayaz is fact.Recommend

  • Mustafa

    How come all of the bloggers write in perfect english while living in Pakistan? It’s like everyone has the same style of writing…….Recommend

  • http://Lahore Whale

    You are very brave to write this salute <3Recommend

  • http://www.twitter.com/adnanjabbar Dr. Adnan

    This is a very controversial topic if I may say. I’m working as a LGBT Activist but I do keep my limits in the sense that I don’t confuse them with religion. I’m 100% for the rights of individuals but I do also think than once the person declares him/herself gay/lesbian they do take themselves out of the basic Islamic concepts. I can’t explain it more. I want LGBT to have rights in our country. I want them to live the way they like but I also do say that projecting yourself as muslim would be a wrong thing to do then.Recommend

  • CB Guy

    good for you, i would tell you to go to hell,but you are moving fast int eh right direction, thumbs up douche bag. Join your homies (rather homos) from Kaum-e-Lut.

    And if you are so man enough and out of the closet, do reveal your actually identity. Recommend

  • Respectful Observer

    My dear fellow, please don’t consider my comments as offensive because I’d like to respectfully differ.

    I don’t go with the culture of ruling out people as infidels and animals. In fact I vehemently disapprove all such conduct because it closes all doors of possible communication. Now to my point. There are two points I’d like to raise to which you have all the right in the world to reject but read me out first.

    A. Everything in this world exists in symmetrical pairs. Darkness and light; hot and cold; peace and anarchy; ….. And more importantly male and female. Now if you don’t deny to this you cant deny that one completes, compliments and supplements the other. Without one you cannot define the other. And that is how nature works. The that exists bond and harmony between these pairs is the only possible means of sustainability of the human race and by large the world. Without the sacred bond between males and females we risk the extinction of human race. So whatever you try to justify it is everything but natural.

    Food for thought: Where would you be if your parents exhibited the same instincts as you.

    B. Speaking of Islam and scholars you’d be hard pushed to find an instance where either would justify a circumstance you are trying to relate to. Because the holiest scripture Quran itself categorically condemns homosexuality. So I’m sorry to say this but they are both in the strictest of conflicts with each other. You have to choose one.

    You are a free human, a free soul and a free citizen. No one has the right or justification to impose the wish or will over you. But as an educated person with a free thought has also the power to think and realize.

    All the best!Recommend

  • Ahmad shuja Pasha

    God created Adim and Eve not Adim and Steve………I this society you cannot live a gay life openly until you kill all the muftisRecommend

  • Omair Shakil

    While one may or may not agree with how you choose to live your life, you certainly have my respect for having the courage to be honest and true to yourself. I agree with the notion that homosexuality is not by choice but I also hope you choose to reconcile your sexual preferences with your religion. Just like we curb thoughts and acts that would earn us the wrath of God, may they be of stealing or fornication or lying, perhaps you can learn to curb your thoughts too. It is certainly not going to be easy but the promise of glad tidings to all those who follow in Allah’s path will certainly make this hard task, worthwhile. God bless!Recommend

  • Troll, A

    Cheers. I can’t imagine what its like for an LGBT person in Pakistan. You have guts. And I hope that mufti saab reads this and realizes he gave a gay person courage to come out. That would be a delicious irony.

    @ CB guy whats your problem exactly? What a big man you are over the internet…lol.Recommend

  • Anonymous

    It feels so good to read something like this, more power to you brother! Be proud of who you are and remember that you’re not alone in this fight, there are thousands of others like you. Recommend

  • e.

    to all the homophobes and holier than thou ppl out there, why are u all so angry? and how does anyone being gay/ straight / bisexual have any impact on YOUR lives? please chill .. do some calming breathing exercises and calm down..Recommend

  • NotInDenial

    ET why is my comment still onhold? Is it because unlike the others I am backing up my argument with actual references. Just like nobody chooses to be in a minority, nobody choose to outlaw something for the heck of it. It’s one thing that the author has made a different choice, but if your questioning religious opinion, this is not somelaw that was created my crazy mullah but infact comes directly from the Quran. Surah Namal (27), Surah Ankabot (29) and Surah Qamar in explicit, literal words completely outlaw homosexuality, stipulate its punishment (wordly and eternal) and narrates the story of Prophet Lut’s tribe that was punishment for indulging in this act.
    So its one thing if someone doesnt believe in the law and makes different choices, but to blame muftis or look for alternate religious jusitification is to delude oneself over something that is not true.Recommend

  • aisha

    dont mix up liberalism with religion..Islam does not allow in any case the concept of bisexuality or being gay or lesbian if you know and previously community involved in this behavior were punished by Allah(qaum e loot).I hope that you understand that a man is made for woman not another MAN and thats rule of nature.I have nothing to do with ur life as u have your own choices im just telling you that a fact is a fact and you cannot change itRecommend

  • Kashif

    Dear writer,
    Mufti repealed people indulged in homosexuality rather than sexually disabled, although I am personally don’t agree with mufti and Orya but being conservatives it is their their compulsion to support religions norms. On the other hand, I think Marvi is right that if anybody attends any event of religious taboo is no doubt innocent compare to those who are killing people on the name of religion.Recommend

  • umar

    jus wanna say astaghfirullah… Allah hum sab ko hedayat dey…Recommend

  • http://www.facebook.com/zurmat Xurmat Xara

    Thank you Mufti Sahab Thank you Recommend

  • http://Gaypakicetus.blogspot.com Whale

    @NotInDenial:
    Keep your religious beliefs and your verses to yourself. Not everyone has the same view of the world as you. Who ever wrote this article is a hero for me. Recommend

  • Talha

    I am a great supporter of lesbian rights.

    I can tolerate Gays too, what they do in the privacy of their bedroom is none of my business.

    As for lesbians, they can do whatever they want, where ever they want.

    Double standards ftw.Recommend

  • Javaria

    The Quran explicitly Outlaws homosexuality. The thing is, just because you are born with it is not a good enough excuse. Since you are a Muslim and obviously believe in Allah, you should put Allah’s will ahead of your own, right? Think of it as a test, like remember that saying of the prophet that the world is like a prison for a momin.
    It’s good that you are being honest with yourself, but dear author… Your religion doesn’t approve your decision.
    Still, your choice.Recommend

  • Abdul Rehman Gilani

    Fact is this, that your article is nothing more than hogwash and unappealing, in the Noble Quran, the people of Lot were destroyed due to this, and the Noble Quran called them transgressors. I agree with Mufti sahab. Its not about ideologies, its about the truth, and the truth was spoken by Orya in that program as well.

    May Allah swt guide us all.(ameen)

    And know this, every disease is curable. So through perseverance of not succumbing to your desire, and asking Allah to Help you, will lead you to success.Recommend

  • Anonymous

    Hay I know this isn’t a dating site and my comment may possibly be far away from what’s appropriate but… are you single??? :D Recommend

  • Sayyed Mehdi

    Homosexuality is NOT unnatural, and it’s NOT a choice. It is a completely natural phenomena that occurs in hundreds of animals, along with Humans. Hatred of homosexuals is completely unnatural though, since it is found only in humans. What seems unnatural now? Homosexuality or Homophobia?

    And salute to the Author.Recommend

  • Pakistani

    Express Tribune there are other stories you could be talking about. Like seriously!Recommend

  • NotInDenial

    @Whale
    Well apparently all the world’s major religions have the same opinion as me and until the 1960′s even the American Association of Pscycology agreed with me. So then why all the hoopla? did man suddenly take an evolutionary leap in the last 20 years that something that has been widely outlawed for most of time, in most places, by most religions, suddenly become normal and okay now? I am not the one imposing anything, like I said its one’s choice if they do something differently. But to say something is not forbidden, or question religious opinion is to be intellectually dishonest. In this case you are the one imposing something on others contrary to the norm. Just be honest and say you dont want to practice the religion instead of attacking those who are, because doing that still wont prove you right.Recommend

  • http://lonepkliberal.wordpress.com Loneliberal PK

    Respectful Observer,
    A. Not everything exists in pairs, or have you not heard of asexual or hermaphroditic organisms? And homosexuality is a natural phenomenon that has been identified in more than 1500 animal species, and these species are nowhere near extinction because heterosexuality still remains the dominant orientation.

    B. Your religious beliefs are not my concern. If your religion forbids you to engage in such activities, then by all means, don’t. But don’t push your laws upon others, who are entitled to live their personal lives in accordance with their own moral code.Recommend

  • http://tamashbeen.wordpress.com Tamashbeen

    Thanks for the support guys. The whole piece is to write about a personal cathartic experience. For those who are referencing religions and moral values for their argument, I think you actually HAVENT read what I’ve written.

    Thanks.Recommend

  • Ali Tanoli

    @ M Ali Khan
    Be civilized u idiot and one more thing the desease called Aids ever heard of also come from San Fancisco gays.Recommend

  • KhalidW

    Were the people of Lut killed for their intention to rape and pillage the angels or for their homosexuality? Which makes more sense… idiotsRecommend

  • Modazul

    The three biggest religions in this world Islam Judaism and Christianity all three forbid homosexuality. If anybody thinks that being a homo is not a sin, then I’m very sorry to say I don’t think you believe in God no matter u r a Muslim Jew or Christian Recommend

  • Ali Azad

    Think before you speak. If you dislike what is being said on the television about homosexuals then ignore. I have a simple and a better solution. Mashah Allah we all are educated and are able to read and understand things. So before we make any judgement let us just pick Quran and Sunnah and read for ourselves. If you think people on the tv are giving wrong information then you take it yourself from the most reliable source which is Quran and Sunnah. But if anyone thinks that the teachings of Islam are old and merely because homosexuality is so common in every society and Islamic teachings do not reflect the modern way of living then that day is not far when such people will soon justify taking alcoholic drinks just because it is so common in the society. Recommend

  • faraz

    Its very common in Afghan society. For centuries, it has been part of their culture. Now you cant blame ignorant tribals of Afghanistan to be under Western influenceRecommend

  • Ali Kazmi

    You have my admiration and support, Tamash Been. As a 24 year old gay man who’s been openly gay for quite a while, I can assure you that being openly gay is mostly a good thing. There is a big downside to being openly gay, but the downside doesn’t really compare to being unapologetically and defiantly honest and liberated.

    Why should we gays, lesbians, bis and trans people be ashamed? We may be “freaks” and what-not, but that’s only what stupid people say about us. Their opinions are worthless and there’s nothing intrinsically wrong about being queer.Recommend

  • http://iblees.wordpress.com/ Haseeb Asif

    We can only fight the stranglehold religious conservatism and social backwardness has on popular discourse when people like you make your voices heard. Excellent well done.Recommend

  • Shakeel

    @Ali: where did you get this idea of abuse ? Many people get abuse in their childhood they do not turn gay, many who are Gay were never abused, so please get to know Gay people before assuming …… Recommend

  • Modazul

    It’s actually not surprising what mess is going on in this world. One of the signs mentioned about the nearing of the Last Day was rampant immodesty and social corruption and support for homosexuality. But it feels good to know Pakistan will never legalize homosexuality. If an individual is gay then let him be. As long as he doesn’t practice it with another person coz then that’s not being an individual, that’s being a group, interacting with society. And everyone knows what’s the punishment for spreading corruption in society. Please homosexuals in Pakistan, go abroad to the U.S or any western country. Don’t spread your social corruption in Pakistan. We already got political corruption causing many social ills Recommend

  • mf hussain

    Being gay is genetic.

    Aur Islam Islam karoRecommend

  • Ahmed Malik

    @M Ali Khan: Very Dumb! Mahmud of Ghazni and Ayaz were not Gay.Recommend

  • KolachiMom

    Hahaha look at all the religious fanatics feeling all insecure, and self righteous, spitting tacks in every direction. Hilarious! To the author, well done, well said, stay strong.Recommend

  • Rehman

    “No one can make you feel insulted/inferior without your own consent”
    Elanoer Roosevelt

    So my advice to gays.
    Always be proud of what/who you areRecommend

  • Abdul Rehman Gilani

    @No 1 is born GAY,

    Absolutely correct.Recommend

  • Enigmatic desires

    Prejudiced bigots have existed since time immorial. The ‘mufti sahibs’ of the dark ages were burning women at the stake for been witches an fornicating with the devil..

    I used to be a bit of a self rightous jackass myself.. Not so long ago before I realised that the light I was soo lookin forward to at the end of the tunnel was the head light of an onrushing train!!

    Kudoes to your courage.. Dont let the heairy barbarians get u down matey.. Spreading misery is basicaly the core purpose of their existence…Recommend

  • FAZ

    Mr. Tamash Been
    I dont blame you for this. However I would like to clarify that sexual orientation of a human being is due to his upbringing, his environment and his surroundings in which he/she grows up. Its your psychological upbringing that decides your future sexual orientation. You are not born gay! You become one. Please dont mind you all LGBT people out there. We live in a suppressive society where you can be tortured and molested in all ways and one of the outcome is homosexuality.
    As far as the nation of Luut is concerned, they were “intentional” homosexuals who “choose” that way which brought a wrath upon them. In any society the number of “straights” is and will always be greater than LGBT’s. But in their case the “straight” people where either forced to go against there will or to leave the community. It is a kind of thing which we are doing towards these people by calling them worst than animals.
    To summarize, anyone with homosexual tendencies can get himself cured by proper psychological treatment, if he/she is willing as this is the right thing to do if you call yourself a Muslim. Allah is always right and He has chosen what is best for us.Recommend

  • OldFaithful

    There are other social and religious taboos too , if you like to look at things in your own personal way instead of any law or conservative religious ruling….
    We don’t eat pig, dead or humans ,
    We don’t marry our sisters ,mothers ,daughters and aunts.
    we don’t go out undressed ,
    we talk to others with a sense of respect
    We take a bath as an obligation too
    we don’t kill people…. so on ….
    Just a few examples that some people think they should not abide by because they like to do it or don’t like to do it at a certain time ….
    Whether you like someone saying it in a certain manner or not , judge you acts according to a set of codes of conduct . Laws are not made at home and Religion is divine no doubt.
    Get out of your doubts. Recommend

  • Mustafa Pasha

    All power to you my Pakistani brother!

    I love how a lot of our muslim bretheren can get so incensed over something that is deeply personal yet ignore the poverty, injustice and cruelty meted out to millions of Pakistanis everyday in the name of religion.

    I pray for the day when you won’t have to write articles defending your right to be yourself. Recommend

  • Mj

    Some interesting information for the homophobes: Your hate might stem from being actually gay, and having to repress those feelings. Ouch!
    .
    “The results of this study indicate that individuals who score in the homophobic range and admit negative affect toward homosexuality demonstrate significant sexual arousal to male homosexual erotic stimuli. These individuals were selected on the basis of their report of having only heterosexual arousal and experiences. ”
    .
    Henrey E. Adams, Lester W. Wright Jr., and Bethany A Lohr, Is Homophobia Associated With Homosexual Arousal? in the Journal of Abnormal Psychology, Vol. 105., No. 3 (1996), pp. 440-445
    .
    “Generally, these varied explanations conceive of homophobia as one type of latent homosexuality where persons either are unaware of or deny their homosexual urges”
    .
    SourceRecommend

  • Rizvi

    Well, I am living in the UK and have a couple of gay friends. They had a bad past where they were sexually abused, and that is the reason they turned out gay. It was not natural for them to be gay. And I think being gay is a mental illness, need to be treated properly. Its so obvious that it is unnatural, you cannot reproduce if you are gay. Period !Recommend

  • CB Guy

    @ Troll, A: i don’t write blogs for ET and i don’t brag about being open on an issue and then not be open. I don’t come up here and talk about my blah blah blah.

    And my problem with sodomy is that i find it nothing more then filth. if Kaum-e-Lut wasn’t enough to teach people a lesson, nothing will be. Recommend

  • Umair

    From a Muslim perspect it forbidden or matter of fact from all religions point of view. Following a religion is a commitment to ones self to obey the rules set out by that religion. So if you are muslim and are proud of being gay than my friend you could not keep a commitment you made to yourself and thats nothing to be proud of.

    My sympathies with you!!!!Recommend

  • http://kmlgl.wordpress.com/ Komal

    I had become complacent about this issue for some time. This article has snapped me out of my complacency. Thank you.Recommend

  • Arsalan

    Great Work man… its really hard here to live with duel identity… and still they think we are not human..Recommend

  • Aishah

    -

    This is tribune , not twitter or facebook or personal blog where people keep fancy nicks to create mysterious airs around them.

    This is hiding identity biz really irritating. And looks unprofessionalRecommend

  • Saad

    Reminded me of this once again…

    http://blogs.tribune.com.pk/story/7255/its-not-easy-being-gay/comment-page-6/#comments

    Kudos to ET for publishing such articles!Recommend

  • Arsalan

    Dear Friends.. Who this gay-ism isn’t permitted in islam must know that there is a huge difference between gayism and having sex with a man. not one want to be a gay in this cruel country. but its natural its just came from the nature. and man have attraction with man and no feeling for a female. if its wrong its mean the nature is wrong..Recommend

  • Shoaib

    Over 1500 species show homosexual behaviour. Only one seems to have a problem. Its like hell with science, facts and nature, lets just go by something said 1400 years ago. More power to you.Recommend

  • Bystander

    Proud of you and salute you…. don’t be pulled down by negative comments…. bless you. Recommend

  • Sarim Jamal

    Live your life, the way you want to live it!
    We as Pakistani target the weak and different and I guess we deserve whatever comes to us for that matter. Recommend

  • Majid Urrehman

    Dude you are not gay you are just posing to be gay. Almost every man in Pakistan is gay. You are not an exception. Every man who finds a chance, does it. “Londey Bazi” is a street word and it means being gay. Don’t try to make headings by saying you are a gay. Accept that it’s a bad habit, try to discard it forever and fear Allah.Recommend

  • Faz

    Writing with the pen name of Tamash-Been, yet claiming to come out of the closet, stop fooling yourself and stop being a mere reactionary to Mufti Abdul Qawi’s flawed statement.
    As for LGBT rights, one fails to understand that there a lots of similar natural desires and instincts which are required to be controlled when it comes to living in a society. From sexually abusing children to adultery all fall in the category of such sexual desires, then what makes LGBT so special to be allowed openly. You want your rights, live your life the way you want but stop publishing and promoting it to my children. The basic entity of society is a family and our social value system is based on family, accept it or not. Why family? because unlike other animals human child needs constant care and protection for the growth. Any desire which comes in direct clash with the family will be opposed and resisted, Like it or not!Recommend

  • http://Gaypakicetus.blogspot.com Whale

    @NotInDenial:
    Most world religions for until a millennium ago believed in slavery. Islam did not abolish slavery either. Why then did the world realize it was wrong?
    Because in progressive cultures we can move on. By looking at facts, researching and reaching conclusions with ‘reasons’ we move from the past to the present. Not everyone believes in the religion you belong to. I’m not imposing anything. Everyone has the right to live as he wants to. What Jesus, Moses, Zarathustra and the Dalai Lama say doesn’t go with everybody. For a man of science earthquakes are caused by movement of the tectonic plates. For a religious man it’s god angry at the gays in Sodom and Gomorrah. I believe in the former.Recommend

  • Usama Aziz

    I doubt whether Pakistan is a Muslim majority country or not.
    To all those who considered gay or lesbian as a natural and acceptable, Please go and read Quran.
    May ALLAH guide us all.Recommend

  • Affan

    and yet you decide to remain anonymous !Recommend

  • UseURhead

    @Sayyed Mehdi
    Animals can also be found exhibiting Cannibalism ….Do you advocate and support it in Humans too ? Recommend

  • xahra

    well.. i am a little depressed after reading your piece of writing. this was way too courageous but all in all ‘m glad that at least someone in our society has the guts to admit the fact they are living with.its a test for u guy ! i do believe as a muslim u should look into this matter in an islamic way as by the end of the day we all have to die and have to be questionable for our worldly pleasures and desires. all we can do is we can pray for people being lost in these wordly desires :( ALLAH will surely help you if you ask him for it.Recommend

  • JJ

    @Author:

    It is all relative!
    You feel imprisoned in a country which totally looks down upon Gays.
    But at least you live in an urban setting; you have access to western views and thoughts and modern education ; you know being Gay is something one is born with – it is not something that one chooses or can give up. You have friends who are educated and accept you for your Gay orientation.
    Now imagine the a Gay person in FATA. Poor guy knows something in his life is wrong – but can’t place a finger on what it is! He does not know that what he feels is normal and that what he feels is natural and not a disease. Recommend

  • Parvez

    You are a brave man to have broached this subject and you have expressed your feelings and your views maturely and nicely. It’s your life to live and you get only one pop at it.
    On the religious aspect there are many, many, many things that religion teaches that we do not follow – shunning hypocrisy is just one.Recommend

  • Bert

    There are several comments on how the Quran has explicitly banned gays and that seems to be the only justification. I do not see any of the comments addressing the question of whether these very same people really think that someone gay would just wake up one day and decide to be gay just for the heck of it – It all boils down to something really simple: How do the moral flag bearers have a right to tell two individuals how they should or should not live their lives when what those two individuals have absolutely no impact and do no harm to anyone else.

    Nobody has the right to bar you from practicing your religion and following the Quran or anything for that matter (Which is why all there is all the fuss in Europe), apply the same reasoning to other beliefs and ways of life instead of being hypocrites Recommend

  • http://pioussluts.wordpress.com EoH

    We are the men so happy and gay
    Who the hell cares what people say!

    Just imagine about PTI surrenders to Taliban and they will crush your head with stones as per their Shariah…Recommend

  • Harris

    Its funny how people cite incident of people of Lut from Quran, and how they were destroyed because of their sexuality. Can you guys tell me why don’t we see such calamities striking now?
    KhalidW’s interpretation of incident makes more sense.
    To the author, I would say its great that your friends were very supportive and caring. Our society is plagued by such self righteous ulemas, who consider themselves moral compass of some sort. Well you aren’t the only one! Best of luck! Recommend

  • Talha

    Great Muslim warrior and descendent of Genghis Khan Babur was gay too.

    You are in good company.Recommend

  • Harris

    To all those attacking author’s anonymity:
    If he weren’t anonymous, I bet you all woulld have tracked him and torched him. Such is the beauty of Islamic Republic of Pakistan!
    @Whale: nice argument mate!
    And kudos to you Tamash Been! :)Recommend

  • http://tamashbeen.wordpress.com Tamashbeen

    I have read most of the comments over here. I really appreciate all the positive comments. I’ll let the comments go on for a day or so, and try and answer some of the issues that are raised during this Comments section, on my personal blog. Most probably on Monday, or Tuesday.

    RegardsRecommend

  • Faz

    @Loneliberal PK:
    The stance of religion and question of morality on LGBT is totally a different debate where I being a believer in Islam can present my argument but I assume that is not the common ground of debate here. So I confine my argument only to the issue of rights. The society you & I live in (whether you like it or not) is based on the institution of marriage where a male and female decide to live together, vow loyalty to each other, reproduce offspring and raise them well enough to contribute to the future of humanity and for a better society. The stronger the relationship between man and woman, the better it is for the offspring. Now that is a common wisdom drawn over centuries of human existence and evolution since a human child unlike animals requires to be taken care for years. You and me are debating here just because we owe our existence to such social system and bonds established. Hence a family is the basic entity of a society without it the wear and tear starts and where will it stop, no one knows. As far as rights or I would rather say sexual rights are concerned there is always a control mechanism existing whether implemented in the name of religion or law to limit the desires and instincts. Otherwise as matter of fact there is no limit to sexual appetites, tomorrow some may start claiming their rights for incest, adultery, child abuse and who knows may be rape too. So be it LGBT or any other right, when it clashes with the basics of society it will be resisted and opposed.
    Still some may want to live their lives according to their sexual orientation, they can do it in private, but will not be allowed to shove such ideas down the throats of others. They will not be allowed to publicize it and propagate it otherwise there will be people either in the name of religion or law who will oppose it and they have the right to oppose it.
    The bottom line; by legalizing and accepting the status of LGBT rights at social level, the fundamental element of the society whose significance I have stated above falls into jeopardy. Recommend

  • Indi-Pop

    I wish to applaud the author for coming out of the closet and openly declaring that he is gay. Living in a conservative society it is easier to bend than to break social taboos. The very same society which shakes its head in disgust in matters which are personal and between two consenting adults, keeps quiet when women undergo marital rape and domestic violence. I would like to cite a few examples from India (which is also a conservative society outside its mega cities and towns) on how how friends and supporters of LGBT community can do their bit to save such people from persecution. After sodomy was decriminalized by Delhi High Court in the Naz Foundation case in 2009, there are many support centres for such people who often get disowned by their families because of social pressure. The media also plays a big role to come to rescue of such people , for e.g. when police tried to stop a party of LGBT community in Mumbai on pretext of drugs being served there it made to front pages of all national dailies. Bollywood to has played its part by making making movies like Dostana, My Brother Nikhil etc which has brought this topic to the drawing rooms of families. Talk shows on TV have broached the topic on how parents should support their gay children i ( e.g http://social.ndtv.com/wethepeople/permalink/44096) . Gay pride marches are regularly organised in major cities where even straight people come out to lend their support . Rich and powerful members of LGBT community have also formed a strong lobby specially in the fashion and entertainment industry to look after the interest of their members. Keeping silent when innocent people are being persecuted for no fault of theirs is also a crime, hence dear friends of LGBT community come out and lend your support to such people to fight against Homophobes and allow them lead a life of dignity.

    Love and Regards from IndiaRecommend

  • Noumaan Shamsi

    Hey buddy,
    Theres been an interesting trend on ET lately, of members of the Pakistani LGBTQ community blogging about their experiences (albeit anonymously). I always have arguments with my muslim peers who say that they have reconciled their religious beliefs with their homosexuality. Its something I cannot understand, and goes against the very principles of the religion. But you did not bring up your personal religious beliefs, and so I see nothing wrong with your lifestyle choice as long as it does not twist the message of islam, or harm anybody around you. We are all, after all, accountable to God individually. All the best to you!Recommend

  • wake up Cinderella!

    Please ignore all these homophobic comments. Proud of you. Glad you came out, and remember you do not need any of these idiots to validate your sexuality, Your feelings and your reality is as natural as anything around you. Rejoice, because you have finally accepted yourself and never ever doubt yourself. You will find friends and lovers everywhere. good for you.Recommend

  • Cynical

    I am being told for all my 37 years that every thing on this earth have been created by All mighty God. It follows that he ( I am assuming the male identity, not so much because of any proof but to massage my male ego) created the gays too. Why did he do that? if they are unacceptable. It would have been more logical not to create them at all.Recommend

  • http://bakedsunshine.wordpress.com Shumaila

    @ Faz, that is a well thought out argument. You obviously consider LGBTs as a threat to the family. Well, that argument has one huge, huge flaw – the fact that research has shown that children brought up in families with LGBT parents are as well-adjusted and as normal as children brought up in heterosexual families.

    “Since the 1970s, it has become increasingly clear that it is family processes (such as the quality of parenting, the psychosocial well-being of parents, the quality of and satisfaction with relationships within the family, and the level of co-operation and harmony between parents) that contribute to determining children’s well-being and ‘outcomes’, rather than family structures, per se, such as the number, gender, sexuality and co-habitation status of parents.”
    .
    So the LGBT community are not a risk to the happy family, and, in fact, are just as capable of adopting children and having a happy family as you are. They, like you, can also raise offspring “well enough to contribute to the future of humanity and for a better society” to quote yourself. And many same sex couples do want to do that, but they can’t because we don’t allow them the rights to.
    .
    Consider, if you please, the number of starving, homeless, loveless children on the streets right now. Would you prefer that they stay that way, or would you prefer that they find a loving home with a same-sex couple that can take care of them just as well as you or I?
    .
    So you’re right really. LGBT rights are not just about sexual appetites, my friend, they are much much more than that. The right to marry, the right to settle down, the right to have a family, just like you :)Recommend

  • annonymous

    Be yourself !Recommend

  • NeMeSYZ

    @everyone comparing humans to other species to justify homosexuality

    Going By your defination of natural:
    Incest is also natural
    Rape is also natural
    Violence is also natural

    All these things exist in other species, do you support them too?

    My personal opinion is that we DONOT follow ALL the things that exist in nature regardless of our natural desire, and that is what makes us Human.Recommend