Self-understanding: Guaranteed! Meg-John’s gender identity journey

This is Meg-John Barker here. I’m one of the authors of the new JKP book How to Understand Your Gender. JKP asked me to write a blog post about how I came to understand my own gender identity, so here I am.

Self-understanding: Guaranteed!

When I shared a pic of the book cover on Facebook one of my friends asked whether it came with a guarantee that the reader would understand their gender by the end of the book! They pointed out that they’d already read and learnt rather a lot about this topic and that certainly hadn’t left them with some kind of clear simple understanding of their own gender.

I had to agree. ‘Complex’ might well be one of the words Alex and I use most in the book, because gender is certainly that! As with our sexuality, relationship patterns, sense of self, inner emotional world, and so much else about being human, understanding our genders is probably going to be a lifetime journey for all of us. And it’s made even more of an ongoing process by the fact that both the wider cultural understandings of gender, and our own experiences of it, change over time.

So, no the book won’t necessarily leave you understanding your gender in a simple ‘Eureka, I’m a ___!’ kind of way. What it will help you to understand is how your wider world views gender, how you came to experience your gender in the way you do today within this, and what options are available to you as you take your next steps on your gender path.

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Be the first to read an extract from ‘Muslim Identity in a Turbulent Age’

How can Islam be understood in the context of internal struggles for unity and identity, a rise in anti-Muslim hate crime and continued media portrayals of violence, extremism, warfare and oppression? Looking at Islam as a faith, a whole system with political dimensions and through the lens of Western media, this book sets out to clarify the nature of true Islam and the true nature of Islam.

“In a world in which ISIS and other terrorists are a global threat and Islamophobia has grown exponentially, Muslim Identity in a Turbulent Age will be welcomed by policymakers and the general public alike. This timely volume discusses and demonstrates the importance of The Amman Message, a major statement by hundreds of major global Muslim leaders and scholars written as a refutation and delegitimation of violent extremism and terrorism in the name of Islam.”

John L. Esposito, University Professor of Religion & International Affairs and author of The Future of Islam

Follow this link to read an extract from the Introduction to Muslim Identity in a Turbulent Age by Mike Hardy, Fiyaz Mughal and Sarah Markiewicz.

For more information and to buy the book, please follow this link.

 

 

How to Discover your Ritual Identity

 

how to discover your ritual identity Jeltje Gordon-Lennox’s new book, Crafting Secular Ritual, is a unique hands-on guide to the craft of ritual making. This book examines and explains the history, function and place of rituals in different cultures, as well as providing practical guidance for creating your own non-religious rituals for important life stages and events; from naming ceremonies to weddings, births to funerals.

Jeltje recommends identifying your ritual strategy before you plan your first ritual – but how do you do this?

To find out, take this short quiz from Crafting Secular Ritual here.

“Outside of religious institutions there has not been much published guidance on how to create rituals. Beginning in the mid-20th century though, wedding planners, along with celebrant, humanist, and funeral societies, began to fill the void. Half a century later, DIY rituals can still be awkward, embarrassing, or meaningless. This book takes a decisive step in the right direction. It gives practical advice to readers for crafting rites of passage thoughtfully and creatively.”

Ronald L. Grimes, author of The Craft of Ritual Studies

For more information on this new book, please follow this link.