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Religion/Spirituality and LGBTQ People

Religion is one of the oldest forms of community organization across cultures—providing individuals with behavioral guides, rituals, and relational structures. While spirituality often accompanies religious experiences, it can stand alone as well as provide a personal sense of meaning within a larger universe. This distinction between religion and spirituality has become increasingly important within Western societies due to the redistribution of power from religious institutions to the individuals within them. This growing emphasis on the individual has brought to the foreground the debate regarding who has the right to interpret scripture and modify religious rituals for sexual (e.g., lesbian, gay, and bisexual [LGB]) and gender (e.g., transgender, gender queer) minorities seeking religious and/or spiritual experiences. In response to tensions between ancient scriptural interpretations and contemporary ...

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