Bioethics Blogs

Gnosticism and the transgender issue

Since June I have found myself coming back again and again to Robert George’s presentation at the CBHD summer conference. In it he talked about how our society has a concept of who we are as human beings that says we are non-bodily persons who inhabit or use non-personal bodies. This idea has its origins in Greek gnostic thought which was picked up by Descartes and modern western philosophy. It is significantly different from the Judeo-Christian concept that a human being is a unity of spirit and body. This difference helps me to understand why many in our society reach conclusions that are so radically different than those reached by those who have a Christian world view.

Currently the university where I work and teach is dealing with how we should respond to those who see themselves as having a gender that is different from their biological sex. As a Christian university we must decide whether those who live out that way of seeing themselves is in conflict with how we expect the members of our community to conduct themselves as an expression of our faith in God and a desire to live lives that reflect his truth and are growing in Christlikeness. We believe that a fundamental part of having a vital Christian community is having agreed upon moral standards by which we conduct ourselves as we live together. That allows us to foster the spiritual growth of our students and all of us in this community.

Because of that we need to determine whether living out a person’s transgender feelings is in conflict with our understanding of biblical moral truth.

The views, opinions and positions expressed by these authors and blogs are theirs and do not necessarily represent that of the Bioethics Research Library and Kennedy Institute of Ethics or Georgetown University.