Dreamer's Refuge ב"ה

A Student of Sense and Nonsense

G-d, Homosexuality, Dreams and Psychology


I have been considering writing this for a while, but I have put it off for several reasons. The primary one being my concern about upsetting my fellow Jews, with whom I closely identify. I deeply care about my community and want what is best for our people.

Having said that, I also embody a trait that is despised, rejected, and until very recently was powerless within the religious community: My sexuality is homosexual. I am also Autistic, and have a speaking impediment (a stutter), which makes it difficult for me to articulate my thoughts and feelings via speech.

All of these create a wedge within our community. The talk of punishment and rejection come up quickly.

As many know the Torah prohibits homosexuality, this creates a conflict – between my spiritual and physical halves – is a struggle that I face every day. But this is the central blessing of being a child of Israel, our struggle with G-d, our angel and our shadow/yetzer hara until we learn (or are forced) to integrate/come to terms with them.

I am close to G-d and feel His presence everywhere, both inside and outside of myself, and I strive to be a “good Jew” by following our people’s commandments and religious laws. But I also seek to honor my animal body/soul (Nefesh).

Suppressing or repressing intimate contact and commitment based on love with another person can be cruel to the animal soul and psyche and have long-term effects on a person’s well-being.

Simultaneously, I am also at odds with the “LGBTQA+ community,” which has recently started to advocate for unrestricted sexual liberation and the dissolution of all gender and sexual norms.

I do not agree with the idea being pushed by most progressive schools of thought that society ought to remove most restrictions on sexual freedom (in public) or the idea that because gender is ‘just’ a social construct that we ought to universalize all gender norms.

In all current wisdom traditions, both sexual discipline and healthy gender norms have been bedrocks of their respective societies. Judaism emphasizes this point, as seen in the prohibition on homosexuality, support for modesty in dress, and creating a distinction between men’s and women’s clothing, and spheres of influence in society.

Additionally, the emphasis on “pride” is a more recent development that has until recently been seen as a negative egoic trait, especially when it is unearned.

The conflict between homosexuality and religion is complex, and there are no simple solutions. However, I hope that sharing my perspective can contribute to the conversation and promote Chessed (loving-kindness) in our community. As our Sages have taught, the Second Temple fell due to baseless hatred, with Jews hating their fellow Jews due to being unable to reach an empathetic agreement in their disagreements. It is my hope to push back against this trend that can still be seen in the Jewish community, while remaining true to G-d, our Torah and respecting the inherent dignity of every Jew as created in the image of G-d.

Furthermore, I believe that the LGBTQA community has yet to confront certain behaviors within itself that would be considered crude, profane, and overly sexual, regardless of the orientation of the individuals involved. In short, the community has not delt with its psychological Shadow.

A caveat must be made before I start; for a lot of people in modern times, their identity has become their Idol. I do not speak for all people within the LGBTQA+ community. I am a Jew who happens to have a homosexual sexuality, just as I happen to have black hair. While for others, homosexuality has become a cultural identity, ‘Gay’, and along with that they may also happen to be Jewish.

This can been seen on display when someone says: ‘As a gay person…’ Their identity, ‘gay’, comes first, then their personhood. Conversely my connection and our covenant with G-d comes first.

So where should I start?  How about my request and prayer for wisdom and a subsequent dream:

The Dream: A Dinner Table Discussion


Before I retired for the night, I was wrestling with these ideas, I was conflicted and uncertain.

I did not want to add or subtract anything from the Torah, I wanted to share my personal understanding of its verses. My intention was not to detract from the existing interpretations, but to add to the multitude of perspectives that exist within our tradition. As we say, every Jew can find themselves in the Torah. For me, that was in the story of David and Jonathan (2 Samuel 1:26) though I understand that is not the traditional interpretation.

So, I prayed and asked G-d for guidance, and wisdom, asking for a dream that would help me decide about whether to write about this topic. The result is the dream below; I will be using Jungian and Hasidic interpretation to analyze it. Why these two?

“But do you know who anticipated my entire psychology in the eighteenth century? The Hasidic Rabbi Baer from Meseritz, whom they called the Great Maggid. He was a most impressive man.”

Jung, C. G. (C.G. Jung Speaking: (pp. 271-272))

Chabad is a Hasidic movement within Orthodox Judaism, founded in the late 18th century by Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi. The Great Maggid was the disciple of the Baal Shem Tov and the leader of the Hasidic movement after his death. Rabbi Schneur Zalman joined his bet midrash (house of study) for a number of years and studied Kabbalah with him. He regarded him as his master and was influenced by his teachings. This is backed up by another celebrated Jungian thinker Erich Neumann in his book “The Roots of Jewish Consciousness, Volume Two: Hasidism”


I was seated at a dinner table with my mother and uncle, in my maternal grandmother’s home in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. We were savoring Pizza Hut pizza when my mother received a call from her friend. She handed me the phone and I was greeted by the voice of this acquaintance, whom I held in high esteem in my youth. This friend was a successful software engineer, having made a successful transition from being a doctor in Russia to working as a software engineer with databases for well-known companies in America.


My grandmother’s home in Tashkent could represent my roots, my past, my psychic connection to my family and cultural heritage. My mother could represent my Anima, which is the feminine aspect of our psyche.  My uncle could represent my Shadow, which is the unconscious part of ourselves that contains repressed or unacknowledged aspects of our personality. My mother’s friend could be the conscious ego that has merged with the Self(because behind the question I felt the friend already knew the answer – it was a sort of test question…) in the guise of an authoritative ‘friend’ who in real life is a lot like me Software engineer, analytical, etc – the conscious will that was asking the question, and the unconscious working in concert.

Dream, continues:

The friend was disturbed as he told me that someone close to him, a son or perhaps the son of his close friend, committed suicide due to depression and other mental health issues. He was upset because he believed that suicide meant the person would go to hell. I was still chewing on my pizza, as I answered that if the son had mental health issues, their death was not truly of their own free will, and that God is merciful and would forgive him taking his own life. This response seemed to have a positive impact on my friend, who wanted to talk to my mother about how impressed he was with my statement. My mother noted how proud she was of me, said that I sometimes make profound and surprising statements.


Based on [Suicide in Judaism – Chabad.org]

Mental health is a consideration in Hasidic Judaism and counts as coercion, and therefore a reduction of free will, due to this, it is stated therefore that G-d will forgive this sin.

Homosexuality without consideration for the political correctness of this statement has been and still is considered by many as a developmental disorder.

It has a high co-occurrence with other developmental disorders, for instance Autism, and can potentially be affected by endocrine disruptors in the environment during development in vivo.

Some studies regarding this:

Possible Neurobiological Underpinnings of Homosexuality and Gender Dysphoria

No ‘gay gene’: Massive study homes in on genetic basis of human sexuality (nature.com

Due to this, the body itself is then also causing coercion, due to what can be seen as a trait that is either a defect, or from an esoteric perspective touched by Chaos. And so free will is therefore also reduced.

Historically these defects (physical and mental abnormalities) themselves have also been seen as a negative:

“Any man among Aaron the Kohen’s offspring who has a defect shall not draw near to offer up G‑d’s fire offerings”

(Leviticus 21:21)

Only he shall not go in to the Veil, nor come near the to altar, because he has a blemish; that he profane not My holy places: for I, G‑d, do sanctify them

(Leviticus 21:23)

It is also beneficial to mention that Leviticus is meant for the Priests (man among the Aaronites and the Cohen) who set the moral norms for the nation (the collective) because they lived around the Temple.

Deuteronomy however is meant for the individual Jew. While Leviticus has prohibitions against Homosexuality (Leviticus 18:22) the closest equivalent in Deuteronomy is the prohibition against both heterosexual or homosexual prostitution, or sex around the Temple (Deuteronomy 23:17-18).

Esoterically and using Jungian thought this could mean that any person that has been adulterated (possessed) by their sexual desires (the numerous archetypes that exhibit homosexual or heterosexual lust/passion) is responsible for their own spiritual death. They have, in essence, created an Idol out of their sexuality. This is what is happening in modern times.

From a modern Jewish perspective, this could mean that the collective culture should not accept homosexuality as a norm because it is a ‘blemish’ in the body (the same way Autism, or Downs Syndrome are) but individually this trait (and act) is between you and G-d; it will be a struggle, but modesty, and humbleness before G-d, and the community are in order, not Pride and sexual extravagances that we see today (either in heterosexual or homosexual communities)

The blemished, those touched by Chaos, or the Moon, on a deeper level have been discussed in the Zohar:

While the body is flawed, the soul inside remains the same as above. The one state resembles the other. Therefore, they are to be renewed like the moon, as it is written (Isaiah 66:23): “And it shall come to pass, that every new moon, and every Shabbat, all flesh shall come to bow down to the ground before Me, says G‑d.” “All flesh” assuredly, for they are in need of renewal along with the moon.

[ ]

The Tzemach Tzedek uses this teaching of the Ari to explain the above words of the Zohar. Generally, he writes, there are two ways to rescue the sparks from the forces of darkness. He equates the spiritual task of the unblemished souls to an army which engages another in battle. Eventually, the victors subdue their enemy but do not eradicate them completely. Then, the Tzemach Tzedek continues, there are those born with a blemish—albeit external, since their soul remains whole. Their task is to totally eradicate evil so that it ceases to exist. Yet to do so, they must come into direct contact with that darkness.

They are like those special forces sent out in camouflage in order to entice the enemy into an ambush. Obviously these soldiers do not have the outside trappings of a burly navy seal, after all, would any half intelligent fighter follow someone who appears as a threat to them into an ambush? But on the inside, internally, they are the elite troops, charged with a special mission.

Another way of saying this: In order to battle face to face with the darkness, the soul needs to have some of that darkness itself. Yet only externally—in order that this darkness itself can be redeemed.

Do Autistic Children Have Special Souls? – Chabad.org

The holiest sparks exist on the lowest levels…

the teachings of the maggid of meseritz and his CONVERSATIONS (1923) P.39

Dream, continues:

After hanging up the phone, we continued eating the pizza, but my uncle made a comment about the quality of the pizza being like a store-bought one. My mother became upset, pointing out that she paid for the pizza and that he was eating it for free, and accused him of being ungrateful. I interjected saying that the dough was rather thick, meaning the topping was light on the pizza, which was primarily just dough.

With that, I woke up and the dream ended.


The Pizza can represent the Mana from heaven, the Bread of Life.  My shadow comments that it does not like the Pizza, in essence that it’s not high quality and is cheap. Money in this sense can also represent power, or Libido, in this sense it is commenting that this bread of life is losing its effectiveness as spiritual food.

My anima criticizes the shadow for being ungrateful. But in truth, as I comment, it is dough heavy.

Dough in a Pizza is its foundation. It is required, but if it’s too thick it can lack flavor. Psychologically this may mean that there is too much traditionalism in Judaism, and not enough “flavor” (Hasidism) for the soul to enjoy and get a charge out of it.

In our tradition there is a question asked about the Mana from heaven that we got for 40 years in the desert.  Getting the same bread (and taste) would be tiresome, and people would not be happy, so there are two arguments/answers, one that they got exactly that, the same bread and taste for 40 years, the other argument is that the bread was the same, but it tasted like whatever the person wanted, their favorite food.

I believe the conjunction of the two is more accurate. The bread was more like a well-balanced Pizza. The foundation of the spiritual food was the same – the Torah. But the layer on top of it – like the Hasidic movement for instance – adds the flavor that it relevant and ‘energizing’ to the individual soul. As the soul/consciousness grows, the taste (top layer) will change with it. And if it does not, the tradition (dough) becomes too thick.

Eventually the soul will give it up. Which means it will either leave the tradition, as is happening now in many organized religions, or covert to a different tradition (Buddhism, or New Age Spiritualism), or become an anti-theist (Actively fight against their own tradition) or become a cultural warrior (and join the other sexual minorities) to destroy the current ethics/morals of the culture keeping them bound. This is also discussed in Eric Neumann’s Depth Psychology and a New Ethic.


Grasping Bread From Heaven – Chabad.org

What Was the Manna? – Chabad.org


So, what ought to be done about this? That is not for me to suggest to the Jewish community as a whole, or any individual who is Jewish and homosexual.

However, what I have taken away from this is that G-d, or the collective unconscious, should be our highest value, our family ought to come second, and our cultural traditions ought to come third.

We ought to treat ourselves and each other as divine souls, with dignity and respect, while also maintaining respect for our ancestors, the Torah, the Land of Israel, and the Children of Israel.

I know that we, b’nai Israel, will navigate through the coming Chaos. The journey will not be perfect, and we will experience a lot of heartache, but the covenant we have with G-d is as strong in our collective cultural unconscious as it ever was. When we search it out in ourselves – like the tzadiks did in Hasidism we will emerge on the other side bruised and battered but having survived the storm.

Moses said […] “… If only all the Lord’s people were prophets, that the Lord would bestow His spirit upon them!”

(Numbers 11:29)

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