Queer Jihad, once called the Muslim Homosexual Resource Center, estimates that there are about 50 million gay and lesbian Muslims in the world. The number appears reasonable; it would include about 5% of the total membership of the Islamic faith. 2 The term "Jihad" can be translated into English as "struggle." The North American media have often mistakenly reported it as meaning "holy war."
Al-Fatiha is an "international organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Muslims, including those questioning their sexual orientation and/or gender identity, as well as their friends, families, partners, and allies." They feature three Email discussion groups: one is a general group, one is restricted to women, another is for men. They hope to work within the progressive wing of Islam "work in order to enlighten the world that Islam is a religion of tolerance and not hate, and that Allah (God) loves His creation, no matter what their sexual orientation might be." 4
Queernet: a Gay-Muslim mailing list:
This was started on 1997-DEC. Its purpose is "to bring gay and lesbian Muslims together to communicate issues of common concern. By using our own individual experiences, our knowledge, and our faith in Islam and in Allah (God), the goal of this list is to bring two important aspects of our lives together. Being Gay and Muslim are not exclusive, nor are they an oxymoron. By participating in this list, the hope is that each and every one of us will realize that. God certainly does not discriminate, and indeed we can be both practicing Muslims AND still identify ourselves as being gay or lesbian."
It appears to have gone offline.
Gay and Lesbian Arabic Society:
"GLAS" defines itself as a "networking organization for Gay and Lesbians of Arab descent or those living in Arab countries. We aim to promote positive images of Gays and Lesbians in Arab communities worldwide. We also provide a support network for our members while fighting for our human rights wherever they are oppressed. We are part of the global Gay and Lesbian movement seeking an end to injustice and discrimination based on sexual orientation." They are based in New York City, and hold twice-monthly meetings in a community center there. GLAS has a online newsletter and a mailing list. 6
Queer Muslims Home page:
"This is a page for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender Muslims, and for allies." The webmaster I intend to put up a list of frequently-asked questions, compiled with the help of Gay Muslims mailing list members. In the meantime, here are all of the resources that I know of. Because of my background and work, I know more about resources for Arabs and transgender people, but I will be adding information to be more inclusive. Please email me if you have any additional suggestions.
References used in the above essay:
Copyright � 1997 to 2007, by Ontario
Consultants on Religious Tolerance