“People who exist at the margins of society are very much like Alice in Wonderland. They are not required to make the tough decision to risk their lives by embarking on an adventure of self-discovery. They have already been thrust beyond the city’s walls that keep ordinary people at a safe distance from the unknown. For at least some outsiders, “alienation” has destroyed traditional presumptions of identity and opened up the mythic hero’s path to the possibility of discovery. What outsiders discover in their adventures on the other side of the looking glass is the courage to repudiate self-contempt and recognise their “alienation” as a precious gift of freedom from arbitrary norms that they did not make and did not sanction. At the moment a person questions the validity of the rules, the victim is no longer a victim.” Jamake Highwater, The Mythology of Transgression: Homosexuality As Metaphor
Alienation – a precious gift of freedom
About the Author: Anthony Venn-Brown OAM
Anthony Venn-Brown OAM, is one of Australia’s foremost commentators on faith and sexuality. His bestselling autobiography 'A Life of Unlearning – a preacher’s struggle with his homosexuality, church and faith', details his journey from being a national Pentecostal leader and famous preacher, preaching to 1000s every weekend in Australia’s growing mega-churches, such as Hillsong, to living as an openly gay man. Anthony was one of the first in the world to experience religious gay conversion 'therapy' and has worked to see the practice cease. Anthony was the co-founder and former leader of Freedom2b. He is an educator and consultant on LGBT/faith issues and leader in deconstructing the ex-gay/reparative/conversion therapy myth. Anthony is the founder and CEO of Ambassadors & Bridge Builders International. Anthony has been recognised on a number of occasions for his contribution and impact including being twice voted one of 'The 25 Most Influential Gay and Lesbian Australians’ (2007 and 2009) and in June 2020 he was awarded the 'Order of Australia Medal' (OAM) for service to the LGBTIQ community.