Jeremy Schulz

The queer art of survival centers the experiences of the borderlands, those spaces where multiple identities meet as sacred and essential. Juxtaposing the Christian conception of Jesus going into the wilderness, queer survival tells the stories of a people who have called the borderlands and the wilderness home from the beginning. A people whose experiences with violence, trauma, and oppression have left them seeking ways to exist that are strange, outlandish, and quintessentially queer. In uplifting a theology of queer survival, we defy the exoticism of the heteronormative spiritual world, claiming our inherent right to self-governance and dignity. I am someone who uses the term “queer” to speak to the reality of being a contradiction, the convergence of opposites within one person. Gender and sexually diverse LGBTQIA+, those people whose existence is both/and. When I use the word “survivor,” I name most vocally someone who has experienced violence and abuse, while at the same time, remembering that instances of violence are not isolated from other traumas and tribulations. It is important to note that survival is directly related to matters of life and death, and that to survive is to move through the world haunted by the memory of the past, both personal and generational (Gordon, 2011). Queer survivors are bearers of tremendous anguish, and yet they persevere. Psychedelic substances are some of the queer survivor’s most powerful tools that, when used respectfully, can aid in the treatment of complex trauma, the alleviating of feelings of intense isolation and suffering, as a key to spiritual development, and as a necessary component to the future survival of our people… continue reading.

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