"In a Revolution"

Let’s Embrace Them!

In Anthropology, Medical Sciences on March 17, 2010 at 2:48 pm

“ A boy feels confused with the everything that occur in himself. Every people say him as a boy, even his parents give him a boy name. However, he feels that he isn’t a boy. He feels that he is actually a girl, so that he more often plays with his girl friends. He feels very comfortable if he can do something like a girl, but this feeling isn’t supported by his environment. He is often excommunicated, ridiculeted as a sissy by his friends, even his teacher ever got angry because he always played with the girls. He was forced to join with his boy friends. Although finally he obeyed, he went and just sit without any desires to play with his boy friends. Often he cries, but always repressed that feeling in a depth because he  knows that no one can understand his feeling.”

Often we are satisfy because we can give some labeling to the peoples around us that seen weird. When we see a boy that his style is so feminine, always plays with the girls, we say “the sissy” easily or when a young woman never associates with her men friends or probably in her life never seen charmed with men, always only associates with her women friends, and too simple in her style as a woman, we can call her “lesbian” easily.

Yes, surely all people admit that make a labeling for the others feel satisfy because on a principle, peoples that like to make labeling is men that feel themselves are the most perfect.

On this article, I will talk particularly about transgender from the medical and cultural point of views. However, firstly I will introduce some terms that relate to transgender.

Transgender is generally used as an overarching term for a variety of individuals, behaviors, and groups involving tendencies along the gender continuum that are in opposition to or in divergence from the gender role (woman or man). This is from Wikipedia and I will add that the gender role here base on physical sex identity.

Transgender can include a number of sub-categories, which, among others, including transsexual, transvestite, consciously androgynous people, people who are genderqueer, people who live cross-gender, drag kings and drag queens, among many others.

Medical Point of Views About Transgender

        There are many researches to get more understanding about transgender. I will talk about neurobiologic aspect that relate to transgender.

Some researches on brain ever state that there is a different size in a central part of the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BSTc) between men and women base on gender identity and biological characters. So, from this journal I get the information that male to female transsexuals have BST size same as the women have and female to male transsexual have BST size same as the men have. It means the BST size of female to male transsexuals is bigger than the BST size of male  to female transsexual. This size difference can be seen from the number of somatostatinergic (SOM) that isn’t a result of sex homone level change because this difference is established on the earlier development.

As an additional information, the psychiatrics classify transgender as a gender identity disorder as recorded in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV).

Mythology about Transgender

I will talk about transgender from the famous Hindu mythology, a figure that change her sex. She is Srikandi. Besides famous on Mahabrata story, Srikandi is on Javanese wayang story. This story is from India, but this story somewhat different with the story from India. so, probably because of this reason, the story is classified in mythology.

On Sanskrit, Srikandi  is spelled Śikhaṇḍin, a feminine form is Śikhaṇḍinī. The word of Śikhandin or Śikhandini means “have fringes” or “that have tuft”.

Srikandi in Mahabrata

Firstly, Srikandi was born as a woman, Amba, that rejected by Bisma to marry. Because felt despised and wanted to avenge, Amba prayed with a desire to kill Bisma. Her desire was fullfilled so that finally Amba reincarnated to be Srikandi.

When she was born, goddess’ voice asked her father to take care Srikandi as a boy. Srikandi treaded her life as a man, learned how to war, and then married. On marriage night, his own wife insulted him after knew. He thought the way of suicide, he run away from Panchala, but was saved by a Yaksa then changed his sex organ. Srikandi went back as a man and was alive with his wife and has children. After his death, his masculinity was returned to Yaksa.

War in Kurukshetra

When war occured in KurukshetraBisma awared that Srikandi was Amba’s reincarnation, and because he didn’t want to attack “a woman”, he threw his weapon. Knew that Bisma will do like that to Srikandi, Arjuna hided on back of Srikandi and attacked Bisma by an arrow shot. So, just by Srikandi’s help, Arjuna can give a death beat to Bisma, that actually never losed. Finally, Srikandi was killed by Aswatama on 18th days of Bharatayuddha.

Srikandi in Javanese Wayang

Srikandi was said born  because of her both parents’ desire, Prabu Drupada and Dewi Gandawati, wanted a normal child birth. Two of her sisters, Dewi Dropadi and Drestadyumna, was born through a concentration worship. Dropadi was born from fire coal worship, while the fire smoke incarnated to be Drestadyumna.

Dewi Srikandi was very enjoy with military manners and expert in using arrows weapon. Her ability was got when she learn to Arjuna, that in the next time would be her husband. In that marriage, she didn’t have a boy.

 Dewi Srikandi was an example for women soldier. She had responsibility to save and secure Madukara with the everything there. In Bharatayuddha war, Dewi Srikandi appeared as a commander in chief Pandawa war replaced Resi Seta, Wirata knight that had died to face Bisma, a great commander in chief  for Korawa soldier. By Hrusangkali arrows, Dewi Srikandi can kill Bisma, according to Dewi Amba’s curse, a girl of Prabu Darmahambara, king of Giyantipura country, that grudged to Bisma.

In the end of story Dewi Srikandi died, was killed by Aswatama that creep away to Hastinapura palace after Bharatayuddha war.

        We can see from the story above that actually transgender is not a something new in this life. This thing has been known since a long time ago, so we don’t need to over do to fellow men, transgender. Concider that the every differences on human neing are just a variety and this is in essence because of an unique! There are no wrong or curiousity on themselves and let’s start from now to think that every differences in human being are so beautiful.  Start to try to understand them! They have feelings too. So, let’s try to see them from the good side that they do!

Written by Catherine Maname Uli

Daftar Pustaka    :

  1. Transgender. Available from the URL: http://psychology.wikia.com/wiki/Transgender
  2. Male-to-Female Transsexuals Have Female Neuron Numbers in a Limbic Nucleus. Available from the URL: http://jcem.endojournals.org/cgi/content/full/85/5/2034
  3. Srikandi. Available from the URL: http://id.wikipedia.org/wiki/Srikandi

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