Thursday, April 20

Half-Nekkid Thursday


In addition to being Half-Nekkid Thursday, today is also Holy Thursday (Μεγάλη Πέμπτη)—the Thursday of Eastern Orthodox Holy Week, as the week preceding Easter is called. I guess that makes it Holy Half-Nekkid Thursday. Among the events that are commemorated today is Jesus’ washing of his disciples’ feet:

Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he had come forth from God and was going back to God, got up from supper, and laid aside his garments; and taking a towel, he girded Himself. Then he poured water into the basin, and began to wash the disciples’ feet and to wipe them with the towel with which he was girded (John 13:3-5).

I once had a very frank discussion with the former dean of the Boston University School of Theology about the feet-washing episode in John’s Gospel. I think I had just finished Theodore Jennings’ The Man Jesus Loved, and I told the dean that I thought that the feet-washing had very erotic overtones. I pointed to how the Gospel writer goes out of his way to mention that Jesus stripped down. Moreover, Jesus dries the disciples’ feet using the same towel that he wrapped around his waist. I guess it was Half-Nekkid Thursday for Jesus too.

The dean did not disagree. On the contrary, he acknowledged that he had often thought the very same thing. We then went on to discuss how the feet-washing episode is an example of how Jesus in the Gospels turns gender upside-down. In the Greco-Roman world of the first century CE, feet-washing was performed by women and/or servants or slaves, all of whom possessed an inferior social status. Scholars have traditionally drawn attention to the fact that Jesus was taking on the role of a servant/slave in order to demonstrate the meaning of discipleship. What is often overlooked is that Jesus was also taking on the role of a woman and in so doing makes a powerful statement about gender.

Therefore, I thought it appropriate to show a picture of my freshly washed feet for this week’s HNT.

HNT_1

29 Comments:

Blogger lecram sinun said...

Beautiful shot and read. Cheers and Happy HNT!

12:17 AM  
Blogger Lee Ann said...

Looks cozy! Happy HNT!

12:22 AM  
Blogger Sassy said...

That looks very comfy! Happy HNT!

12:22 AM  
Blogger Sassy said...

That looks so comfy there! Happy HNT!

12:23 AM  
Blogger Evilicious Blonde said...

Cute tootsies!!!!

Happy HNT. :)

12:27 AM  
Blogger Bellarosa said...

Very Nice

Happy HNT

12:40 AM  
Blogger Mia said...

Feet are one of my fetishes. I don't like touching them or tasting them... I just like looking at a lover's feet. This is a really good shot.

12:46 AM  
Blogger Robyn said...

so comfy lookin! happy hnt!

1:37 AM  
Anonymous Fling Mama Yee said...

Wow. Great site, with so many well-written, thoughtful, and interesting posts!

Thanks for your insight regarding Jesus's washing of the disciples' feet, as well as the former dean's comments.

Now to go read more about the rembetika you've featured. (I especially appreciate your inclusion of the lyrics in Greek -- thanks!)

Oh, and Καλό Πάσχα!

1:39 AM  
Blogger Wenchy said...

It is a very cozy, comfortable look you are portraying here. Wow... makes me wish I could just get back in bed.

1:57 AM  
Blogger Scotty said...

Great feet! I like the fur!
HHNT

2:34 AM  
Blogger Phoenixboi said...

Happy HNT and Happy Easter to you!
I think id like to wash ure feet with my tongue ;)

5:08 AM  
Blogger The Persian said...

Thanks for sharing that, I learned something today. Great complimentary pic as well.

Happy HNT :)

6:33 AM  
Blogger tornwordo said...

Nice feet! Happy HNT.

6:43 AM  
Blogger Ryan said...

love the shot hhnt!

9:32 AM  
Blogger Scott E D said...

I love reading your posts on religion and your insight into Greek Orthodox Church. My sister’s husband is Greek, when their children where born they were baptized Orthodox. However they are only Orthodox in name, which is a shame.

I hope you have a Happy Easter.

9:53 AM  
Blogger kate m said...

An appropriate week to wash your feet using my favorite Lush product: "Mt. Bathos"

10:20 AM  
Blogger Polt said...

Very nice feet, dude.

Happy HNT!

10:29 AM  
Blogger Brad said...

Brad appreciates a cute set of feet and you sure do have a cute set my friend! HHNT Dean :)

11:23 AM  
Blogger AndyT13 said...

Nice! HHNT!

11:47 AM  
Blogger castor said...

Not only your body is classical, your feet are classical too! A beautiful picture!
As far as I know, Jesus only spoke about adultery, but never of sexuality ... and I always thought by myself that John was his lover.
Could you be so kind to give a short resumé of Jenning's book"The Man Jesus Loved", Dean?

11:58 AM  
Blogger barefoot_mistress said...

Very well done post, SDB!! HHNT

11:59 AM  
Blogger Sandouri Dean Bey said...

hans,
i had planned to do a post this week on an aspect of john's gospel that has to do with the relationship between jesus and the beloved disciple. it's something that jennings did not address in his book. i'm not sure i'm going to get to it, but if not, i'll do it soon.

jennings' book is quite remarkable. i'll give you the quick summary. in his own words, he gives a "queer-friendly" reading of the new testament. what that means is that he looks at the gospel narratives as presenting not just a queer-friendly, but a queer jesus. he is not writing from the historical jesus camp per se. in other words, he isn't necessarily making an argument about the historical jesus as he was, but instead gives his interpretation of the gospel texts to make a case about how the communities that produced those texts may have understood jesus. he recognizes that the gospels aren't necessarily historical. they give insight into how jesus was understood by the gospel writers themselves and the communities to which they belonged. they don't necessarily shed any light on the "real" jesus.

what jennings does not do is attempt to offer an exegesis of the passages that have historically been used to condemn homosexuality. he accepts that within the new testament there is hostility to homosexual acts and same-sex love. he regards this as evidence of the tension between inclusivity and liberation (the gospel) on one hand and patriarchy, traditional morality, and dogma on the other. that proscriptions against homosexual acts made it into the new testament demonstrates that the early church wrestled with that tension. we don't need to try to explain those passages away. they tell us a great deal about the evolution of the earliest christian communities.

finally, he places his entire analysis of the gospel literature within the context of liberation theology. he never attempts to hide his theological bias. his reading of the gospel texts is firmly based in his committment to the idea of the gospel as "good news" to the poor, the oppressed, and the marginalized.

12:17 PM  
Blogger Mike said...

Love the feet shot. Happy HNT!!

12:43 PM  
Blogger castor said...

Thank you, Dean, that's very interesting! Some times ago I've found a Russian Apokrypha about Jesus and Mary Magdalene. The story tells that Jesus, after Mary Magdalene had finished washing his feet, Jesus stood up, turned away from her ... after a little while he turned over again and let her see his left palm full with his sperm and he said unto her: " My semen belongs only to God "

3:42 PM  
Blogger Will said...

That picture has an extremely erotic pull. I'm not a foot fetishist, but I know strong masculinity set of against sensuous softness when I see it. Happy HNT, Dean!

5:51 PM  
Blogger Brad said...

Ok I think I am going to have to get my hands on that book and read it now Dean.

11:45 PM  
Blogger epicurist said...

I like the picture, but even more so because you have tied it into an idea and theme. Great!

3:07 PM  
Blogger Sandouri Dean Bey said...

thanks for the compliments on my feet, y'all.

oh, and scotty-
it's not fur. fur is wrong :)
it's a flokati, which is a type of woven wool rug from greece. unless, you were referring to the fur on my toes...

3:43 PM  

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