10 gender neutral and feminist-friendly wedding readings for your rad wedding ceremony #Ceremony Advice#ceremony#feminism#LGBTQ#quotes#readings August 4 2016 | Catherine Clark bijouxandbits Silver Gender Equality Symbol Ring from yhtanaff Related Post Skeptic turned bride: The 5 feminist wedding choices I made Like many feminists, I have always regarded the institution of marriage with some skepticism. While at one point in my life I thought I would... Read more When searching for weddings readings for your LGBT wedding, feminist wedding, or just a wedding where you want to embrace gender neutral terms, it can be TOUGH. There are a lot of gendered wedding rituals and readings to dodge in your search. But we found a fair few readings that can empower everyone. Let's see what gender neutral and feminist wedding readings we found… From "Letters to a Young Poet" by Rainer Maria Rilke "Loving does not at first mean merging, surrendering, and uniting with another person … Once the realization is accepted that even between the closest people infinite distance exists, a marvelous living side-by-side can grow up for them, if they succeed in loving the expanse between them, which gives them the possibility of seeing each other as a whole before an immense sky.” I Wouldn’t Thank You for a Valentine by Liz Lochhead I wouldn’t thank you for a Valentine. I won’t wake up early wondering if the postman’s been. Should 10 red-padded satin hearts arrive with sticky sickly saccharine Sentiments in very vulgar verses I wouldn’t wonder if you meant them. Two dozen anonymous Interflora red roses? I’d not bother to swither over who sent them! I wouldn’t thank you for a Valentine. Scrawl SWALK across the envelope I’d just say ‘Same Auld story I canny be bothered deciphering it – I’m up to hear with Amore! The whole Valentine’s Day Thing is trivial and commercial, A cue for unleashing clichés and candyheart motifs to which I personally am not partial.’ Take more than singing Telegrams, or pints of Chanel Five, or sweets, To get me ordering oysters or ironing my black satin sheets. I wouldn’t thank you for a Valentine. If you sent me a solitaire and promises solemn, Took out an ad in the Guardian Personal Column Saying something very soppy such as ‘Who Loves Ya, Poo? I’ll tell you, I do, Fozzy bear, that’s who!’ You’d entirely fail to charm me, in fact I’d detest it I wouldn’t be eighteen again for anything, I’m glad I’m past it. I wouldn’t thank you for a Valentine. If you sent me a single orchid, or a pair of Janet Reger’s in a heart-shaped box and declared your Love Eternal I’d say I’d rather not be caught dead in them they were politically suspect and I’d rather something thermal. If you hired a plane and blazed our love in a banneracross the skies; If you bought me something flimsy in a flatteringly wrong size; If you sent me a postcard with three Xs and told me how you felt I wouldn’t thank you, I’d melt. From "The Irrational Season" by Madeleine L'Engle But ultimately there comes a moment when a decision must be made. Ultimately two people who love each other must ask themselves how much they hope for as their love grows and deepens, and how much risk they are willing to take. It is indeed a fearful gamble. Because it is the nature of love to create, a marriage itself is something which has to be created, so that, together we become a new creature. To marry is the biggest risk in human relations that a person can take. If we commit ourselves to one person for life this is not, as many people think, a rejection of freedom; rather it demands the courage to move into all the risks of freedom, and the risk of love which is permanent; into that love which is not possession, but participation. It takes a lifetime to learn another person. When love is not possession, but participation, then it is part of that co-creation which is our human calling, and which implies such risk that it is often rejected. From "Overlap" by Ani DiFranco Search your profile For a translation I study the conversation Like a map ’cause I know there is strength In the differences between us And I know there is comfort Where we overlap Mr, Mrs, Mx: Genderqueer and gender-neutral wedding wording Weddings aren't a strictly gendered thing, as all of us reading Offbeat Bride are like aware of... but many of the words around weddings and marriage are very gendered. Even… Read More From "Advice to Myself" by Louise Erdrich “Leave the dishes. Let the celery rot in the bottom drawer of the refrigerator and an earthen scum harden on the kitchen floor. Leave the black crumbs in the bottom of the toaster. Throw the cracked bowl out and don't patch the cup. Don't patch anything. Don't mend. Buy safety pins. Don't even sew on a button… Don't worry who uses whose toothbrush or if anything matches, at all. Except one word to another. Or a thought. Pursue the authentic-decide first what is authentic, then go after it with all your heart.” From "Still Life with Woodpecker" by Tom Robbins “Love is the ultimate outlaw. It just won’t adhere to any rules. The most any of us can do is to sign on as its accomplice. Instead of vowing to honor and obey, maybe we should swear to aid and abet. That would mean that security is out of the question. The words “make” and “stay” become inappropriate. My love for you has no strings attached. I love you for free.” To Love is Not to Possess by James Kavanaugh To love is not to possess, To own or imprison, Nor to lose one’s self in another. Love is to join and separate, To walk alone and together, To find a laughing freedom That lonely isolation does not permit. It is finally to be able To be who we really are No longer clinging in childish dependency Nor docilely living separate lives in silence, It is to be perfectly one’s self And perfectly joined in permanent commitment To another–and to one’s inner self. Love only endures when it moves like waves, Receding and returning gently or passionately, Or moving lovingly like the tide In the moon’s own predictable harmony, Because finally, despite a child’s scars Or an adult’s deepest wounds, They are openly free to be Who they really are–and always secretly were, In the very core of their being Where true and lasting love can alone abide. Our super sweet and silly gender-neutral atheistic Pagan ceremony script With a bit of help from the internet (Offbeat Bride especially!), a few books, and my personal experience writing atheistic pagan sabbat rituals, we wrote our ceremony script ourselves. It… Read More By bell hooks Genuine love is rarely an emotional space where needs are instantly gratified. To know love we have to invest time and commitment… "dreaming that love will save us, solve all our problems or provide a steady state of bliss or security only keeps us stuck in wishful fantasy, undermining the real power of the love — which is to transform us.' Many people want love to function like a drug, giving them an immediate and sustained high. They want to do nothing, just passively receive the good feeling. From "The Hundred Secret Senses" by Amy Tan “Love is tricky. It is never mundane or daily. You can never get used to it. You have to walk with it, then let it walk with you. You can never balk. It moves you like the tide. It takes you out to sea, then lays you on the beach again. Today’s struggling pain is the foundation for a certain stride through the heavens. You can run from it but you can never say no.” From "Love" by Roy Croft “I love you Because you have done More than any creed Could have done To make me good. And more than any fate Could have done To make me happy. You have done it Without a touch, Without a word, Without a sign. You have done it By being yourself.” Is it possible to have a feminist wedding? I have a Masters in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. In other words, I’m a professional feminist. I had been with my partner for ten years when he proposed, and… Read More Reporter Name * Reporter Email * Original text Enter the original text here. Edited text* Enter your suggested copyedit here. Notes You can add a note for the editor here. * Required information. Fix Typo Catherine Clark Catherine Clark is Offbeat Bride's Executive Editor. In her spare time she loiters at her local library, makes art, watches movies en masse, plays video and tabletop games, poorly cooks healthy things, cuddles with her feline fur baby, and blogs at BijouxandBits.com. @enidjcoleslaw @bijouxandbits @bijouxandbits PREVIOUS Lovingly written vows and touching tributes at this queer rustic barn wedding NEXT Up your carnival-theme game: get a cotton candy machine! Show/Hide comments [ 2 ] LOVE THESE!!! Thank you for for sharing such wonderful ideas. Reply These are great. Thank you so much for sharing! Reply Join the conversation Cancel Reply Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *Comment Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Sign me up for your offbeat awesomeness newsletter! No-drama comment policy Part of what makes the Offbeat Empire different is our commitment to civil, constructive commenting. Make sure you're familiar with our no-drama comment policy. 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