• Unitarian Universalists - a hippy religion

    Article taken with permission from John Broken Willow's blog.

    This church was formed in 1961 from two other churches, called the Unitarians and the Universalists. Clearly they spent a long time thinking about the new title. Both of these churches were traditionally Christian but nowadays, UU is not about Christianity at all.In fact, these guys are pretty open-minded about their religious beliefs. They don't really have anything solid, you see, just some vague, wishy washy spiritual stuff about following our unique spiritual path in togetherness. And stuff. And they welcome Christians, Buddhists, Atheists and even Pagans into the fold. The aim of the church is to get people together to follow their spirituality in multiple ways,which, lets face it, is great! What a brilliant idea for a church! Way to get as many members as you can. Anyone is welcome as long as they can uphold some basic principles of respect, dignity, democracy and peace.

    These people are serious hippies! Amazingly,
    - They explicitly state that Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered people are completely welcome at all levels within the church;
    - They have an active environmental protection campaign known as the UU Ministry for Earth and dozens of their congregations have been accredited as "green sanctuaries";
    - They also campaign for the rights of immigrants in the US;
    - Their education program for children includes topics such as "Love all around us", "Journeys of the Spirit", "Circle of trees",
    - and, the principles of UU draw from, amongst other things, "Direct experience of that transcending mystery and wonder, affirmed in all cultures, which moves us to a renewal of the spirit and an openness to the forces which create and uphold life."

    They also clearly recognise that religion does not have all the answers to the mysteries of the Universe, just the same as the fact that Science does not. This is simply amazing stuff!

    Some of the language is quite yoghurty, mind, and there are some dubious ideas surrounding the religion. For example, they talk about having "worship" as part of the ceremonies, but it's not clear who or what is being worshipped. Instead, they just tell you what to wear, where to park, and what will happen. I guess they mean for people to worship whatever they feel like worshipping, and listen to the sermon - which is probably good if it's anything like the stuff on the website. There is a UU dating site. Of course they state that it's not a dating site but what else can be implied by "This is not a dating site, but a place for single UUs to meet and discuss life....we prefer to keep this group for adults only although we are an inclusive group."?

    This UU centre in North Los Angeles is specialised for people who worship onions.





    One particularly pleasingly yoghurty idea is the Flower communion. This is a religious holiday in early Spring, during which members bring in a flower, usually one that they like in particular which is added to a special bouquet. This bouquet, as well as creating a health and safety nightmare for hayfever sufferers, represents the diversity of the people and the beliefs that come together to make the church. UU's also recognise various Christian, Jewish and other religious holidays, Earth Day, and Martin Luther King day; and readers of my book may remember that they also celebrate the solstices.

    Some people argue that UU should not be called a religion at all, since there are no core beliefs, and believe that the UUs only claim to be a religion to benefit from the resultant tax-exemption.This may or may not be true.
    John Broken Willow argues that this is the best religion he has ever come across, since it preaches good human ethics without spouting loads of mumbo jumbo bullshit at people to keep them interested.
    Comments 22 Comments
    1. Noctula's Avatar
      Noctula -
      Will read the article in a mo - but UU, that's the "everyone's right, we're all ok and respect everyone's belief" religion isn't it?

      *edit* Have now read article and yup, it's as I thought
    1. 9shadowcat9's Avatar
      9shadowcat9 -
      Sounds awesome! Are these people anywhere near Portsmouth by any chance? :3
    1. stuoolong's Avatar
      stuoolong -
      Unfortunately not, your nearest one is Brighton. http://www.brightonunitarian.org.uk/index2.html
    1. Khaldoon's Avatar
      Khaldoon -
      sounds great !
    1. Ms Xrayspecs's Avatar
      Ms Xrayspecs -
      I seem to think that I've visited one of their "churches" in Delhi. Could I have done or am I talking bollox? Definately visited some kind of site that was not religious but sort of was, if you know what I'm trying to say (not very well).
    1. Natalie's Avatar
      Natalie -
      their own version of Christianity? who knows...maybe they just wanted their own club? as long as people respect and love eachother does it really matter? 'Your beliefs dont make you a better person, your behaviour does' is a quote a read recently xx
    1. Gravelrash's Avatar
      Gravelrash -
      This sounds like the basis of christianity itself in that the core preaching is of love and humanity, rather than the doctrine that grew up around the formal religion of christianity. arent the christian celebrations set by taking over previously established none christian festivals. easter christmas etc
    1. M-madchemicals's Avatar
      M-madchemicals -
      If you've got a 'religion' youve got people who want to say how it goes, the structures start to grow on the back of that. Thats not the way.
    1. JonnyBrush's Avatar
      JonnyBrush -
      Quote Originally Posted by Gravelrash View Post
      This sounds like the basis of christianity itself in that the core preaching is of love and humanity, rather than the doctrine that grew up around the formal religion of christianity. arent the christian celebrations set by taking over previously established none christian festivals. easter christmas etc
      You're sure as hell right there!
    1. JonnyBrush's Avatar
      JonnyBrush -
      Quote Originally Posted by M-madchemicals View Post
      If you've got a 'religion' youve got people who want to say how it goes, the structures start to grow on the back of that. Thats not the way.
      I could agree more but i'll just agree totally..
    1. Wolfy53's Avatar
      Wolfy53 -
      Lot of good reasons to join...and not to
    1. Kesley's Avatar
      Kesley -
      Does this organisation have any links in the UK?
    1. detonatorJE's Avatar
      detonatorJE -
      Quote Originally Posted by Gravelrash View Post
      This sounds like the basis of christianity itself in that the core preaching is of love and humanity, rather than the doctrine that grew up around the formal religion of christianity. arent the christian celebrations set by taking over previously established none christian festivals. easter christmas etc
      it is the core basics of many religions, but they have all been basterdised to say what the preachers want to say. I think the creators of religion were actually just hippies and then other people used 'god' and 'hell' to scare people into folloing what the teach
    1. Vixy's Avatar
      Vixy -
      I think with the right core values and morals it could work to help people that feel isolated in their own homes to feel a belonging to something that isnt going to take advantage of them, with the right people leading the right way without the corruption that spoils other beliefs it could be more of a support network i feel
    1. detonatorJE's Avatar
      detonatorJE -
      Quote Originally Posted by Vixy View Post
      I think with the right core values and morals it could work to help people that feel isolated in their own homes to feel a belonging to something that isnt going to take advantage of them, with the right people leading the right way without the corruption that spoils other beliefs it could be more of a support network i feel
      agreed, it seems like a cool just kinda 'love everyone and everything' *religion* and I put that because they dont seem set on one belief about god, its just whatever you want to believe, you should, and thats fine
    1. Vixy's Avatar
      Vixy -
      It'd be nice just to gather and share thoughts without the control of religion which just spoils the very nature of what it is suppose to be about.
    1. detonatorJE's Avatar
      detonatorJE -
      I think the problem comes with organised religion, where people do not get to form and explore their own thoughts on how everything works.
    1. dazman94's Avatar
      dazman94 -
      This sounds great man the link I read about the one in Brighton uk says that thecore of the church is based on love and togetherness and everyone welcome they are not like the Roman Catholic church or the C of E. read their site info man it is cool http://www.brightonunitarian.org.uk/index.html
    1. horse's Avatar
      horse -
      sounds great to me me thinks next time im in brighton will pop in
    1. craigskywalker's Avatar
      craigskywalker -
      nice ive been looking for something like this
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