or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Talk Amongst Ourselves › Spirituality › Summer Unitarian Universalist Thread - All Welcome
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Summer Unitarian Universalist Thread - All Welcome - Page 4

post #61 of 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adele_Mommy View Post
The words to this hymn from StLT can be sung to the tune of "Jesus Loves Me"
YAY! These are AWESOME! Thank you so SOOO much! Your version is great and even seems like it should be the original... makes the Jesus one sound like a knock-off ... and it will be super-easy for me to memorize.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mammal_mama View Post
I worry about our girls feeling a need for something more, and possibly getting sucked into fundamentalism since it's the fundamentalists who keep reaching out into the community and offering fun activities and free food and so on.
Yes, this is my worry too. Pretty much all our family (incl. DH) and all the people who surround us are fundamental Christian, so I worry that their practices will either feel conflicting when DD starts to be more involved at the UU church (she's 2.5 yrs now) or will somehow be turned into her "default" setting... does that make sense? Not sure how to say that, but I think the things that surround you when you're little, when/if you're totally safe and secure, remain powerful throughout you're life... like your default setting... your safe place that you always want to go back to and recreate as you get older. I would prefer that DD not have that connection to religion.

Stargirl - sounds like a great book... we're on a "no spend" budget for the month of Sept, but I think the book comes out as a paperback in Oct, so maybe I can get it a little cheaper then.
post #62 of 97
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stargirl View Post
Has anyone read "The Cathedral of the World: A Universalist Theology" by Forrest Church? I just picked up a copy and I would love to read it as a book club. Anyone interested?
I have not read The Cathedral of the World, but I love Forrest Church. I think a book club sounds like a great idea! Count me in!

I also am trying not to spend money on "extras", but a copy is available at my local library, though currently checked out. I can put a hold on it.

How do you want to handle the book club, Stargirl?
post #63 of 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by treehugz View Post
Not sure how to say that, but I think the things that surround you when you're little, when/if you're totally safe and secure, remain powerful throughout you're life... like your default setting... your safe place that you always want to go back to and recreate as you get older. I would prefer that DD not have that connection to religion.
The hard part is that I started out parenting as a fundamentalist Christian myself. At about age 6, my older dd got really upset when one of her Sunday School teachers said something about liars going to hell. Dd has actually always been quite honest, but she still worried that she might have accidentally told a lie sometime.

I started to realize that this kind of religious teaching wasn't having a good effect on my dd, and I also realized that I didn't really believe any more that God was like that. We took a step back from church, and I talked a lot to her about how God is Love, and I asked her if she could believe that I would ever throw her into hell, and she said No, and I said that God is so much more loving than any human, so God doesn't throw His children into hell either.

Then, the other night, we were watching a documentary about that Intelligent Design trial in Dover. One of the couples that was pro-Evolution was also Christian, and dd looked at me and said, "Are we Christian?"

I wasn't sure how to answer. I started talking about my belief in Love, and she got very upset and asked what would happen to us when we died. I told her I couldn't really know for sure, but I was remembering this book Life After Life, in which some people who'd had near death experiences told their stories.

These were people who had all different beliefs -- not just Christian -- and yet they all saw the beautiful light and they all felt a sense of peace and wellbeing. I told her I'll get this book so we can read it. I said that I've never died, so I honestly don't know "for sure" what happens next -- but I just really believe in Love and I really believe that everything will be all right.

In some ways, it seems like dd felt more reassured when the teachings were "definite." Then she had the anxieties about hell, but I guess at least she felt like she knew "the rules." All this "I don't know" and "I'm still learning" stuff is terribly unsettling to her.

Maybe when families are UU from the very beginning, the children are spared all this angst? I wish I'd started this journey a little sooner, but for me it took becoming a mom to get me to start questioning the whole "God can't forgive our sins 'til someone bleeds for them"-spiel.

I feel so free and happy now, witin myself, but it's hard realizing that my prior beliefs and teachings have placed my now 10yo in the position of having to work through some really tough issues now, too.
post #64 of 97
Susan--

If I can chime in, my 4 year old has not been exposed to any of the fire and brim stone, doom and gloom, vengeful G-d, or the absolute Truth of much of Christianity.

But, he is really struggling with things like the creation of the universe, death, reincarnation, the existence of God, souls, etc. he is very anxious.

I don't think that anything you said or did earlier has anything to do with your daughter's anxiety now.

my mom and I were talking about it this morning on my way to work, and she basically acknowledged that everyone gets anxious when they really think about these Really Big Things, unless you can fall back on an unwavering faith. But, I have never known anyone whose faith was unwavering, and everyone I know who has been through darkness and struggle has struggled with faith...
post #65 of 97
spedteacher30 -- Thank you so much for sharing about your son's journey! I'd been feeling that I really dumped a load on my dd, both by being so fundamentalist before, and by being so changeable now -- but maybe we all just really have to make our own journeys, and this is part of her journey.
post #66 of 97
Hi. Could someone please help me understand this? I have been researching UU after trying out many religions (judaism, christianity, islam), but I feel like all paths lead to God, although I still have Christian leanings. I also love that UUs are accepting of everyone. I posted on another christian group asking if anyone else attended a UU church and of course they all got their panties in a ruffle and someone posted this link http://www.gotquestions.org/unitarian-universalism.html. I'm pretty sure that this website has false information, but can you please confirm that for me? DH is agnostic and very open to a UU church. I would love to have a place that we could all attend with the family. You can reply here or PM me. Thanks so much.
post #67 of 97
Sometimes I wish the name could just be "Universalist" and not "Unitarian Universalist" -- mainly because of how I've grown through communing with Mary. I've come to see her as the the one through whom God became human. Her DNA is now inextricably interwoven into God's DNA.

Also, the concept of the Three in One, once explained to me through the example of an apple being seeds, flesh, and skin, but still one apple, has for years been very beautiful to me to such an extent that I refuse to give it up.

Although I no longer believe that everyone has to believe the Christian gospel to be saved -- and I also no longer believe that Jesus' death was necessary from God's standpoint -- I still believe Jesus' crucifixion was necessary in order for a certain portion of the world's population to move beyond the "eye for an eye" revenge mentality.

I kind of see the Christian gospel as a "gateway drug" to draw certain people into the path of full enlightenment.

So...I don't know if I can ever commit to Unitarianism although I am certainly already committed to Universalism. I'd be very interested in learning whether this is likely to be an issue at whatever point that I might like to become a full fledged member.
post #68 of 97
P.S. I now kind of use the words "God," "Love," and "Life force" interchangeably. I just realized that it seems, and probably is, very contradictory for me to post earlier in the thread about how I wonder if I might be a "spiritual atheist" -- and then here I am talking about "God's DNA."

I'm not sure what I really mean by this, exactly, but it's weird how the less sure I feel, and the less "set" it all is in my mind, the more alive I feel and the more in-tune with Reality and Truth. Does anyone else ever feel this way?
post #69 of 97
I think I'm gonna lurk if that's ok.

post #70 of 97
Thread Starter 
Absolutely, barefootscientist. Lurk away!
post #71 of 97
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jcookie1982 View Post
Hi. Could someone please help me understand this? I have been researching UU after trying out many religions (judaism, christianity, islam), but I feel like all paths lead to God, although I still have Christian leanings. I also love that UUs are accepting of everyone. I posted on another christian group asking if anyone else attended a UU church and of course they all got their panties in a ruffle and someone posted this link http://www.gotquestions.org/unitarian-universalism.html. I'm pretty sure that this website has false information, but can you please confirm that for me? DH is agnostic and very open to a UU church. I would love to have a place that we could all attend with the family. You can reply here or PM me. Thanks so much.
In my opinion, that website contains a few misinterpretations and some out-in-out falsehoods along with a few tiny, out of context truths.

Here are the high points as I see them.

UU is definitely NOT a cult. It does not even come close to meeting any of the characteristics of a cult. See What Is a Cult on the International Cultic Studies Site for more information. Note: sometimes people confuse UU with the (completely unrelated) Unification Church (Moonies), which may actually be a cult, but it does not appear to me that this website is doing this.

The Unitarian Universalist name comes from the merger of two denominations - the Unitarians and the Universalists (both Christian denominations by the way). At the time of the merger, not all Unitarians were Universalists and certainly not all Universalists were Unitarians. Now you do not have to be either Unitarian or Universalist (or Christian) or subscribe to any specified theology to be UU. Unitarian Universalists are united by a set of principles or values rather than a creed. You can find these principles here. I think it is important to note that UU is by no means the only non-creedal protestant-based denomination. Other examples include Quakers, Baptists, and the Brethren. You can read about the history of UU here.

While it is true that the name Unitarian (though not Universalist) comes from a rejection of the concept of the Trinity, this rejection is not historically a rejection of the Bible, or even the divinity of Jesus necessarily. Very early Christianity included Unitarian thought. I believe it was not until the Nicean council that denial of the doctrine of the Trinity formally became heresy (after that point some Unitarians were executed for their beliefs by the way). Early Unitarians definitely considered themselves to be Christians. I personally do not believe in the holy authority of the Bible, but even if I did, it is my understanding that the Biblical argument for the Trinity is not conclusive (it is definitely possible to be a Bible-believing Unitarian).

While it is true that many and possibly most UUs today either do not believe in an afterlife or will admit to not knowing, this is not part of the theology of Universalism. Prior to the merger, historically, Universalist theology stated that whatever Salvation there was, it was available to all people, Christian and non-Christian, and that no one was ever condemned to an eternal, everlasting hell. There is more to it than that and of course there have always been individual variations of belief, but that is my understanding of the main essential concept of Universalism as present in the Universalist denomination in the US prior to the merger that formed the Unitarian Universalist Association.

Finally, UU is not anti-Christian (or at least it shouldn't be - I can't speak for every member of every UU congregation). There are UU Christians today. They are not in the majority at my church, but there are some. There are also some whole UU congregations that are Christian. You can find out more information about UU Christianity here: Unitarian Universalist Christian Fellowship (Disclosure: I am not Christian, myself).

I hope this information is helpful. Please feel free to post here or PM me if you have specific questions or concerns.

Adele
post #72 of 97
Subbing.

We're planning on going to our first UU service this weekend and I'm nervous as well as excited. I've been wanting to check it out for a bit now, but there wasn't much going on in the summer and the sermon (do you call it that?) this Sunday is

“Words and Phrases": "Spiritual terms resonate with all of us in different ways. This sermon will explore how words like God, worship, and church are interpreted by a diverse set of people and invite the congregation to reflect on their own assumptions about religious words."

So it should be a good introduction. Especially since when I brought it up with DH (trying to explain what a UU church is and why I wanted to check it out) he had issues with the term church vs. worship service!
post #73 of 97
Thread Starter 
curiouscanadian!

That sounds like a really great sermon to me. Of course, I'm a word-lover.

Please post and let us know your reactions after you visit.
post #74 of 97
Hello fellow UUs and interested folk! I am new to this board and my husband and I are currently TTC #1. We started attending a UU church about 8 months ago and we LOVE it. We come from very different religious backgrounds (him Christian, me nothing.) We began going with the intent of finding a place to take our future children to. Growing up without a religion may seem freeing to a lot of people but in my experience it was frustrating not having any sort of questions answered or even discussed.

What was really helpful to us deciding to keep attending was going to a 3 hour class by the pastor who went through the history of UUism and core beliefs. He was SO knowledgable about the history of it and his sermons are very thought provoking and moving. I honestly never thought I would like going to church but I love that hour of hymns, stories and sermon like you wouldn't believe. I have honestly been moved to misty eyes on more than one occasion.

My only complaint is that our church is very....elderly. There aren't a lot of young folk - we started a young adult group and that is well and good but the majority is just old. It's strange. I didn't think they would be so in to it?

I'm excited to hear more about everyone's experiences and reading this thread has been great!

Sidenote/trivia: our church is the one that President Obama's mother attended when her family lived in WA state. Woo!
post #75 of 97
Adele: I just want to express yet again my gratitude for the gift of time and reflection that you give to all of us who read this thread.

Juliabell: My family found UU'ism in the same way as you AND my initial reservation about our congregation too was all of the white hair. What I discovered along the way is that many of these wonderful folks came to UU'ism for their children. In a time (60's) where there kids would be chastised in the community for not attending Sunday school, many of these families resonated with the UU paradigm and brought their kids. They are huge supporters of our RE program and essentially keep our church going through their financial and volunteer contributions. So now, three years later, I see what a gift my older congregation is to my family who doesn't have any grandparents and extended family nearby. They are our church family, our spiritual home. So although I always try to inform other young families that I meet about our wonderful congregation in hopes of growing our demographic, I have come to realise just how much we have benefited from the experience and wisdom of all those wonderful white heads of hair. May it be so for your too!
post #76 of 97
Thread Starter 
Juliabell!
post #77 of 97
Thread Starter 


Thank you, Stargirl, for saying such a nice thing about my posts on this thread. Also, thank you for providing a wonderful thoughtful response to Juliabell.

Thanks to those who said nice things about my little "Mommy Loves You" rhyme.

Thank you all for making this thread so fun and rewarding!
post #78 of 97
So I went to my first UU service today as planned. Unfortunately DH bailed on me at the last minute (he had previously agreed to go ) but I still went and took DS with me as I wanted to approach it with family in mind.

I purposely arrived a little early and everyone was very friendly and I got a nice tour of the church. Due to having DS with me I opted for the Quiet Room attached to the Sanctuary, which is a big plus in my books as I didn't feel comfortable leaving him in the nursery. It was nice, and I did meet another couple with young children but I admit I was very disappointed by the fact that the other couple was very chatty (between themselves) when I was was trying to listen to the sermon so between them and DS I felt I missed a large portion of the actual sermon. Luckily I was told after that the sermon would be posted to the church website so I will be able to read it and absorb/reflect on it much more.

I do think I will be going again, but if DH isn't going to be joining me (which I admit to being disappointed about) I will probably leave DS at home with him and join the others in the Sanctuary. I guess in summary I will be going again as I don't feel the experience was all it could be and am still hoping it will be the spiritual community I'm looking for.

(BTW, sorry if I got any of the terms wrong - totally new to this! )
post #79 of 97
Thread Starter 
CuriousCanadian,

I'm sorry there were disappointing things about your UU visit, but I'm glad there were good things as well and really glad there were enough good things that you are going to go back.

My dh does not attend with me. This is a lack for me and for quite some time I harbored hopes that he would eventually attend at least occasionally, but now I have accepted that it is never going to happen. There is the silver lining that my dd could stay home with him when she was too young for RE as you said you are going to try with your ds. My dd very rarely attended with me until she got old enough to be interested in RE. Now she goes during the year because she enjoys RE, but frequently skips during the summer.

Regarding the terminology, I'm sure there are some UUs who would say you got them all right and others who would say you got them wrong. Language can be an area of contention for UUs. Some members of my church call the sanctuary the sanctuary and others call it the auditorium. Everyone knows what is being referred to by either word and most people don't care much which word is used, but there are a few individuals who will make a big deal about it in a way I find rather annoying.

Thanks for the update!

Adele
post #80 of 97
So would you say that your uu has similar sermons as these:

-Our Annual Water Service

-Nonviolence and The Obama Peace Prize Speech

-The Power Of Words


I really want to get into UU but I dislike the hymns, the people that go are old, and its not very spiritual. I know I'll never find a perfect place but ..I dunno. Sorry I'm being such a Debbie Downer. I really *do* want to feel like I fit in somewhere.. maybe its cause I'm used to the way the Christian church was that I used to go to. Dh still goes there with the older kids. I loved the pop/rock music they played and the pastor was great but could not agree with the political side and literally believing the bible is true.

eta: I have two UU's about 30 mins in each direction and then another one about 45-50mins away. Maybe I should try one of those.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Spirituality
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Talk Amongst Ourselves › Spirituality › Summer Unitarian Universalist Thread - All Welcome