Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

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Re: Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

Post by MaineCaptain on Sat Sep 19, 2009 1:30 pm

Thank you Gorm for taking the meaning I intended Smile

And I like that song Razz

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Re: Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

Post by DotNotInOz on Sat Sep 19, 2009 1:45 pm

This digression is SO UU!

Thanks, guys, for lightening up the thread.
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Re: Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

Post by Sakhaiva on Sun Sep 20, 2009 7:53 pm

Speaking of sunshine... my visit to the local UU church was sincerely enjoyable. The greeters (who all wore yellow sunflowers ) were friendly and helpful... especially with helping me get each of my kids to the right location. (The children's programs were fantastic.)


Uh... they did have the habit of asking visitors to stand up at the start of the service while everyone clapped; being a 'back-pew' sorta Scorpio I didn't really enjoy that part, but I did it anyways (at least I wasn't the only one; there were many visitors.) The pastor of this UU congregation is co-chair of a local "Interfaith Alliance" -- he used inclusive language and even threw in a few 'blessed be's. The message of the day inspired me to get out and do something good with the time/energy I've got.


(I could not help but smile when the choir sang an Arlo Guthrie song ... which they did a very nice job singing.)

All in all I had a lovely time, as did the kids, and we all want to go back.

And someone told me I looked like Jackie Kennedy.
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Re: Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

Post by Willowcreek70633 on Sun Sep 20, 2009 8:58 pm

Laughing Isn't that such a grand experience?? I like when experiences like that happen! Gives life meaning even if it's just for a few moments, & last a day or a lifetime! Feeling upbeat, energized, positive, loved, welcomed, cared about & wholesome in spirit sure is a great self esteem & family builder! Blessed be, Sak!
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Re: Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Sun Sep 20, 2009 9:32 pm

That's awesome sak! Yeh we all have to embarrass our visitors.

I'm delighted you had such a great time. I hope this works out for you if its meant to be, for the time its meant to be. Smile

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Re: Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

Post by MaineCaptain on Sun Sep 20, 2009 9:43 pm

Sakhaiva wrote:

All in all I had a lovely time, as did the kids, and we all want to go back.

And someone told me I looked like Jackie Kennedy.
I am so glad you have a great time. But I gotta tell you, you are prettier then Jackie Kennedy!!

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Re: Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

Post by Willowcreek70633 on Sun Sep 20, 2009 10:03 pm

Wink We once had a Siamise cat named Jackie! She was always so very poised, always in style, & ever so graceful, & gracious! Someone stole her! pale
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Re: Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

Post by MaineCaptain on Sun Sep 20, 2009 10:24 pm

oooooo What I would do to someone if I caught them after they stole a cat or dog grrrrr

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Re: Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

Post by Sakhaiva on Sun Sep 20, 2009 10:32 pm

Thanks guys. ((((MC)))) Bless you Smile

Willow, you know, it was just nice to be welcomed. But omg, sorry to hear about your kitty! I second what MC said..... darn the cat-stealing people of the world.
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Re: Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

Post by Willowcreek70633 on Sun Sep 20, 2009 10:39 pm

My daughter tried "stealing" a puppy in New Orleans, she noticed this puppy tied by a rope around its neck to a electricity pole for about 2 hrs, in the middle of day in August! She brought it a bowl of water, & was petting it, & talking to it. It was so VERY glad to see her! She started untieing the rope around the pole, when this burly guy came out of the "convenience store" & told her it was his dog, & leave it alone. My daughter is so throwed off, (like her mother), she asked this guy "Oh, so you work here?" He stammered, "No, I'm shopping." She stood up, & smiled saying "While your SHOPPING, buy some water for your dog." He stood there speechless!
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Re: Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Sun Sep 20, 2009 10:47 pm

GO HER!

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Re: Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

Post by DotNotInOz on Mon Sep 21, 2009 5:47 am

Sakhaiva wrote:The pastor of this UU congregation is co-chair of a local "Interfaith Alliance" -- he used inclusive language and even threw in a few 'blessed be's. The message of the day inspired me to get out and do something good with the time/energy I've got.

Sorry if I seem cynical, but the acid test as far as I'm concerned would be if there's any more inclusion of Pagan-Witch-New Age spirituality than merely an occasional "blessed be." I'm tired of tokenism in this regard.

I've now been involved with two churches whose sole references were a hearty "blessed be" at the conclusion of prayers and the service. The only other nods to such might be a brief educational summary of the history of Samhain or Beltaine. But including a portion of an earth-based ritual in services on occasion, perhaps? Wouldn't happen, and that's not adequate representation of these beliefs, IMO.
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Re: Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Mon Sep 21, 2009 5:53 am

You cynical scorpio! Laughing

Heck, celebrating easter, christmas or halloween is pagan to begin with.

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Re: Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

Post by DotNotInOz on Mon Sep 21, 2009 6:13 am

TigersEyeDowsing wrote:That's awesome sak! Yeh we all have to embarrass our visitors.

I'm delighted you had such a great time. I hope this works out for you if its meant to be, for the time its meant to be. Smile

Ah, well, as with everything, this practice varies widely among UU churches. I've been in UU churches that didn't ask visitors to stand or otherwise put them in the spotlight during the service. The service leader or minister issued a welcome, but that's it. The church I've been going to has greeters who are watchful for newcomers, offering a "meet the church" information kit, but otherwise allows visitors to be as inconspicuous as you prefer.

Joys and Concerns--the time for sharing personal news that's happy or difficult--can be done rather differently, too, from church to church. My former church had about thirty more members than the one I'm attending now so wasn't that much bigger. However, there people with a joy or concern came up to an open mic to share it whereas my current church has a book for people to write them for the minister to read aloud at that point of the service. While the latter method is far more efficient, it's somewhat less personal. Both churches have the provision that joys or concerns too personal to share are represented by the person coming forward to light a candle silently.
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Re: Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

Post by DotNotInOz on Mon Sep 21, 2009 6:25 am

TigersEyeDowsing wrote:You cynical scorpio! Laughing

Heck, celebrating easter, christmas or halloween is pagan to begin with.

True enough, Tiger. However, these holidays are now either so Christian or secular that there's little left of the original Pagan observances.

I thought it inexcusable that my former church had an active earth-based ritual group that met regularly, including potlucks and rituals for the major Pagan holidays, but the group was never invited (as far as I know) to do a service or portion of one in the year I was a member. The worship committee chairperson was a witch. I asked her once about the possibility of getting some of her rituals or mine included in services once in a while. Her response was that there was no chance; she'd tried, and the bulk of the committee was opposed to including what they regarded as "woo-woo UU stuff."

So despite the talk about respecting all beliefs, whether or not that's more than lip service can be questionable in UU churches. I phrase it as "Some beliefs are more equal than others."
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Re: Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Mon Sep 21, 2009 6:41 am

Hmph. It all comes down to who's on the committee.

When I first got on the dowsing community I was all for the "woo woo" (we called it that too) but only three of us were... the rest were 'old school' dowsers only interested in finding lost stuff, dowsing for water, etc. Granted, provable stuff. They had the PhDs, so, they like magic when you can viably measure it. The other two of us were all about dowsing for healing, feng shui, interdimensional communications... none of which is ever viably 'provable'. Over time the committee shifted. Those young wild ones come on with their crazy ideas and.... well, you know. Wink

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Re: Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

Post by Sakhaiva on Mon Sep 21, 2009 11:19 am

I, traditionally, hide from any and all committees, even one as cool sounding as dowsing (which sounds very cool TED.)

DOT, yeah, it's hard to tell from the surface what the aceptance level of a congregation really is. I thought I sensed a bit of tension when the Pastor used god language... and there were lots of laughs when he used a quote from Barbara Bush (!!!)

Re: earth faiths, the last UU church I attended had a very active CUUPS group while this church has none. (The last UU church had this amazing natural plot of land with old Oaks and had ample sacred space for rituals/meditation etc. I used to arrive early to the Sunday meetings just to sit in them.) Well, time will sift the truth to the surface... there are words and there is reality. On an another note, I've got to add that the *air* felt very, very light in the sanctuary ..... I sat near the back watching the other people (there were a few hundred people there which, to me, is massive) and I sort of felt like a heavy shadowy figure in the midst of all that happy lightness.

(me trying to transcend)
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Re: Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

Post by Willowcreek70633 on Mon Sep 21, 2009 1:28 pm

I understand all the council & committee stuff really I do. When I visit other churches no matter the denomination/lack of/group all.

I have one agenda in mind when visiting other services. To personally connect w spirit & find what spirit is teaching that day, at that moment. To let spirit show through it all! Its not necessary the wording or the phrasing or the subtle prejudices, the political stance, its always walking away seeing the bigger picture that is trying to unfold. The connection to spirit in each of us, (centered within) to include the atmosphere "air", found within the grounds "earth", not only within the church or its members "fire". Like "water" I let it flow right along w all in Spirit.
That's just my old ways of viewing it!
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Re: Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

Post by Gorm_Sionnach on Mon Sep 21, 2009 5:14 pm

Well other than the Catholic's celebrating All Saints Day, which is their own horse, no one I know of other than Pagans celebrate Samhain/ Halloween as an actual religious holiday. Of course Halloween is wholly secular to begin with...

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Re: Unitarian Universalism--info and argument

Post by DotNotInOz on Mon Sep 21, 2009 5:53 pm

Gorm_Sionnach wrote:...no one I know of other than Pagans celebrate Samhain/ Halloween as an actual religious holiday.

Actually, it's reasonable to expect inclusion of a bit of Pagan ritual in a UU service, particularly when there are Pagan members desiring such. UU's make a big deal about everyone being free to discover what beliefs or combinations of beliefs are meaningful to each individual.

Now, obviously, I'm not expecting Pagan or CM rituals every other Sunday, but for a major holiday such as a solstice, Samhain, Beltaine, it would seem logical to incorporate some kind of ritual into the Sunday service that falls nearest the holiday for one or two per year.

What bothers me about this sort of exclusion is the claim that UU's respect diversity of belief, and yet, it's too easy for the democratic process to extend from church governance to service content...majority rules in all aspects. I just wish that people would make more of an effort toward balance, honoring requests from minorities within the church for their beliefs to be represented occasionally in service content. For one thing, doing so would dispell some of the lingering bias against "woo-woo stuff," I think.
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