Principles of Unitarianism
I’m not much a follower of organized religion and I’ve generally stayed away from discussing religious figures over the previous 17 days of inspiration – the world doesn’t need another list of inspiration including Jesus Christ or Mohammad. What I believe the world does need, though, is to draw inspiration from multiple sources, multiple perspectives, multiple beliefs. Perhaps a little more understanding of each other and a little less posturing. In disclosure, I am not now nor have I ever been a member of the Unitarian church. I simply appreciate their teachings.
The UUA does not use dogma nor a specific creed. Indeed, they’re more interested in the principle of freedom of thought than having these things, but they do use seven principles that are meant to guide their congregations:
- The Inherent worth and dignity of every person;
- Justice, equity and compassion in human relations;
- Acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth in our congregations;
- A free and responsible search for truth and meaning;
- The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large;
- The goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all;
- Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.
The message I read in these principles is to be the best person you can be, whether or not that means being a Unitarian or not. Consider what the world might look like if more people were interested in a search for meaning and truth than in pushing their truth and meaning on others; where compassion would be the guiding principle instead of righteousness.
In an age where we can be so divided, I am heartened to believe that others seek congregation and justice and am inspired to be more than what I may currently be by virtue of others seeking truths as well – even if they’re not my truths.