Unitarian Universalism is a spiritually alive and justice-centered faith. This Youtube video shares some first-person experiences with this faith: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wezp1W2HKlU We are a caring, open-minded faith that encourages you to seek your own spiritual path. Our faith draws on many religious traditions, welcoming people with diverse beliefs into our community. We are united by shared values, not by creed or dogma. While our congregations uphold shared principles, individual Unitarian Universalists may discern their own beliefs about spiritual, ethical, and theological issues. Our congregations are places where people gather to nurture their spirits and put their faith into action by helping to make our communities—and the world—a better place. Unitarian Universalism is a liberal religious tradition that was formed by the consolidation of two traditions: the Universalists, who organized in 1793, and the Unitarians, who organized in 1825. They consolidated into the Unitarian Universalist Association in 1961. Both groups trace their roots in North America to early Massachusetts settlers and to the founders of the Republic. Overseas, their heritages reach back centuries to pioneers in England, Poland, and Transylvania. Unitarian Universalists share faith in seven Principles and six Sources. The Seven Principles (with links for more detail about each on the UUA website): 1st Principle: The inherent worth and dignity of every person; 2nd Principle: Justice, equity and compassion in human relations; 3rd Principle: Acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth in our congregations; 4th Principle: A free and responsible search for truth and meaning; 5th Principle: The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large; 6th Principle: The goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all; 7th Principle: Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part. The Six Sources:
  • 1st Source: 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;
  • 2nd Source: Words and deeds of prophetic women and men which challenge us to confront powers and structures of evil with justice, compassion, and the transforming power of love;
  • 3rd Source: Wisdom from the world’s religions which inspires us in our ethical and spiritual life;
  • 4th Source: Jewish and Christian teachings which call us to respond to God’s love by loving our neighbors as ourselves;
  • 5th Source: Humanist teachings which counsel us to heed the guidance of reason and the results of science, and warn us against idolatries of the mind and spirit;
  • 6th Source: Spiritual teachings of Earth-centered traditions which celebrate the sacred circle of life and instruct us to live in harmony with the rhythms of nature.
Find out more about Unitarian Universalism’s beliefs and history at the UUA website. An excellent book about Unitarian Universalism is A Chosen Faith by John A. Buehrens and Forrest Church, Beacon Press. Seven days a week, UUs live their faith by doing. Whether in community with others or as an individual, we know that active, tangible expressions of love, justice, and peace are what make a difference. Unitarian Universalist congregations are committed to seven Principles that include the worth of each person, the need for justice and compassion, and the right to choose one’s own beliefs.  Our congregations and faith communities promote these principles through regular worship, learning and personal growth, shared connection and care, social justice and service, celebration of life’s transitions, and much more. Our faith tradition is diverse and inclusive. We grew from the union of two radical Christian groups: the Universalists, who organized in 1793, and the Unitarians, who organized in 1825. They joined to become the UUA in 1961. Both groups trace their roots in North America to the early Massachusetts settlers and the Framers of the Constitution. Across the globe, our legacy reaches back centuries to liberal religious pioneers in England, Poland, and Transylvania. Today, Unitarian Universalists include people of many beliefs who share UU values of peace, love, and understanding. We are creators of positive change in people and in the world.