#370 | Guy Loftman | Rewrite Inspirations

Submission 370
Guy Loftman
UU Church of Bloomington, Indiana (Bloomington, IN) 3433

What is your suggestion or idea?

Delete Section 2-2.3. Inspirations

Substitute the following:
Section 2-2.3. Inspirations:

Unitarian Universalists are not bound by creed or
doctrine. The following historic beliefs
are widely appreciated, and currently accepted, by many in our congregations.

We honor our Unitarian heritage, which recognizes Jesus
of Nazareth as a great prophet, but not divine, thereby distinguishing
Unitarianism from the Trinitarian tradition.

We honor our Universalist heritage, which promotes the
doctrine of Universal Salvation: Everybody goes to Heaven; nobody goes to Hell.
We honor our Transcendentalist heritage, which proclaims
the unity of man and nature, and recognizes the divine in the commonplace.
We honor our Humanist heritage, which counsels us to
heed the guidance of reason and the results of science.

What is the reason for your amendment idea?

The Charge wisely says that we should center Unitarianism and Universalism in Article II. I find many UU’s don’t know much or anything about either. This amendment satisfies the Charge and seeks to familiarize our members and friends with our historical underlying theological principles.

I also recognize the tension between our rationalist leaning congretations and congregans and those that are more spiritual in their approach. This tension is historically evident, and the legitimacy of both in our churches should be recognized. They are inherent in our Transcendental and Humanist influences, which should be honored with our Unitarian and Universalist roots.

Have you discussed this idea with your congregation or other UUs?

I helped organize and participated in two congregational discussions of the proposal, had many private conversations, and exchanged drafts with several people. I was a remote delegate to GA 2021 and 2022. I submitted various suggestions to the Commission and directly to the UUA.

This sentence makes it sound as if UUs have no theology. It over-emphasizes a lack of creed in a section intended to discuss what we hold in common.

This is not an important theological discussion for contemporary Unitarian Universalism as a whole, and should not be centered. The learning we take from our Unitarian ancestors is to engage directly with our religious sources, engaging with them as human beings with the full spectrum of human understandings, rather than accepting received wisdom and interpretation without questioning it.

strike man, replace with humanity. This is unnecessarily gendered language.

This proposal lacks reference to any non-Western religious or philosophical traditions or to the direct experience of mystery and wonder, and, in my view, is incomplete.

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