#433 | Norman Rave | Immersed in UUspeak

Submission 433
Norman Rave
UU Congregation of Rockville (Maryland)

What is your suggestion or idea?

Reject the proposal and retain the existing principles.

What is the reason for your amendment idea?

I have a number of specific issues with the existing
proposal, including that the replacement for the 7th Principle is cast too much
in the language of human relationships and is inadequate to the ecological
crisis facing us; and that as an atheist I feel insulted and excluded by being
referred to as a ““sacred”” being.

However, my reason for proposing to reject the proposal as a
whole is that it is only intelligible to people already immersed in UUspeak and
thus ignores the fact that one purpose of our fundamental statement is to
present ourselves to those who are not UUs. This is important because (1)
we want people and groups that we hope will work with us in addressing the
important issues we face to view us as serious thinking people rather than as
naive idealists with no grounding in the real world; (2) we need a clear strong
statement that succinctly communicates who are to people who are considering
becoming UUs (and to our friends and family who want to try to understand what
we are doing). The existing principles are clear and succinct, and
perform these functions well. The proposal with its ““Love is all you
need”” theme, seven amorphous words, and lengthy explanations is not and
does not.

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

We have not had a general congregation-wide discussion of the proposal. I have discussed it with a few people in the congregation who had not thought about how non-UUs would view the proposed revisions, and they have recognized that it could be an issue.