#52 | Cynthia Jorgensen | Too Intellectual

Submission 52
Cynthia Jorgensen
Buckman Bridge Unitarian Universalist Society (Orange Park, FL) 2927

What is your suggestion or idea?

If an introductory statement by a faith requires definitions or explanations, it is way too lofty and highbrow. UU’s can be accused of being intellectual past the point of necessity. In our community, we try to include folks of all diverse backgrounds, including education. The principles are easily understandable. If a change is to be made, please use easily understandable terms.

What is the reason for your amendment idea?

I would ask… would you understand all these terms if you walked into a UU and were told these are the main concepts?

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

Others, yes. Most agree.


Cynthia, Our Fellowship agrees that several of the petals include elitist language as well as much of the supporting commentary.

A group from our congregation thought that “Fairness” would be more easily understood than “Equity.” We also like “Growth” better than “Transformation,” because transformation need not be in a positive direction, whereas growth does connote progress. “Diversity” might be easier to grasp than “Pluralism,” a value some have expressed concerns about because it has a meaning that might not be clear to everyone.

Thank you for your comment. I appreciate “fairness” in place of “equity”. As I thought more about an alternative for “transformation”, I also thought “growth” was better than “change”. Someone else mentioned not having a green petal. Growth might be just the right place for that.

Good point. It seems the commissions just threw together a lot of words to make sure nothing was left out, but it has no coherence, much less power. I think the values should be whittled down and something our children will easily remember, people who are checking our our congregation be drawn to, and longtime UU’s find new layers of depth and inspiration.

Personally, I would go with Love, Justice, Reason and Interdependence. But what the commission should be charged with is getting a read on which values most UU’s consider central to our faith.

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