What do Unitarian Universalists believe?
“Unitarian Universalism is a liberal faith which draws on the truths of the world’s great religions. We are bound by no statement of belief, and our members tend to keep open minds in a continuing quest for their own religious and spiritual truths. We abide by our Covenantal relationships.”
Unitarian Universalist congregations affirm and promote seven Principles, which we hold as strong values and moral guides. We live out these Principles within a “living tradition” of wisdom and spirituality, drawn from six Sources as diverse as science, poetry, scripture, and personal experience. These Principles and Sources of the Unitarian Universalist Association grew out of the grassroots of our communities, were affirmed democratically, and are part of who we are.
As Rev. Barbara Wells ten Hove, Minister Emerita, Cedars UU Church, Bainbridge Island, WA,explains, “The Principles are not dogma or doctrine, but rather a guide for those of us who choose to join and participate in Unitarian Universalist religious communities.”
These are the seven Principles which represent the core values of what we hold in common:
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.
These are the six Sources our congregations affirm and promote:
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;
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;
Wisdom from the world’s religions which inspires us in our ethical and spiritual life;
Jewish and Christian teachings which call us to respond to God’s love by loving our neighbors as ourselves;
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;
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
Want to know more? Check out this informational video about UU congregations:
Note: the current President of the UUA is Rev. Susan Frederick-Gray, and the Co-Moderators are Meg Riley and Charles Du Mond.