Celestial Lands The Religious Crossroads of Politics, Power, and Theology

Deepening in the Principles workshop

Last Night (February 18th) I faciliated an evening workshop at the UU Society of Geneva, IL about deepening our understanding of the Unitarian Universalist 7 principles by looking at them through the lens of another traditions ethical guidence.  As I said that night, I think this could be done with many different moral and ethical codes, but we used a few of the Buddhist precepts to see where they connect to the 7 principles and to our lives. 

 The workshop is a continuation of the work I began in the essay “Living the Principles Through the Precepts”, in the book The Abiding Questions of Free Congregations.  The members of the workshop either had before, or can get from their minister copies of the essay.  (Or you can order the book from Amazon). 

We only began the process last night, and I asked those who were present to continue to look for insight into the principles through the method we used, and I promised to provide a space where they could continue to share those insights with eachother and with me. 

This is that space.  If you attended the workshop (or you have read the essay and understand the purpose and the method) please reply to this message to share the insights that come to you. 

I am looking forward to continuing to hear from you, and thank you for the wonderful engagement last night.  It was great! 

 Yours in faith,


3 Thoughts on “Deepening in the Principles workshop

  1. I know that the Asatru have what they call the Nine Noble Virtues, one of which is “hospitality.” I see this right smack in the very first principle itself, affirmation and promotion of the inherent worth and dignity of every person.

    The Goddess Frigga, the Allmother of the Folk, is considered to be the “frithweaver” of the Elder Kin, because she embodies all the delightful things about hearth, home, a good wife, etc. It is not considered demeaning for a woman to serve the ale to the warriors in the hall – quite the opposite, actually. Serving meant providing hospitality – nourishment, respite from stress, enjoyment, everything that hospitality entails.

    That is why at a Heathen symbel (ritual toasting to the Divine powers, the ancestors and heroes) I have served as the “hall-idis” or hall-mother, bringing the ale-horn to the celebrants and pouring the mead/ale/whatever into their cups and saying, “Drink with our blessings.” I represented Frigga and the lady of the house to them, welcoming them, regardless of their path or philosophy or lifestyle or color or economic level or whatever.

    Does any of that make sense?

  2. Tracie,

    I think you got exactly what I am proposing, by seeking to deepen our understanding of the principles by looking at them through the lens of different ethical systems.

    Though I am familiar with Asatru, (due to a former significant other who practiced it), I am not familiar with the Nine Noble Virtues. I will look at them… thanks!

    Yours in Faith,


  3. Lisa Rittenberry on Sunday March 8, 2009 at 16:46 +0000 said:

    David- how many ways can one say ‘WOW’…this was really my first experience with the whole concept of ‘UU Zen’ and now I am attending weekly meditation group at UUSG. Thank you for making my first experience so enlightening!

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