Unitarian Universalists are not a typical worship gathering. In fact they are more thoughtful and willing to consider and discuss religious concepts and ideas than perhaps any other church denomination. In this flawed world where so many powerful voices pressure you to adopt their way, Unitarian Universalists have a special appeal. Many people who are questing after a moral way of living and want to think about differing values find UUs a pleasant alternative.
In a service scheduled for 11 a.m. on Sunday, Sept. 27 at the New River Unitarian Universalist Fellowship on 911 South Kanawha Avenue in Beckley, Dr. H. Randall Grumpelt will be leading a presentation on distinctive models of “right living” offered by Buddhists, Christians and Muslims.
The service will not be a criticism of any of these faiths. Neither will it look at the special spiritual views of the followers. Instead it will compare the nature of human values and behaviors that were suggested by Siddhartha, Jesus and Mohammad. The figureheads provide an ideal of the faith in human form.
Siddhartha learned to expect little in his life. Still all people eventually suffer, but personal peace and compassion can be found through meditation, turning inward and certain practices. Jesus also experienced an uncertain life. However, standing up to unjust authorities (even if church or government), aiding the less fortunate and spreading love all became part of his way of living. Muhammad married and within his family was a helpful, affectionate mate who shared responsibilities. In addition he protected his family and the larger community by becoming a warrior when necessary, defining the good life in a unique way. These are a few of the essentials to following the values expected of the followers of these different religions. The Fellowship will discuss and consider an expanded version of these concepts.
In these times when world knowledge has widened so dramatically, most independent thinkers realize the narrow views of each religion can not all be right. Most people begin to realize they must have the courage to find their own way. Maybe we do not have to acquiesce to pressures to adopt a confining view. We can explore what a fuller and more individualized human can be.
Unitarian Universalists are open to listening to others who have traveled one of the many paths to the top of the mountain. Spiritual, secular and many alternate views are respected and encouraged. Perhaps you can add some ideas to the exchange. And understanding can increase and add to our store of wisdom. Yes, for the thinking person growth continues throughout life.
New River Unitarian