Monday, June 27, 2005

My, UUism's navel is facinating. I could study it for hours...

Jess takes me to task for my lack of enthusiasm for this year's study/action issue.

But I'm not doing this because I'm a meanie. I'm doing this because we are drowning ourselves in debate, a point that The Almost Church will back me up on.

Last year's study/action issue was "Global Warming," and we've fixed that problem right up, right?

The irony is, I'm usually the one who complains about politics in the church and this is probably the least political topic of all as it is basically all about UUism. Were the theme "Growing UUism," I would probably support it. Unfortunately, the theme seems to be "Growing UUism through social action," which I think is a bad plan for reasons I've already gone over ad nauseum.

You can read the SAIs here, and I hope you'll notice that the "actions" suggested for this issue are almost all talking, and almost all stuff we're doing already. (Honestly, is there anyone here who goes to a church where people aren't ALREADY discussing the nature of morality someplace, be it in a covenant group or in a humanist discussion group or in adult RE?)

Does the UUA think nobody outside of UUism has ever thought of an interfaith group?

And no, greater participation in social action among UUs is not going to do a damn thing as long as UUs are .5 percent of the population.

CC

12 comments:

Scott and Tonic said...

0.08 percent. If we were booze, we'd barely get the USA a drunk driving conviction, and soon we'll not even do that.

contribUUtor said...

The item is to sponsor interfaith activities, not try and explain to the rest of the world what they are.

Also, what have you seen be an effective recruitment tool? Granted social action may only bring people in for a relatively short stay, but my experience in most people seem to be around for a short stay.

It also brought up a question I posed in my blog. I'd be curious to see how people answer.

Chalicechick said...

I guess I should warn people when I just make up statistics. Thanks, Scott!

My point wasn't that the UUA needed to explain what interfaith organizations were, but that it was crazy arrogant of the UUA to assume that we would have to start something like that. Hell, Columbia, South Carolina has interfaith organizations!

To say nothing of DC, home to Interfaith Alliance, Washington Interfaith Network, Interfaith Conference of Metro Washington, Capital Interfaith Hospitality Network and Interfaith Outreach, to name five, and that doesn't even count the ones formed to work on specific political issues.

And no, I see zero point in recruiting people who will come to church while we care about their pet issue and then blow us off.

CC

Anonymous said...

You are reading the Interfaith item very differently than I am. I do not grok the intention to sponsor an interfaith alliance, but rather to host or facilitate interfaith activities. I do not think any interfaith organization is doing such an all encompassing good job that there is no room to sponsor interfaith dialog for anyone else. Perhaps I am biased by having been at congregations where the ministers have participated in such civic discussions...

And the question about recruitment was what have you seen effectively draw people in to stay? What does work?

Chalicechick said...

I guess there's nothing wrong with hosting and fasciliating interfaith activities. But I would say that probably the best interfaith activities are charitable ones or other activities where people of different faiths work together on a greater project.

I do work in an office full of Mormons, and while it doesn't come up all the time, it has come up sometimes and I think we've both developed greater appreciation for each others' faiths. Because we're working, side-by-side, and have come to respect one another as people. Then respecting one another's faith comes.

We've debated politics (gently, but we've done it,) we've watched each other handle family divorces and other divisive issues and CC was once taken severely to task for making fun of scientologists since making fun of ANY minority religion isn't cool around my office.

Are my office buddies still mildly spooked that I don't believe in the bible, at least not in the sense that they do? I'm sure.

Do I still see Joseph Smith as at least a nutjob and probably a pedophile? Well, yeah.

But we get one another as people, and we get the values behind what the other believes if not the specific beliefs.

You set me in a room with people of five different faiths and say "Discuss morality!" you're not going to make half this much progress toward understanding.

I think making morality itself the focus was a big mistake. Instead of focusing on the theory, it's about time we focused on the practice. (And not in the sense of telling the government what to do, but in the sense of getting our own butts in gear.)

I'll devote a whole separate post to recruitment ideas.

CC

Oversoul said...

“And not in the sense of telling the government what to do, but in the sense of getting our own butts in gear.”

If you don’t stop saying things like this, I may very well fall in love with you ;)-

contribUUtor said...

Where I would really like to see more interfaith dialog is in public forums. Every time the press interviews folks on a hot button topic that I have seen it is in the context of Whatever vs. Religion. Stem cell research - Science vs. Religion. Abortion - Women vs. Religion. Gay marriage - Homosexuals vs. Religion, etc. Since I was not raised UU I had no idea that there was another side of "the debate" within religion. A liberal religous voice in the public forum is noticeably lacking. Understanding from "the other side" would be nice, but would at best be a secondary goal.

Chalicechick said...

Ever wonder if the fact that we see them as "the other side" is part of the problem?

CC

Ps. Oversoul: *blush*

contribUUtor said...

If someone opposes gay marriage, and I support it, what more useful term is there than saying they "are on the other side" of the argument?

Chalicechick said...

First of all, the issue of gay marriage is more complicated than "yay" or "nay," so viewing it as two sides is kind of silly. (For one example, people who want civil unions because they are uncomfortable with gays calling themselves "married" fit on neither side. For another, TheChaliceDad will tell you that homosexuality is a horrible genetic disease and that gays are to be pitied. If they can eke out a bit of happiness by marrying one another, he supposes that's for the best, though they will never know the sort of feeling heterosexuals can have for one another. This is our side?)

But we're getting off track and it's my fault, so I will put us back on.

Pretend my previous post read thusly:

I do work in an office full of liberal Episcopalians, and while it doesn't come up all the time, it has come up sometimes and I think we've both developed greater appreciation for each others' faiths. Because we're working, side-by-side, and have come to respect one another as people. Then respecting one another's faith comes.

We've debated politics (gently, but we've done it,) we've watched each other handle family divorces and other divisive issues and CC was once taken severely to task for making fun of scientologists since making fun of ANY minority religion isn't cool around my office.

Are my office buddies still mildly spooked that I don't believe in the bible, at least not in the sense that they do? I'm sure.

Do I still see Jesus Christ as having a lovable crazy guy, predicting an almost immediate end to the world? I see real good in some of the things he said and the effect he has had on the world, but essentially, yes.

But we get one another as people, and we get the values behind what the other believes if not the specific beliefs.

You set me in a room with people of five different faiths and say "Discuss morality!" you're not going to make half this much progress toward understanding.

I think making morality itself the focus was a big mistake. Instead of focusing on the theory, it's about time we focused on the practice. (And not in the sense of telling the government what to do, but in the sense of getting our own butts in gear.)


Now I assume you find Liberal Episcopalians more palatable.

And I think my points still stand.

CC

Anonymous said...

Loving Chalicechick is great. She's a hellcat.

Anonymous said...

Help me Dude, I'm lost.

I was searching for Elvis and somehow ended up in your blog, but you know I'm sure I saw Elvis in the supermarket yesterday.

No honest really, he was right there in front of me, next to the steaks singing "Love me Tender".

He said to me (his lip was only slightly curled) "Boy, you need to get yourself a shiny, new plasmatv to go with that blue suede sofa of yours.

But Elvis said I, In the Ghetto nobody has a plasma tv .

Dude I'm All Shook Up said Elvis. I think I'll have me another cheeseburger then I'm gonna go home and ask Michael Jackson to come round and watch that waaaay cool surfing scene in Apocalypse Now on my new plasma tv .

And then he just walked out of the supermarket singing. . .

"You give me love and consolation,
You give me strength to carry on "

Strange day or what? :-)