Very soon after I joined my first UU church, I developed a theory about the way we are with each other. I noticed that some UUs, those whom I soon came to think of as “Baby UUs,” were very excited about UUism as a vehicle for their own self-expression. They tended to throw temper tantrums when the service wasn’t about something they wanted. And most of all, they talked about their previous religion. "Back when I was with the Jesus people, we did (whatever) Wasn’t that so-o stupid?”
And Beliefnet gave me the chance to meet some Ex-UUs who were constantly saying things like “You know what the problem with UUism was…?”
Newsflash: If you're an ex-UU we don't care. If you see problems but want to stay and fix them, great, I agree. If you fit in better with another faith, it's been nice praying with you. You know where the door is.
Whether you're going or coming, hearing people complain about their ex-religions gets OLD. It’s still old.
So please, people. Cut it out.
If you have just changed faiths, your numero uno job in your new community is to LISTEN to everyone else and LEARN about this new path in your journey. So do thyself a favor and shut up for six months then let the comparisons between the two faiths trickle in to coversation only when they offer real theological and cultural insight. But don't forget the first six months of shutting up, because that's when you're most likely to babble on. Believe it or not, the people in your new church don’t actually give a damn that you think they are cooler than the people in your previous church. You just make yourself look like a big jackass.
The blind date who won’t quit bitching about her ex? That’s you.
I don’t care if you were a deacon, an alter boy, a board president or a guy with a really popular blog in your old faith. Once you’ve moved on to a new faith, you’re starting over so try to do so with minimal baggage. Should you have trouble with this process, may I suggest you avail yourself of the services of a professional or a support group or anybody who is not a member of either faith, because I promise you, the people in both your new faith and old faith have heard your warmed over sarcasm a thousand times and it isn’t very interesting.
If you want to burn your bridges, just stop calling the people in your old church, you don't have to actively insult them and doing so is really sort of masturbatory and stupid. Don't get up at joys and concerns, tell people individually, preferably on your last Sunday.
Perhaps we need a thought experiment. Let’s think back to college.
Remember that freshman? You know, the one in the obviously brand new clothes who had obviously been a big shot back at Bumblefuck High? You probably met him the August of your Junior year and he was all “Back at my high school, we did it this way... Wasn’t that totally lame? Everyone was SO immature. And have I told you my SAT scores yet?”
And you the junior and your snarky little friends listened with a straight face, then went back to your off-campus apartment and laughed at him?
If you are new to your church and still whining about your old church, you’re that freshman.
So cut it out.
That is all.
who observes that many, many people come to and leave UUism knowing this already and practicing it. She salutes those people.