Thursday, December 10, 2009

Another sign of UU cultural hegemony

There's a new poll out from the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life that documents the religious eclecticism of Americans.

There's much to dive into here--far more than I can get to in one post right now.

But to start with, it's one more example of how the pluralistic values at the heart of Unitarian Universalism are mirrored in the wider culture far beyond our own tiny numbers.

To be sure, there's also a much larger discussion to which this can give rise, about the tension within religion between being a cultural force and a counter-cultural one. I may try to post some thoughts about that later, too.


  1. Jan Taddeo our Ministerial Student says that we are the vanguard. That people who are not with us in our congregations yet hear of our work and what we do becomes acceptable. We want to grow but cannot because we are the Vanguard. We enrich the world by being who we are.

  2. Forgive me for being moderately U*Uncivil aka "less than polite" DSD, but perhaps you have it ass-backwards as they say.

    Don't you think that "the pluralistic values at the heart of Unitarian Universalism" (or at least *claimed* by U*Us) mirror aka reflect the greater Western culture that U*Us grew out of aka evolved with, and still more-or-less belong too, even if only as "a tiny, declining, fringe religion" to quote Rev. Peter Morales?

    Did U*Us dream up the Seven Principles and other claimed U*U ideals in a cultural vacU*UM DSD? I think not. Indeed I know not. Most U*U principles and ideals are culturally appropriated from modern Western culture. N"est-ce pas? Which makes it all the more annoying when *some* U*Us consistently behave in ways that totally disregard and outright violate their own claimed principles and ideals. The ideals of the U*U World, with a few exceptions that only serve to prove the rule, are the ideals of the Western World.

    Would that U*Us would do a better job of mirroring their claimed pluralistic values aka principles and purposes than they have done in their rather questionable human relations with me over the years. How does what is image tarnishingly reflected in the Montreal Mirror in any way "mirror" the purported principles and purposes of Unitarian*Universalism, to say nothing of the well-established pluralistic values of modern and democratic Western society? I dare say that Montreal Unitarian U*Us and plenty of other U*Us including top level UUA leaders have shamefully behaved in ways that are counter-cultural to the hard fought and reasonably well established cultural values of modern Western civilization. . .

  3. Robin, I certainly never claimed, or never intended to claim, that these values originated in the UU world exclusive of the larger world. While I don't share your vitriol toward institutional UUs and their leaders, I have no doubt that all of us at one time or another have failed to live up to the best of our aspirations.


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