Saturday, May 28, 2005

Universism - Standing on the Insteps of Midgets?

This may be old news for many of you, but I first read about Universism in an article in the Atlanta Journal Counstitution this morning. According to their web site at, "Universism is the world's first rational religion. "

They say that "It's not what you believe, it's how you believe it! The future of religion is faithless. "

Their FAQ says the following about Universalism and Unitarian Universalism: "Universalism is a universally accepting philosophy, equally accepting reason and faith as valid, accepting many Truths, and in Unitarian Universalism, often making claims about various faith traditions serving as alternate paths to the same end - salvation. Universism, by contrast, takes a stand on reason and evidence, the right tools for a natural universe. On a practical level, Universists believe we cannot combat the ill effects of faith and offer a positive alternative if we do not take a clear stand against those faiths. Unitarian Universalism cannot do this."

As a humanist and a most-of-the-time rationalist with a great deal of respect for reason I can sympathize with what Universism is trying to do. But it seems very odd to me that they seem to be missing a lot of what has gone before in terms of humanist thought. They're also not very well-informed about Unitarian Universalism. It seems a bit sad that they're standing on the insteps of midgets when there are plenty of giants with broad shoulders around.

I plan to do more research to understand Universism better from an organizational dynamics perspective and also hope to analyze their beliefs in more detail--but at first glance Universism appears to be a lot like the Platte River, a mile wide and an inch deep.

One interesting question comes to mind from what I've read so far, however:

Is it true that Unitarian Universalism cannot take a stand against the ill effects of "faiths"?

It will be fascinating to see what happens to Universism in the years ahead.



Blogger Chalicechick said...

At least on of the guys behind this posted on beliefnet for a few days. I wasn't impressed.

And I don't undestand why every new upstart religion that is 75 pecent like UUism and 25 percent different has to have a name so easily confused with ours.

As for as I'm concerned it's like going to the drugstore and seeing bottles of genric sunscreen that are designed to look like Coppertone.


5:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

First of all, I think the differences are more extensive. But even if it would be so, then universism is 25% better. Is that a bad thing? Or does it have to be 100% original for you to be impressed? But it doesn't really matter. Universism wasn't founded in order to impress.

5:59 PM  

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