The Grass is Always Greener: What Unitarianism is and what I wish it were

crooked-path

Sometimes, going to my Unitarian church on Sundays feels like an act of “spiritual suicide.” I am grateful for what Unitarianism is, even while I wish it could be more. [Read more...]

The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea: When a friend turns to fundamentalism

Can we not have the "life, meaning, and beauty" without the "swindle of religious belief"? Can we not have the peace without the "illusion"? Can not my friend find salvation from suicide without resort to religious fundamentalism? [Read more...]

M is for Masturbation

Lucy: “Where are you?” Devil/Dad: I’m at my dildo factory. Lucy: You have a dildo factory? Devil/Dad: Of course, Sinsperations. Lucy: I love Sinsperations! I mailed a letter with recommendations! Devil/Dad: Whoa! Daddy doesn’t want to hear about baby’s ideas on dildos. … Lucy: I’m a big masturbator. I can come there and do product [Read More...]

Religion vs. Therapy

Over at Patheos, in a post entitled, “another false divide”, deity-centric hard polytheist Aine makes a case that worship of the gods should benefit the worshiper as much as the worshipee.  Believe it or not, this is something of a radical statement to make in the polytheistic community.  Aine’s post is in response to the [Read More...]

Longing and Grace in Lev Grossman’s The Magician King

God speaks to each of us as he makes us, then walks with us silently out of the night. These are the words we dimly hear: You, sent out beyond your recall, go to the limits of your longing. … – Rilke You, the great homesickness I could never shake off … – Rilke I [Read More...]

The next time you walk into your bookstore …

… you may find your Pagany books in the Religion section, instead of in the New Age section.  Elysia over at Llewellyn has posted about “The Biggest Pagan News that No One is Talking About”. The BISAC code [the codes developed and maintained by the Book Industry Study Group] that used to be OCC036020 Body, [Read More...]

“One Needful Thing”, Part 2: UUism and the Transformative Experience

In Part 1, I traced the development of Unitarianism since the early 19th century to the present and argued that UUism has, since its inception, been characterized by what William Channing called a “too partial culture of the mind.”  I hinted that the “one needful thing” for UUism is enthusiasmos or personal abandonment, which I [Read More...]

“One needful thing”, Part 1: What’s missing from Unitarianism

This is a mutli-part series.  In this part, I discuss the history of Unitarianism, including the Transcendentalist revolt, the humanist revolution, and the search for a language of reverence. A few weeks ago, a married couple who are friends of mine joined the Unitarian Universalist congregation that I attend.  They have been attending for about [Read More...]

Treacherous parodies of freedom, joy, and fulfillment

A few weeks ago, my daughter heard an ad on the radio for an audition to a Disney television show while we were driving to her gymnastics class.  She convinced me to call in and we made an appointment for an audition.  So last night I took my daughter to the “audition”.  Naturally, it turned [Read More...]

My Son Confronts Existential Despair

Yesterday, I initiated a conversation with my 13 year-old son about what he believes happens after death and why evil exists in the world. Let me preface this by explaining why.this is not an unusual conversation for us.  I haven’t written much here about my kids yet.  Today, I’m going to tell you a little [Read More...]