The world we imagine
Doug Muder thinks through the problem of technology-related unemployment, and the potential for either a dystopian or a utopian future.
Adjusting to [the] new reality will require not just economic and political change, but social and psychological change as well. Somehow, we will need to make meaningful lives for ourselves in a work-free technological Garden of Eden. When I put it that way, it sounds easy, but when you picture it in detail, it’s not. We will all need to attach our self-respect and self-esteem to something other than pulling our weight economically. . . .
Already-existing trends that lower the workforce, like retraining mid-career or retiring early, need to be celebrated rather than worried about. In the long run the workforce is going to go down; that can be either a source of suffering or a cause for rejoicing, depending on how we construct it. (The Weekly Sift, March 6)
Looking depravity in the eye
The Rev. Dr. Victoria Weinstein notes that while some people avoid noticing evil, she chooses differently.
Me, I try to look human depravity in the eye most every day. I am not sure why. I think that perhaps, like a surgeon, I want to know exactly how big the tumor is before I operate on it. . . .
I will be in this fight until the day I die, and probably even afterwards when I am working full time as a comforting angel and arguing with God every day about fixing the system, even if God fixes me out of a job. (Facebook, March 6)
The Rev. Cynthia Cain writes that there is no vaccine for heartless indifference.
I am shocked every day when I wake up, to realize that a significant portion of the people I know, or thought I knew, and love or thought I loved, are actually heartless, racist, biased, and cruelly indifferent to the plight of their fellow beings. . . .
I’m not suggesting that we spend all day, every day wringing our hands over the travesty that has been racism for centuries, but is now being brought clearly to the surface. But I do think, if we call ourselves Christians, people of faith, people of conscience, or even human beings with hearts, we must, each day, be learning, listening, and witnessing, to our participation in white privilege and white supremacy. (A Jersey Girl in Kentucky, March 5)
The gift of Unitarian Universalism
The Rev. Jordinn Nelson Long, who is a Christian and a Unitarian Universalist, treasures the freedom that Unitarian Universalism gives her to explore.
I explain, when asked, that I am deeply grateful to have been called to minister in a tradition that allows me to hold personal identity loosely while diving deep into the questions—if it turns out that I am led another way as I continue to learn, to wonder, to love, and to know God and not-God as best I can experience them, I don’t lose my place here. I don’t lose my pulpit. I don’t lose my village. I don’t lose myself.
This is the unique power and deep gift of Unitarian Universalism. We are not, after all, “that church where you can believe anything you want to.” The pursuit of truth, justice, and beauty on earth and in human relationships point us in particular directions, and is a challenging path and a realistic admonisher as we fall short. (Facebook, March 3)
The Rev. Dan Harper shares a practical experiment for helping members of his congregant share their preferred pronouns. (Yet Another Unitarian Universalist, March 3)
The Rev. Tandi Rogers suggests a process for congregations to use social media to discover who they are, and how they live out their values. (Faith Identity Formation on Social Media, March 4)
Wolves and the wind
The Rev. Robin Tanner’s young daughter used to think the wind was a monster.
Today, it was windy again. She ran to the door and shrieked “wind!”
She opened the door wide ran outside letting all the neighbors know it was windy and beautiful. She opened her arms trying to hug the wind.
May we all find a fear in our lives dissolve with this ease of wonder and embrace. (Facebook, March 9)
The Rev. Chris Buice suggests that the alarmist tweeter-in-chief might lose the ability to scare us—and may one day need to communicate a real cause for alarm.
Once upon a time there was a president who tweeted “Wolf” and all the people of the nation became anxious and upset and their concerns filled the 24/7 news cycle until they ran to save him only to realize there was no wolf. The next day the president decided to tweet again “Wolf, wolf, wolf...” he tweeted until he reached his 140 character limit. Once again the people of the country were distraught....(you can complete the story for yourselves.) (Facebook, March 8)