Welcome

We are a community of people sharing our spiritual life journeys.  Visitors are welcome to join us any Sunday.

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Webside Pulpit

Who is more humble? The scientist who looks at the universe with an open mind and accepts whatever the universe has to teach us, or somebody who says everything in this book must be considered the literal truth and never mind the fallibility of all the human beings involved?
      ~ Carl Sagan 

 

Our Vision Statement

Don Heights is a resilient, welcoming community of diverse individuals, promoting love, reason and freedom in religion, fostering lifelong spiritual growth and acting for social justice and the environment

Approved at a Congregational Meeting, October 4, 2009

CUC Member

Don Heights is a member of the Canadian Unitarian Council, our national organization, which provides support for Unitarians across Canada.

www.cuc.ca

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About Unitarian Universalism

Principles and Sources

As Unitarian Universalists we are guided to live by our seven Principles. We covenant to affirm and promote

  • The inherent worth and dignity of every person.
  • Justice, equity and compassion in human relations.
  • Acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth in our congregations.
  • A free and responsible search for truth and meaning.
  • The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large.
  • The goal of world community with peace, liberty and justice for all.
  • Respect for the inter-dependent web of all existence of which we are a part.

Grateful for the religious pluralism which enriches and ennobles our faith, we are inspired to deepen our understanding and expand our vision.


The living tradition we share draws from many sources:

  • Direct experience of that transcending mystery and wonder, affirmed in all cultures, which moves us to a renewal of spirit and an openness to the forces which create and uphold life.
  •  Words and deeds of prophetic women and men which challenge us to confront powers and structures of evil with justice, compassion and the transcending power of love.
  • Wisdom from the world’s religions which inspires us in our ethical and spiritual life.
  • Jewish and Christian teachings which call us to respond to God’s love by loving our neighbours as ourselves.
  • Humanist teachings which counsel us to heed the guidance of reason and the results of science, and warn us against idolatries of the mind and spirit.
  • Spiritual teaching of Earth-centered traditions which celebrate the sacred circle of life and instruct us to live in harmony with rhythms of nature.

 


 

 

Brief Reflections on the Seven Unitarian Universalist Principles
by Rev. Debra Faulk

Preamble: These seven principles were crafted by a committee with input invited from the entire continental membership. The wording went through a multi-year process before final acceptance in 1985. They are currently under review in both Canada and the United States for we truly recognize the dynamic nature of religious community which requires constant evaluation and re-affirmation. These principles are not a creed. They are meant to be guiding statements, that when posed to ourselves as questions, can clarify our ethical stand in the world.

The 1st Unitarian Universalist principle states that We affirm and promote the inherent worth and dignity of every person. Simple and perhaps obvious at first reading -- enacting it can be a challenge. What of the person we perceive committing injustice or undermining the dignity of another, do we affirm their inherent worth? Would doing so equate to supporting their actions? Acceptance of a person’s potential is not acceptance of abusive behaviour.
This principle is a demand to justice. As guiding principle it calls us to action, to work for issues of equality and anti-oppression - social, economic or political. It requires that we honour individual choice, ever aware of the influence of the individual on the wider society. It requires that we recognize our own inherent worth as well.

The 2nd Unitarian Universalist principle states that We affirm and promote: Justice, equity and compassion in human relations.
To be a justice seeking person requires a core of self-acceptance, a sense of personal dignity that translates into the recognition of the worth and dignity in every one else. It has been said that justice is love at a distance. This love causes internal unrest in the face of inequity. Compassion literally means “to suffer with”. Living out of the capacity for compassion involves the willingness to witness pain in the world, be with it and not paralyzed by it. The call to justice and equity means to take an ethical stand in the face of injustice with compassion.

The 3rd Unitarian Universalist principle states that We affirm and promote acceptance of one another and encouragement of spiritual grown in our congregations.
The spiritual dimension of an individual or a community is vital and changing. At its best it deepens and grows. With the acceptance of this aspect of growth we express our willingness to explore new ideas, to expand our perceptions and to suspend judgment – this is challenging and meaningful work.

The 4th Unitarian Universalist principle states that We affirm and promote a free and responsible search for truth and meaning. In this statement is found the essence of our liberal faith tradition. We are each responsible for engaging in the quest to deepen our understanding of what is meaningful and true to us personally as well as communally. This is a dynamic and lifelong process, enhanced by having like-valued people to accompany us on the journey.

The 5th Unitarian Universalist principle states that We affirm and promote the right of conscience and the use of democratic process within our congregations and the society at large.
The 5th Unitarian Universalist principle offers a succinct expression of the importance of the individual in the context of community. The demand is to search one’s own conscience and then to contribute to the community. Participation, engagement and action are our responsibility if we strive to enact justice in the world.

The 6th Unitarian Universalist principle states that We affirm and promote the goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all. It has been said that for peace to exist it must begin within the heart of each person. Peace is more than an absence of war; it is the presences of justice, equity for all persons. In community we find support to be agents of this kind of transformation in the world.

The 7th Unitarian Universalist principle states that We affirm and promote respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part. The recognition of our place as merely a strand in the web of life invites us to be planetary stewards. As individuals and congregations we reflect on how we can live as sustainably as possible and then put it into action.

 


 

Some Famous Unitarians and Universalists

Who When Why
John Adams 1735-1826  Second President of United States
John Quincy Adams 1767-1848  Sixth President of United States
Horatio Alger 1832-1899  Writer of rags-to-riches books for boys.
Louisa May Alcott 1832-1888  Author of Little Women and other books
Susan B. Anthony 1820-1906  Organizer of women's suffrage movement.
P. T. Barnum 1810-1891  Owner of Barnum & Bailey Circus, founder of Tufts University
Bela Bartok 1881-1945  Hungarian composer
Clara Barton 1821-1912  Founder of the American Red Cross
Alexander Graham Bell 1847-1922  Inventor of the telephone, founder of Bell Telephone Company
Ray Bradbury  Science fiction writer
Luther Burbank 1849-1926  American botanist of the early 20th century
Robert Burns 1759-1796  Scottish poet and song writer
e.e. cummings 1894-1962  20th century American poet
Charles Darwin 1809-1882  Scientist and evolutionist, author of Origin of Species
Charles Dickens 1809-1882  English novelist
Ralph Waldo Emerson 1803-1882  Unitarian minister, essayist, philosopher
Benjamin Franklin 1706-1790  Scientist, writer, statesman
Nathaniel Hawthorne 1804-1864  American novelist, author of The Scarlet Letter
Julia Ward Howe 1819-1910  Composer of Battle Hymn of the Republic
Thomas Jefferson 1743-1826  Third President of United States and author of the Declaration of Independence
Arthur Lissmer 1847-1922  Canadian artist, member of the Group of Seven
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow 1807-1882  American writer, author of The Song of Hiawatha
Thomas Masaryk 1850-1937  First president of Czechoslovakia in 1920, proponent of democracy and social justice
Herman Melville 1791-1872  Writer, author of Moby Dick
Samuel Morse 1791-1872  Inventor of the telegraph and Morse code
Florence Nightingale 1820-1910  British nurse and hospital reformer
Linus Pauling 1901-1994  Chemist, won Nobel Prize for chemistry in 1954 and the Nobel Peace Prize in 1962
Beatrix Potter 1866-1943  Author of Peter Rabbit and other children's stories
Joseph Priestly 1733-1804  Discoverer of oxygen, Unitarian minister
Paul Revere 1735-1818  Silversmith and colonial patriot or revolutionary depending on your point of view
Carl Sandburg 1878-1967  American poet, won Pulitzer Prize for biography of Abraham Lincoln
Albert Schweitzer 1875-1965  Theologian and physician
Adlai Stevenson 1900-1965  Governor of Illinois, candidate for President and U.S. Ambassador to the U.N.
William Howard Taft 1857-1930  27th President of United States and tenth Chief Justice of the Supreme Court
Dr. Emily Stowe 1831-1903  Canada's first female doctor, and founder of first woman suffrage society in Canada
Henry David Thoreau 1817-1862  Essayist and naturalist, author of Walden Pond
Kurt Vonnegut Jr.  Writer, author of Slaughterhouse-Five
Frank Lloyd Wright 1869-1959  Architect
Whitney Young 1921-1971  Head of the Urban League