Recently, I started attending All Souls Unitarian Universalist Fellowship in the Walltown Neighborhood of Durham, NC. On the way out of our first service a couple months ago, one of the elders at the church handed Helen With Purpose and Principle. This, coupled with some recent thoughts about “branding” led to a lot of thoughts about what my values are. The UU church has a set of principles and affirmations that I think are a great starting place, so I thought I’d repost them here for your pleasure:
We 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 interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.
I found these words to be very powerful. With that in mind, I thought I’d draft my first values statement here: I believe in humans’ right to self-determination, their need for community to survive and the need for more inclusive economic and political tools as we move forward as a society.
Whether or not you feel like you are a part of the food movement, we need everyone to recognize our “interdependent web of existence” as we struggle to determine the Earth’s carrying capacity for human life. As I seek out and promote innovative new concepts that can make a difference locally, I hope to keep the Unitarian Universalist principles in mind as I work with others in my community. I hope you will consider them as well, and will feel free to express concerns when I don’t live up to these principles (and hopefully, praise at some point).