This I Believe - Some Words of Others

If you’re in need of inspiration, you need look no further than your fellow UU’s.

In their words you will find all the wonder and joy of being alive.

Jennifer Thimesh
I believe that I thrive in seeking a personal and meaningful truth. This journey begins by searching within myself for peace and by showing kindness, love, and a giving (and forgiving) spirit to those around me.

John Myers
I believe I am driven, and limited by, the human condition and human evolution. I’m driven to reproduce, protect, and live to the fullest, my genetic message.  These needs are represented for me and mine by Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.

As an individual in the enormous knowable and unknowable universe, I covenant to keep an open and active mind and strive for deep awareness of what resonates with my maturing inner being to:

• seek life affirming situations and relationships;
• accept my efforts as enough;
• identify and make habits of my best;
• listen and speak from my heart and
• celebrate life.

Ruth Kelly Trudeau
I have long had this saying hung in my bathroom and I look at each day as I brush my teeth.  My mother wrote it on a piece of parchment-like paper as an exercise in calligraphy.  I have seen it attributed to Anonymous and to William Penn, but she wrote it from memory.  We heard it every Sunday from Rev. Frank Schulman at Emerson let's talkUnitarian Church in Houston.

“I shall pass through this world but once.
Any good thing, therefore, that I can do,
Any kindness that I can show
To any human being
Let me do it now
For I shall not pass this way again.”

I believe in this.

Ron Suiter
Of this I am convinced:

That all knowledge is provisional, we cannot know anything for certain.

That although we cannot know anything for certain, we must act on what we can know, and that reproducible and recurring results provide sufficient basis for action.

That true courage, character and leadership lies not in acting out of certainty and conviction, but in being willing to act after rational analysis in spite of uncertainty.

That the scientific method is the only rational way to obtain knowledge that can be relied upon in making serious decisions affecting ourselves and other beings.

That human development, improvement and evolution has been moving away from superstition, ignorance, fear and irrational spirituality toward the use of reason and science to answer questions about the unknown; away from the selfishness and exclusion of tribalism toward an understanding that we are all one tribe; away from the “me centered” universe toward an understanding that the Earth itself is simply a pale blue dot hardly noticeable from any significant distance.

That the only meaning that exists in life is the meaning we give it by what we do and how we treat other living beings.

That sincerity is not a justification for doing evil.

That there is no one more dangerous than someone who is convinced he is right.

Gary Paramore
It is said that “every man is my master, in that I may learn from him.” So hearken unto the words of thy brethren and sisetern, and be enlightened.

I believe that God, like the rest of us, is a work in progress.

We participate in the creation of God as we make choices to actualize the possibilities of good in the world.

Every time we:
• appreciate beauty,
• deepen our understanding,
• share our bounty,
• develop a loving relationship,
• take care of the earth, or
• work for justice

we are co-creators of meaning and shapers of God.

I want to live my life paying attention to and prioritizing those activities - to do my little bit towards establishing the kingdom of God on earth.

David Phillips
One of the main UU issues is that its members must respect "many beliefs." However, there is one thing that is not as apparent to most of us, and even less to those of other churches. In order to respect other beliefs that are different from yours, it is absolutely necessary that you accept that they are just as likely to be as correct or more than yours. In order to accept this, your attitude of your beliefs must be humble. In order to gain humility, human beings must accept that almost all of their faiths and beliefs are opinions, not facts.

Pam Schuman
Deity: Life Force/Nature, intelligent, benevolent, in all things. Origin/functioning of Universe part of design, known dimly to us through innate curiosity and scientific exploration, ever-unfolding.

Life: Joy from “god”-given senses and intellect, relationships; pain from suffering, not from supernatural punishment or incarnate evil, but from neutral sources (accidents, diseases, natural disasters) or human instigation (personal desires not restrained before harm to self or others occurs). Learn from pain to find life-affirming lessons for self/others.

Death: Consciousness as we know it ceases, “re-joins” Deity in ways not readily understandable (spirit/soul). No hell, but gentle acceptance in rejoining.

“Do unto others…” “Choose life.”

Doug Arvanites
I am blessed to have been born into this place and time. I have the ability to accomplish things that many in the world cannot, due to their circumstances. I honor these advantages by seeking to make the world a better place, every day, in each relationship. In doing this, I help to add positive energy to the life-force that guides our planet and our universe. This, in turn, helps to make the world a better place for my children (and all children) to live, grow and propagate.

Beth Bargar
I believe in God, humankind, and a sense of mystery. I feel a spiritual presence that I interpret as God when I hear uplifting music, observe the wonders of nature, and experience the circle of life with family and friends. I believe in the potential for all people to be “good” if they are brought up with love and treated with respect. I enjoy the mysteries of life and accept that some things cannot be explained. I am thankful for a religion that encourages me to explore and refine my beliefs, and accepts diversity as an asset.

Nathan Smernoff
I think all pets should be treated the same as humans because if we were nice to pets they would be nice to us. Lions eat you because you are not nice to them, you hunt them. Ducks are nice sometimes. If you kick them you get bit in the butt. That's how life works. Everything has a reason. You scrape your knee for a reason. Everything happens for a reason. On God... When someone dies, God gives them a new body.

Lynn Hess
I believe (in fact, I know) that I don’t have it all figured out, and never will – but that I will try to figure it all out anyway, because it is in the trying that I become who I really am.

I believe the main obligation I have during the limited time I have on this Earth is to do my best to “be the light I wish to see in the world.”

I believe that we each have our own unique way of being, and that we are all perfect, and perfectly acceptable, just the way we are.

I believe everything is exactly as it should be, and that all things will work out – that there is no other alternative.

I believe love is the answer to each and every question – no exceptions!

Marty Robinson
As I view the beauty of the world around me, as I marvel at the multitude of living things, I cannot help but believe in a Creative Force. This Spirit is exemplified in the interdependence of all matter. There is a spark of the divine in all of us. What we do to the earth, what we do to animals, what we do to other humans - all of our actions affect creation as a whole. The way in which we exercise that spirit of Love will be the true measure of our legacy.

Bob Ludwig
I believe that we walk alone together

That I am never closer to the ALL than when I am small

That I have been assisted all along
 by personalities I perceive only dimly, usually

That I have been blessed with flashes of seeing
 and the calm assurance of their presence

That I continue to be born in pain
 and unfold with a dancing joy

That each of our losses diminishes me

That healing is joyful
 and life is intimately musical

Love, light, & laughter

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