Sunday, January 4, 2009
Morning Meditation - A UU theology
I have been thinking about the topics or concerns that a good theology should cover. The things I have come up with so far are suffering, purpose of life, what gives meaning to life, death, and ethical behavior. There may be other topics as well, but these seem to me to be the big ones that are perrenial.
I am not a theologian, but like most human beings I struggle to make sense of my life and in our society so much of our theology seems dysfunctional that I have been led to make up my own.
For most Americans, the theology of materialism and consumerism is the most influential and powerful. As the bumper sticker says, "The one with the most toys when they die, wins."
The second biggest theology, for men anyway, is sports.
After materialism and sports, relgious faith is small potatoes in American culture.
What Unitarian Universalism needs if it is to grow is a mythic story which resonates with the masses and we have none. People are basically stupid and they love fairy tales. L. Ron Hubbard started his religion of Scientology on a bet that he could scam the people.
I think if UUs were as cynical we could do the same thing.
The Christian theology is laughable when you consider that it is based on a myth of constructive destruction like God killed his son to save humankind. In other words the way to show your love is by abuse and killing. The United States being a Christian nation think they can bring freedom and peace by killing people in pre-emptive wars of liberation that lead to occupation and subjugation.
Jesus and Buddha never taught such cockamamie nonsense and people profess to be their disciples when they disregard their teachings.
Unitarian Universalists have no longer any mythic story except there is ony one God, not trinity, no three for the price of one, and that everybody goes to heaven eventually. How that works is never spelled out but it is a nice thought which goes against the intuitive sense that good is rewarding and bad is punishing.
And so Unitarian Universalists are left with mushy, psychobabble which attracts very few people, and yet there is something there for the more enlightened mind and heart something which says that the transcendent can't be captured in a neat description or category, something which says that the good life is rewarding intrinsically and that evil causes its own suffering in hell on earth, something which calls us to become more and better than we are at the moment.
The Unitarian Universalist theology is based on the idea that life is God and that at its base it is mystery which is to be revered.
The bumper sticker theology of Unitarian Universalism is "My God is too big for any one religion." and then it would be helpful to further describe such a big God in knowing full well that God cannot be described and captured in any theology.