Showing posts with label Letters to the editor. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Letters to the editor. Show all posts

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Letters to the editor - Can religion and spirituality go together?

I have begun getting letters to the editor and have decided to start a new feature on UU A Way Of Life which will deal with some of them worthy of public notice. If you have questions, concerns, comments you can leave them in the comments under each article or send them directly to me at

Dear editor

You make a distinction between religion and spirituality. Can they overlap? I have been raised in a religious tradition, and I think I am spiritual too.


Dear John:

Most of religion is false. It is not the real deal. Unitarian Universalists pride themselves as being free thinkers and even have one of their seven principles, the fourth, which affirms and promotes the free and responsible search for truth and meaning, but this search does not bring the seeker closer to the Truth.

The Truth is within, not without, and to go within the seeker must leave the without behind. You can't take your worldly knowledge with you. It not only will not do you any good, it will actually block and create obstacles to your awareness of Love's presence which A Course In Miracles assures us is our natural inheritance.

The ego loves to distract and take us on a wild goose chase providing the tools of schooling, diplomas, certifications, awards, trophies, and all kinds of "atta boys," and "atta girls." It provides opportunities to have the spot light as a worship associate, a lector, a chalice flame lighter, a lead singer in the choir, a musician, and usher, etc.

There are all nice things and necessary for the operation and doing church, but they have nothing to do with spirituality. So don't be fooled.

The signs of spirituality are forgiveness, gratitude, generosity, peace, and joy. These signs of genuine spirituality are very weak in most churches, if they exist genuinely at all.

The spiritual quest can be lonely. It is a turn onto the high road. Most churches are walking, unfortunately, on the low road all the while saying pious words and paying lip service. Jesus said, "By their fruit, ye shall know them." The pickings, in my experience, are pretty slim. Then I realized I was looking in all the wrong places and started looking elsewhere.

So John, while there may be some small overlap between religion and spirituality, it is very rare. If you are searching for true spirituality, you probably won't find it in church. You will find it within yourself. To go on this search it is helpful to find a spiritual director. A spiritual director is a mentor who understands the spiritual life, has been there, is there, and wants to help others with the search as well. You need to find someone who is a little farther along than yourself. Finding such a person can be a challenge, but as the saying goes, "When the student is ready, the Master appears."

Best wishes for your search.

Harry Hollywood
For UU A Way Of Life

"The religion of one age is the literary entertainment of the next."
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Letter to the editor - God Revised could be used as the basis for a study group

Dear David:

Thank you for choosing Galen Guengerich's book, God Revised, for your book of the month. I don't know if I would have read it otherwise and now, having finished, it, I consider it one of the most important books on religion I have read in quite some time.

Guengerich is personal, thoughtful, philosophical, theological, literary and puts it all together in an informative, and understandable way. His main idea seems to be that the Supernatural God is dead, but that a new understanding of what the word, God, means would be important for the future of humanity. In his argument, Guengerich is on the cutting edge of being a modern myth maker suggesting elements of a new cosmic story we could be, should be, telling ourselves about who we are and what kind of a future we should be creating.

It is rare to see the thoughtful kind of discussion you are publishing in this kind of media (blogs), and I have found the thoughtfulness of the articles and comments helpful in shaping my own thinking on very difficult topics. Guengerich's book would be a great book for at least a book discussion group, if not for a longer study group. Perhaps some of your articles here could be used to stimulate such discussion. Thank you for your good work.

Sincerely yours,

Russell Anderson

Editor's note:

The UU A Way Of Life welcomes letters to the editor or articles. Please send them to

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