Things I Believe

The Religious Principles of the American Unitarian Conference

1. God's presence is made known in a myriad of ways. Religion should promote a free and responsible search for truth, meaning, communion and love.

2. Reason is a gift from God. Religion should embrace reason and its progeny, including the scientific enterprise which explores God's creation.

3. Free will is a gift from God. Religion should assist in the effort to find a path that exercises that gift in a responsible, constructive and ethical manner.

4. Conscious of the complexity of creation, of the limits of human understanding and of humanity's capacity for evil in the name of religion, we hold that humility, religious tolerance and freedom of conscience should be a central part of any religious experience.

5. Religious experience is most fulfilling in the context of a tradition. Our religious tradition is the Unitarian tradition, which emphasizes the importance of reason in religion, tolerance and the unity of God.

6. Revelation is ongoing. Religion should draw inspiration not only from its own tradition but from other religious traditions, philosophy and the arts. Although paying due regard for the hard lessons learned in the past and to the importance of religious tradition, religion should not be stagnant but should employ reason and religious experience to evolve in a constructive, enlightened and fulfilling way.

7. Conscious of the spiritual and material needs of our fellow men and women, the evil they may be subjected to and the tragedies they may endure, works of mercy and compassion should be a part of any religious experience.

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