Atheism and Agnosticism: Part of the Theological Diversity Within Unitarian Universalism
Atheists may be called or call themselves "non-believers," meaning they do not believe in the existence of a supernatural deity or god. Many people who call themselves Agnostic believe they cannot know for sure whether God exists, and some believe that no one can know this for sure. Some are interested in knowing; others, like many Unitarian Universalists, are comfortable without knowing.
Atheists, Agnostics, and Unitarian Universalists
Atheists and Agnostics are welcome in Unitarian Universalism and can find a welcoming, supportive faith community in our congregations. Although both groups are often defined by what they do not believe, the reality is that they do believe in a great many things, including many beliefs affirmed within Unitarian Universalism. They believe, for example, that we as humans are responsible for our own actions, that the here and now is important, and that it is good to try to make this world a better place.
While Unitarian Universalists may share many beliefs in common with many Atheists and Agnostics, we do not have to. As a non-creedal faith, Unitarian Universalism honors the differing spiritual paths we each travel. Our congregations are places where we celebrate, support, and challenge one another as we continue on these journeys. For this reason, many interfaith families—and this increasingly includes those with members who are Atheist or Agnostic—find Unitarian Universalism can uniquely meet their spiritual needs.
Additionally, the goal of Unitarian Universalist religious education is to equip children and adults to seek out their own truths in a context that honors the underlying values, beliefs, and ethics found in all religious traditions. For this reason, many Atheist and Agnostic parents find a home in Unitarian Universalism when their children begin asking spiritual questions, encounter questions from schoolmates about their lack of belief in God, or wish to explore more theistic religious traditions.
- Tapestry of Faith, free, downloadable religious education curricula for all ages to explore Unitarian Universalist history, theological diversity, and work of justice and love
- UU Parenting, a blog by Michelle Richards, author of Tending the Flame: The Art of Unitarian Universalist Parenting
- “If There is a God…,” by Cynthia Landrum
- “Paradox Riders,” by Tom Owen-Towle
- Bridging the God Gap: Finding Common Ground Among Believers, Atheists and Agnostics, by Roger Christan Schriner
- Faitheist: How an Atheist Found Common Ground with the Religious, by Chris Stedman
For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Last updated on Friday, February 8, 2013.
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