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Introduction, Workshop 13: Mirages and Oases — Idealism and Utopianism

In "Faith like a River," a Tapestry of Faith program

Humanity must ever reach out towards a New Eden. Succeeding generations smile at the crude attempts, and forthwith make their own blunders, but each attempt, however seemingly unsuccessful, must of necessity contain a germ of spiritual beauty which will bear fruit. — Clara Endicott Sears, founder of the Fruitlands Museum

A vibrant stream of idealism runs through Unitarian Universalist history. This workshop introduces Transcendentalism, spiritualism, and Utopianism, three 19th-century movements which perhaps represent a high point of idealism in the United States as well as in both Unitarianism and Universalism. Participants explore the reasons for these expressions of idealism, examine how these movements shaped our faith, and identify strains of idealism in Unitarian Universalism today.

Before leading this workshop, review the Accessibility Guidelines for Workshop Presenters in the program Introduction. Make preparations to accommodate individuals who may be in the group.

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Last updated on Friday, January 6, 2012.

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