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I am always more interested in what I am about to do than what I have already done. — Rachel Carson

Big Question: Where are we going?

The past: Where do we come from? The present: What are we? The future: Where are we going? This session takes up the final question of Paul Gauguin's trilogy. It introduces the idea that Unitarian Universalism is a humanistic religion: We believe humans have the potential to greatly shape our mutual destiny. The session's central story presents Rachel Carson, one person who caused a shift in humanity's journey toward our future. In WIT Time, participants consider the increasing control they will gain, with time, over their own decisions and lives—and the responsibilities and opportunities which accompany that control.


This session will:

  • Pose the Big Question "Where are we going?" and explore Unitarian Universalist responses to it
  • Introduce "Humanism," "cosmic," "quotidian" and "the butterfly effect"
  • Invite participants to formulate questions about the future
  • Explore our individual control over our own lives and our shared destiny with others
  • Tell a story of Rachel Carson and her impact on human history
  • Present Unitarian Universalist ideas about where we are going and human goals for the future.

Learning Objectives

Participants will:

  • Consider who and what controls the future
  • Discern their own ability to shape their lives and human history
  • Understand how quotidian events can effect cosmic outcomes
  • Appreciate how Rachel Carson affected our shared future
  • Recognize Unitarian Universalism as a humanistic religion
  • Explore a Unitarian Universalist perspective about where humanity should be going and our role in moving ourselves forward into our future.

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