Leader Resource 5: Belief Notes
Copy, divide, and distribute appropriate parts of this page to these Activity 4 On-Air People: Atheist, Theist, Agnostic, Humanist, Mystery Seeker, God as Love-ist, and Pagan.
Atheist — You do not believe God exists.. You try to live by the UU Principles. You like searching through the UU Sources for wisdom and ideas. But you do not believe in God. You cannot speak for all UU atheists. You know some are humanists who believe people have the responsibility to care for one another and solve the problems of the world. You know some say that belief in God is bad because different ideas about God make people fight with each other. You yourself just cannot find any proof that there is a God. So you are an atheist.
Theist — You believe in God. You cannot speak for all UU theists. You know they have many many different ideas about God. Some believe in a God who can influence people's lives and many believe in a less personal God. You yourself think God created the universe with a big bang, then stepped back to watch what happened after that.
Agnostic — You are not sure whether or not God exists. In fact, you do not think that you or anybody else can ever know. Sometimes when you look up at the sky, it seems that there must be a superpower somewhere that started everything and gives us guidance. At other times, you think there are so many problems in the world that there cannot be a God. You cannot prove nor disprove God's existence and you really do not even find the question important. So you are a UU who is just not sure about God.
Humanist — You think that our life on earth is the only life we know of for sure, and that what we do on earth is more important than whatever might follow after death. You cannot speak for all UU humanists. Some believe in God, and some do not. You yourself are not sure, so you are an agnostic humanist. But you do not really care much about the idea of God. You are too busy trying to do all the human things you can do to help make the world a good place.
Mystery Seeker — You feel there is a power beyond you, and beyond all creations on earth, and you call that power Great Mystery. Some people spend a great deal of thought trying to define what that power might be. You love exploring the possibilities, even though you know you will never know the answers for sure and that is fine with you. Instead of worrying about finding answers, you would rather celebrate the beauty of it all.
God as Love-ist — You are a UU who thinks of God as the force of love. The power of love, you say, is what draws everybody and everything together. Love is a universal connecting force. Other words you use to describe your God, the force of love, are "divinity" and "divine." You hope that someday other people will stop worrying about who their God is, and why their God is better than other people's Gods. You think that if they will honor the force of love, they can all grow together and be peaceful.
Pagan — You belong to a UU pagan group, and all the members have different ideas. Some of your friends think of themselves as Wiccans and witches who have religious ideas that go back before the time of Jesus. But when you think of paganism, you think about the UU Source that says "Spiritual teachings of earth-centered traditions which celebrate the sacred circle of life and instruct us to live in harmony with the rhythms of nature." To you, nature is a life-giving and sacred force.