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Find Out More, Session 12: Humor (Sandpaper)

In "Toolbox of Faith," a Tapestry of Faith program

For two perspectives about humor in Unitarian Universalism, read Rev. Judith E. Meyer's sermon, "Irreverent or Irrelevant?" given in October 2006 at the Unitarian Universalist Community Church in Santa Monica, California, and Rev. Michael McGee's sermon, "What's So Funny about Unitarian Universalism?" given in August 2004 at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington, Virginia.

Read the cult classic, The Essential Crazy Wisdom by Wes "Scoop" Nisker (Berkeley, CA: Ten Speed Press, 2001). Explore the world of clowns, jesters, and fools while unearthing paradox in our daily lives. This irreverent look at the world draws from both Eastern and Western philosophies and traditions, quoting sources from Socrates to Mark Twain to Albert Einstein, and from Coyote legends to Taoism to Dada:

He who knows he is a fool is not the biggest fool; he who knows he is confused is not in the worst confusion.

— Chang Tzu

Visit the Faithful Fools Street Ministry website. Sister Carmen Barsody and the Reverend Kay Jorgensen bring, respectively, Catholic and Unitarian Universalist training and traditions to their street ministry of "spiritual foolery" in San Francisco, California. The website articulates their mission:

"Faithful" in our accompaniment of people with a presence that acknowledges each human's incredible worth. "Fools" are one[s] who see the world in all its glorious absurdity and act on what they see. "Streets" being a place where we discover our common humanity making way for celebration, community and healing to occur. "Ministry" is a way of living and being in the world that mirrors the presence of God.

There is a movement, "Laughter Yoga," which really isn't about yoga poses but is about the value of laughter. This group encourages the formation of "Laughter Clubs" in which the sole purpose is to enjoy a good hearty laugh. Visit the Dr. Kataria School of Laughter Yoga website to find out if there is a Laughter Club in your area and join in for a session. On the website, find some laughter exercises.

Find out more about Dav Pilkey, the author of the Captain Underpants series, on his website.

For a lively exploration of humor in a variety of religious and spiritual traditions, read the transcript of "Between Laughter and Tears," a television program in the Australian Broadcasting System Compass Series, broadcast on July 13, 2003. This transcript provided the opening quotes for this session.

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Last updated on Wednesday, October 26, 2011.

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