Faith CoLab: Tapestry of Faith: What We Choose: An Adult Program on Ethics for Unitarian Universalists

Alternate Activity 1: Unitarian Universalist Principles as Moral Laws

Part of What We Choose

Activity time: 30 minutes

Materials for Activity

Preparation for Activity

  • Write each of the seven Unitarian Universalist Principles on a different piece of newsprint, and post.

Description of Activity

The group reframes the Unitarian Universalist Principles in Kantian terms.

Read each Principle aloud or ask a volunteer to read. Then invite participants to reword each Principle as an unchanging truth. For each Principle, ask:

  • Does rewriting the Principle to express an unchanging moral truth make a difference? How?
  • Can you envision a set of circumstances when this expressed moral truth would not guide you to an appropriate response? When and why?

When you have finished reframing all seven, lead a general discussion, using these questions:

  • Are there certain Principles that are harder to follow as unchanging truth than others?
  • If you believe the seven Principles represent unchanging truth, are there changes you must make in your own behavior in order to live by these Principles?
  • Can you steal the paper clip if you are following the Unitarian Universalist Principles? Is there another commonly held ethical or moral Unitarian Universalist value that guides us not to steal the paper clip?
  • What can you do in the world to further follow these ethical guidelines?