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

Taking It Home: Relational Ethics

Part of What We Choose

Much of the insensibility and hardness of the world is due to the lack of imagination which prevents a realization of the experiences of other people. — Jane Addams, from Democracy and Social Ethics, 1907

Hello, babies. Welcome to Earth. It's hot in the summer and cold in the winter. It's round and wet and crowded. At the outside, babies, you've got about a hundred years here. There's only one rule that I know of, babies—God damn it, you've got to be kind. — Kurt Vonnegut, 20th-century writer and Unitarian Universalist, from God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater

Are there ways in which you can bring relational ethics into your life? Could focusing on relationship and compassion as you make decisions change the way you interact with others? Pay attention to how you treat people with whom you have a relationship, as well as strangers.

Investigate if groups you support—with money, with time, or by distributing information—ground their work in relationship with those whom they serve. Do these groups invite you to put yourself in another's shoes? Might you want to open a conversation about how the work could be done differently?