The 4th Principle of Unitarian Universalism is: “A free and responsible search for truth and meaning.” Certainly there is a category of empirical truth to the physical world. Just as certainly there is a category of more subjective truth that will vary from person to person. Still, in the Unitarian Universalist tradition, we take the question of religious truth very seriously. It was the search for truth and a more authentic religious experience that led us to break away from more traditional Christianity. This month, let us reflect individually and communally on some of the following:

  • What distinguishes religious/spiritual truth from more (so-called) rational truth? Is there such a thing as religious/spiritual “truth?”
  • Nadine Gordimer wrote: “The truth isn't always beauty, but the hunger for it is.” Is this true? Do you experience your own hunger as beautiful? Tell a story about this.
  • What do you accept as true, even though you might not be able to prove it?
  • Tell a story of pursuing a responsible search for truth and meaning. What are you searching for in your life right now?
  • What deeper truths, and what sense of meaning is needed by the world?
  • What, in our larger culture, encourages a search for truth and meaning? What works against that search? How do you experience encouragement or discouragement in your own life?
  • What can we do as people or a community to more effectively support this principle?