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First Committee on Ministry Directed Survey Is Now Live

Posted by on Feb 19, 2017 in General News

The first of the Committee on Ministry’s directed surveys for 2017 is now live here. The COM is starting a series of small, directed surveys this year to assess some of the individual ministries within First Parish. This first survey focuses on the Community and Hospitality Committee (CHC). Please take a few minutes to fill out this brief questionnaire to assist COM and the CHC in evaluating some of what the CHC does at First Parish of Sudbury.   Take CHC Survey

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2/19 Bohm Dialogue — Idealism

Posted by on Feb 1, 2017 in General News, Religious Exploration, Salon - Bohm Dialogue

For this month we chose the topic:

idealism
/aɪˈdɪəˌlɪzəm/
noun
1. belief in or pursuance of ideals
2. the tendency to represent things in their ideal forms, rather than as they are
3. any of a group of philosophical doctrines that share the monistic view that material objects and the external world do not exist in reality independently of the human mind but are variously creations of the mind or constructs of ideas Compare materialism (sense 2), dualism (sense 2)

The Idealist strives for perfection or at least improvement, while the Realist says reality will be the final judge. The Realist says great evil has been done in the name of ideas while the Idealist says our greatest teachers have been idealists. But the Buddha advised seeking the real and rejecting dogma. However are not all ‘isms‘ idea driven, including Buddhism, UUism, … even Realism? For better or worse humans are idea driven, always mistaking the symbol for the thing, the model for reality, hence is it realistic to pretend otherwise? Given that all supposed reality is filtered through and shaped by our senses and mind, how real is it, really? And what is the relationship between Idealism and Hope?

Join us to listen to what others think and to share what you think.  The Religious Exploration Salon is a group that meets 3rd Sundays to discuss various topics in the format called Bohm Dialogue which emphasizes respectful listening and balanced, synergistic sharing. For more details about how Dialogue works, please see this intro.

Everyone is welcome. You are welcome to think about the topic beforehand but no preparation is required or expected — come as you are with whatever thoughts/intuitions you have, ready to listen, learn and contribute.  We next meet Sunday Feb 19th at 7pm in the Brackett Room.

Contact Paul Reising, Tom Yelton or Jan Hardenbergh for more information.

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1/15 Bohm Dialogue — Heaven (on earth) or a Discussion of Same?

Posted by on Jan 10, 2017 in General News, Religious Exploration, Salon - Bohm Dialogue

sudbury-signThe old joke goes: “A Unitarian Universalist dies, and on the way to the after-life encounters a fork in the road. The left path has a sign “To Heaven” and the right has a sign “To a Discussion about Heaven” Without pausing, the UU turns right.” In January you will have the chance to take the right path, to dialogue with us about the topic of Heaven (on Earth) i.e. Utopia.

Why do people dream of Paradise, why are we dissatisfied with what is? Do we long for something dimly remembered or something yet to be? What would your paradise be and would others agree? Is thinking about Utopia futile or necessary?

There is an old story, with variants told in many cultures, about Heaven and Hell. Hell is a place where the food is abundant and delicious but everyone is starving because their arms are bound in splints and can’t bend so they cannot feed themselves. Heaven is the same but no one is starving because they have learned to feed each other. Compared to other animals people were made for cooperation: we lack great strength, speed, teeth or claws, but we have hands to grasp, arms for hugging, minds for understanding and shaping things and language for communicating — humans are weak alone but strong together. So why do we (c0llectively) tend to choose Hell?

The answer will may be revealed Sunday in dialogue! Join us to listen to what others think and to share what you think.  The Religious Exploration Salon is a group that meets 3rd Sundays to discuss various topics in the format called Bohm Dialogue which emphasizes respectful listening and balanced, synergistic sharing. For more details about how Dialogue works, please see this intro.

Everyone is welcome. You are welcome to think about the topic beforehand but no preparation is required or expected — come as you are with whatever thoughts/intuitions you have, ready to listen, learn and contribute.  We next meet Sunday Jan 15th at 7pm in the Brackett Room.

Contact Paul Reising, Tom Yelton or Jan Hardenbergh for more information.

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Yule – Winter Solstice Rite and Feast

Posted by on Dec 14, 2016 in General News

winter solsticePlease join us for the Earth Center traditions group’s annual Winter Solstice Rite.  We will celebrate the Shortest Day of the year on Sat, Dec 17 at 6pm.  We turn the wheel of the year and bring back the sun, a chance to leave things in the old year and gather others for the new.  The rite will be followed by a pot luck feast and carols in the Parish Hall.

The ceremony is appropriate for those approximately 12 years and up – use your own judgment. Childcare is available if requested by Thursday before the event (12/15). The children are welcome to join the adults for the feast.

If you are interested in helping in any way ( reading, singing, drumming, setting up, clean up), see Tom Yelton or Jan Hardenbergh.

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12/11 Bohm Dialogue — How Do We Decide How to Vote

Posted by on Dec 6, 2016 in General News, Religious Exploration, Salon - Bohm Dialogue

Voting Symbols vectorVoting is a right best exercised by people who have taken time to learn about the issues. – Tony Snow

 

Its easy to view politicians as corrupt and voting essentially an act of picking the lesser of two evils. I understand that perspective and feel it’s valid. – Macklemore

 

Democracy must be something more than two wolves and a sheep voting on what to have for dinner. – James Bovard

 

Voting is a right that has been given to every American; however, as Christ followers, our votes should reflect our God.  – Monica Johnson

 

No matter what name we give it or how we judge it, a candidate’s character is central to political reporting because it is central to a citizen’s decision in voting. – Roger Mudd

 

Nobody would say, ‘I’m voting for this guy because he’s got the stronger chin,’ but that, in fact, is partly what happens. – Daniel Kahneman

 

Well, first of all, I think that a lot of the voters who are voting for the tea party candidates have really good impulses. That is, they believe that for years and years and years, the people with wealth and power or government power have done well and ordinary people have not. That’s true. – William J. Clinton

 

For some reason, voters can be brainwashed, and they vote sometimes against their own best interests, let alone voting against the interests of people who need them, like people who are disenfranchised and people who are poor and so forth. – Joyce Carol Oates

 

Perhaps the fact that we have seen millions voting themselves into complete dependence on a tyrant has made our generation understand that to choose one’s government is not necessarily to secure freedom. – Friedrich August von Hayek

 

Research shows children can reliably pick winners of parliamentary runoff elections using only facial appearances. – John Antonakis.

Last time we solved the problem of  ‘Automation and Us’ (ha!).  The topic for December’s salon is How Do We (collectively and individually) Choose How to Vote. How do you choose? In the light of this past election how do you think others choose?

Join us to listen to what others think and to share what you think.  The Religious Exploration Salon is a group that meets 3rd Sundays to discuss various topics in the format called Bohm Dialogue which emphasizes respectful listening and balanced, synergistic sharing. For more details about how Dialogue works, please see our January article.

Everyone is welcome. You are welcome to think about the topic beforehand but no preparation is required or expected — come as you are with whatever thoughts/intuitions you have, ready to listen, learn and contribute.  We next meet Sunday Nov 13th at 7pm in the Brackett Room.

Contact Paul Reising, Tom Yelton or Jan Hardenbergh for more information.

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