Universalism: An interfaith community

When people ask what my religion is, I say "Universalist".  Most people blink a couple times and say "Oh".  From my experience, not many people know what Universalism is, or they have assumptions about it that may or may not be accurate.  I am not a member of a Universalist church, but their system of beliefs are the closest to my own, so I have no qualms calling myself a "subscriber".

Here's the synopsis of Universalism, from my perspective.  Please let me know if any of this is inaccurate, if you disagree with a belief, or just what you think in general:

From Wikipedia: "Universalism is a religion and theology that generally holds all persons and creatures are related to God or the divine and will be reconciled to God. A church that calls itself Universalist may emphasize the universal principles of most religions and accept other religions in an inclusive manner, believing in a Universal reconciliation between humanity and the divine. Other religions may have Universalist theology as one of their tenets and principles, including Christianity, Hinduism, and some of the New Age religions. Universalist beliefs exist within many faiths, and many Universalists practice in a variety of traditions, drawing upon the same universal principles but customizing the practice to suit their audience."

Some people have had issues with the "vague" nature of Universalist belief.  "How can you say you're a christian and a buddhist at the same time? Jesus said he was the one and only way, so you're going against God's word".  My response: If the divine is a black and white "yes/no", and she gives one society a prophet and savior, and then neglects the others, what kind of universal truth is that? Religion becomes dangerous when people think the truth is static, and anything that doesn't coincide with their version of "truth" is wrong. Universalism, as far as I know, does not make any of these assertions, and as such has a great ability to guide us in spiritual growth.

Ideology drives us apart. Neuroscience can bring us back together.

A guide to making difficult conversations possible—and peaceful—in an increasingly polarized nation.

  • How can we reach out to people on the other side of the divide? Get to know the other person as a human being before you get to know them as a set of tribal political beliefs, says Sarah Ruger. Don't launch straight into the difficult topics—connect on a more basic level first.
  • To bond, use icebreakers backed by neuroscience and psychology: Share a meal, watch some comedy, see awe-inspiring art, go on a tough hike together—sharing tribulation helps break down some of the mental barriers we have between us. Then, get down to talking, putting your humanity before your ideology.
  • The Charles Koch Foundation is committed to understanding what drives intolerance and the best ways to cure it. The foundation supports interdisciplinary research to overcome intolerance, new models for peaceful interactions, and experiments that can heal fractured communities. For more information, visit charleskochfoundation.org/courageous-collaborations.

How to split the USA into two countries: Red and Blue

Progressive America would be half as big, but twice as populated as its conservative twin.

Image: Dicken Schrader
Strange Maps
  • America's two political tribes have consolidated into 'red' and 'blue' nations, with seemingly irreconcilable differences.
  • Perhaps the best way to stop the infighting is to go for a divorce and give the two nations a country each
  • Based on the UN's partition plan for Israel/Palestine, this proposal provides territorial contiguity and sea access to both 'red' and 'blue' America
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Why a federal judge ordered White House to restore Jim Acosta's press badge

A federal judge ruled that the Trump administration likely violated the reporter's Fifth Amendment rights when it stripped his press credentials earlier this month.

WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 16: CNN chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta (R) returns to the White House with CNN Washington bureau chief Sam Feist after Federal judge Timothy J. Kelly ordered the White House to reinstate his press pass November 16, 2018 in Washington, DC. CNN has filed a lawsuit against the White House after Acosta's press pass was revoked after a dispute involving a news conference last week. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
Politics & Current Affairs
  • Acosta will be allowed to return to the White House on Friday.
  • The judge described the ruling as narrow, and didn't rule one way or the other on violations of the First Amendment.
  • The case is still open, and the administration may choose to appeal the ruling.
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