Most faiths are based around a specific set of beliefs; Unitarian Universalists are united primarily not by “beliefs” but by “values” including tolerance, compassion and a desire to make the world a more just and humane place for all.
We believe it makes no difference whether you are agnostic or atheistic or believe in Jesus, Buddha, or another deity, but rather how you live your life.
We draw from many religious and ethical sources, but the covenant which binds us together is the affirmation of our principles.
Our Eight Principles
As Unitarian Universalists we covenant to affirm and promote:
- The inherent worth and dignity of every person;
- Justice, equity, and compassion in human relations;
- Acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth in our congregations;
- A free and responsible search for truth and meaning;
- The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large;
- The goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all;
- Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part;
- Individual and communal action that accountably dismantles racism and systemic barriers to full inclusion in ourselves and our institutions.
Our Sources of Tradition
The living tradition which we share draws from many sources:
- Direct experience of that transcending mystery and wonder, affirmed in all cultures, which moves us to a renewal of the spirit and an openness to the forces which create and uphold life;
- Words and deeds of prophetic people which challenge us to confront powers and structures of evil with justice, compassion, and the transforming power of love;
- Wisdom from the world’s religions which inspires us in our ethical and spiritual life;
- Jewish and Christian teachings which call us to respond to God’s love by loving our neighbours as ourselves;
- Humanist teachings which counsel us to heed the guidance of reason and the results of science, and warn us against idolatries of the mind and spirit;
- Spiritual teachings of Earth-centred traditions which celebrate the sacred circle of life and instruct us to live in harmony with the rhythms of nature.
Grateful for the religious pluralism which enriches and ennobles our faith, we are inspired to deepen our understanding and expand our vision. As free congregations we enter into this covenant, promising to one another our mutual trust and support.
The first seven principles and the sources were written by members of the Unitarian Universalist Association and adopted by the Canadian Unitarian Council (CUC). The eighth principle was added by the CUC in November 2021.