First Unitarian Universalist Congregation, Second Life (FUUCSL)
Thursday, November 13, 2014
6:30PM SL Time (Pacific Standard Time)
Leading the service: dav0 Turas
** Announcements **
Welcome to the First Unitarian Universalist Church of Second Life.
An Order of Service is available by saying “oos” in chat. For
visitors, a special welcome. If you are not familiar with Unitarian
Universalism (“UU”), a single service is not enough to experience the
diversity of ideas and styles of interaction that we offer, either
here in SL or in RL. Please come again.
You might also wish to look at UUA.org. or consider joining the group
“Unitarian Universalists of SL” to receive regular announcements.
There are lots of events besides this weekly service to take part in.
Be sure to check out our web site: http://fuucsl.org, for more details
on these and other such events.
We are always looking for members of our community who wish to get
There is rental property available in UUtopia as well – contact Zyzzy
Zarf to learn more.
If you would like to try your hand at leading a service, please
contact a member of the Leadership Group – their names are available
in the notecard dispenser in the welcome area.
Feel free to hang around after the service for coffee and conversation –
a UU tradition!
Are there any announcements?
** Lighting the Chalice **
“We gather this hour as people of faith With joys and sorrows, gifts
and needs. We light this beacon of hope, Sign of our quest For truth
and meaning, In celebration of the life we share together”
– Christine Robinson
** Joys and Concerns **
Please feel free to share any joys and concerns…
** Opening Words **
The Meaning of God
“This is it, Bill thought.
After his service on the Earthly sphere,
Bill knew that it was his time to go to Heaven.
It would have been nice to see the Super Bowl tomorrow, but…
He peered longingly through the dark tunnel.
The light on the other side glittered brightly,
beckoning him onward like a moth to the flame.
With a face-swallowing grin that would put
Mr. Potato Head to shame,
Bill floated upward through the tunnel,
waiting peacefully for God’s embrace
to carry him through the void.
Bill had been a man of virtue for his entire life.
He loved his family, and they often loved him back.
Bill was a model citizen.
And it’s all paid off.
Bill could hardly contain his excitement.
Soon, he would be in Heaven.
It was real all along.
Even after all those people doubted.
Soon, he would be reunited
with his mother, father, and uncle.
Bill had led a good life, but now
it was his turn to enter the other side.
The tunnel entrance was upon him now,
the radiant light nearly blinding him.
Bill shut his eyes and felt the warmth,
the pure love. With a power not his own,
he floated downwards and felt himself
standing on a soft surface.
(. . . some strange things transpired
upon Bill’s arrival in Heaven but
suffice it to say that Bill was shocked
to learn that Heaven was being run by
noneother than Saint Lucifer…)
Bill opened— with some difficulty—
the heaviest door he had ever encountered
and strode into the largest room he had ever seen.
The floor was rough concrete and the walls
appeared to be corrugated sheet metal.
At the far end of the wall was a small desk
and a man sitting at it,
though he was too far away to discern clearly.
Bill strode across the vaulted room,
taking in the high ceiling and small windows
that lined the upper walls.
After several minutes of plodding,
Bill reached the other end to see a man intently
running his fingers along a number of scrolls
on his desk and murmuring under his breath.
“You must be Lucifer,” accused Bill.
The man looked up, startled.
“How rude of me— yes that’s me.
I’m dreadfully sorry, I didn’t even hear you.
It’s these high ceilings you see, the acoustics—”
“Do you really need a warehouse for an office?”
challenged Bill, immediately on the offensive
in an attempt to prove his faith.
I shall not fail this test.
I have come too far.
Lucifer cast his eyes down,
“I know, it’s dreadful.
But with elections coming up,
my marketing team insists it’s more impressive.
. . .
“I’ll believe that when I see it. I’d sooner trust
Father Time than a man with horns,”
countered Bill, his patience thinning.
“I don’t have horns…”
said Lucifer as he felt the top of his head nervously.
“Nonsense, you’re a shapeshifter,” asserted Bill.
“I should hope not,” said Lucifer with horror,
“I was born how I am, the same as you,”
“Impossible. Only humans were crafted
in the image of God!”
Bill bellowed overly loud
in hopes that God would hear
Bill’s noble defense.
“Human s made in God’s image?”
“Please, that’s dogs.”
“What do you mean that’s dogs?”
demanded Bill uncertainly.
“You didn’t actually think… you’re serious?
Well, yes , dogs were crafted in God’s image.
Isn’t it obvious? Dog is just God backwards.
God loves dogs so much, he even
created an entire planet dedicated to them,”
Bill gaped, “There’s no way…”
“It’s true . God created humans to serve them.
God only cares about dogs,”
David Kutai Weiss – excerpts from his book: “Transcripts from the Other Side”
** Offering **
Please be generous and donate to the offering plate so that we can help sustain UUtopia.
** Musical Interlude **
The Song of UUtopia
Have you heard the beauty?
Have you seen the sound?
When we’re all together
There’s nothing more profound
Are you superstitious?
Well look what you have found
If ever there was mystery
It’s right here on the ground.
U… U… topia…
A place we all belong
Despite all of our differences
We seem to get along
One by one we find our way
The wounded and the brave
Our restless hearts are thriving here
To life we are no slave
~Principles and Beliefs~
Unitarian Universalists hold the Seven Principles as strong values and
These Principles are listed here:
1st Principle: The inherent worth and dignity of every person;
2nd Principle: Justice, equity and compassion in human relations;
3rd Principle: Acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth in our congregations;
4th Principle: A free and responsible search for truth and meaning;
5th Principle: The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large;
6th Principle: The goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all;
7th Principle: Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.
As a leadership goal, we are challenged to explore at least one of
these principles each week.
This week, I would like to explore the 1st Principle:
The inherent worth and dignity of every person
It’s one thing to believe it, but how can we
recognize the inherent worth and dignity
of every person? That’s a tall order!
One way to do this would be to honor each other
with awards and certificates for this and that
with the hope of recognizing people
for some level of worth and dignity.
But how to reward everyone equally?
Sitting through an award ceremony
like that would probably feel like
a waste of time!
But what if everyone’s inherent
worth and dignity was recognized
at the same time through self
discovery? Who know’s the
worth and dignity which is inherent
within you better than you?
Call it meditation, prayer, or introspection.
We can value the inherent worth and dignity
of every person by valuing these qualities
in our own selves first, then together in
a shared experience of the moment.
As a step in this direction,
please pause for a moment of reflection
** Meditation Moment **
Close your eyes if you can…
Let the ambient sounds
and distractions of life fade away…
All you hear is the sound of your breathing…
You begin to float away…
Drifting off in a boat on calm waters…
The sun is warm on your skin and
a warm breeze is filling your sail…
The water laps quietly
at the side of the boat…
The boat sails away,
across the water…
The boat rocks you gently…
Each wave pulsing…
The sound of water trickling
as you sail along…
You begin to hear the sound
of a rolling surf…
Softly at first in the distance…
Then more clearly…
Seagulls cackle in the distance…
The sound of waves gently breaking…
You hear a soft slipping noise
As the boat slides into the sand…
You have arrived.
You open your eyes.
You stand up and stretch.
Celebrate your worth and dignity.
You have discovered it within yourself.
Turn to those next to you and smile –
You have all earned some happiness.
*** Awaken ***
“What is the meaning of life?
What is our purpose on earth?
These are some of the great,
false questions of religion.
We need not answer them,
for they are badly posed,
but we can live our answers all the same.
At a minimum, we can create the conditions
for human flourishing in this life—
the only life of which any of us can be certain.
That means we should not terrify our children
with thoughts of hell or
poison them with hatred for infidels.
We should not teach our sons to consider women
their future property or convince our daughters
that they are property even now.
And we must decline to tell our children
that human history began with bloody magic
and will end with bloody magic
in a glorious war between
the righteous and the rest.
As for the rest— charity, community, ritual,
and the contemplative life—
we need not take anything on faith
to embrace those goods.
It is one of the most damaging lies of religion—
whether liberal, moderate, or extreme—
to insist that we must.
Consciousness is simply the light by which
the contours of mind and body are known.
It is within our capacity to recognize
the nature of thoughts,
to awaken from the dream
of being merely ourselves and,
in this way, to become better able
to contribute to the well-being of others.
Each of us is identical to the very principle
that brings value to the universe.
Experiencing this directly—
not merely thinking about it—
is the true beginning of spiritual life.
The human mind is the most complex
and subtle expression of reality
we have thus far encountered.
This should grant profundity
to the humble project of noticing
what it is like to be you in the present.
However numerous your faults,
something in you at this moment is pristine—
and only you can recognize it.
Open your eyes and see.”
from his book entitled: Waking Up
** Discussion **
** Closing words and Extinguishing the Chalice **
“We extinguish this flame but not the light of truth, The warmth of
community, Or the fire of commitment. These we carry in our hearts
until We are together again.” – Elizabeth Selle Jones
** Dance **
** Coffee Hour **