Sunday Forum: What Jews can Teach UUs

March 11, 9 AM, Starr King Room

UU Fellowship of Northern Nevada
(780 Del Monte Ln, Reno, Nevada)

Jewish members bring a richness to our spiritual lives. Rabbi Ethan Bair, of Temple Sinai, will engage UUs on their third UU Principle of “encouragement to spiritual growth”, as he endeavors to imagine what Judaism as a whole could teach them. He will focus on the tension between the particular, for example, Judaism, and the universal, e.g. values, aspirations, ideals. This will be about the importance of depth in the particular in order to engage in universally oriented work more fully. He promises to challenge UUs and perhaps make them a little uncomfortable, as he invites them to struggle with their own particularity as a community that bills itself as universalistic. He advocates the right balance between rooted-ness and universalism, seeing them not as mutually exclusive, but as mutually reinforcing. Achieving balance between identity and practice is what the UU’s can, he believes, learn from the Jewish people. In their covenant, they celebrate “wisdom from the world’s religions which inspires us in our ethical and spiritual life”, and in particular “Jewish… teachings, which call us to respond to God’s love by loving our neighbors….” This is an opportunity to think about what they really mean, and to share a mean cup of coffee. Kevin Murphy will moderate.