Throughout history religion has been a source of conflict between peoples, and sometimes an excuse for abusing them. In this sermon we’ll consider the meaning of an old Islamic story that suggests a different understanding of what religion ought to be about.
Speaker: Rev. Dr. Todd Eklof
In George Orwell’s 1984, the Powers-that-Be keep switching enemies in an ongoing worldwide war and their citizens very quickly forget that they had ever been at war with anyone else. In this sermon, we’ll consider how easy it is for our society to forget even it’s most recent past, and how important it is that we don’t.
Since the advent of the PC, the stereotypical computer programmer is thought of as a young nerdy male without much of a social life. Not only is this stereotype false, but the opposite is true. The first hackers, referring to those who “hacked” together computer code, were mostly brilliant women. In this sermon we’ll take a closer look at the hidden figures who have and are changing our world with this powerful technology.
The idea of Unity seems so simple, but it complicated. It’s complicated because unity implies the unification of different things, parts, people. This is true of communities, biology, and the Universe itself. In this sermon we’ll consider how increasing complexification is a driving force behind our evolution toward wholeness.
Restorative Justice is a popular alternative to our current system of justice, but what exactly is it and how is it being put into practice? Is it truly an alternative to our punitive system of justice? Where has it been put into practice and how successful has it been?
Freedom: it seems like such a good idea, but how many of us are genuinely committed to the principle of freedom, especially when it can mean falling out of favor with others, or not being able to control others and outcomes, or struggling to find a healthy balance between respecting the freedoms of others while also honoring our own, or wrestling with inherent conflict between freedom and belonging, and between freedom and equality? These are challenging questions to ponder on this 4th of July holiday.
During this service, members will have an opportunity to ask Rev. Eklof questions about topics he has or hasn’t addressed in previous sermons.
Like all technology, social media platforms can be used for good or for ill, and they are currently used for both. In this sermon we’ll consider some of the pitfalls associated with the rapid adoption of this form of social interaction, including its impact upon our own liberal religion, along with more positive ways to take advantage of it.
Today we take it for granted that we ought, at the very least, pretend to be tolerant of those with whom we disagree. This moral sentiment, however, is relatively new in human history. Until recently, the very notion that a society should be tolerant of differing ideas was considered preposterous, and, in some cases, the suggestion alone was enough to get a person condemned. In this sermon, we’ll explore the roots of moral tolerance.
This will be the first in a seven-part monthly series on mind blowing ideas, beginning with the biological concept known as neoteny. Neoteny is the tendency of some species to retain juvenile characteristics throughout their entire lives. Humans are among the most neotenous species in the history of Life.