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Where Love and Justice Cross All BordersSunday, July 25, 10:30am Immigration Justice Team, Patti Absher, Refugee Resettlement Team, Ross Wells, Sue SmithWES members who have volunteered in immigration justice, refugee resettlement, and similar movements of solidarity will reflect on putting their values into action and on what WES members might do …
 
"Taking Action for the Earth"Earth Ethics Action TeamMembers of the Earth Ethics Action Team will reflect on ways they have collaborated with each other, our partner organizations, and the planet to move toward environmental justice.โดย affirming the worth of every person since 1944.
 
Understanding Religion in the 21st CenturySunday, July 11, 10:30am Peter BishopThough not all WES members self-identify as “religious,” religious Humanism is the closest label we have for a community like this one that gathers for mutual support, discerning values, raising children, and marking life passages without regard for creed or dogma. The o…
 
"This Is What Democracy Looks Like"Abi Daken, Brennan Barber, Kate LangWES members who have engaged in voter mobilization and other pro-democracy efforts will speak about collaborating for the common good.โดย affirming the worth of every person since 1944.
 
Ethical Systems and UsChristian HaydenHow do we establish our approach to, and what guides us in, ethical interaction with the world? Join Christian Hayden, Leader in Training, in learning about the different ways we engage in ethical/moral reasoning.โดย affirming the worth of every person since 1944.
 
Laughing SpiritLyn Cox, Interim Leader.Laughter (the deep, personal growth kind) emerges at the return of vitality. It can be an affirmation of survival after a harrowing experience. It can be a breath of peace when the truth is revealed. The wisdom side of laughter comes at times of renewal, relief, and realization.…
 
Founder’s DayLyn Cox & WES MembersRemembering the pride and the puzzles from our past will help members decide what kind of community to be in the present and what to strive for in the future.โดย affirming the worth of every person since 1944.
 
A Mother’s GriefSunday, May 9, 10:30am Lyn CoxThe tradition of Mother’s Day was initiated by Julia Ward Howe as a protest against state violence. In those days, the violence was rooted in war, yet in our days as tanks and teargas enter the streets against our own citizens, there is a direct line of tradition that makes Mother’s Day a powerful day t…
 
Ideally, our communities lay the groundwork for us to become our best selves. With room enough to make mistakes and grow from them, some tolerance for the discomfort of growing pains, and feedback grounded in truth and love, our communities can help us to bloom.โดย affirming the worth of every person since 1944.
 
Environmental Justice in Indian Country and Moving Toward a Transformational Land Ethic Dina Gilio-WhitakerThe talk highlights the author’s main ideas from the book As Long As Grass Grows: The Indigenous Fight for Environmental Justice from Colonization to Standing Rock, and leans into ideas from a forthcoming book. Dina Gilio-Whitaker (Colville Co…
 
Spring Festival: Demeter and PersephoneLyn Cox, Interim Leader.The story of Demeter and Persephone reminds us that seasonal changes feel differently to different people, that there is a place for grief in the cycle of renewal, and that change is possible. At Spring Fest, we celebrate Baby Naming and dedicate ourselves to nurturing new life among us…
 
"Accountability and Responsibility: Towards a relational ethic of repair"Anthony CruzThis platform will illuminate dimensions of accountability and responsibility that contribute to a more humanizing praxis for transformative change. In particular, this message will invoke the wisdom from Black and Afro-Carribean thinkers.…
 
"Cultivate a Brighter Future"Lyn Cox, Interim Leader.What we pay attention to grows in our minds and hearts. Words and deeds add up to nourish commitments, from seed to harvest. This Platform is also the beginning of the pledge drive, when WES members are encouraged to renew their commitments.โดย affirming the worth of every person since 1944.
 
"Love, History and the Statement of Purpose"Vincent Tyler, WES Board of TrusteesAs members prepare to examine WES’s Statement of Purpose, let’s look back on how we have defined our mission and values over the years, and imagine how we might describe our direction today.โดย affirming the worth of every person since 1944.
 
Superhero stories in popular culture are fictional, yet they contain themes that remind us about making ethical choices. Let's explore how these stories help us to come to terms with the past, grapple with power and responsibility, and team up as a source of strength.โดย affirming the worth of every person since 1944.
 
Love is more than sentimentality and greeting cards. Love, in the broader sense, offers lessons such as groundedness, embodiment, and interdependence. This is wisdom that helps us to live out our values. The essays and poetry of free thinking ancestors such as Egbert Ethelred Brown and Lewis Latimer show that intellect and love are partners in cult…
 
"Trees"Lyn CoxWe reflect on putting down roots and growing shelter for generations to come. We will draw inspiration for resilience from the Jewish holiday of Tu B’Shevat, the New Year of Trees, as we consider growth and fruitfulness on a long time scale.โดย affirming the worth of every person since 1944.
 
Replacing Magical Thinking with Rational Discourse: How can freethinkers help restore democracy?The platform will be shared by representatives from all twenty-five national Ethical Societies and will feature music from the Washington Ethical Society Chorus, Jaque DuPree and Barry Kornhauser, with presiders Vandra Thorburn, Elaine Durbach and Lyn Co…
 
'Stardust'Lyn Cox, Interim Leader.The origins of the universe, at least to the best of our knowledge. show that we are related to all life, and that we are connected atomically to all matter. Science leads to awe and wonder while maintaining rationality.โดย affirming the worth of every person since 1944.
 
"Dreamers" Lyn Cox, Interim Leader.Working toward a better world, a world of racial justice and an end to interlocking oppressions, requires imagination. On this weekend when we remember the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., let's also consider both the history of civil rights and the unbounded creativity of speculative fiction by writers of color …
 
"Democracy Is Not a State"Lyn Cox, Interim Leader.This week has been filled with emotion as we see the will of the people expressed in the electoral process, and an attempt to thwart that process with violent insurrection. The late Rep. John Lewis reminded us that democracy is an ongoing practice, not a binary condition, and that our sustained and …
 
ResolutionLyn Cox, Interim Leader. How shall we re-imagine the year ahead? Bring your intentions for letting go and your intentions for fresh beginnings as we kindle a flame for the new year.โดย affirming the worth of every person since 1944.
 
"De-Stressing: Allowing Our Bodies to Work"Trish Weil, WES Mindfulness GroupThe practice of deep relaxation is built on the premise that relaxed muscles and anxiety are mutually exclusive states. We can bring about very deep relaxation intentionally and adopt it as a practice. That requires learning to release muscular tension, breathing practices,…
 
Winter FestivalPeople of all ages are invited to help bring winter-themed poetry to life in this virtual adaptation of one of WES’s favorite celebrations. We’ll lift up peace, hope, love, joy, and giving in creative and collaborative ways.โดย affirming the worth of every person since 1944.
 
"Blue"Lyn Cox, Interim Senior Leader.Between the dwindling hours of sunlight and difficult memories associated with the time of year, many people struggle with the winter holiday season. Let’s look out for one another, and let’s give comfort and solace to our own troubled hearts.โดย affirming the worth of every person since 1944.
 
Some of us may be anticipating stressful situations, and are looking for skills in de-escalation. The first step is to de-escalate our own minds and hearts. How can we respond rather than react when our earliest instincts tell us to fight or flee?โดย affirming the worth of every person since 1944.
 
The stories we tell about our past affect the way we view the present and orient toward the future. This is true about the myth of Thanksgiving, stories we tell about WES’s and Ethical Culture’s past, stories we tell about our individual journeys, and more. When we recognize the impact of origin stories, we can be intentional about how we tell them…
 
National and international events that change the course of our lives are in mid-swing. We may wish for certainty, yet we also know that resolution may not be as swift as we might hope. In this in-between time of doing all we can and not yet knowing the results, we ground ourselves as we are able in the here and now. In this moment, we listen to ou…
 
The Community Relations Committee will present a recorded interview with Daryl Davis and raise the topic of Deep Listening. What skills do we need to hear each other truly and respectfully? How do we find common ground when there are deep disagreements? How do we handle our fear as we engage across powerful dividing lines? The CRC asks us to re-ima…
 
No Human Being is Illegal on Stolen LandLyn Cox, Interim Leader.On this weekend of Indigenous Peoples Day, we acknowledge that those of us who are not Indigenous are living on stolen land, and we look for a way forward that draws from restorative justice. In addition to reparations and honoring the treaties already made, turning away from a mindset…
 
Vote LoveLyn Cox, Interim Leader.In these midst of global pandemic, rising authoritarianism, and uprising, lives hang in the balance and the future of democracy is on the line. In response, WES joins our Unitarian Universalist kinfolk in answering the call of ethics and values, building powerful partnerships to mobilize our communities to #VoteLove…
 
Forgiveness & Infinite InterrelatednessLyn CoxThere is both ethical and scientific basis in understanding ourselves as inescapably related to each other, to the entire human family, to the earth, and to the universe. Yet in the course of these relationships, another inescapable fact is that we will sometimes fall short of our best intentions, and t…
 
"The Definition of Riches is ‘Abundant Meaningful Work"WES MembersSeveral lay members of WES will speak about their vocation or avocation and what makes that work meaningful to them.โดย affirming the worth of every person since 1944.
 
Shared ImprovisationLyn Cox, Interim LeaderWe keep hearing about how these times are “unprecedented.” There is no definite script for working together as the world changes. Building trust, drawing out each other’s creativity, and remaining curious can help us to engage in the jazz-like process of shared improvisation. Part of this week’s Platform a…
 
"Together in this Liminal Time"Lyn Cox, Interim Leader.In Lyn Cox’s first Platform as our Interim Leader, we’ll explore the theme of collaboration and how it shows up on this threshold of change in our world, our nation, and our congregation. Lyn will explain a little bit about the interim opportunity and how WES might grow through it, and will off…
 
"Reclaiming Democracy"Hugh Taft-MoralesFaith in democracy is being challenged today on multiple fronts: anti-democratic tendencies of our current administration; the resurgence of global authoritarianism; money corrupting politics; questions about the electoral college; and, the rampant voter repression. Racial justice protests point out that for l…
 
The Encampment for Citizenship, founded in 1946 by Ethical Culture Leader Algernon D. Black and Alice (“Nanny”) Pollitzer, a prominent civic leader, offered an opportunity for “young adults of many religious, racial, social and national backgrounds” to learn “the principles and techniques of citizenship… through lived experience.” Black believed th…
 
"These Certain Times"Rev. Megan Foley, UUA Central Region.Through the spring of 2020 everything got thrown up into the air – our health, our safety, our patience with unjust systems, WES’ clergy leadership structure…and now as we live through the summer of 2020, things are becoming more clear if not more easy. What is the path forward when we find …
 
All I Can Say Is ThanksAmanda Poppei, Senior Leader.Join us for Amanda’s final platform as WES’ Senior Leader, as she shares her gratitude for the community that she has been proud to serve for twelve years.โดย affirming the worth of every person since 1944.
 
"Everything I Know About Life I Learned from Ethical Culture"Amanda Poppei, Senior Leader.The very first time Amanda offered a platform at WES, she titled it “Everything I Know About Ethical Culture I Learned from Wikipedia.” And that was true! Join Amanda to hear about her journey as an Ethical Culture learner and Leader, as she explores how the p…
 
Compassionate Community: If You Build It, They Will ComeAmanda Poppei, Senior LeaderWhat does it mean for WES to be a compassionate community–especially in this time? How do we balance care for our own members with the needs of the broader world? Can we infuse an ethos of compassion into not just all we do, but all the ways we are? Amanda will expl…
 
"To Be of Use"Laura Solomon, Clergy Intern.Join Laura as she concludes her first year of internship – and her time at WES – with reflections on WES, clergy leadership, and what it means “to be of use” in community.โดย affirming the worth of every person since 1944.
 
We Dare to QuestionAmanda Poppei, Senior LeaderOne of the hallmarks of Ethical Culture, and humanism in general, is the impulse to question. We ask questions especially at times of change, at thresholds–but our impulse toward curiosity is present at all times. Amanda invites you to participate in one of her favorite platforms by sending her your qu…
 
Sunday, May 10, 9:30am "A Family System, Not a Family"Amanda Poppei, Senior LeaderIt’s common to refer to a congregation as a family, and even to imagine that a clergy person is like the parent…or (even more problematic!) that the relationship between a clergy person and a congregation is a kind of marriage. Amanda will explore the power behind the…
 
"This Is Not The End"Laura Solomon, Clergy Intern.In the midst of the many thresholds we are crossing and living between, it is easy to feel overwhelmed. There is power in naming exactly what we are experiencing, and also in being clear about what is NOT happening. As we enter our May theme of “thresholds,” join Laura to consider how, in spite of a…
 
Sunday, April 26, 2020."Centering: The Great Turning toward Mother Earth"Lore RosenthalReflecting on the 50th anniversary of the first Earth Day, how far have we come? What are our paths for moving forward? Lore will share some quotes from climate enthusiasts as well as share some of her own thoughts. Is our civilization turning toward a partnershi…
 
In times of uncertainty and change, it can be tempting to jump to “what’s next?!” And knowing some of the plans and steps is certainly helpful. But we can also remember to ask “what now?” What are we invited to experience now–even if it is grief or fear? What can we bring to this moment? Join Amanda as she explores the uncertainty of this time–at W…
 
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