A Religion Without A God

Joelle Redstrom defends Unitarianism against claims that its doctrinal ambiguity makes it “religiously empty”:

The original movement began in Poland back in the mid-1500s when a member of the Minor Reformed Church challenged the Trinity doctrine. Those who agreed with him were given the ultimatum to convert to Roman Catholicism or leave. Most of them went to Transylvania, which is where they first used the name “Unitarian” to describe themselves. Unitarianism came to the U.S. in the 1780s; Boston’s King’s Chapel was its first church. Many Unitarians, including the ones who attended church with my family and me, refer to themselves as Universalists. The term originally meant universal salvation, opposing the idea that God would punish or not save anyone. …

The lack of God in Unitarianism was its saving grace for me. Sermons involve spirituality, relationships, nature, communication, activism, politics, morality, and other non-deific subjects. But to others, the cognitive dissonance of a religion with no God is just too much. … While Unitarians often avoid categorizations, designations, and congregations, it’s not because we’re cagey—it’s because we value space.