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Boredly tolerant of everything except...

I don't think this has come up recently, but as far as I know, the only controversial group that's tried to associate itself with the Unitarian Universalist Association and caused major distress by doing so is a UU polyamory group.

Pretty much any group that's not actually harmful can find a place under the UU umbrella, but it's mildly interesting that this one would cause knee-jerk reactions. I guess it's the old association of poly- and hedonism.

Dunno why that's in my head right now, just a stray thought. I guess the slippery slope would be the fear that the UU's would be obligated to push for legal rights for poly relationships. It does seem like a difficult tangle of thorns to work with. You don't want to be the wife-swapping, swingers church.

Dunno. Dun even no why I'm thinking about this.


( 24 comments — Leave a comment )
Sep. 10th, 2008 06:16 pm (UTC)
Ah, every group has it's "excluded" subgroup. There are the furries who claim to support the openness and nonjudgemental nature of furry fandom and then bitch about the babyfurs, for example.
Sep. 10th, 2008 06:38 pm (UTC)
I've rewritten about six different responses, but they do tend to boil down to "well, sometimes it's good to draw lines and exclude, for the health of a group." Ostracism isn't a bad thing, it's a natural, correcting force, at times. Other times, no, not so much, but this is all very gray stuff.

I can just about handle being in a room with a reporter and six fursuiters, I can explain that. I wouldn't want to be there when three people wearing diapers show up, that's beyond my ability to explain, but i can put that down to my own personal knee-jerk reactions. I don't know what to say about the babyfur hygiene horror stories I've heard, though. If those are true, then ostracism is 100% appropriate.
Sep. 11th, 2008 07:00 pm (UTC)
I don't think that it's a contradiction to appreciate something for it's open-ness but to still have ideas about the acceptability of certain behaviors. That's setting up a slippery slope, isn't it? 'If we allow gay marriage, then we'd have to let people marry dogs' kinda thing?

Not that I don't belive for a second that there are people who espouse wildly contradictory and overstated things, which is probably what you mean. :)
Sep. 10th, 2008 06:23 pm (UTC)
My husband and I are considering visiting the church on Sunday. We've been looking for something like that. When I told my Mom about it, she thought that we were going to "the Moonies church". Yeah, so, apparently the names are particularly similar. It's not controversy but I thought it was interesting nonetheless.
Sep. 10th, 2008 06:30 pm (UTC)
Please do, and make a point of saying "hi" at me :) Like I said earlier, while the service is going to be normal this Sunday, there's going to be a big "what's going on this year" event dominating the rest of the church, which I'm helping organize - anyone with a red nametag will know who I am, they're all on the membership/welcoming team with me :)

The moonies are the "church of universal harmony," I think. I can see the confusion. We don't actually have a system of beliefs to inflict on people...
Sep. 10th, 2008 06:34 pm (UTC)
Will do. We can only go to the 11:30, will things be going on after/around that?
Sep. 10th, 2008 06:43 pm (UTC)
Absolutely! Until 1:30.
Sep. 11th, 2008 05:59 pm (UTC)
I think Reverend Moon's group is the Unification Church
Sep. 10th, 2008 06:26 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I think that's interesting too and I've thought about it before. There has been some support of polyamory by different UU groups which I thoroughly appreciate but overall it still isn't very accepted or vocal. I think partially because a fear of a comparison between fringe conservative religious groups like FLDS and their plural marriage support. Also because of the idea that poly (read polygamy or polygyny) is somehow inherently anti-feminist.
Sep. 10th, 2008 06:43 pm (UTC)
I don't know why it makes me twitchy. Even when I've been involved with more than one person, somehow the idea of polyamory makes me edgy (I like the idea of polyfidelity, but that's a hard arrangement to pull off...)

Hmm...I guess we all have our personal taboos. For me, it's the breaking point between love and promiscuity, I think. Lots of gray area here.
Sep. 11th, 2008 11:52 pm (UTC)
Polyfidelity. =) Thanks for that word. I've stolen it from you while you weren't looking.
Sep. 10th, 2008 09:33 pm (UTC)
Are you maybe confusing polyamory with polygamy? From what I've witnessed from my poly friends, it's more "polyfidelity" (as you said) and not at all like 'woohoo! free-for-all sexy wife-swappy times!'

From this Wikipedia article:

...polyamory is a personal outlook grounded in such concepts as choice, trust, equality of free will, and the more novel idea of compersion, and newer cultural traditions distinct from the religious & cultural traditions of polygamy.

Sep. 11th, 2008 06:54 pm (UTC)
Polyandry FTW. :)

(I just wanted to use that word, mostly)
Sep. 11th, 2008 07:06 pm (UTC)
Cute! And now I'm thinking of a comedy series, with characters named Poly-Anna and Poly-Andy! Hehehhe...
Sep. 11th, 2008 07:08 pm (UTC)
Ooh, need more than the 2, so add Poly-Andre as well! ;)
Sep. 11th, 2008 07:49 pm (UTC)
You can throw in Polly-Genie, as well...let's just get the entire confusing set going...
Sep. 10th, 2008 09:53 pm (UTC)
Poly's a tough issue indeed. People who identify as poly fall into a really broad swath of folks. You have people claiming it's an orientation you're born with, and then you have the unethical horn-dogs. I guess I'd see it like there being a UU group for pot-smokers or something (though poly's not illegal in Texas- adultery is still illegal in some states) and can see why the UU doesn't want to mess with it.
Sep. 11th, 2008 07:51 pm (UTC)
Yeah, it'd be a can of worms. Like Fairy_Wench said, it'd probably be best if the UU-Poly commuuunity (I grow weary of that pun) set up a definition that was fair and equitable.

Sep. 11th, 2008 04:38 am (UTC)
This has already been brought up by a few people, but... I honestly don't think any church or similar community will support poly* until it's defined a little bit better. I know that that's my problem with it, anyhow: I have several friends who identify as poly-whatever, but that means something different to each of them. Some of what they say I can wrap my brain around and support, some I can't, and until they come together as a group and say what exactly poly* is and what it stands for, I can't support them as a group because I honestly don't know if I support what they stand for. At least with most other groups you can point to some unifying, fairly universal world-view within that group, but poly*? Not so much.

Bah. I'm going to trust that you get what I'm saying here; I'm working on too little sleep and too many distractions to articulate any better than that.
Sep. 11th, 2008 02:25 pm (UTC)
That makes a lot of sense--it's not reasonable to expect most people to get the fine distinction betweens a close-knit trio (or whatever), a close-knit couple that welcomes new people occasionally, a person with an extended series of significant others, someone who just likes a lot of variety, and your garden-variety slut (such a loaded word...)

Churches are all about institutions, blessing them and maintaining them and supporting them. Without a firm knowledge of what they're looking at when they talk about poly*, and even less reasonable to assume that people coming together to form a "coalition for the acceptance of polyamory in the UU church" would be able to present a solid definition of what that means that would be acceptable to *all* of them *and* the church.
Sep. 11th, 2008 11:58 pm (UTC)
Well said.
Sep. 11th, 2008 06:52 pm (UTC)
I think the BDSM groups would be even more offensive ('they hit WOMEN!!') but I guess the 'lifestyle' group of them is more a fringe of a fringe.
Sep. 11th, 2008 11:57 pm (UTC)
Haha.. but they never complain when the women hit the men. Jokes aside, though, you would be surprised the depth that that community can have as far as life philosophies and such. Interesting study that makes you examine some heavy issues like trust from a vantage point that isn't usually seen.

There are so many fringe groups.. how to fit them all under one roof?
Sep. 13th, 2008 10:58 am (UTC)
Interesting. I have some poly friends who have gone through this repeatedly with their UU church in Louisville. It's an interesting puzzle.

Also, there is this ( http://unclehyena.livejournal.com/145868.html ) if you missed it the first time around.

( 24 comments — Leave a comment )