Quaker Universalist Conversations

Seeking a roadmap

I guess you could say that I am in Quaker kindergarten. As a new follower of Quakers and universalism, a roadmap would be helpful to build my understanding of these institutions.

The QUF weblog has spawned many new ideas and raised questions for me about how to live my life with purpose. I have been seeking a sense of community and kindness.

Quaker Universalism has raised my consciousness because, well, it’s universal. It doesn’t have to be tied to a set a rules and regulations and a particular religious or secular community. These are ‘life rules’ that don’t point a finger and regulate your life. I am free but very comforted by the boundaries and the responsibility is all mine to find the spirit within me. The ethical principles really make sense to me. I try to recount them every day and assess if I am doing my best to live by them.

Rhoda Gilman’s article on the QUF website entitled A View of Quaker Universalism resonates with me as a newcomer. While I am uninitiated with the full spectrum of Quaker practices, Ms. Gilman’s advice to employ the Quaker principles to help solve the difficult problems facing our planet is very motivating. I certainly hope I am up to the task.

If the readers of the blog and practitioners of Quaker universalism have suggestions for a roadmap on learning more about these ideals, I would appreciate your thoughts.


I am very happy to read Cherie Roberts’ ‘Seeking a roadmap’. It is a common reach for many people. Some of us have tried many forms of religion. Others have just used varying denominations of a particular religion. My base is Christianity. Still others have created a new form of religion or combinations of religions. In each of these, we are seeking a roadmap for ourselves. Even those who wish to call themselves atheists, are seeking a roadmap of life. We all have faith, weak or strong, in what we believe. In Quaker Universalism, there is a major step in accepting all beliefs right to present their viewpoints. It is considered by political standards very liberal. Being able to accept all mankind’s beliefs, can be difficult in each of us obsessed with narrow visions of life or God(s). In your presentation, I feel Quakerism is new to you. Please do not believe certain ceremonies or rites in meetings need be as told to members of certain denominations of Christianity. Also, do not be surprised to learn some Quakers feel no need for someone to lead their meeting and others have a leader or even Evangelical Minister. It varies across the United States. I am not aware of all views of individual Quakers or Friends on Earth. We each have our own roadmap. I was not raised as a Member of the Religious Society of Friends. With a Methodist mother and Catholic father, many different Christian denominations were part of my life. However, Quakers were in my life as well, even my former attorney. I’ve even known about the Quaker Meeting House in Millville, PA, as far back as remembered in my home area. A period of silence was difficult as a child with ADHD, but later in life, it became daily. Your inward (or inner) light will provide you with how to live your daily life. Others may be able to help in many different ways. Your past and what you learn will provide information for you to use. When you honestly and truthfully feel from within, you can understand your life’s roadmap and its direction.
Rhonda Gilman’s presentation is very good in showing similarities in Quakerism and Universalism. The one difficulty to overcome is the existence of both names being used in differing groups. Some Friends do accept many denominations of Christianity, but still consider themselves Christian. Others may believe their own form of Christianity, which is used in their meetings. Admittedly, I have never witnessed this second form, only read about it. Both Societies of Friends adhere to their understanding of Quakerism. Another group using Universalism, call themselves Unitarians or Unitarian Universalism. They do not believe in the Trinity. However, they do claim only one God exists. Possibly over different forms of religion to reach mankind, possibly reaching all of our lives. The only connection I have had with them was in one of their huge meetings, over 25 years ago. Quaker Universalist Fellowship (QUF) reaches out even further in our Global Community. With a willingness to listen to all of various organizations and individuals, QUF can even accept the viewpoint of agnostics and atheists. In QUF, the personal roadmap of life you seek, may be even broader than the others presented, May Love be in you as you seek each day of your life.
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