Mikki Morrissette

Author's posts

BLOG: Thoughts on God

Excerpts from an unfinished (undated) manuscript written by Rev. John Dietrich, sometime well after his retirement from First Unitarian Society in 1938, and before his death in 1957. Find the full 33-page manuscript here. His background philosophy For many years, I believed and taught a philosophy and religion, which I called Humanism — a religion that …

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BLOG: McCarthyism Revived

From March 1, 1953, “McCarthy and McCarthyism” It was the hope of many last fall that Joseph McCarthy would not be re-elected to the Senate of the United States. Sharing this hope were Republicans as well as Democrats… and included were some who had given support and early approval to McCarthy’s initial election to the Senate in 1946 …

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BLOG: Humanist Thoughts on Coping With Evil and Pain

Part of an ongoing series that examines the wisdom from our Humanist Pulpit roots. On Coping With Pain There are three appalling evils connected with affliction. The first is the actual pain and suffering; the second is the shadow which is tends to throw over the universe, the doubts, the loss of faith it engenders; …

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BLOG: A 1922 Address About Morality

Excerpt of a Humanist address, “What’s Wrong With the World,” delivered to First Unitarian Society of Minneapolis by Rev. John Dietrich, January 29, 1922. This is an excerpt of an excerpt, focusing on morality.  … Our problem today is not so much that of freedom from political tyranny (in spite of the temporary reaction during the …

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BLOG: A 1922 Address About Labor

Excerpt of a Humanist address, “What’s Wrong With the World,” delivered to First Unitarian Society of Minneapolis by Rev. John Dietrich, January 29, 1922. This is an excerpt of an excerpt, focusing on economics.  …. There are some people who think that the present economic system was foisted upon society by a group of men who …

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BLOG: What’s Wrong With the World?

A Humanist address delivered to First Unitarian Society of Minneapolis by Rev. John Dietrich, January 29, 1922. Like most of Dr. Dietrich’s addresses, this one was written for an hour-long talk, for an audience of hundreds that eventually filled a Minneapolis theater and a readership of thousands. Because of the length, each of his talks here …

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BLOG: Mixed Feelings

Excerpted from Rev. Jim Foti’s talk “Mixed Feelings,” on the eve of Memorial Day 2016. Conversations about America’s greatness can deteriorate very quickly. One problem is when we take the step of labeling ourselves as “the greatest nation on earth.” It’s not a good sign when any country feels a need to assert its superiority …

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BLOG: Change and the Progressive Mind

Excerpts from a talk presented by Rev. Dr. David Breeden, 4 September 2016, at First Unitarian Society of Minneapolis “Are you discontent with the lot the universe has given you? The universe is change; life is opinion.”– Marcus Aurelius (Meditations IV.3) Humanism is a progressive philosophy—we believe in change as basic to both human knowledge and social wellbeing. Humanists …

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BLOG: What If the World Went Humanist?

Excerpted from Rev. John Dietrich Sunday morning address, as compiled May 1930 in Humanist Pulpit XIII. The full transcript is here. A book version is now in FUS bookstore. This is the first archived talk to be discussed in the 2016-17 monthly Dietrich Centennial series, third Sundays, noon, at FUS. The Idea of a Humanist World …

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BLOG: Are You Building a Shelter?

Carl Storm and FUS youth

An interesting snapshot of the early 1960s, when nuclear war seemed inevitable. This excerpt of “Are you building a shelter,” is from Rev. Carl Storm (pictured with FUS youth here), delivered at First Unitarian Society on November 5, 1961: After a decade of almost complete apathy about civil defense, and even a somewhat slap-happy dismissal …

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BLOG: Cooperating With Natural Law, Not Deity (1930)

The following comes from “The Supreme Discovery of the Ages: The universe is governed by natural law, not by a deity,” delivered by Rev. John Dietrich on March 9, 1930. … Natural laws are not the same type of thing as statute laws — they are merely the expression by man of fixed relations existing …

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BLOG: Darwin and Evolution a Century Later (1959)

On February 8, 1959, FUS minister Rev. Carl Storm delivered the talk “Darwin and Evolution: A Century Later.” This is an excerpt. … If life derives from life, how could the process have started unless there were some life-giving power behind it? To postulate some divine and supernatural life-giving force in now way provides an …

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BLOG: The Roots of Unitarianism

A summary of a lesson offered in a Unitarian Universalist Association workshop Before setting its roots in Humanism, the First Unitarian Society of Minneapolis was founded on a legacy of Unitarianism. Unitarian Christianity was the talk of a title by William Ellery Channing (1780-1842) — also known as the Baltimore Sermon — on May 5, 1819. Orthodox and …

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BLOG: Who We Are and Who We Have Been (2015)

On February 15, 2015, Rev. Dr. David Breeden delivered a talk at First Unitarian Society of Minneapolis about our roots and shoots as a congregation titled “An Accident Called Intelligence: Global Climate Change and Stewardship.” Here are some of the highlights. Our Roots “It’s easy to feel hopeless. But this congregation over the years has faced …

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BLOG: Humanism as a Bridge (5/15/16)

This is an excerpt from a talk delivered May 15, 2016 by Rev. David Breeden. It is a good introduction to our humanist focus at First Unitarian Society. Full podcast and text of FUS talks here. …I like the way the British Humanist Association summarizes humanism. They have three points and the third goes this way: Living …

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BLOG: Our Physical and Spiritual Energy Force

We continue our excerpts of the Humanist talks delivered at First Unitarian Society, starting with the founding Humanist minister John Dietrich. He originally delivered this talk on April 14, 1929. Put a nonliving object in an environment and nothing happens. Put a living object in this environment, and something does happen. Energy, in other words, or …

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BLOG: Is the Universe Friendly?

We continue our excerpts of the Humanist talks delivered at First Unitarian Society, starting with the founding Humanist minister John Dietrich. This was re-published as a series compilation that started in the late 1920s.   Our whole system is but a speck of light in the infinite reaches of space. … To be tumbled out …

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BLOG: Evolution and Progress

John Dietrich

In launching this series in 2016, in what feels like a churning time for progressive society, we open with an excerpt of Dietrich’s talk on “Evolution and Progress,” from the compilation The Fathers of Evolution (Pioneer Press, 1927). A Parallel Universe? “In the beginning of the 20th century, men began to look back over the last century and …

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