The Fundamental Beliefs of the Universal Life Church
The basic tenets of the Universal Life Church (ULC) include the following two core beliefs:
We are all children of the same Universe.
Do that which is right.
Other core Universal Church beliefs include universal equality and the intrinsic right of all people, regardless of their faith to be valued. A strong emphasis is placed on the value of human life along with equality and civility among mankind. Freedom is paramount among the teachings of the ULC, especially the freedom for people of different faiths to practice the traditions of their respective religions with dignity. Instead of crafting a new identity for those that have a strong faith or those that are largely nondenominational, the Universal Life Church strives to overcome negative perceptions of people that practice certain religions or people that are anti-religious. After all, a core ULC tenet is that we are all children of the same Universe. We are not defined by our individual religious affiliations.
What Differentiates the Universal Life Church from Other Multi- or Nondenominational Churches
It is difficult to find a religious institution that does not teach righteousness and civility. Most doctrines follow a substantive moral and ethical code. A few spiritual and moral organizations such as the Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations and Council for Secular Humanism share many of the same beliefs at the ULC. However, there are a number of differences regarding approaches to worship and principle philosophies.
Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations
Like the ULC, the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) embraces theological diversity. Worship is held regularly and to celebrate numerous holidays. The UUA has strong ties to advocacy for social justice as the organization was started in the South during the Civil Rights Movement in 1961. Working to promote social justice is a primary way in which Unitarian Universalists express their faith.
The Council of Secular Humanists
Secular humanism is viewed as a life philosophy rather than a traditional faith. It is characterized by the strong belief in an individual moral code and high ethical standards. Secular humanism is rooted in Atheism and ancient Greek philosophy. Secular humanists strongly value individualism and explore deeper levels of thought and social justice theory regarding in the physical world.
The Common Thread that Ties Religion and Philosophy
The Universal Life Church, the UUA, and secular humanism all have a strong focus on striving to achieve superior ethical standards. This spiritual growth is hallmarked by acceptance, social justice, and freedom of thought in different settings. The ULC coined the phrase, “Do that which is right,” which largely defines the basis of morality and theology.