7 February, Ross McLuckie: “Recognition and Appreciation”
We are all aware of what we do, but do we recognise the real meaning of what is happening and see the benefit in it?
14 February, Laurence Gormley: “Evolution and Valentine’s Day”
The weekend has been designated Evolution Weekend by the UU movement in the US. More popularly, today is Valentine’s Day. What do these antithetical celebrations have to do with each other?
21 February, Jan Tendys: “Mindfulness/Reducing Stress”
We will do a mindfulness exercise and talk about stres and ways of reducing it
28 February, Janet Horton: “Finding Meaning in Music”
How our iPods and gadgets can play a part in our search for meaning
7 March , Candace Parks: “The Power of Connection”
Power–the ability to get things done–lies in numbers and organization. Throughout history, power based on domination and control has made its mark. But there is another kind of power, too, call it people power. It comes about mainly through a change of consciousness, an altered perception of what’s possible.
14 March, Special Guest Speaker Mary-Lou Johnson: “Faith and Reason” 500 years ago we emerged from the Dark Ages into the Enlightenment–the age of reason and of science. It has taken us to the brink of destroying our planet. Where do we go from here and how do we achieve balance?
Mary Lou Johnson is visiting from Canada where she is the chair of the worship Committee at the Unitarian Fellowship of Kelowna in BC. She was the founder of the Canadian Holistic Nurses Assn. and has spent much of her life on the front lines of psychosocial change.
21 March, Colin Whatmough: “Marcus Borg and Liberal Christianity”
28 March, Martin Horlacher “A Way of Life”
4 April, Ginna Hastings: “Jesus was a liberal.”
11 April, Guest speaker Rev. Bill Lawton: “When an open heart to the socially marginalized becomes a central life value.”
18 April, Ross McLuckie: “Solitude”
25 April, Janet Horton: “The Tao of iPod.”
2 May , Ginna Hastings: “The Gospel according to Elner Shimfissle.”
9 May, Candace Parks: “All I really need to know I learned in kindergarten .”
16 May, Geoff Matthews: “Is the projected population growth for Australia sustainable.”
23 May, Dr. Julian Droogan, Guest Speaker : “Working for nothing?”
How true is it that Buddhists strive towards nothingness and self-extinguishing in their quest for enlightenment? Is it fair, in this case, to call Buddhism an atheistic or even nihilistic philosophy? In this discussion we will look at the classic Buddhist concept of Nirvana and no-self, and compare it with the mystical experiences of the Hindus, Gnostics and a mysterious text from the Nag Hammadi library.
30 May, Colin Whatmough:”Three Ages of Christianity”
The Age of Faith, the Age of Belief (from Constantine, about 387 AD, to the present) and the new era, the Age of Spirit.
6 June, Jan Tendys: “The Doctrine of Original Sin—any relevance for today?”
The Cophenhagen talks were disappointing, Penny Wong’s emissions trading scheme is in limbo, climate change denialists are all over the internet. Why is humanity blundering in this crisis? Are liberals simply wrong in having an optimistic attitude towards human nature?
13 June, Ross McLuckie : “Letters”
To understand the personality of some Australians by reading their published letters.
20 June , Laurence Gormley:”A Year of Mixed Blessings“.
A personal take on the pending end of the financial year 2010.
Disappointment and frustration are unavoidable parts of life, but aiming low is what constitutes real failure. When we dream together our shared aspirations lift us up, giving flight to our common goals.
4th July, Janet Horton: “Authoring your own Beliefs”
Independent thought: As Unitarians, we like to say that the end religious authority lies not in a book or person or institution, but in ourselves. But, what does it really mean to be the authors of our own beliefs? This talk will introduce the concept of self authorship as a a natural stage of adult development and then pose questions about what it means in a religious context.
11 July, Claire Morgan, “Living the Charter for Compassion” (Debut talk.)
This is Claire’s debut talk for our group. Last November a multi-faith coalition launched the Charter for Compassion. It calls upon people “to make compassion a clear and dynamic force in our polarized world”.In this interactive session we will explore whether compassion for self comes before compassion for others and how the Charter can bring about positive change in the world.
18 July, Janet Horton: “The Church on the Other Side of the World”.
25 July, Colin Whatmough: An open discussion on Marcus Borg’s thoughts on Liberal Christianity…
…arising from Colin’s talk on this topic on 21 March,2010. (Published in May 2010 Esprit).
1 August, Geoff Matthews: “Horses’ Birthday Today”.
In this talk, the significant relationship of horses to the history and heritage of Australia will be covered, together with the impact of horses in our society, such as in the racing industry, equestrian, show jumping and people with mental and physical difficulties, and relating this to our connection with our society as Unitarians.
8 August, Ginna Hastings: “Kindness”.
This has become a little valued quality in today’s society! This week’s service will be some reflections on it’s value for all of us, both as givers and receivers.
15 August, Ross McLuckie: “Carers”.
We could all become one or need one. What are they like ?
22 August, Jan Tendys: “World Stress—Another Mindfulness Session”.
We live in a stress-inducing world. This exercise is another useful stress-breaker.
29 August, Lilium Ouyang : “Authentic Happiness”. (Debut talk.)
We human beings have been relentlessly pursuing happiness. Is it something illusionary, or is it possible to reach authentic happiness? If true happiness does exist, then what’s the pathway? And, is it something we are born with, or something we can add more in our life? In this interactive session, everybody will have a chance to voice their opinion on this topic.
5 September, Laurence Gormley: “As we travel the arc of life time seems to step up its presence”.
12 September, Candace Parks: “Surprised by Hope”.
In the face of climate change, economic crisis and on-going world conflict, hope can be hard to find. But once we choose hope, it expands our hearts and we start to see the good news.
19 September, Geoff Matthews: “Ethics as Unenforceable Obligations – The Importance of Being Good for Nothing.”
This will be an interactive session where we will explore what we see as our individual ethical ten commandments, and from there review a moral dilemma and discuss in terms of these ethical commandments.
26 September, Colin Whatmough: “Food and Population – The Elephant in the Room”.
3 October, Carolyn Donnelly: “A Sense of Community”
10 October, Ginna Hastings: “Building our Unitarian Community.”
This will be an interactive session.
17 October, Ross McLuckie: “Resilience”
24 October, Laurence Gormley: “Some Thoughts on Gay Adoption.”
The NSW parliament is currently debating the idea of allowing Gay and Lesbian adoption of children but what is it really all about?
31 October, Janet Horton: “Nothing to Fear.”
Gremlins and goblins and things that go bump in the night. We’ve all got a gremlin or two – an ugly monster who sits on the shoulder and whispers negative thoughts. Today we will be talking about the great art or gremlin taming.
7 November, Jan Tendys: “Hunting for Hope.”
We share with writer Scott Russell Sanders his journey from despair to healing.
14 November, Sandra Mottram: “A presentation on the global organisation of the Soroptimist Society.”
Sandra, the Sydney President, will provide some background to the group, what they do internationally, successful projects they have been involved in and current exciting projects they are engaged in.
21 November, Candace Parks: “Loving Your Political Opponent.”
Partisanship is an uncompromising, unreasoned attitude which is inherently unethical and theologically unsound. Unsound, because partisanship presumes dichotomy – and our complex lives transcend the simple dualism of right/wrong, either/or, us/them. And unethical because Unitarian values require that we work for the common good. Often easier said than done!
28 November, Colin Whatmough: “A discussion on the topic ‘The Three Ages of Christianity’ arising from Colin’s talk in May 2010.”
This will lead towards how modern man is engaging in spiritual realms in the 21st C.
5 December, Morandir Armson : “Dualism in the 21st Century.”
The Zoroastrian Diaspora in Australia.
Members of the Zoroastrian faith in Iran have faced a great deal of religious discrimination and harassment, including forced conversions, violence and facing the ordeal of being legally identified as ritually unclean. As is the case with many persecuted peoples, small numbers of Zoroastrians have made their way to Australia, seeking refuge from this religious persecution. Unfortunately, these Zoroastrians have faced more religious discrimination in Australia and this discrimination has underscored the ignorance which the average Australian holds about Zoroastrianism and indeed, religions in general.
12 December, Ginna Hastings: “Freedom to Choose in Marriage.”
This talk will be touching on the importance of marriage and why our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters should have the freedom to choose whom they marry as well as heterosexuals.
19 December, Christmas lunch