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Posted by: anybody ( )
Date: September 12, 2017 01:07AM


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/12/2017 01:11AM by anybody.

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Posted by: anybody ( )
Date: September 12, 2017 01:11AM


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Posted by: Dave the Atheist ( )
Date: September 12, 2017 01:12AM

Are you talking about quakers ?

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Posted by: memikeyounot ( )
Date: September 12, 2017 01:38AM

Or a fan club for the NBC TV show that was on 10 years, 1994-2004.

And it was on about 3 years too long.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/12/2017 02:14AM by memikeyounot.

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Posted by: anybody ( )
Date: September 12, 2017 07:43AM


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Posted by: fordescape ( )
Date: September 12, 2017 11:26PM

Yes. Lake Erie Yearly Meeting. Go only if you're liberal. I don't mean run of the mill liberal. I mean so far left you might fall over.

I'm not really either/or conservative/liberal but one guy showed me his membership card in the communist party. That kind of left.

There are other types of Friends. It takes all kinds.

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Posted by: Dave the Atheist ( )
Date: September 12, 2017 11:32PM

communist party ? Like back in the 50's ?

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Posted by: anybody ( )
Date: September 13, 2017 07:27AM

and if they still said "thee," "thou," and "thy" in the modern era...

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Posted by: peculiargifts ( )
Date: September 13, 2017 11:51AM

Just like other groups, individual Friends' meetings vary as to liberality. Some are fairly biblically conservative, some are very liberal. I've never met any who were like what fordescape describes, but I suppose that it's as possible as anything else.


The meetings are generally very quiet. No liturgy, no hymns, no talks are planned. Occasionally, some person feels moved to speak, but that does not always happen. Some people may say thee --- my aunt still did, when she was alive, but she only said it at home, in the presence of family members and close friends. I never heard her say it out in public. Like everything else, it varies.

The bottom line, you don't ever have to speak, unless you choose to. Meetings tend to be highly contemplative.

In the Vietnam War era Quakers were very active draft and war opponents, and are generally very much pacifists. But then, Richard Nixon was raised a Quaker, so no generalizations there either.

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Posted by: Beth ( )
Date: September 16, 2017 11:44PM

There are different types of Quakers. The Meetinghouse near my home welcomes atheists. Meeting (again, depends on the group) is an hour of silence. Someone might stand up and say something on any topic, but it's usually something they've been mulling or realized. Sometimes one person speaking will be followed by others speaking about something similar that came to mind based on what another said. Sometimes comments are random. Often, you sit in silence for an hour. The hour is over when two people stand and shake hands.

We sat in concentric circles in school. The older meetinghouses usually have pews that were built in a square.

I like Meeting.



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 09/17/2017 12:14AM by Beth.

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Posted by: got2Breal ( )
Date: September 16, 2017 11:57PM

Budhists do that also - it's called meditation.

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Posted by: Beth ( )
Date: September 17, 2017 12:02AM

talk about whatever if they want.

It's not a contest.

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Posted by: boilerluv ( )
Date: September 17, 2017 11:56AM

I have not been to one myself, but a friend from my UU church is a member of the local Friends (Society?) too. (Yes, you can be a UU and still hold membership in another church if you want to.) She said it is mostly silence--or silent meditation. On my way home from work, I pass the home where the local (very small) group meets. There is a really big sign over the door that says "Friends Meeting House" and they have a huge stone in the yard with the following painted on it in blue: "Love Thy Neighbor--No Exceptions." I think that's kind of cool.

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Posted by: pollythinks ( )
Date: September 17, 2017 01:11PM

Well, when watching the movie, 'Friendly Persuasion'. Does that count?

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Posted by: Obadiah Dogberry ( )
Date: September 17, 2017 06:17PM

Yes, I joined the Religious Society of Friends, a.k.a. Quakers, more than 35 years ago. Historically the movement began in reaction to the established church in England in the mid-1600's. It shared some similarities with (but arose independently of) the Anabaptists on the European continent.

In 1800's America there were some schisms, leaving American Quakers today split between:
(a) congregations ("Friends Churches") that tend to be theologically conservative, bible-centered, sometimes evangelical, with ordained clergy and a "programmed" order of worship (including sermons and music), and
(b) congregations ("Friends Meetings") that tend to be theologically liberal or universalist, without ordained clergy, with "unprogrammed" worship that is mostly contemplative or meditative. I'm a member of the latter group, and so my comments following apply to "unprogrammed" Friends Meetings.

We have no formal creed, theological doctrine, or articles of faith that must be affirmed to qualify for membership. The individual beliefs of Friends vary regarding the nature of deity, the existence and nature of an afterlife, etc. Many individual Friends identify as Christian (perhaps liberally interpreted), but many also describe themselves as universalist, or Buddhist, or other. It is up to each individual to seek truth in these matters as she finds it. And we are generally comfortable with theological heterodoxy.

There are, however, some central values that we share. First is the notion of respect and reverence for the life of every human being (or as Friends traditionally said, "There is that of God in every person"). From this notion flow other shared values of high importance to Friends: seeking to live life in a spirit of love, truth, peace, equality, and community. Thus, Quakers tend to be involved in social movements and actions seeking to enact these values.

Decision-making authority in Quaker community rests principally in each congregation or "Meeting." Decisions are made in monthly congregational meetings ("business meetings"), using a kind of consensus process, chaired by a "Clerk". Clerks appointed by their meetings usually rotate every few years.

The Quaker practice of mostly meditative worship is described by others in this thread. It isn't for everyone. And for those who mostly share with Quakers the same values and liberal approach to theology--but who prefer a structured service with professional clergy, prepared sermons, and music--a Unitarian Universalist congregation might provide a good fit. Except for the form of worship, the two denominations share much in common. (Full disclosure: when I was a young man I considered becoming UU after leaving Mormonism. And my husband, whom I met after becoming Quaker, is a UU minister.)

So, you asked, and this is my attempt to describe Friends Meetings in a nutshell.

In peace, (as we say),

David

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