Letters - 10 September 2021

From Back to basics to Find our way

Back to basics

I am concerned that we are losing our way. We are the Religious Society of Friends, which implies to me that we believe in an external Light, God or Force – whatever you may call it. We have our basic testimonies – Peace, Truth, Simplicity, Equality and Respect for that of God in everyone. We appear to be distracted by a desire to attract more members by following social media trends without enough thought. Decisions are being taken by Meeting for Sufferings that should be referred to Yearly Meeting. There seems to be a desire to forget our history and those without whom we would not be where we are today. We should remember and learn.

I find for instance that although I support the aims of Extinction Rebellion (XR) I cannot support its means. The Quaker way is peace and mediation, not confrontation and alienation. I also have serious doubts that we should be a charity since this restricts our spiritual freedom.

Judith Nilsen

The YMG Epistle – diversity

Our 2021 Epistle enjoins us, at the end, to do what love requires. Earlier, it mentions ‘gender journeys’ and the ‘unfamiliarity, ignorance and prejudice’ that Friends are likely to come up against on their journey.

‘Gender’ and ‘sex’ used to be treated as synonyms, but nowadays they are often deemed to be different – the one to do with a psychological and social identity, the other to do with biology.

While accepting diversity, in line with what love requires, please may we not turn our backs on biology and the concept of biological sex.

David Harries

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