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Doug MuderDoug Muder

Doug Muder, a columnist for uuworld.org, writes about religion and politics with a focus on attempts to bridge conflicts of worldview. His articles have appeared in UU World, Religious Humanism, The Humanist, and Public Eye.

He blogs about politics under the pseudonym Pericles for Daily Kos and writes the religious blog Free and Responsible Search.

Doug is currently in his third career, having already been a mathematician (Ph.D., University of Chicago, 1984) and an author of books about computer software (including the over-optimistic VRML for Dummies with fellow UU David Kay, 1996). He is a member of First Parish Unitarian Universalist in Bedford, Massachusetts, and lives in Nashua, New Hampshire.



#YesAllWomen and the continuum of aggression
When a man fully grasps the continuum of aggression, it's hard to claim that he's never played any role in perpetuating it.
By Doug Muder 8.15.14

I don't 'believe in' the Seven Principles
I don’t think of them as beliefs at all.
By Doug Muder 5.19.14

Live better, help often, wonder more
The Sunday Assembly movement shares Unitarian Universalism's values, but has a lot more fun expressing them.
By Doug Muder 11.25.13

Political empathy
Demonizing your political opponents doesn't change anyone's mind, but empathy can.
By Doug Muder 10.28.13

Is religion broken?
There’s a movement that attracts millions of people and encourages them to become their best selves—but it’s not a church.
By Doug Muder 9.23.13

My bloody closet
I found five tags that say "Made in Bangladesh," but I don't know what to do next.
By Doug Muder 5.13.13

Wrestling with Easter
We need a secular Easter mythology.
By Doug Muder 3.25.13

The surprising success of lifeboat faith
Unitarian Universalism cannot thrive if we don’t at least understand the appeal of religions that give people identity and direction.
By Doug Muder 2.4.13

The gravity of family
All my adult life, I have valued my chosen relationships over the ones I was born into.
By Doug Muder 11.5.12

A passion for reason
Reason needs the energy of passion in order to inspire others.
By Doug Muder 9.17.12

Making sure General Assembly has something for everyone
General Assembly needs good social action, but in our diverse faith it needs other things, too.
By Doug Muder 7.30.12

At my mother's funeral
Unitarian Universalists are precisely the people who can't believe whatever they want.
By Doug Muder 1.23.12

A candy bar for death
I remember exactly when I first became afraid of death in a more-than-childish way.
By Doug Muder 10.31.11

Before words: The spirituality of Humanism
Spirituality is an awareness of the gap between what you can experience and what you can describe.
By Doug Muder 7.18.11

Winter hope
Optimism often lies, but hope never fails.
By Doug Muder 1.31.11

Stop the elevator; I'm not done
If someone on an elevator asked you what Unitarian Universalism is, could you answer before one of you reached your destination?
By Doug Muder 12.27.10

Heroes and mentors: Reclaiming Krypton
Why a generation that grew up with Buffy and the Power Rangers will demand a different Unitarian Universalism.
By Doug Muder 11.15.10

Sudden death
The real sting of death is the thought that all life’s possibilities were supposed to wait until I got around to paying attention.
By Doug Muder 10.18.10

What can we reasonably believe about an afterlife?
Where should we assign the burden of proof for ideas about the afterlife?
By Doug Muder 7.26.10

The catch
I haven't played chess in decades, yet somehow I've ended up with a chess player's worldview.
By Doug Muder 6.14.10

A world that is all about you
The problem with ‘corporate personhood’ is what it’s doing to human personhood.
By Doug Muder 3.15.10

Christmas nostalgia for the family we never were
I never rode in a one-horse open sleigh or saw visions of sugarplums dance in my head.
By Doug Muder 12.21.09

The DIY spiritual practice
A spiritual practice my wife and I cobbled together, the Unitarian Universalist way.
By Doug Muder 11.16.09

Message or culture?
Are Unitarian Universalists more committed to spreading liberal religion or to preserving our congregational culture?
By Doug Muder 8.17.09

Graduation day
Parenthood makes life serious and challenges you to push past limitations you have accepted too easily. But those issues don't go away when you decide not to have children.
By Doug Muder 5.11.09

Holding the center against sectarianism and secularity
Religious liberals reject the idea that a religion is a collection of beliefs that are either true or false.
By Doug Muder 4.27.09

A religion for hard times
Faith is what’s left when you stop responding to radical uncertainty with panic and denial.
By Doug Muder 3.30.09

That elusive more
What do Unitarian Universalists need to go deeper?
By Doug Muder 1.12.09

The ghosts of Unitarian Christmas
It was Christmas Eve, a time when any sensible person stays safe in his house with a good book. But then Ben’s reading lamp burned out.
By Doug Muder 12.8.08

Assembly of a lesser god
Belief and worship are powerful tools for organizing thought and behavior. If others get control of those tools, they can make us dance like puppets. But if we’re careful, we can learn to pull our own strings.
By Doug Muder 9.22.08

PostSecret Project reveals our common humanity
People keep secrets for all kinds of reasons, even Unitarian Universalists.
By Doug Muder 7.21.08

The stages of rest
Four stages of burnout and recovery as the church year draws to a close.
By Doug Muder 6.9.08

Unfinished with Christianity
Most Unitarian Universalists live in some kind of tension with Christianity. I wish we talked about this more.
By Doug Muder 3.24.08

Mike Gravel's Unitarian Universalism
Democratic presidential candidate identifies as a Unitarian Universalist; UUA support for publication of 'Pentagon Papers' an enduring bond.
By Doug Muder 12.10.07

Pete Stark's untroubled humanism
Regaled by a secularist group for his nontheism, the Unitarian Congressman can't fathom what the fuss is about.
By Doug Muder 10.8.07

Liberal religion and the working class
If my working-class father started attending a UU church, I'm not sure who he'd talk to.
By Doug Muder 9.3.07

Drops of water turn a mill
Does the Internet Age augur a revival of liberal religion?
By Doug Muder 8.13.07

Does humanism need to be new?
A Harvard conference offers a 'new humanism,' but how does it differ from the old?
By Doug Muder 6.4.07

Straight to Jesus
Inside the Evangelical gay-conversion movement.
By Doug Muder 12.11.06

Secularism and tolerance after 9-11
Isn't religion supposed to be fading away?
By Doug Muder 9.4.06

Competing worldviews of fundamentalists and religious liberals
Why are fundamentalists so frightened by liberal family values? A look at competing worldviews.
By Doug Muder 9.12.05

Making sense of the conservative worldview
Two recent books can help liberals understand the Christian right.
By Doug Muder 8.1.05