Many great justice activists and spiritual leaders have come before us, are working alongside us, and will come after us. SALT holds that there is value in learning from those teachers, and from each other. Training young adult leaders from a place of spirituality and accountability helps them keep their eyes and hearts on the goal of building the beloved community, not just winning a fight or being right or powerful.
From “Inspired Faith, Effective Action: A Social Justice Workbook for Unitarian Universalist Congregations”
Ours is a theology of engagement. We draw inspiration and truth from experiencing each other and the world around us. Therefore it is important to remember that:
How the work is done is as important as the end goal of promoting justice. If the justice work we do fails to build community–or worse yet, destroys it–then we will not have served our congregations or Association well.
This is about personal transformation. Our ability to create social transformation is linked with our willingness to go through personal transformation in the process. How can we expect the world to change if we’re not willing to?
We learn from reflection. Educator and writer Paulo Freire, author of Pedagogy of the Oppressed, argued that we learn not from action, but from reflection on action. The cycle of action-reflection is often referred to as “praxis.”
We need strong relationships. The more we are in relationship with each other, and approach social justice in ways that value this relationship, the better off we’ll be as a community. This type of sharing, namely personal, ethical, emotional, spiritual, and/or theological, is necessary both for effective social justice work, and for personal and congregational development.