Five facts | The origin and teachings of Unitarianism
TNT FIVE FACTS | September 18, 2018
While Unitarians across India celebrate the anniversary of Unitarianism on September 18th, most of its citizens celebrate the day as a mere holiday -free from work- without knowing its significance and origin.
This Unitarian day, help yourself learn better about this small population of people that live in our state:
- The roots of Unitarianism lie in the Protestant Movement of the 18th century.
Unitarianism as an organized religious movement emerged during the Reformation period in Poland, Transylvania, and England, and later in North America from the original New England Puritan churches. During this period, people claimed the right to read and interpret the Bible for themselves and fought for the right to seek a direct relationship with God. Unitarians found no warrant for the doctrine of the Trinity accepted by other Christian churches.
- Khasi Unitarianism is a unique movement which largely draws its theology from the indigenous Khasi religion.
As with traditional Khasi faith, the major emphasis of Khasi unitarianism is to carry out one's duty towards God and fellow humans. Unitarians stress on the unity of God as opposed to the trinity.
- In the Khasi-Jaintia Hills, the movement was founded by Babu Hajom Kissor Singh
The movement was founded by Babu Hajom Kissor Singh (June 15, 1865-November 13, 1923). Singh came from a Christian family but was not satisfied with the orthodox Christian doctrine of his time. He began the movement in Jowai with the help of Khasi Brahmos and American Unitarians in 1887 and called the faith 'ka niam Unitarian'. On September 18, 1887, Singh held his first service and this day came to be celebrated as Unitarian day.
- While the Unitarians honour Jesus, they do not worship him
Unitarians deem Jesus as a major figure rather than a central figure. He is thought of as the epitome of what all humans can be- an individual of compassion, integrity and potential. As such, they do not worship him, but instead respect him.
- Unitarianism stands for social justice and inclusivity of all including the LGBTQIA community
Unitarianism preaches social justice and has stood for gender equality and human rights including those of the LGBTQIA community. They believe in the equality of opportunity for everyone regardless of their sexual orientation, class or religion.