Quaker Testimonies

Quakers believe in living life in the spirit of love, truth and peace, reaching for the best in oneself and answering “that of God” in everyone. Quaker testimonies are expressions of the commitment to put those beliefs into practice.

They do not exist in any rigid, dogmatic or written form; nor are they imposed in any way. Each Quaker searches for how the testimonies can best be expressed in their own life.

While attempting to live in concert with these teachings, Quakers are tender with themselves and with each other when they fall short, ready to recommit and try again. Quaker Testimonies can easily be remembered using the acronym S-P-I-C-E-S. 

Below we will explain those Testimonies. 


“Life is meant to be lived from a Center, a divine Center…a life of unhurried peace and power. It is simple. It is serene. It takes no time, but it occupies all our time.”
Thomas R. Kelley, Testament of Devotion (1941) 

The testimony of simplicity emphasizes living a life that is uncluttered by material possessions and distractions. It involves seeking to simplify one’s life in order to focus more fully on spiritual values, inner reflection, and relationships with others. By embracing simplicity, Quakers seek to live in harmony with their values, reducing their impact on the environment, and fostering a deeper connection to their community and the world around them.


Practically, simplicity may manifest in various ways, such as living modestly, avoiding extravagance, consuming mindfully, and prioritizing relationships and experiences over material possessions. It’s about finding contentment in what is essential and opening up space in our lives to experience the Light.


“Become an instrument of peace. At every opportunity, be peacemakers in your homes, workplaces and communities. Steep yourself in the power of the universal Spirit.”

Pacific Yearly Meeting, Faith and Practice (2001)

The Peace Testimony is possibly the Quakers’ most famous principle. This testimony emphasizes the rejection of war and violence. It is rooted in the belief that each person contains a divine spark (that of God in everyone), and therefore violence against others is contrary to the will of God and the good of mankind.


Quakers believe in nonviolent conflict resolution, in personal interactions as well as on a larger scale. To that end, many Quakers, though not all, are pacifists and conscientious objectors. While pacifism is an individual calling, the Peace Testimony is more than taking a stance against war — it is an active commitment to building a more peaceful and just world.


“While seeking to interpret our Christian faith in the language of today, we must remember that there is one worse thing than failure to practice what we profess, and that is to water down our profession to match our practice.”

Friends World Conference, 1952

The testimony of integrity, sometimes also called the testimony of Truth, emphasizes living a life of honesty, authenticity, and moral uprightness. Integrity involves being true to oneself, to others, and to the Spirit, even when that discipline is challenging.

In our daily lives, living the testimony of integrity can mean avoiding deceit and telling the truth at all times, being reliable and consistent in our actions, dealing fairly with others in business, and being accountable for our actions. Quakers also traditionally avoid taking oaths based on the belief that the need for an oath to ensure truth telling implies that the truth is not necessary or guaranteed absent special circumstances or a specific promise of honesty.