Aware me on secular humanism...
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16-12-2011, 12:32 PM
Aware me on secular humanism...
And how it relates to atheism and existentialism.

I feel like I am all of these things but need help defining the differences and similarities.

“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it's time to pause and reflect.”

-Mark Twain
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16-12-2011, 12:54 PM
RE: Aware me on secular humanism...
You can look up definitions on wikipedia.

If you ask for a personal view however:
Secular: Although "secularism" is merely the opposite of "religious" I took the liberty to define it slightly different: A strict separation between religion and state. Since religion is a private matter, it should be separated from the state and it's laws. You can't force religion by law for the same reason you can't force a favorite color by law.

Humanist: Whenever whatever you do, the well being of your fellow humans should be foremost on your mind. I choose human well-being above religious dogma's, human life, economic profits, scientific knowledge, nationalism, ...

Note that this is no where related with any theistic or non-theistic point of view.
I know enough Christians that are humanist as well.

Secular humanism is a social philosophy.

Observer

Agnostic atheist
Secular humanist
Emotional rationalist
Disclaimer: Don’t mix the personal opinion above with the absolute and objective truth. Remember to think for yourself. Thank you.
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16-12-2011, 12:58 PM
RE: Aware me on secular humanism...
(16-12-2011 12:54 PM)The_observer Wrote:  You can look up definitions on wikipedia.

If you ask for a personal view however:
Secular: Although "secularism" is merely the opposite of "religious" I took the liberty to define it slightly different: A strict separation between religion and state. Since religion is a private matter, it should be separated from the state and it's laws. You can't force religion by law for the same reason you can't force a favorite color by law.

Humanist: Whenever whatever you do, the well being of your fellow humans should be foremost on your mind. I choose human well-being above religious dogma's, human life, economic profits, scientific knowledge, nationalism, ...

Note that this is no where related with any theistic or non-theistic point of view.
I know enough Christians that are humanist as well.

Secular humanism is a social philosophy.

I understand the definitions. I was just wondering how they relate to each other. Are most atheists also secular humanists? Wouldn't most secular humanists be atheists? Am I an atheist, secular humanist, and an existentialist? I'm not sure if there is a better way to define myself socially, philisophically, politically, and non-religiously.

“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it's time to pause and reflect.”

-Mark Twain
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16-12-2011, 01:15 PM
RE: Aware me on secular humanism...
(16-12-2011 12:58 PM)germanyt Wrote:  I understand the definitions. I was just wondering how they relate to each other. Are most atheists also secular humanists? Wouldn't most secular humanists be atheists? Am I an atheist, secular humanist, and an existentialist? I'm not sure if there is a better way to define myself socially, philisophically, politically, and non-religiously.

Because atheists don't have a holy book, they don't really have a unified view on morality, either. But Sam Harris' books (especially The Moral Landscape) push the idea of humanism, so because of Sam Harris' popularity you'll find that a lot of atheists are also humanists (probably "most" atheists).

Usually if a person identifies himself or herself as an "atheist", they generally mean that they're also a humanist, as people who are simply "unbelieving" don't really read people like Harris, Hitchens, or Dawkins. But it's always better to ask rather than assume.

If you're looking for self-identification, there are better writers than these on such topics - David Hume, for instance, or AC Grayling. But even a quick review of Wikipedia (as I know has already been mentioned) is enough to find definitions of these topics, and you can just self-evaluate based on these definitions. Do they apply to you or not? If not, don't use them. If they do, then do.

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16-12-2011, 01:22 PM
RE: Aware me on secular humanism...
(16-12-2011 12:58 PM)germanyt Wrote:  
(16-12-2011 12:54 PM)The_observer Wrote:  You can look up definitions on wikipedia.

If you ask for a personal view however:
Secular: Although "secularism" is merely the opposite of "religious" I took the liberty to define it slightly different: A strict separation between religion and state. Since religion is a private matter, it should be separated from the state and it's laws. You can't force religion by law for the same reason you can't force a favorite color by law.

Humanist: Whenever whatever you do, the well being of your fellow humans should be foremost on your mind. I choose human well-being above religious dogma's, human life, economic profits, scientific knowledge, nationalism, ...

Note that this is no where related with any theistic or non-theistic point of view.
I know enough Christians that are humanist as well.

Secular humanism is a social philosophy.

I understand the definitions. I was just wondering how they relate to each other. Are most atheists also secular humanists? Wouldn't most secular humanists be atheists? Am I an atheist, secular humanist, and an existentialist? I'm not sure if there is a better way to define myself socially, philisophically, politically, and non-religiously.

I guess one way to look at is this:

You are an atheist simply because you don't believe. (you know that already)

Secularism is the principle of separation between government institutions and the persons mandated to represent the State from religious institutions and religious dignitaries. (if you are atheist you most likely believe this)

Humanism is an approach in study, philosophy, world view or practice that focuses on human values and concerns. (Most atheists relate to this).

Atheist is your belief.

Secular Humanist may be your worldview.

What Is Secular Humanism?
  • Secular Humanism is a term which has come into use in the last thirty years to describe a world view with the following elements and principles:
  • A conviction that dogmas, ideologies and traditions, whether religious, political or social, must be weighed and tested by each individual and not simply accepted on faith.
  • Commitment to the use of critical reason, factual evidence, and scientific methods of inquiry, rather than faith and mysticism, in seeking solutions to human problems and answers to important human questions.
  • A primary concern with fulfillment, growth, and creativity for both the individual and humankind in general.
  • A constant search for objective truth, with the understanding that new knowledge and experience constantly alter our imperfect perception of it.
  • A concern for this life and a commitment to making it meaningful through better understanding of ourselves, our history, our intellectual and artistic achievements, and the outlooks of those who differ from us.
  • A search for viable individual, social and political principles of ethical conduct, judging them on their ability to enhance human well-being and individual responsibility.
  • A conviction that with reason, an open marketplace of ideas, good will, and tolerance, progress can be made in building a better world for ourselves and our children.
Copied from: http://www.secularhumanism.org/index.php...ction=main

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16-12-2011, 01:24 PM (This post was last modified: 16-12-2011 01:25 PM by germanyt.)
RE: Aware me on secular humanism...
(16-12-2011 01:15 PM)Starcrash Wrote:  
(16-12-2011 12:58 PM)germanyt Wrote:  I understand the definitions. I was just wondering how they relate to each other. Are most atheists also secular humanists? Wouldn't most secular humanists be atheists? Am I an atheist, secular humanist, and an existentialist? I'm not sure if there is a better way to define myself socially, philisophically, politically, and non-religiously.

Because atheists don't have a holy book, they don't really have a unified view on morality, either. But Sam Harris' books (especially The Moral Landscape) push the idea of humanism, so because of Sam Harris' popularity you'll find that a lot of atheists are also humanists (probably "most" atheists).

Usually if a person identifies himself or herself as an "atheist", they generally mean that they're also a humanist, as people who are simply "unbelieving" don't really read people like Harris, Hitchens, or Dawkins. But it's always better to ask rather than assume.

If you're looking for self-identification, there are better writers than these on such topics - David Hume, for instance, or AC Grayling. But even a quick review of Wikipedia (as I know has already been mentioned) is enough to find definitions of these topics, and you can just self-evaluate based on these definitions. Do they apply to you or not? If not, don't use them. If they do, then do.


I've been through wiki but I will again. I'm going to paste the ones that I feel I identify with to see if I can get a better and more consitent idea about what exactly it is I believe. I just feel so confused. I'm libertarian but agree with social services and welfare. I'm atheist but am agnostic. I'm humanist but also agree with Darwin on some level. WTF?

(16-12-2011 01:22 PM)Clint Barnett Wrote:  
(16-12-2011 12:58 PM)germanyt Wrote:  
(16-12-2011 12:54 PM)The_observer Wrote:  You can look up definitions on wikipedia.

If you ask for a personal view however:
Secular: Although "secularism" is merely the opposite of "religious" I took the liberty to define it slightly different: A strict separation between religion and state. Since religion is a private matter, it should be separated from the state and it's laws. You can't force religion by law for the same reason you can't force a favorite color by law.

Humanist: Whenever whatever you do, the well being of your fellow humans should be foremost on your mind. I choose human well-being above religious dogma's, human life, economic profits, scientific knowledge, nationalism, ...

Note that this is no where related with any theistic or non-theistic point of view.
I know enough Christians that are humanist as well.

Secular humanism is a social philosophy.

I understand the definitions. I was just wondering how they relate to each other. Are most atheists also secular humanists? Wouldn't most secular humanists be atheists? Am I an atheist, secular humanist, and an existentialist? I'm not sure if there is a better way to define myself socially, philisophically, politically, and non-religiously.

I guess one way to look at is this:

You are an atheist simply because you don't believe. (you know that already)

Secularism is the principle of separation between government institutions and the persons mandated to represent the State from religious institutions and religious dignitaries. (if you are atheist you most likely believe this)

Humanism is an approach in study, philosophy, world view or practice that focuses on human values and concerns. (Most atheists relate to this).

Atheist is your belief.

Secular Humanist may be your worldview.

What Is Secular Humanism?
  • Secular Humanism is a term which has come into use in the last thirty years to describe a world view with the following elements and principles:
  • A conviction that dogmas, ideologies and traditions, whether religious, political or social, must be weighed and tested by each individual and not simply accepted on faith.
  • Commitment to the use of critical reason, factual evidence, and scientific methods of inquiry, rather than faith and mysticism, in seeking solutions to human problems and answers to important human questions.
  • A primary concern with fulfillment, growth, and creativity for both the individual and humankind in general.
  • A constant search for objective truth, with the understanding that new knowledge and experience constantly alter our imperfect perception of it.
  • A concern for this life and a commitment to making it meaningful through better understanding of ourselves, our history, our intellectual and artistic achievements, and the outlooks of those who differ from us.
  • A search for viable individual, social and political principles of ethical conduct, judging them on their ability to enhance human well-being and individual responsibility.
  • A conviction that with reason, an open marketplace of ideas, good will, and tolerance, progress can be made in building a better world for ourselves and our children.
Copied from: http://www.secularhumanism.org/index.php...ction=main

It's similar to what wiki says. Could humanism also be considered a political ideology?

“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it's time to pause and reflect.”

-Mark Twain
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16-12-2011, 01:27 PM
RE: Aware me on secular humanism...
(16-12-2011 01:24 PM)germanyt Wrote:  
(16-12-2011 01:15 PM)Starcrash Wrote:  
(16-12-2011 12:58 PM)germanyt Wrote:  I understand the definitions. I was just wondering how they relate to each other. Are most atheists also secular humanists? Wouldn't most secular humanists be atheists? Am I an atheist, secular humanist, and an existentialist? I'm not sure if there is a better way to define myself socially, philisophically, politically, and non-religiously.

Because atheists don't have a holy book, they don't really have a unified view on morality, either. But Sam Harris' books (especially The Moral Landscape) push the idea of humanism, so because of Sam Harris' popularity you'll find that a lot of atheists are also humanists (probably "most" atheists).

Usually if a person identifies himself or herself as an "atheist", they generally mean that they're also a humanist, as people who are simply "unbelieving" don't really read people like Harris, Hitchens, or Dawkins. But it's always better to ask rather than assume.

If you're looking for self-identification, there are better writers than these on such topics - David Hume, for instance, or AC Grayling. But even a quick review of Wikipedia (as I know has already been mentioned) is enough to find definitions of these topics, and you can just self-evaluate based on these definitions. Do they apply to you or not? If not, don't use them. If they do, then do.


I've been through wiki but I will again. I'm going to paste the ones that I feel I identify with to see if I can get a better and more consitent idea about what exactly it is I believe. I just feel so confused. I'm libertarian but agree with social services and welfare. I'm atheist but am agnostic. I'm humanist but also agree with Darwin on some level. WTF?

(16-12-2011 01:22 PM)Clint Barnett Wrote:  
(16-12-2011 12:58 PM)germanyt Wrote:  
(16-12-2011 12:54 PM)The_observer Wrote:  You can look up definitions on wikipedia.

If you ask for a personal view however:
Secular: Although "secularism" is merely the opposite of "religious" I took the liberty to define it slightly different: A strict separation between religion and state. Since religion is a private matter, it should be separated from the state and it's laws. You can't force religion by law for the same reason you can't force a favorite color by law.

Humanist: Whenever whatever you do, the well being of your fellow humans should be foremost on your mind. I choose human well-being above religious dogma's, human life, economic profits, scientific knowledge, nationalism, ...

Note that this is no where related with any theistic or non-theistic point of view.
I know enough Christians that are humanist as well.

Secular humanism is a social philosophy.

I understand the definitions. I was just wondering how they relate to each other. Are most atheists also secular humanists? Wouldn't most secular humanists be atheists? Am I an atheist, secular humanist, and an existentialist? I'm not sure if there is a better way to define myself socially, philisophically, politically, and non-religiously.

I guess one way to look at is this:

You are an atheist simply because you don't believe. (you know that already)

Secularism is the principle of separation between government institutions and the persons mandated to represent the State from religious institutions and religious dignitaries. (if you are atheist you most likely believe this)

Humanism is an approach in study, philosophy, world view or practice that focuses on human values and concerns. (Most atheists relate to this).

Atheist is your belief.

Secular Humanist may be your worldview.

What Is Secular Humanism?
  • Secular Humanism is a term which has come into use in the last thirty years to describe a world view with the following elements and principles:
  • A conviction that dogmas, ideologies and traditions, whether religious, political or social, must be weighed and tested by each individual and not simply accepted on faith.
  • Commitment to the use of critical reason, factual evidence, and scientific methods of inquiry, rather than faith and mysticism, in seeking solutions to human problems and answers to important human questions.
  • A primary concern with fulfillment, growth, and creativity for both the individual and humankind in general.
  • A constant search for objective truth, with the understanding that new knowledge and experience constantly alter our imperfect perception of it.
  • A concern for this life and a commitment to making it meaningful through better understanding of ourselves, our history, our intellectual and artistic achievements, and the outlooks of those who differ from us.
  • A search for viable individual, social and political principles of ethical conduct, judging them on their ability to enhance human well-being and individual responsibility.
  • A conviction that with reason, an open marketplace of ideas, good will, and tolerance, progress can be made in building a better world for ourselves and our children.
Copied from: http://www.secularhumanism.org/index.php...ction=main

It's similar to what wiki says. Could humanism also be considered a political ideology?

He just came to my office and ask me how he could know Jesus Christ as his personal savior.

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16-12-2011, 01:36 PM
RE: Aware me on secular humanism...
(16-12-2011 01:24 PM)germanyt Wrote:  I understand the definitions. I was just wondering how they relate to each other. Are most atheists also secular humanists? Wouldn't most secular humanists be atheists? Am I an atheist, secular humanist, and an existentialist? I'm not sure if there is a better way to define myself socially, philisophically, politically, and non-religiously.

I'd say you have to be agnostic/atheist to be a secular humanist. While the reverse is not nessarily true, an atheist with empathy would almost have to be a secular humanist.
Secular humanists can and do differ in their politics - it's the methodology that ties them together: tolerance, reason, free inquiry, etc.

I used to think 'secular humanist' was just a way to say 'atheist' without the social stigma.

It's been a while since I thought about existentialism, so I'll pass on that part.

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16-12-2011, 01:39 PM
RE: Aware me on secular humanism...
Quote:It's similar to what wiki says. Could humanism also be considered a political ideology?

I would say Humanism is more of a philosophy.

Political Ideology as wiki says:

An ideology is a collection of ideas. Typically, each ideology contains certain ideas on what it considers to be the best form of government (e.g. democracy, autocracy, etc.), and the best economic system (e.g. capitalism, socialism, etc.).

There are so many ideologies. I personally don't apply myself to just one. I also haven't researched each one to see where I fit either. I consider myself somewhat liberal I guess.

Idiot: : a foolish or stupid person
— idiot adjective
See Republican Candidates.

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16-12-2011, 02:38 PM
RE: Aware me on secular humanism...
(16-12-2011 01:27 PM)kingschosen Wrote:  
(16-12-2011 01:24 PM)germanyt Wrote:  
(16-12-2011 01:15 PM)Starcrash Wrote:  
(16-12-2011 12:58 PM)germanyt Wrote:  I understand the definitions. I was just wondering how they relate to each other. Are most atheists also secular humanists? Wouldn't most secular humanists be atheists? Am I an atheist, secular humanist, and an existentialist? I'm not sure if there is a better way to define myself socially, philisophically, politically, and non-religiously.

Because atheists don't have a holy book, they don't really have a unified view on morality, either. But Sam Harris' books (especially The Moral Landscape) push the idea of humanism, so because of Sam Harris' popularity you'll find that a lot of atheists are also humanists (probably "most" atheists).

Usually if a person identifies himself or herself as an "atheist", they generally mean that they're also a humanist, as people who are simply "unbelieving" don't really read people like Harris, Hitchens, or Dawkins. But it's always better to ask rather than assume.

If you're looking for self-identification, there are better writers than these on such topics - David Hume, for instance, or AC Grayling. But even a quick review of Wikipedia (as I know has already been mentioned) is enough to find definitions of these topics, and you can just self-evaluate based on these definitions. Do they apply to you or not? If not, don't use them. If they do, then do.


I've been through wiki but I will again. I'm going to paste the ones that I feel I identify with to see if I can get a better and more consitent idea about what exactly it is I believe. I just feel so confused. I'm libertarian but agree with social services and welfare. I'm atheist but am agnostic. I'm humanist but also agree with Darwin on some level. WTF?

(16-12-2011 01:22 PM)Clint Barnett Wrote:  
(16-12-2011 12:58 PM)germanyt Wrote:  
(16-12-2011 12:54 PM)The_observer Wrote:  You can look up definitions on wikipedia.

If you ask for a personal view however:
Secular: Although "secularism" is merely the opposite of "religious" I took the liberty to define it slightly different: A strict separation between religion and state. Since religion is a private matter, it should be separated from the state and it's laws. You can't force religion by law for the same reason you can't force a favorite color by law.

Humanist: Whenever whatever you do, the well being of your fellow humans should be foremost on your mind. I choose human well-being above religious dogma's, human life, economic profits, scientific knowledge, nationalism, ...

Note that this is no where related with any theistic or non-theistic point of view.
I know enough Christians that are humanist as well.

Secular humanism is a social philosophy.

I understand the definitions. I was just wondering how they relate to each other. Are most atheists also secular humanists? Wouldn't most secular humanists be atheists? Am I an atheist, secular humanist, and an existentialist? I'm not sure if there is a better way to define myself socially, philisophically, politically, and non-religiously.

I guess one way to look at is this:

You are an atheist simply because you don't believe. (you know that already)

Secularism is the principle of separation between government institutions and the persons mandated to represent the State from religious institutions and religious dignitaries. (if you are atheist you most likely believe this)

Humanism is an approach in study, philosophy, world view or practice that focuses on human values and concerns. (Most atheists relate to this).

Atheist is your belief.

Secular Humanist may be your worldview.

What Is Secular Humanism?
  • Secular Humanism is a term which has come into use in the last thirty years to describe a world view with the following elements and principles:
  • A conviction that dogmas, ideologies and traditions, whether religious, political or social, must be weighed and tested by each individual and not simply accepted on faith.
  • Commitment to the use of critical reason, factual evidence, and scientific methods of inquiry, rather than faith and mysticism, in seeking solutions to human problems and answers to important human questions.
  • A primary concern with fulfillment, growth, and creativity for both the individual and humankind in general.
  • A constant search for objective truth, with the understanding that new knowledge and experience constantly alter our imperfect perception of it.
  • A concern for this life and a commitment to making it meaningful through better understanding of ourselves, our history, our intellectual and artistic achievements, and the outlooks of those who differ from us.
  • A search for viable individual, social and political principles of ethical conduct, judging them on their ability to enhance human well-being and individual responsibility.
  • A conviction that with reason, an open marketplace of ideas, good will, and tolerance, progress can be made in building a better world for ourselves and our children.
Copied from: http://www.secularhumanism.org/index.php...ction=main

It's similar to what wiki says. Could humanism also be considered a political ideology?

He just came to my office and ask me how he could know Jesus Christ as his personal savior.


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“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it's time to pause and reflect.”

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