AFFIRMATION OF HUMANISM

We are committed to the application of reason and science.

We deplore efforts to denigrate intelligence.

We think scientific discovery and technology contribute to the betterment of mankind.

We think an open and pluralistic society that is democratic is the best protection of human rights.

We are committed to the principle of separation of church and state. We cultivate the arts of negotiation and compromise.

We are concerned with securing justice and fairness for all and eliminating discrimination and intolerance.

We think supporting the disadvantaged and disabled will help to enable them to help themselves.

We attempt to transcend divisive parochial loyalties based on race, religion, gender, nationality, creed, class, sexual orientation or ethnicity and strive to work together for the common good of mankind. We want to protect and enhance Earth.

We think enjoying life in the here and now and developing our creative talents to the fullest.

We try to cultivate moral excellence.

We respect the right to privacy. Mature adults should be allowed to express sexual preference, to exercise reproductive freedom, to have access to comprehensive and informed health care, to die with dignity.

We think common moral decencies, altruism, integrity, honesty, truthfulness, responsibility are human qualities. Human ethics is amenable to critical, rational guidance. Moral principles are tested by their consequence.

We are deeply concerned with the moral education of our children.

We are engaged in the arts no less than by the sciences.

We are citizens of the universe and excited by discoveries still to be made.

We are skeptical of untested claims to knowledge and are open to novel ideas.

We affirm humanism as a realistic alternative to theologies and ideologies of violence  and as a source of  rich personal significance and genuine satisfaction in the service of others.

We prefer optimism to pessimism, hope to despair, learning in the place of dogma, truth instead of ignorance, joy rather than guilt or sin, tolerance in the place of fear, love instead of hatred, compassion over selfishness, beauty instead of ugliness, and reason rather than blind faith of irrationality. We think in the fullest realization of the best and noblest that we are capable of as human beings.

Forgive me Paul Kurtz-who penned this- for doing some editing, for reasons of length, mostly, but also ’cause you use ‘believe’ a lot. I am not a believer. I affirm, I think. I try to reason. I am a secular humanist and secular humanism is truth, ‘Good enough”, salvation, egalitarian , defining, hope, sensual according to lots’a guys who responded to Tom Flynn’s  request for answers in the February/March edition of Free Inquiry. One, a devout atheist said we are “atheists without balls.” See, we even call each other names. But no fisticuffs. Anyhow, I can get away with it, I’m a little old lady without a pencil.

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