Humanism in more depth

Humanism (Wikipedia definition) is a way of thinking and living that aims to bring out the best in people so that all people may have better opportunities in life. Humanism encompasses the view that we can make sense of the world using reason, experience and shared human values and that we can live good lives without religious or superstitious beliefs. Humanists hold that there is no god(s) and no afterlife and therefore we must take responsibility for our own lives and for the community and the world in which we live.

Human values are based on the recognition of what makes life worthwhile for humankind. These values give us rights, freedom and dignity, but also give us responsibilities. Humanists believe that people alone, through personal commitment, rational discussion and collective effort can achieve a better world.

Humanism is an approach to life based on humanity and reason – humanists recognise that moral values are properly founded on human nature and experience alone and that the aims of morality should be human welfare, happiness and fulfilment. Our decisions are based on the available evidence and our assessment of the outcomes of our actions, not on any dogma or sacred text.

Humanism is a naturalistic view, encompassing atheism and agnosticism as responses to theistic claims, but is an active and ethical philosophy greater than these reactions to religion.

Humanists believe in individual rights and freedoms, but believe that individual responsibility, social cooperation and mutual respect are just as important.

Humanists believe that people can and will continue to find solutions to the world’s problems, so that quality of life can be improved for everyone.

Humanists are positive, gaining inspiration from our lives, art and culture, and a rich natural world.

Albert Einstein Tim Minchin

Famous non-believers: Albert Einstein, Tim Minchin