Humanist Manifesto III- A Review

I didn’t really intend to review the Manifesto again, in detail, though that will happen as I review the series, the responses to it, and my thoughts in retrospect. All experiences are interesting, from one end of the spectrum to the other; this is not one I would particularly put away for safekeeping in a box, but perhaps some lessons can be learned from it. Read on…

Humanist Values- Working for a Better Society

The last two values espoused in the Humanist Manifesto III continue the general feeling set by the previous two, which is to say they may tend to inspire a yawn. But again, I will attempt to find something positive about the statement “Working to benefit society maximizes individual happiness.” In attempting to do so, I once again consulted the AHA on the subject: Read on…

Humanist Values- Relationships

At the risk of inciting more anti-Humanist Manifesto III feelings, I am going to stubbornly continue through the list. :) Next up is one which is even less specific than the last: Humans are social by nature and find meaning in relationships. By my standards, at least, that is more of a New-age philosophy than it is a Humanist philosophy. It feels vaguely like something taken from a Depok Chopra self-help book. Still, we will soldier on. Read on…

Humanist Values- Serving Humane Ideals

The fourth of the Humanist values from the 2003 Humanist Manifesto III has always seemed a little soft for me. It says, “Life’s fulfillment emerges from individual participation in the service of humane ideals.” One supposes they meant it to be that way, since it can mean so many things to so many different people. Personally, I would be happier of it mentioned some concrete possibilities. The sentiment is clear, in any event. There is reason to believe that ethical … Read on…

Humanist Ethical Values

This third value espoused by the 2003 Humanist Manifesto is perhaps more complex than the first two, and requires what I see as a divorcement between the concept of ethics and the concept of morals. In its entirety, this third item reads: Ethical values are derived from human need and interest as tested by experience. Read on…

Humanist Values- Nature and Evolution

I suppose suppose it could be said that the second item in the list of the six mentioned in the Humanist Manifesto 3 is an extension of the first. In full, this item reads “Humans are an integral part of nature, the result of evolutionary change, an unguided process.” If you remember that first item, it had to do with empiricism, including observation, experimentation, and rational analysis. You know, the scientific method, critical thinking, pragmatism, etc. Read on…

Where should tolerance end?

Tolerance is often discussed as one of the grand issues, of which there could never be too much. That opinion speaks both of very little critical thought and too much “What would jebus do?” Tolerance may seem bland, like water, but regardless of how many times doctors tell us that water is good for us, no water at all is bad and 40 gallons a day is just as dangerous, if not more so. As with most things in life, tolerance needs a little balance. Read on…

Anatomy of a Humanist “church”

There is a tiny area at the back of my head where I run mental jobs that are the human equivalent of background tasks. I can poke them back there to run on their own, and they pop out with a “DING!” when they have something to say. Some of them have been there for years; they keep dinging but still need more work, so I put them back. Read on…

Shameless Web Site Pandering

Those of you who have read my posts here and elsewhere will know that I miss the Freethinking Unitarian church that I joined in the 60s and which the parent organization has tried to turn into just another christian denomination over the past twenty or so years. I have other Web sites that are dedicated, in part, to reversing that catastrophe. Now, along with a few others who feel the same way, a new think tank has been formed to … Read on…