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Where are the theist secular humanists?
Posted: 30 March 2015 05:05 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 16 ]
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Irmin - 11 February 2015 10:53 AM

That’s all very nice, but what has it got to do with humanism?

It has a lot to do with humanism. See the signers of the Humanist Manifesto I and look into the history of Humanism, as well as the notable signers of the Humanist Manifesto III:

http://americanhumanist.org/Humanism/Humanist_Manifesto_I

http://americanhumanist.org/Humanism/Humanist_Manifesto_III/Notable_Signers

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Posted: 11 March 2016 10:51 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 17 ]
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I used to think that calling and considering myself an atheist was sufficient.  But now I realize that a label that describes me best is secular humanist. I realize and understand the Sam Harris argument that labels are not necessary and that individuals do not label themselves has non astrologists, but I think it’s a place to at least, hang your hat.

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Posted: 11 March 2016 12:59 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 18 ]
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Secular Humanist Texan - 11 March 2016 10:51 AM

I used to think that calling and considering myself an atheist was sufficient.  But now I realize that a label that describes me best is secular humanist. I realize and understand the Sam Harris argument that labels are not necessary and that individuals do not label themselves has non astrologists, but I think it’s a place to at least, hang your hat.

Humanism needs no adjectives., certainly not “secular”. Humanism is by definition, secular. To add the word “secular” to humanism is redundant. It’s like calling a Catholic, let’s say, a Catholic Theist., or a Methodist a Methodist Theist, as if there were any other kind.

Is Buddhism a religion?

[ Edited: 12 March 2016 11:06 PM by LoisL ]
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Posted: 11 March 2016 03:07 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 19 ]
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The word “humanism” has a number of meanings. And because authors and speakers often don’t clarify which meaning they intend, those trying to explain humanism can easily become a source of confusion. Fortunately, each meaning of the word constitutes a different type of humanism—the different types being easily separated and defined by the use of appropriate adjectives. So it is relatively easy to summarize the varieties of humanism in this way.

Literary Humanism is a devotion to the humanities or literary culture.

Renaissance Humanism is the spirit of learning that developed at the end of the middle ages with the revival of classical letters and a renewed confidence in the ability of human beings to determine for themselves truth and falsehood.

Western Cultural Humanism is a good name for the rational and empirical tradition that originated largely in ancient Greece and Rome, evolved throughout European history, and now constitutes a basic part of the Western approach to science, political theory, ethics, and law.

Philosophical Humanism is any outlook or way of life centered on human need and interest. Sub-categories of this type include Christian Humanism and Modern Humanism.

Christian Humanism is defined by Webster’s Third New International Dictionary as “a philosophy advocating the self-fulfillment of man within the framework of Christian principles.” This more human-oriented faith is largely a product of the Renaissance and is a part of what made up Renaissance humanism.

Modern Humanism, also called Naturalistic Humanism, Scientific Humanism, Ethical Humanism, and Democratic Humanism, is defined by one of its leading proponents, Corliss Lamont, as “a naturalistic philosophy that rejects all supernaturalism and relies primarily upon reason and science, democracy and human compassion.” Modern Humanism has a dual origin, both secular and religious, and these constitute its sub-categories.

Secular Humanism is an outgrowth of eighteenth century enlightenment rationalism and nineteenth century freethought. Many secular groups, such as the Council for Secular Humanism and the American Rationalist Federation, and many otherwise unaffiliated academic philosophers and scientists, advocate this philosophy.

Religious Humanism largely emerged out of Ethical Culture, Unitarianism, and Universalism. Today, many Unitarian Universalist congregations and all Ethical Culture societies describe themselves as humanist in the modern sense.

The most critical irony in dealing with Modern Humanism is the tendency for its advocates to disagree on whether or not this worldview is religious. Those who see it as philosophy are the Secular Humanists while those who see it as religion are Religious Humanists. This dispute has been going on since the beginning of the twentieth century when the secular and religious traditions converged and brought Modern Humanism into existence.

Secular and Religious Humanists both share the same worldview and the same basic principles. This is made evident by the fact that both Secular and Religious Humanists were among the signers of Humanist Manifesto I in 1933, Humanist Manifesto II in 1973, and Humanist Manifesto III in 2003. From the standpoint of philosophy alone, there is no difference between the two. It is only in the definition of religion and in the practice of the philosophy that Religious and Secular Humanists effectively disagree.

The definition of religion used by Religious Humanists is often a functional one. Religion is that which serves the personal and social needs of a group of people sharing the same philosophical worldview.

To serve personal needs, Religious Humanism offers a basis for moral values, an inspiring set of ideals, methods for dealing with life’s harsher realities, a rationale for living life joyously, and an overall sense of purpose.

To serve social needs humanist religious communities (such as Ethical Culture societies and many Unitarian Universalist churches) offer a sense of belonging, an institutional setting for the moral education of children, special holidays shared with like-minded people, a unique ceremonial life, the performance of ideologically consistent rites of passage (weddings, child welcomings, coming-of-age celebrations, memorials, and so forth), an opportunity for affirmation of one’s philosophy of life, and a historical context for one’s ideas.

Religious Humanists often maintain that most human beings have personal and social needs that can only be met by religion (taken in the functional sense just detailed). They do not feel that one should have to make a choice between meeting these needs in a traditional faith context versus not meeting them at all.

[ Edited: 11 March 2016 05:04 PM by Secular Humanist Texan ]
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Posted: 12 March 2016 04:49 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 20 ]
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Everyone can be a Humanist.  IMO, the problem lies in the phrase *secular theist*, which speaks of “tolerance” a very dangeros word, IMO.

Secular Humanists do not *tolerate*, they *accept* and *embrace*.

[ Edited: 15 March 2016 04:57 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 13 March 2016 09:04 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 21 ]
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Write4U - 12 March 2016 04:49 AM

Everyone can be a Humanist.  IMO, the problem lies in the phrase *secular theist*, which speaks of “tolerance” a very dangeros word, IMO.

Secular humanist do not *tolerate*, they *embrace*.

Secular theist is an oxymoron. It takes cognitive dissonance, but I have friends who are secular theists. I don’t understand how they can compartmentalize their beliefs, but we share many values and have good times when we’re together. I even know a Catholic Nudist. Wrap your head around that one.

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Posted: 15 March 2016 04:40 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 22 ]
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DarronS - 13 March 2016 09:04 PM
Write4U - 12 March 2016 04:49 AM

Everyone can be a Humanist.  IMO, the problem lies in the phrase *secular theist*, which speaks of “tolerance” a very dangeros word, IMO.

Secular humanist do not *tolerate*, they *embrace*.

Secular theist is an oxymoron. It takes cognitive dissonance, but I have friends who are secular theists. I don’t understand how they can compartmentalize their beliefs, but we share many values and have good times when we’re together. I even know a Catholic Nudist. Wrap your head around that one.

I agree.

My main point was that the word *tolerance* is often used to describe “we don’t like it, but we’ll live with it”, which IMO is hubris.
As a secular Humanist, meeting a good person of any cloth, I embrace their humanity, regardless of their spiritual orientation.

[ Edited: 15 March 2016 05:00 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 15 March 2016 05:49 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 23 ]
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CuthbertJ - 12 February 2015 11:15 AM
Irmin - 10 February 2015 02:50 PM

A common assertion among people here is that theists can be (secular) humanists. A lot of American humanists seem to be of this viewpoint, which would make American humanism very different from European humanism., the latter which is explicitly irreligious and atheistic (or at least agnostic).

So I’m asking you here: Where are those secular humanists who are also theists? Have they had prominent roles in any humanist organization? Do they show up in meetups or in membership lists? Show me an example of a theist secular humanist!

Umm, no, theists can’t be secular humanists. Contradiction in terms.

They can be secular in the sense that they believe in government without religious influence, even if they believe in god. They can also be humanists.  Secular humanist is redundant. Humanism embraces the secularity of government, it does not embrace or require atheism. As long as a person can be secular—meaning wanting a separation between religion and government—as well as religious, he or she can be a humanist as well as theistic in the accepted meaning of the word humanism.


Secularism

n.

The view that religious considerations should be excluded from civil affairs or public education.

Free Dictionary.

Note, it has nothing to say about belief. A secular person can a theist or not, he just doesn’t believe in attaching religion to civil affairs or public education. Even theists can be rational.

The philosophy of Americans United For Separation of Church and State is a secular state. Many AU members are theists. The president of AU is a clergyman. There is no reason to think that a theist or even a Christian can’t also be secular. Secularism has nothing to do with religion. Secularists want civil affairs and religion to be separate, just as the American founding fathers wanted.

Lois

[ Edited: 15 March 2016 06:03 PM by LoisL ]
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Posted: 16 March 2016 12:09 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 24 ]
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The strength of a theists faith is inversely proportional to their humanism. 

Justifications and reasons for an action are necessary when deciding if it is humanistic or not.  I consider being good because you’re afraid of Hell or some other punishment, different from being good because you want to reduce suffering. 

A person with 100% adherence to a religious doctrine is only a humanist in the same way a stopped clock is right… by coincidence only.  As a person gets less and less literal in their faith, they can become can be more and more of a humanist.

So can there be a theist secular humanist?... not really, unless you can have degrees of humanism (which I don’t think you can).

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Posted: 16 March 2016 12:43 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 25 ]
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3point14rat - 16 March 2016 12:09 PM

The strength of a theists faith is inversely proportional to their humanism. 

Justifications and reasons for an action are necessary when deciding if it is humanistic or not.  I consider being good because you’re afraid of Hell or some other punishment, different from being good because you want to reduce suffering. 

A person with 100% adherence to a religious doctrine is only a humanist in the same way a stopped clock is right… by coincidence only.  As a person gets less and less literal in their faith, they can become can be more and more of a humanist.

So can there be a theist secular humanist?... not really, unless you can have degrees of humanism (which I don’t think you can).

Your first line I thought, was marvelous.
After that I don’t know…
I have know a few Humanist Theists,(jews, catholics) they seemed pretty Humanist to me.
No, I’m pretty sure someone can be a Theist and Humanist quite concurrently.
That’s my opinion.

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Posted: 16 March 2016 01:44 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 26 ]
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VYAZMA - 16 March 2016 12:43 PM
3point14rat - 16 March 2016 12:09 PM

The strength of a theists faith is inversely proportional to their humanism. 

Justifications and reasons for an action are necessary when deciding if it is humanistic or not.  I consider being good because you’re afraid of Hell or some other punishment, different from being good because you want to reduce suffering. 

A person with 100% adherence to a religious doctrine is only a humanist in the same way a stopped clock is right… by coincidence only.  As a person gets less and less literal in their faith, they can become can be more and more of a humanist.

So can there be a theist secular humanist?... not really, unless you can have degrees of humanism (which I don’t think you can).

Your first line I thought, was marvelous.
After that I don’t know…
I have know a few Humanist Theists,(jews, catholics) they seemed pretty Humanist to me.
No, I’m pretty sure someone can be a Theist and Humanist quite concurrently.
That’s my opinion.

I agree.
Theists are involved in many Humanist efforts. It fact it is one of the redeeming factors of US theism anyway.

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Posted: 16 March 2016 01:47 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 27 ]
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VYAZMA - 16 March 2016 12:43 PM
3point14rat - 16 March 2016 12:09 PM

The strength of a theists faith is inversely proportional to their humanism. 

Justifications and reasons for an action are necessary when deciding if it is humanistic or not.  I consider being good because you’re afraid of Hell or some other punishment, different from being good because you want to reduce suffering. 

A person with 100% adherence to a religious doctrine is only a humanist in the same way a stopped clock is right… by coincidence only.  As a person gets less and less literal in their faith, they can become can be more and more of a humanist.

So can there be a theist secular humanist?... not really, unless you can have degrees of humanism (which I don’t think you can).

Your first line I thought, was marvelous.
After that I don’t know…
I have know a few Humanist Theists,(jews, catholics) they seemed pretty Humanist to me.
No, I’m pretty sure someone can be a Theist and Humanist quite concurrently.
That’s my opinion.

I know lots of great people who are very strong theists, and now that I think about them, I might have to revise my position. 

The good theists I know had the humanist portion of their values instilled in them from the religions they follow when they were young.  But now that they are adults, they truly want to do good for others and don’t seem to be acting out of fear or because it’s expected of them.  The humanism is as much a part of them as any other aspect of their personality.

So I suppose you can be a theist humanist, as long as you’re doing it for the good of others and not yourself (this is still necessary in my eyes). 

As for the secular part of ‘theist secular humanists’, nope… “secular theist” is an oxymoron.

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Posted: 16 March 2016 02:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 28 ]
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3point14rat - 16 March 2016 01:47 PM

So I suppose you can be a theist humanist, as long as you’re doing it for the good of others and not yourself (this is still necessary in my eyes). 

Hell yeah. That goes without saying. grin

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Posted: 16 March 2016 03:03 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 29 ]
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VYAZMA - 16 March 2016 02:23 PM
3point14rat - 16 March 2016 01:47 PM

So I suppose you can be a theist humanist, as long as you’re doing it for the good of others and not yourself (this is still necessary in my eyes). 

Hell yeah. That goes without saying. grin

Well it should go without saying, but some people don’t look at the reasons behind the actions like we do.  Those people wouldn’t have a problem calling a rabid theist a humanist even if most of their actions were done out of fear and self-preservation.  I’m just reinforcing the idea for those who don’t already get the concept.

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It is morally as bad not to care whether a thing is true or not, so long as it makes you feel good, as it is not to care how you got your money as long as you have got it.  Edmund Way Teale, Circle of the Seasons

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Posted: 16 March 2016 03:51 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 30 ]
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3point14rat - 16 March 2016 03:03 PM
VYAZMA - 16 March 2016 02:23 PM
3point14rat - 16 March 2016 01:47 PM

So I suppose you can be a theist humanist, as long as you’re doing it for the good of others and not yourself (this is still necessary in my eyes). 

Hell yeah. That goes without saying. grin

Well it should go without saying, but some people don’t look at the reasons behind the actions like we do.  Those people wouldn’t have a problem calling a rabid theist a humanist even if most of their actions were done out of fear and self-preservation.  I’m just reinforcing the idea for those who don’t already get the concept.

Oh, I gotcha. Roger that.

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