Everything on this site is rooted in humanism. The equipping and the empowering. The living and the laughing. All this making sure we’re grounded in the real world rather than playing make-believe with fairies and angels.
When we bring this all together, it results in something powerful.
Something called humanism.
Which is why we’re talking about The Humanist You.
And what is humanism? Humanism can speak of a mindset, a perspective, a philosophy, or a social movement. It’s one that begins and ends with the advancement of humans. Sometimes people will make a distinction between “secular” humanism and “religious” humanism, but this can be confusing since both are inherently non-theistic. Humanism is never about gods but about humans.
Whether you’re talking about a philosophy or a social movement, here’s what humanism strives for:
To be Humanist is to strive for the Big-Picture Betterment of a Thriving Humanity.
But what exactly does this mean?
I’m glad you asked.
Below you find six bullet-pointed ideals concerning humanism. Each of these are direct quotes from the American Humanist Association‘s 2003 declaration, Humanism and Its Aspirations: Humanist Manifesto III. Each of the bullet-points are what the document refers to as humanism’s, you guessed it, “aspirations.” Click on each one to read about the general consensus on what it means to be humanist.
“Knowledge of the world is derived by observation, experimentation, and rational analysis.
“Humanists find that science is the best method for determining this knowledge as well as for solving problems and developing beneficial technologies. We also recognize the value of new departures in thought, the arts, and inner experience—each subject to analysis by critical intelligence.”
“Humans are an integral part of nature, the result of unguided evolutionary change.
“Humanists recognize nature as self-existing. We accept our life as all and enough, distinguishing things as they are from things as we might wish or imagine them to be. We welcome the challenges of the future, and are drawn to and undaunted by the yet to be known.”
“Ethical values are derived from human need and interest as tested by experience.
“Humanists ground values in human welfare shaped by human circumstances, interests, and concerns and extended to the global ecosystem and beyond. We are committed to treating each person as having inherent worth and dignity, and to making informed choices in a context of freedom consonant with responsibility.”
“Life’s fulfillment emerges from individual participation in the service of humane ideals.
“We aim for our fullest possible development and animate our lives with a deep sense of purpose, finding wonder and awe in the joys and beauties of human existence, its challenges and tragedies, and even in the inevitability and finality of death. Humanists rely on the rich heritage of human culture and the lifestance of Humanism to provide comfort in times of want and encouragement in times of plenty.”
“Humans are social by nature and find meaning in relationships.
“Humanists long for and strive toward a world of mutual care and concern, free of cruelty and its consequences, where differences are resolved cooperatively without resorting to violence. The joining of individuality with interdependence enriches our lives, encourages us to enrich the lives of others, and inspires hope of attaining peace, justice, and opportunity for all.”
“Working to benefit society maximizes individual happiness.
“Progressive cultures have worked to free Humanity from the brutalities of mere survival and to reduce suffering, improve society, and develop global community. We seek to minimize the inequities of circumstance and ability, and we support a just distribution of nature’s resources and the fruits of human effort so that as many as possible can enjoy a good life.”
So yes, the humanist drive centers on the big-picture betterment of a thriving humanity.
Humanists want humans to thrive. This is no surprise. We don’t just want them to do well. We want them to be at their best. But we’re not just talking about certain humans. Not just my family, my people, or my country. No, we’re talking about all humanity. And not just for today, but thriving as a species into future.
The betterment we seek is “big-picture” in that it’s wide and all-encompassing. Humanism’s not about short-term goals and quick fixes. It’s not just trying to make a quick buck. It’s not demanding what we need for today while sabotaging our grandchildren’s needs for tomorrow. It’s not merely about making yourself or others feel good for the meanwhile.
And humanism’s not so naive as to think it’s humans against the rest of this world. Nope, we’re all connected, and this planet is our home. The “big-picture betterment of a thriving humanity” demands we also take damn good care of this earth and its ecosystems. Long-range and into the future. Smart, healthy, ethical decision making that will set us up for success. Tomorrow and every day thereafter.
So the Humanist YOU?
It’s you making the most of your potential.
And it’s you then channeling that potential for the good of all humanity,
for the forward-thrust of this global community we find ourselves within.
All of us together.
For the better.
Until the job is done.