Please comment with feedback on this next-to-last segment of my book introducing Humanism to newcomers!
“The fact that a believer is happier than a skeptic is no more to the point than the fact that a drunken man is happier than a sober one.”
-George Bernard Shaw
Faith and Reason
What do humanists have faith in?
They place their faith in humanity’s ability to solve all types of problems-social, political, aggression, health, economic, education. We do not need to look to a supernatural being for assistance or intervention. We have within us the innate power and ability to make a better world.
They feel confident that the future will bring more freedom, more free choice, and extended rights for more people.
They have faith that an educated and free people make good choices for themselves, their loved ones, and their nation.
They are confident that people, employing the scientific method, have the ability to solve problems, lead a better life and achieve happiness for themselves and others.
Why do humanists lack faith in a god or a supernatural being?
They have difficulty placing their faith in a god that might not exist, who allows people to suffer natural tragedies like earthquakes and floods, which indicates this god is either impotent or does not care.
Humanist beliefs are not based on faith in God. Most often, they regard faith as a claim that has insufficient evidence to support it.
Who does a humanist have faith in?
Him/herself, and others whose goals, values and actions will lead to a better world.
Before a humanist says he believes something, what questions might he or she ask?
Is there credible evidence to support this belief?
Is this claim reasonable?
“If we are going to teach ‘creation science’ as an alternative to evolution, then we should also teach the stork theory as an alternative to biological reproduction.”
Life and Death
Do humanists believe in any type of afterlife?
Not a physical afterlife. The only afterlife for a humanist is the effect they had on persons and institutions with whom they had been involved.
If humanists do not believe there is an actual life after death, how important is this life?
Convinced that this life is all there is, they try to live the fullest life possible. They can not wait for the “next life” to perform all the good they want to do. Humanists believe in life before death
What is a humanist funeral service like?
Although sometimes (often) held in a religious building, it is not a religious event. It is a celebration of the deceased’s life, how the person affected others, and the positive affect the person had. Friends and relatives often speak.
Does suffering have a purpose?
No. Suffering should be eliminated wherever it appears. Humans should oppose suffering in all its forms.
What is evil?
Those conditions that create or perpetuate needless suffering.