Define Secular Humanism
Define Secular Humanism - How Do People Define Humanism?
Secular Humanism is defined as an attempt to function as a civilized, secular society with the exclusion of God and any type of absolute moral truth or principles. The primary focus of Humanism is to exclude any kind of supernatural answers from the questions of life. Humanism holds that the universe exists for no purpose. We are the result of a blind and random process that does not necessitate any kind of meaning.
Humanism differs from the more extreme philosophy of nihilism, in that life can have a meaning if we assign a meaning to it. Life is only worth living if we ourselves make it worthwhile and enjoyable. Humanism maintains that no objective or universal values exist. A person may be moral if he or she creates a system of values and lives according them.
Define Secular Humanism - The Void
Secular Humanism is void of God or anything supernatural. Therefore, most secularists argue that secular humanism is not a religion.
This predominant view holds that secular beliefs are supported by science/reason, and religious beliefs are supported by faith/feelings. Secular humanists place religion outside science. Itís a mythological, touchy-feely realm of emotions that is irrelevant and obsolete -- an evolutionary feature that has yet to be completely discarded.
The question is why doesnít the definition of religion include secularism or any belief system that rejects God or supernatural things? According to some dictionaries, the U.S. Supreme Court, and many humanists themselves, religion is not limited to belief systems that believe in God (or gods). Any non-supernatural belief system that believes in a prime reality or highest truth (even if itís matter, nature, or the Force) is equally religious and should be treated identically to other religions. In the 1961 case of Torcaso v. Watkins, the U.S. Supreme Court held that Secular Humanism is a religion. Secular humanist John Dewey described Humanism as our "common faith." Julian Huxley called it "Religion without Revelation." The first Humanist Manifesto (1933) spoke openly of humanism as a religion. In fact, claiming that humanism was "the new religion" was trendy for at least 100 years.