Humanism is a dynamic and religion-free way of life that affirms our ability and responsibility to lead ethical and meaningful lives, aspiring to the greater good of humanity. Humanists are guided by reason and scientific inquiry, inspired by music and art, and motivated by ethics, compassion and fairness.
Humanists support secular and scientific approaches to addressing the wide range of issues important to us all. This is why Humanists advocate for keeping government and religion separate. Secular laws are the fairest and most realistic way that people of all faiths and philosophies can be considered truly equal under the law.
If you want to learn more about the humanist approach to life, the twelve principles of humanism are a good place to start.
Twelve Principles of Humanism
- Humanism aims at the full development of every human being.
- Humanists uphold the broadest application of democratic principles in all human relationships.
- Humanists advocate the use of the scientific method, both as a guide to distinguish fact from fiction and to help develop beneficial and creative uses of science and technology.
- Humanists affirm the dignity of every person and the right of the individual to maximum possible freedom compatible with the rights of others.
- Humanists acknowledge human interdependence, the need for mutual respect and the kinship of all humanity.
- Humanists call for the continued improvement of society so that no one may be deprived of the basic necessities of life, and for institutions and conditions to provide every person with opportunities for developing their full potential.
- Humanists support the development and extension of fundamental human freedoms, as expressed in the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights and supplemented by UN International Covenants comprising the United Nations Bill of Human Rights.
- Humanists advocate peaceful resolution of conflicts between individuals, groups, and nations.
- The humanist ethic encourages development of the positive potentialities in human nature, and approves conduct based on a sense of responsibility to oneself and to all other persons.
- Humanists reject beliefs held in absence of verifiable evidence, such as beliefs based solely on dogma, revelation, mysticism or appeals to the supernatural.
- Humanists affirm that individual and social problems can only be resolved by means of human reason, intelligent effort, critical thinking joined with compassion and a spirit of empathy for all living beings.
- Humanists affirm that human beings are completely a part of nature, and that our survival is dependent upon a healthy planet that provides us and all other forms of life with a life-supporting environment.