Who are the Humanists?
Humanism is defined as: a world view or life stance that focuses on the natural and human and rejects the supernatural. Humanism is positive, ethical and democratic. It is underpinned by a commitment to rational inquiry and the scientific method (HHA, 2014). Humanists believe that innate human compassion and ability can overcome life’s obstacles to accomplish great things without a need for a higher being to dictate behavior. They are communities like any other that strive for democratic change for the betterment and acceptance of all individuals equally. The Humanists promote science, thought, action, community, and recognition of the capacity of the human race to be the controllers of their world through open dialogue (G., 2014)
Humanism in history dates back to the 1920’s with the establishment of the American Humanist Association in 1941. The focus of the group was to promote secular and free thinking to benefit society for the evolution of mankind. Human behavior is based on action and interaction rather than the input or control of a religious being. The Humanists work towards a government free from religious bias and justice for all in a nonviolent society with understanding and compassion for everyone. Through community outreach the association hopes to encourage understanding and accomplishment by working together to support a public dialogue of critical thinking, free speech, and ethical behaviors. They believe that we are not guided by the rewards of an afterlife or adherence to a supernatural being, but rather seekers of knowledge that must answer to our own ethics, and shape our world with civil rights and liberties for everyone; “No deities will save us, we must save ourselves” (Humanist, 2014).