Humanism is a progressive philosophy of life that, without supernaturalism, affirms our ability and responsibility to lead ethical lives of personal fulfillment that aspire to the greater good of humanity.

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Comment by Geraldo Cienmarcos on November 28, 2010 at 12:11pm
Why Religious Believers Are So Desperate for the Atheist Seal of Approval

Many religious believers are intent on getting atheists' approval for their beliefs. If you're hoping for that -- don't hold your breath.

Comment by Geraldo Cienmarcos on November 23, 2010 at 4:07pm
a link to a YouTube video of a debate (participants including Dawkins, Shermer) : Does the Universe Havea Purpose?

Michael Shermer: "What is our purpose? We come from stardust. All of the elements of which we are made of were cooked inside stars, coalesced into new solar systems like ours, and here we are complex organisms. For 3 and 1/2 billion years life has evolved from one generation to the next not one broken chain in this long link. Darwin said instead of finding this to be depressing as our opponents think this is a grim world view, in fact it's an ennobling world view. Darwin said, "When I view all beings not as special creations, but as the lineal descendants of some few beings which lived long ago they seem to be to become ennoble. It's ennobling to think how fortunate we are to be part of that 3 and 1/2 billion year long chain. We are an integral link in that. What could be more uplifting than that. But there is more than that. We have big brains. We can do many different things to contribute to this lineal descent of hitting our genes into the next generation. In fact there is a science that studies this. It is what makes people happy, fulfilled, and feeling like they have purpose. There are four things you can do. 1. Deep love, family commitment, commitment to another person, even a person of the same gender ... 2. Meaningful work and career, that is doing something productive makes people feel fulfilled, happy and have a sense of purpose. Not just to make money, but to actually do something in the world that makes a difference. 3. We are a social primate species. How we interact with other people matters. So the third thing you can do is be involved socially, politically, in your community, not just your family and your extended family but people you don't know, strangers, manning the soup kitchens, volunteering for non-profits, helping other people in some way. This is one of the things that people report makes them feel better, happier, fulfilled, giving them deep purpose in their lives. And finally 4. Some sense of transcendences, something beyond you. Now religion claims this as their monopoly, their exclusive rights to the idea of being spiritually fulfilled. This is nonsense. The religious world view is so small, so mediaeval in this tiny little proscenium right here at the stage on earth of which we're acting out this drama just for some grand life to come. No, that's not what counts. What counts is the here and now. If there is no after life, if there is no God, how important it is now what you do. Now is when it counts. Your relationships with other people now is what counts and matters. Not so you can chalk up some points for next life, to get a bonus and move up the ranks of to some special country club on high. No, what you do now matters. Now I'm going to close with a quote from Helen Keller most of you probably know that Helen Keller was blind, deaf, and dumb, 1930s, who found deep significance, wrote, "I know no study that will take you nearer to the way of happiness than the study of nature and I include in the study of nature, not only things and their forces, but mankind and their ways and the molding of the affections and the will into an earnest desire not only to be happy, but to create happiness and it all comes down to this, the simplest way to be happy is to do good."
Comment by Geraldo Cienmarcos on November 19, 2010 at 8:23am
"... the brain links the literal and the metaphorical..."

"So where did this facility with symbolism come from? It strikes me that the human brain has evolved a necessary shortcut for doing so, and with some major implications."

The Stone: This Is Your Brain on Metaphors

By ROBERT SAPOLSKY Despite rumors to the contrary, there are many ways in which the human brain isn't all that fancy. Let's compare it to the nervous system ...
Comment by Geraldo Cienmarcos on November 10, 2010 at 9:34pm
'The planet won't be destroyed by global warming because God promised Noah,' says politician bidding to chair U.S. energy committee

By Mail Foreign Service
10th November 2010
A Republican congressman hoping to chair the powerful House Energy Committee refers to the Bible and God on the issue of global warming.

Read more:

tiny URL:
Comment by Geraldo Cienmarcos on November 10, 2010 at 3:35pm
Don't Miss Our First Humanist TV Ad this Friday!
Comment by Geraldo Cienmarcos on November 10, 2010 at 8:32am
News analysis and History notes:
Big Business Allies Duped Tens of Millions of Evangelicals

How Republicans and Their Big Business Allies Duped Tens of Millions of Evangelicals into Voting for a Corporate Agenda
The bible-thumping white underclass have given a big boost to the corporate bottom line.


The earnest, mostly Evangelical dupes have a point: by calling for a "return to our roots" (be they biblical and/or constitutional) they are actually maintaining a grand old American tradition: religious delusion as the basis for conquest. ...

PS. from Gary
There is a book with an entire, detailed, footnoted chapter on how corporate American cynically co-opted the Evangelical movement.

Selling Free Enterprise:
The Business Assault on Labor and Liberalism, 1945-60.
by Elizabeth A. Fones-Wolf
Comment by Geraldo Cienmarcos on November 8, 2010 at 7:53pm
Atheist Students Find Their Place in the Interfaith Movement
Huffington Post

"When I found humanism, I felt like many humanists and atheists were detached from religious communities, and many were antagonistic toward the religious," ...
tiny URL:
Comment by James M. Martin on November 7, 2010 at 5:53pm
I should think the problem finding morality would be theological, as it seems to me that the closer one gets to "God" the more immoral one becomes, unless perhaps we are talking about mendicant gurus in caves. Such pronouncements as Rat's to the effect that morality is impossible without "God" presupposes a set of strictures, "Thou shalt's" and "Thou shalt not's" that ignores the simple truth that nothing is right or wrong but thinking makes it so.
Comment by Geraldo Cienmarcos on November 7, 2010 at 4:18pm
Hi James,
Of course that is what I would expect Pope Rat to say.
I did find the part about we can't have morality without God of interest.
He's still beating that dead horse. Ratzinger has written about 3 books on that topic. He has to ignore a heap of empirical evidence to pull off that fallacy.
Anyway, as a curiosity, it just goes to show that the Roman Catholic Church is still trying to shore up its base after all these approximately 1,710 years. I least they aren't doing so by outright killing people like they used to. The Spaniards have had a fabulous rebirth since Franco died and the church and state got a divorce.
-- Gary
Comment by James M. Martin on November 7, 2010 at 10:05am
@Geraldo: What would expect the old Nazi to say? When I visited Spain (so long ago I hate to date it) Franco was still in power and the Catholic Church held sway; for all purposes, Catholicism was a state religion. After Franco's death, the nation became one of the most liberal (and expensive) on earth. The social reforms, including gay marriage, have recast Spaniards as freethinking secularists, whereas they were once devout Catholics. The Poop reminds me of the old saying, "No point closing the barn doors now that the cows are outside the barn."

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