Saturday, March 28, 2015


Compiled by Dick Bennett for a Culture of Peace and Justice

OMNI draws from many traditions, including Humanism.


Contents: Humanist Newsletter #1 March 28, 2015  
Varieties of Humanism
American Humanist Association
Humanist Manifesto, III
Free Mind Quarterly
Art Hobson, Best Science Organization and Journal
President Obama a Humanist?
Buddhism and Confucianism for Peace
Luis Granados, Damned Good Company: Twenty Rebels.
Fayetteville’s Freethinkers
HumanLight:  Anybody Need some Optimism?

·         Log In Log Out
Top of Form
Bottom of Form
Advocating progressive values and equality for humanists, atheists, and freethinkers
·         ABOUT THE AHA »
·         WHAT IS HUMANISM »
·         OUR WORK »
·         AHA NEWS »
AHA board member Herb Silverman calls out Fox News for blatantly biased reporting.
American Humanist Association legal center demands end to unconstitutional behavior.
Report examines every country in the world for violations which specifically affect the non-religious.
By: Dan Savage, 
2013 Humanist of the Year
The internationally syndicated sex columnist on bi-phobia, losing his religion, and buying Ann Landers’ desk.
By: Katha Pollitt, 
2013 Humanist Heroine
“I’m not a heroine. I don’t even get hate mail anymore,” says the award-winning poet and longtime
 Nationcolumnist. “I guess I’m just going to have to try a lot harder.”
By: Greta Christina, 
2013 LGBT Humanist Pride Award
The popular atheist blogger and author shares what humanists can learn from the LGBT movement.
By: Carl Coon, 
AHA Lifetime Achievement Award
“We've come a long way,” says the former U.S. ambassador and author in considering a humanist future. “We still sit pretty far below the salt, but at least we now have a place at the table.”
Other Publications » Free Mind» EPH
·         DONATESupport humanism
Learn more about the Appignani Humanist Legal Center
Learn more about the Center for Humanist Activism
Learn more about the Feminist Caucus of the American Humanist Association
Learn more about Humanist Charities
Learn more about humanist leadership The Humanist Institute
Learn more about applying humanism to daily life at the Humanist Society
Learn more about the International Darwin Day Foundation
Learn more about huamnist education at The Kochhar Humanist Education Center
Support LGBTQ humanists at the LGBTQ Humanist Council

Advocating progressive values and equality for humanists, atheists, and freethinkers
·         ABOUT THE AHA »
·         WHAT IS HUMANISM »
·         OUR WORK »
·         AHA NEWS »
·         Share
·         Email
·         Print
·         Font Size: A A A
In continuous publication for over half a century, Free Mind is the official newsletter for members of the American Humanist Association. Issued quarterly, it is a free membership benefit that keeps readers updated on news of their association's activities.
Information is published on AHA initiatives, forthcoming conferences and other events, and the high profile work of leading humanists. Feature articles contain ideas for activism, news of little-known developments, and stimulating opinion. A past favorite section was "Your Published Letters," where members share effective Humanist letters to the editor that they succeeded in getting published in their local media. It is written in a style that is friendly and accessible.
Click here to view latest issue of Free Mind & our issue archive (subscribers only) 
·         DONATESupport humanism
In a response to a letter sent by the AHA, today we are pleased to report that t...
1 days ago
Learn more about the Appignani Humanist Legal Center
Learn more about the Center for Freethought Equality
Learn more about the Feminist Caucus of the American Humanist Association
Learn more about Humanist Charities
Learn more about humanist leadership The Humanist Institute
Learn more about applying humanism to daily life at the Humanist Society
Learn more about the International Darwin Day Foundation
Learn more about huamnist education at The Kochhar Humanist Education Center
Support LGBTQ humanists at the LGBTQ Humanist Council
Vol. 58, No. 4, Winter 2014 Articles
AHA Asks Americans to Sit Out the Pledge of Allegiance” encourages people to oppose the phrase “under God,” which discriminates against atheists and other non-theists.
Bishop McNeill, “The Midterm Elections Will Drastically Affect Humanists.”  Fewer progressive representatives means fewer allies for humanist values.  Duh?
Roy Speckhardt (Exec. Director of AHA), “Planetary Patriotism: Putting Humanity Before Nationality.”  “…nationalism remains a potent cause of violence between opposing governments.”  And much more: excellent magazine for humanists.  Critique:  large percentage of articles about religion seems misleading regarding the concerns of humanists, for humanism should also be at the forefront in reducing wars and climate change, which, except for the message from Speckhardt, were not discussed.  –Dick.


Advocating progressive values and equality for humanists, atheists, and freethinkers
·         ABOUT THE AHA »
·         WHAT IS HUMANISM »
·         OUR WORK »
·         AHA NEWS »
Humanist Manifesto III, a successor to the Humanist Manifesto of 1933*
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.
The lifestance of Humanism—guided by reason, inspired by compassion, and informed by experience—encourages us to live life well and fully. It evolved through the ages and continues to develop through the efforts of thoughtful people who recognize that values and ideals, however carefully wrought, are subject to change as our knowledge and understandings advance.
This document is part of an ongoing effort to manifest in clear and positive terms the conceptual boundaries of Humanism, not what we must believe but a consensus of what we do believe. It is in this sense that we affirm the following:
Knowledge of the world is derived by observation, experimentation, and rational analysis.Humanists find that science is the best method for determining this knowledge as well as for solving problems and developing beneficial technologies. We also recognize the value of new departures in thought, the arts, and inner experience—each subject to analysis by critical intelligence.
Humans are an integral part of nature, the result of unguided evolutionary change. Humanists recognize nature as self-existing. We accept our life as all and enough, distinguishing things as they are from things as we might wish or imagine them to be. We welcome the challenges of the future, and are drawn to and undaunted by the yet to be known.
Ethical values are derived from human need and interest as tested by experience. Humanists ground values in human welfare shaped by human circumstances, interests, and concerns and extended to the global ecosystem and beyond. We are committed to treating each person as having inherent worth and dignity, and to making informed choices in a context of freedom consonant with responsibility.
Life's fulfillment emerges from individual participation in the service of humane ideals. We aim for our fullest possible development and animate our lives with a deep sense of purpose, finding wonder and awe in the joys and beauties of human existence, its challenges and tragedies, and even in the inevitability and finality of death. Humanists rely on the rich heritage of human culture and the lifestance of Humanism to provide comfort in times of want and encouragement in times of plenty.
Humans are social by nature and find meaning in relationships. Humanists long for and strive toward a world of mutual care and concern, free of cruelty and its consequences, where differences are resolved cooperatively without resorting to violence. The joining of individuality with interdependence enriches our lives, encourages us to enrich the lives of others, and inspires hope of attaining peace, justice, and opportunity for all.
Working to benefit society maximizes individual happiness. Progressive cultures have worked to free humanity from the brutalities of mere survival and to reduce suffering, improve society, and develop global community. We seek to minimize the inequities of circumstance and ability, and we support a just distribution of nature's resources and the fruits of human effort so that as many as possible can enjoy a good life.
Humanists are concerned for the well being of all, are committed to diversity, and respect those of differing yet humane views. We work to uphold the equal enjoyment of human rights and civil liberties in an open, secular society and maintain it is a civic duty to participate in the democratic process and a planetary duty to protect nature's integrity, diversity, and beauty in a secure, sustainable manner.
Thus engaged in the flow of life, we aspire to this vision with the informed conviction that humanity has the ability to progress toward its highest ideals. The responsibility for our lives and the kind of world in which we live is ours and ours alone.
For historical purposes, see preceding Humanist Manifestos: I and II.
Click here for a version in Spanish (pdf).
 here for a version in Portuguese (pdf).
Humanist Manifesto is a trademark of the American Humanist Association-© 2003 American Humanist Association

Art Hobson  3-28-15
10:58 AM (1 hour ago)
to me
Hi Dick - Although they all are probably good, the ones I trust and read the most are #2, 5, and 6 on your list:  Nature, NOAA, and AAAS, because these are all published by scientific organizations having excellent scientific reputations.  In other words, these sources offer you good science fairly directly from scientists, rather than translated through others.    Personally, my main source for climate change and much other science-related info is the AAAS—probably the world’s largest and most prestigious scientific organization, and US-based (for better or worse).  I’ve attended many big AAAS national meetings, including one where Al Gore gave a well-attended talk about climate change and received a standing ovation both when he was introduced and when he finished.  It was an overflow crowd of a few thousand scientists, mostly US but many from other nations.   The journals Nature and Science are the english-speaking world’s most important scientific journals.  Nature is British, and Science is US.  They are similar journals, and publish the world’s most significant science.  The only one I read regularly, and subscribe to, is Science (the journal of the AAAS).  In my opinion (biased) it’s the world’s best magazine—it’s range, accuracy, and level-headedness are really amazing.  - Art

Art Hobson, Emeritus Professor of Physics, U Arkansas. 
Look for Tales of the Quantum  Oxford University Press, in 2015.
See my textbook & other stuff here.  

Amy Goodman 12-23-08 interviewed Max Blumenthal, author of “Rick Warren’s Hypocritical Double Life,” describing Warren’s homophobia, sexism, support for assassinating the pres. of Iran, belief only a few (Christians) will go to heaven, and so on.  Yet Obama has invited this right-wing authoritarian to participate in his official inauguration.   In contrast, an article in The Humanist (Jan.-Feb. 08) “Son of a Humanist,” describes Obama’s earliest education, from his mother, as humanist—“to see all humanity as one, to see beyond tribalism, to find common ground and unity, and his inclination towards empathy.”   

New Horizons in Eastern Humanism
Buddhism, Confucianism and the Quest for Global Peace
Tu Weiming and Daisaku Ikeda
I.B. Tauris/Centre for Albanian Studies, May 2011
264 pages,
China now attracts global attention in direct proportion to its increasing economic and geopolitical power. But for millennia, the philosophy which has shaped the soul of China is not modern Communism, or even new forms of capitalism, but rather Confucianism. And one of the most striking phenomena relating to China's ascendancy on the world stage is a burgeoning interest, throughout Asia and beyond, in the humanistic culture and values that underlie Chinese politics and finance: particularly the thought of Confucius passed on in the Analects. In this stimulating conversation, two leading thinkers from the Confucian and Buddhist traditions discuss the timely relevance of a rejuvenated Confucian ethics to some of the most urgent issues in the modern world: Sino/Japanese/US relations; the transformation of society through education and dialogue; and the role of world religions in promoting human flourishing. Exploring correspondences between the Confucian and Buddhist world-views, the interlocutors commit themselves to a view of spirituality and religion that, without blurring cultural difference, is focused above all on the "universal heart": on harmony between people and nature that leads to peace and to a hopeful future for all humanity.

Tu Weiming has been a professor of Chinese history and philosophy and of Confucian studies at Harvard University since 1981. He is the former Director of the Harvard-Yenching Institute (1996-2008) and a distinguished research scholar at the Asia Center, Harvard University. Currently he is Professor of Philosophy and Director of the Institute for Advanced Humanistic Studies at Peking University. Daisaku Ikeda (1928-) is the President of Soka Gakkai International, a lay Buddhist organization whose adherents come from over 190 countries throughout the world. He is the author of more than 80 books on Buddhist themes, and received the United Nations Peace Award in 1983.
Table of ContentsTable of ContentsTable of Contents:   The Starting Point for Peace * Life-changing Encounters with Mentors * Learning and the Youth * Leaning as a Way of Life * Dialogue of Civilizations * Dialogues for Change * The Social Role of Religion * Buddhism and Confucianism for a Better World * A Century of Great Harmony * Globalization of Peace Culture * Confucian Humanism and Buddhist Humanism * Analects and a Dialogical Community * New Horizons in Humanism * The Unity of Heaven and Humanity vs. the Oneness of the Self and the Universe * Buddhist and Confucian Wisdom — A Full Flowering of Humanity * Sino-American Relations * Toward a Dialogical Civilization * Glossary * Bibliography * Index
Latest Humanist Press Ebook Includes Online Reader Commentary, Linked Videos
For immediate release

Humanist Press: Brian Magee, 202-238-9088 ex. 105, Mobile: (202) 681-2425
Luis Granados, Author:
(Washington, DC – July 31, 2012) – The power that comes from religious authority has been at the center of all human societies from time immemorial–but those claims of sovereignty have been disputed for just as long. In Damned Good Company: Twenty Rebels Who Bucked the God Experts, author Luis Granados explores twenty cases, from Socrates to Ayaan Hirsi Ali, of brave challenges against those claiming a special authority from God.
Damned Good Company is a book about people, not about God. People who have preached about God, taken money for sharing what they say they know about God, and ordered others about to enforce what they claim to be God’s will–and a small band of heroes who stood up to them.
In short, Damned Good Company is Profiles in Courage for humanists.
Some of the twenty heroes of Damned Good Company are well-known: Erasmus, Voltaire, Thomas Paine, Clarence Darrow, Atatürk, Nehru, Steve Biko. Others are not: people like Han Yü, banished from the 9th century Chinese court for questioning the worship of the Buddha’s finger, and Lucy Harris, who came within an inch of deflating Mormonism before it got off the ground.
Each hero is contrasted with a villain of his or her time and place: either a God expert like Martin Luther or Joseph Smith or a cynical politician like Mussolini, who never believed in God but exploited religion shamelessly to advance his political ambition.
The stories in Damned Good Company will inspire those today who want to stand up to the Christian Right, the Muslim fanatics, the oppressiveness of Catholic and Jewish orthodoxy, the rising Hindu Taliban, and everyone else who claims a God-given right to tell the rest of us what to do.
This enhanced ebook has been extensively researched, with over 1,100 footnotes. It takes full advantage of state-of-the-art features with over 100 photographs, online reader comments, linked videos, and hundreds of useful web links.
Damned Good Company is available from and all major online ebook retailers.
Brief video summaries of each chapter can be found here:
A book launch party will take place on Sept. 20, 2012, 7-9 pm, at The Hill Center, 921 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, Washington, DC 20003.

Humanist Press is the publishing house of the American Humanist Association, providing material for the humanist/freethought/atheist market since 1995. The American Humanist Association ( advocates for the rights and viewpoints of humanists and atheists in the United States. Founded in 1941 and headquartered in Washington, D.C., its work is extended through more than 150 local chapters and affiliates across America.

Humanism is a progressive philosophy of life that, without theism, affirms our responsibility to lead ethical lives of value to self and humanity.
SEE REVIEW BY FREDERIC MARCH in The Humanist (Jan-Fev. 2013), “Damned Good Company: Twenty Rebels Who Bucked the God Experts.”--Dick
About the Author(s)By Tu Weiming and Daisaku Ikeda

FAYETTEVILLE FREETHINKERS Meets the last Saturday of each month at FPL 2pm, and holds an annual banquet.
Hello freethinkers, it is time to once again celebrate shortest day of the year!  As you know, all the biggies in religious history... Jesus, Mithra, Frigga, Saturn, Horus, Apollo, Osiris, and many others were born at the time of the winter solstice.

We don't have a Freethinker meeting in December but instead celebrate the winter solstice with a feast. This will also be an officially recognized celebration of the secular holiday, HumanLight, in Northwest Arkansas.

HumanLight presents an alternative to religious holidays during the winter season. It is a humanist's vision of a future in which all people can identify with each other, behave with the highest moral standards, and work together toward a happy, just and peaceful world. HumanLight was created and founded as a humanist-oriented winter holiday by Joe Fox and Gary Brill, members of the New Jersey Humanist Network.

You can read about HumanLight here:

On solstice eve, this Friday, we have our room reserved for about 45 people. We have a nice menu (with veggie option) which includes a drink and dessert for $19.00 (plus tax and tip, should be $25 or so). If you could be so kind as to RSVP if you plan on coming so we can plan for an overflow situation if necessary.
Time and place:  Date: Friday, December 20.  Time: 7:15pm
Location: Powerhouse Seafood and Grill, in the Boarshead Pub

Celebrate HumanLight — the secular December holiday!


HumanLight- On December 23rd
The HumanLight holiday presents an alternative reason to celebrate in the December holiday season!
HumanLight illuminates Humanism’s positive, secular vision. 
Celebrate and express positive humanist ideals and values: Reason, Compassion, Hope, Humanity.
Celebrate and promote a positive vision of a better future — a future in which all people can identify with each other and try to behave with high moral standards — a future which people can build by working together for a happy, just and peaceful world. Celebrate human achievements that help build that future.
Scenes from past HumanLight celebrations:
In many cultures, late December is a season of good cheer and a time for festive gatherings of friends and families. As part of this holiday season, HumanLight is a festive holiday that is entirely secular – not based on any supernatural religious beliefs or theistic concepts.  It is not an attempt to “secularize” any existing religious holiday, and therefore avoids the problems which such attempts can lead to.    
By celebrating and expressing positive human hopes and values, HumanLight has a vibrant and authentic meaning for the secular, non-theistic community.
All groups and individuals who believe in its meaning are encouraged to celebrate HumanLight with family and friends — either in a public group event, or privately at home!

See the FAQ: What is HumanLight?

Learn more in the “About” section.

No comments:

Dick's Wars and Warming KPSQ Radio Editorials (#1-48)

Dick's Wars and Warming KPSQ Radio Editorials (#1-48)