|My thoughts on Freethought||Freethought News||Links to Humanism/
|Links to Human Rights Sites||Favourite Humanist Quotes|
Thought is Free — William Shakespeare
My Thoughts on Freethought – brevity is for someone else. 😉
|Why do you not think freely, my friend? I am no different than you are, so why do I reject the dogma and the myth? Why is it so important to my peace of mind to be in this world, with no chains on my thinking … in this universe, in this time, in my own mind with my own questions and free will. Yes, I share community with you on our beautiful planet. Each day we spin together on our planet, in the lightness and darkness, in the dance around our sun, one of billions and billions of stars heading to some great attractor beyond our local group of galaxies. Each day we share in the four important tasks; stay warm, stay dry, stay well fed and stay well loved. As we go about the tasks I think about you and hope you are well and I wonder about your source of comfort and faith. Why do you need your God? And I don’t? Did your teachers lie to you when you asked them about the universe? When you reached the age of reason and your first questions were “Does Santa Claus really exist?” “Is this all there is?” and “Where does the universe end?” Perfectly normal questions for any well child. And no doubt you expected to hear the truth. But how could they have known that the evolution of any universe is much more awesome than the myth our ancestors would weave into our language and law. When I have a bad day I sometimes wish there was a God. Some force that could change the forces around me. When my body breaks and I hurt I may even look to the sky for some intervention. I wait and wonder and then I go to the bottle of pills on the shelf thanking the rationalists of this world who would invent a morphine not so toxic and addictive as my Grandmother’s potion. When your child asks you “Is this all there is?” What will you tell her my friend? Will you tell her that God would punish the curious? Or would you show her the pictures from Chandra and Hubble telescopes? Will you love her because she is free and can mark her own path in life? Or will she only be loved because she has faith in a supernatural authority? Does the emptiness of space terrify you? You are not alone in your fear. But perhaps one day we will discover that space is not so empty. Evidence shows that given energy, nutrients and water life can’t help but take advantage of it’s environment. Energy, nutrients and water are found not only on Earth. Yes, this is a pleasant bit of rock in the club-med zone of our solar system. Some combination of chemistry and physics has allowed lots of life to evolve, diversify, die and constantly change. But the laws of physics and chemistry are the same everywhere in the universe. Doesn’t this knowledge make you feel less alone? Or is disgorgement from your community, becoming an outsider in thought and body, that terrifies you? There is no denying that it can happen. But freedom is worth the risk and you will not be alone for I will be standing there in sisterhood with you and together we will find a growing community of like minds. I wish you freedom my friend. It is time.|
Ten Reasons Why I Would Be an Active Humanist
1.Now that humanity has walked on the moon and peered into the structures of black holes, earthly religions seem to be anti-evolutionary. Our language and images of religion no longer provide any realistic understanding of the nature of the universe and our place in it.
2. Even in 1999 religious differences are still a cause of hatred and fear in many communities. Although individual believers claim to comfort themselves with divine presence, religion in community is fraught with danger for the freethinker and innocent children.
3. The fun is in the questions. I am not one who would need all the answers, I enjoy the processes of discovery. A prediction is ok but the excitement and joy of confirming data is much more appealing.
4. Perhaps it is a tad millennial panic, but these days those who would chain my mind are becoming louder and seeking more political power. The “what if” scenarios abound. The outcome of even a small political vacuum could bring the thought police knocking on my door.
5. I’ve lost a best friend to religion. When I was a child the first question one asked of another little kid was “what religion are you?” Why? Generations, liberations and deliberations later I assume that sad introduction has changed at least in my nation. But I continue to feel at odds with people under the influence of supernatural faith. And I feel some threat from those who would dismiss me as damned. Religion is like a bad virus that doesn’t go away.
6. Humanism feels good, like a deep breath of the freshest air under a starry, starry sky. I know I love every human on this planet because in the big scheme of things we are all in this together.
7. Wishing and hoping to recreate the past will never work. We will do with the future what we will. With a better understanding of the nature of the universe, and our place in it, we can make the right choices. Leaving it up to God and myth is irresponsible.
8. Where two or more gather … people working together can make good things happen. In my solitude I can have little impact on change.
9. There are not enough like minds in my current community of friends and family.
10. I want to contribute to the reasoning of humanity. I am tired of the wars and the icons of human myth.
Freethought News American Atheist News Headline stories.
Onelist Humanism was an e-mail list and international list of atheists, humanists, freethinkers and others in a lively discussion of news and views important to the freedom from religion
Links to Humanism, Atheism, Rational and Critical Thinking
Thought is Free! – Shakespeare
Humanist Association of British Columbia Meetings, Newsletters, Papers and Links of interest to local and international humanists.
Humanist Association of Canada History, actions and link to listserve.
Pat Duffy Hutchinson (1926 – 2010) a writer, sociologist and educator with broad experience both in teaching at all levels of the public school and university system, and in policy-oriented research. Among her many publications are A Sociology of Canadian Education (Toronto, ON: Van Nostrand Reinhold, now Nelson of Canada, 1975) — the first textbook ever published on that subject — and Leaving the Cave: Evolutionary Naturalism in Social-Scientific Thought (Waterloo, ON: Wilfred Laurier University Press, 1996). Her latest book is Building Character and Culture ( Westport, CT: Praeger Press, 1999).
The American Humanist Association Excellent resources for humanist thought and concerns and links to other Humanist sites.
International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU) “IHEU was founded in 1952 in Amsterdam and is the only umbrella organisation of Humanist, rationalist, atheist, secularist, ethical culture and agnostic groups around the world. Its Member Organisations range from large membership groups to specialist bodies such as publishers, universities and development agencies. “
The Epicurean Humanist was an educational website dedicated to promoting the philosophical Humanism first taught by the ancient Greek philosopher Epicurus of Samos. Epicurus encouraged the use of sensory perception, critical thinking, empirical science, practical wisdom, and mutual friendships as ways of attaining a healthy, happy, and humane lifestyle.
European Union North American Communicators Secular Journal (EUNACO) . German/English articles
The Secular Web is published by the Internet Infidels, an educational nonprofit organization of unpaid volunteers dedicated to the growth and maintenance of the most comprehensive freethought web site on the Internet. Over book reviews, audio interviews, and a library with over six thousand articles, and more links to more freethought.
Freedom From Religion Foundation working to keep church and state separate and to educate the public about the views of nontheists.
Ten Myths of Science … Reexamining what we think we know. “Only by clearing away the mist of half-truths and revealing science in its full light, with knowledge of both its strengths and limitations, will learners become enamored of the true pageant of science and be able fairly to judge its processes and products.” William McComas An excellent essay on how science education may be failing our children. Reason Foundation’s REASON magazine online an independent monthly magazine of “free minds and free markets,” covers politics, culture and ideas from a dynamic libertarian perspective.
The Skeptic Friends Network The S-Files, The Kil Report, Message Board, News and Resources
Skeptic.Com The online resource and official website of The Skeptic’s Society. Also links to their Delphi forum and live chat. Huge links resources, articles and mailing lists.
Quotes of Reason — in favor of atheism A collection of quotes any atheist could use
Skeptic Radio – SkepticRadio.com attempts to give the facts on claims of the supernatural and paranormal. Real Audio required.
Skeptic’s Dictionary: A Guide for the New Millennium – Well done! Hundreds of definition entries, essays and articles. Click here for an excellent article on Confirmation Bias.
Coming Out – Atheism: The Other Closet It’s easier than you may think! From the American Atheists. Also, The Bone Pit, and excellent rebukes of Creation science.
News of concern to freethinkers.
What is Humanism? by Frederick Edwards Executive Director, American Humanist Association. A great discussion on secular and religious humanism. 1989.
Humanist Manifestos I and II An affirmation of some religious humanists in 1933 and in 1973.
The Skeptics Annotated Bible From insults to women to ignorance and violence, its all in the Bible and these skeptics have pointed the way to the best quotes. Excellent site if you are into this sort of thing.
An Illustrated Guide to Atheist History including Atheist Chats, Atheist Milestones, Atheist Articles, Atheist Cartoons, Church History
Humanistic Judaism Cultural Jews in Toronto are coming together without the chains of the supernatural.
Godless.Org Website of the Humanist Association of San Diego with interesting articles relating to Godless Ethics and Godless Science.
James Randi Educational Foundation An educational resource on the paranormal, psuedoscientific and the supernatural.
Jim Lippard’s Skeptical Information Links! From the sublime to the ridiculous, from ufology to cults. You’ll find a link here.
Crank Dot Net is devoted to presenting sites by and about cranks, crankism, crankishness, and crankosity. All cranks, all the time.
The Campus Freethought Alliance
Austin Cline – your About.com Guide to: Agnosticism/Atheism Humanism: from the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy
The Philosophy of Humanism by Corliss Lamont. The .pdf file.
Annotated Webliography of Humanism by Dr. Peter Derkx, associate professor history of humanism at the University for Humanist Studies (Universiteit voor Humanistiek) at Utrecht in the Netherlands
Links to Human Rights Sites “All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.” Article 1, UN Declaration of Human Rights, Adopted and proclaimed by General Assembly resolution 217 A (III) of 10 December 1948
United Nations News. Declarations, Briefing Papers and Tribunal News.
Inter-American Court of Human Rights An organization of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.
Canadian Civil Liberties Association Information about CCLA’s efforts to protect Canadians’ rights and freedoms.
The Canadian Human Rights Foundation offers programs for human rights training and publications on human rights issues in Canada and globally. Also an excellent list of other human rights organizations.
Amnesty International News reports on international violations of human rights., action plans, and a research library.
University of Minnesota’s Human Rights Libary Over 6,000 documents and links to over 1,000 human rights web sites.
HateWatch.Org An educational resource combating online bigotry including news reports, online discussion groups and interviews with racists and bigots.
Electronic Freedom Foundation Freedom on the Web
Center For Health, Environment and Justice An American focus on business and the environment and human health issues. Papers, documents and links.
|” Religious advocacy now dresses itself in sober polysyllables, but that disguises nothing; it still promotes the superstitions of mankind’s infancy.” — Anthony Grayling, The Guardian, 6/2/99|
|“It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts.” — Sherlock Holmes, in Arthur Conan Doyle’s ‘A Scandal in Bohemia’ (1891).|
|“If we believe absurdities, we shall commit atrocities.” — Herbert J. Muller|
|“The notion that faith in Christ is to be rewarded by an eternity of bliss, while a dependence upon reason, observation, and experience merits everlasting pain, is too absurd for refutation, and can be relieved only by that unhappy mixture of insanity and ignorance called ‘faith.'” — Robert G. Ingersoll|
|“The history of physics is the history of giving up cherished ideas,” — Andrew Strominger, Harvard physicist.|
|“Religion is an insult to human dignity. With or without it, you’d have good people doing good things and evil people doing bad things. But, for good people to do bad things, it takes religion.” — Steven Weinberg, Noble Laureate|
|“The conviction or suspicion that there is no cosmic justice can fuel a commitment to the cause of earthly justice.” — Wendy Kaminer|
|“I know you’re looking for a ruby in a mountain of rocks But there ain’t no Coupe de Ville hiding at the bottom of a Cracker Jack box.” — Jim Steinman, Two Our of Three Ain’t Bad, Bat out of Hell.|
|“Science cannot solve everything, but the alternatives really solve nothing.” Ludwig Krippahl – Skeptics list|
|“Even at this late date in human history, certain elementary facts based upon the critical use of scientific reason have to be restated. We find insufficient evidence for belief in the existence of a supernatural; it is either meaningless or irrelevant to the question of survival and fulfillment of the human race.” © Copyright 1973 by the American Humanist Association — Humanist Manifestos I and II|
|“To find a safe path into a promising future, we need the light of a profound realism, a view of the world which includes the inner experiences that make us human. ” — Erika Erdmann|
|“As soon a you need experts to explain God’s supposedly simple message to mankind, then it is not God’s word to mankind — it is something else.” — Hooge|
|“I have never seen the slightest scientific proof of the religious theories of heaven and hell, of future life for individuals, or of a personal God.” — Thomas Edison|
Religious Histories On the Net and other interesting discussion
- Catholics, Heretics and Heresy A story of The Cathars, The Templars, The Hospitallers, and the Rosicrucians, heretics or not, active during the 11th to the 14th century. A summary of bibliographical study by G C H Nullens.
- What is a Holy Book? Some skeptical thoughts on what should constitute divine literature.
- A Liberal Religious Heritage: Unitarian-Universalist Foundations in Europe, America and Elsewhere by Andrew Hill
- Why Creation Must Be Kept Out of the Classroom by Richard Young
- Letters from the Earth – by Mark Twain
- The Other Side of Time – Physicist and skeptic Vic Stenger explains why the Kalam Cosmological Argument is all washed up.
- Digital Humanism: The Processed World of Marshall McLuhan an excerpt from Arthur Kroker’s Technology and the Canadian Mind: Innis/McLuhan/Grant.