Monday, July 30, 2012

Video explaining Humanism - from the BHA


Just-released video on Humanism from the BHA.

4 comments:

Paul P. Mealing said...

You can believe all that and be religious too. It doesn't have to be either or. Being an atheist or a theist doesn't make one superior over the other.

Regards, Paul.

Sue G. said...

I agree with Paul [previous comment].
I also wonder why atheists feel the need to defend their atheism and attack, or in some way, try to demote theism. I do not see the reverse happening, except by a few silly American fanatics.

Anonymous said...

While I suspect that I am broadly sympathetic with the worldview of the above two commentators, I feel obliged to play Devil’s advocate to them and to point out that a religious worldview entails superstitious beliefs whereas a strictly non-religious worldview should endeavour to oppose them. It is also true that Christians are called to evangelise, and therefore to challenge the values of the non-religious. In that sense I have no moral objection to this video.

However I do fear that the comments on Humanist morality are a tad oversimplistic. In part this is for reasons expressed in the website www.investigatingatheism.info. I would like to point out immediately that I have atheist friends whom I care for very dearly and whose friendship I value, but they are not broadly hostile to religion or to religious modes of thinking. While I recognize that not all Humanists are utilitarians, I do fear that particular ethical code can very easily degenearate into a bullies charter, which makes all the more sinister the apparent desire among some atheist thinkers to airbrush away some of the moral complications that arise from an atheistic worldview. Buddhism (I think correctly) highlights the illusion of the autonomous ‘self’ whereas Christianity declares that the last shall be first. I see no Humanist equivalent, and that is for me why faith remains philosophically the least bad option. Dogmatism is the problem, not faith per se.

As a footnote, Richard Dawkins is absolutely wrong in equating science with poetry. Science uses words (however beautifully expressed)to convey facts, whereas poetry recognizes the limitations of both facts and words. Richard explains the night sky. The poet allows his neighbour to observe the night sky and to derive his own conclusions whether scientific or mythological.

Put another way, on Wednesday I saw Diamanda Galas in concert. Only one of her songs was in English, but even without understanding, the passion was apparent. That, not Dawkins, is the spirit of poetry.

jules said...

A religious worldview need not entail superstitious beliefs.