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Spiritual Humanism - religion based on reason?

Any topics that are primarily about humanism or other non-religious life stances fit in here.
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Jem
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Spiritual Humanism - religion based on reason?

#1 Postby Jem » May 5th, 2008, 10:22 am

To save me from reading the whole website, does anyone here have any experience of this lot and understand what they're about, or is anyone here a 'spiritual humanist'? I see their name crop up all the time.


http://www.spiritualhumanism.org/

You can become an ordained member of the Spiritual Humanist clergy for FREE right now! As a legally ordained clergy member you can legally perform religious ceremonies and rituals like weddings, funerals, benedictions, etc.

As Spiritual Humanists we believe that every person has innate right to make a spiritual connection to the rest of the cosmos. We facilitate this through our free online ordination program. Our premise is simple:

We can solve the problems of society using a religion based on reason.


A religion based on reason sounds like an oxymoron to me.

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Parapraxis
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Re: Spiritual Humanism - religion based on reason?

#2 Postby Parapraxis » May 5th, 2008, 10:29 am

A religion based on reason sounds like an oxymoron to me.


I was going to say...

As far as I'm aware most, if not all, religions are based on faith and again, as far as I'm aware faith is the opposite of reason, I often like to define it as "belief without knowing".
The poster formerly known as "Electric Angel"

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Alan H
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Re: Spiritual Humanism - religion based on reason?

#3 Postby Alan H » May 5th, 2008, 10:47 am

I'm sure there was an earlier thread mentioning this lot.
Jem wrote:
We can solve the problems of society using a religion based on reason.


A religion based on reason sounds like an oxymoron to me.
They would need to define what they mean by 'religion' and 'reason'.
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

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Lifelinking
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Re: Spiritual Humanism - religion based on reason?

#4 Postby Lifelinking » May 5th, 2008, 10:57 am

religion based on tax exemption
"Who thinks the law has anything to do with justice? It's what we have because we can't have justice."
William McIlvanney

Maria Mac
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Re: Spiritual Humanism - religion based on reason?

#5 Postby Maria Mac » May 5th, 2008, 12:34 pm

I have some experience of the Church of Spiritual Humanism, as I believe they call themselves, because a BHA celebrant was an "ordained celebrant" of the CSH when I worked at the BHA and when I was on the HSS NEC, an HSS celebrant turned out to be one too. Both organisations considered their membership and promotion of themselves as spritual humanists was inappropriate and both were de-registered from their respective organisations.

I did read their website and their forum extensively at the time and, IIRC, they seemed a perfectly nice bunch of people and I didn't find anything to disagree with about their fundamental beliefs. Our differences lie, firstly, in their fondness for the trappings of religion (e.g. they like to call themselves Revd and stuff like that); another difference is in the structure of their organisation: my understanding is that it's all started up by one guy who has ultimate control. This makes it seem rather cult-like but I think it would be wrong to describe it as such. I think the worst thing is that the guy is running a bit of scam re 'ordained celebrants'. You get ordained in about 30 seconds by clicking on a mouse (no training needed - in fact you don't even have to prove you are a real person) and you are then invited to buy celebrant packs. The more you spend the bigger the pack.

I got ordained (for research purposes only, you understand) though I didn't buy a pack. Nor did I use my real name or address. My CSH persona is none other than the "Reverend Jemima Puddleduck" and I gave my address as a duck pond in Glasgow.

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Curtains
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Re: Spiritual Humanism - religion based on reason?

#6 Postby Curtains » May 6th, 2008, 10:11 am

Lifelinking wrote:religion based on tax exemption


I can't think of any other reason to make a religion out of trying to promote a rational viewpoint. From that site:
What is the "Scientific Method"? The Scientific Method is the best way yet discovered for winnowing the truth from lies and delusion. The simple version looks something like this:

1. Observe some aspect of the universe.
2. Invent a theory that is consistent with what you have observed.
3. Use the theory to make predictions.
4. Test those predictions by experiments or further observations.
5. Modify the theory in the light of your results.
6. Go to step 3 and make new predictions.

Spiritual Humanism recognizes that any religion not based on the Scientific Method can never fully reveal truth to its members.


How ludicrous is the idea of religion being based on the Scientific Method? :hilarity:

Occam
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Re: Spiritual Humanism - religion based on reason?

#7 Postby Occam » May 6th, 2008, 9:31 pm

Many tend to think of humanism as synonymous with atheism. I see my atheism as a disbelief in a god or similar force, but my humanism as a philosophical outlook and code of behavior. As I understand it, Spiritual Humanists want to adopt the humanistic principles but still believe in a god or central force.

It appears that they just can't or aren't willing to give up their early theological inculcation. The good is that they aren't likely to proselytize theologically, but the bad is that they dilute my brand of Humanism.

Occam

Noggin
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Re: Spiritual Humanism - religion based on reason?

#8 Postby Noggin » May 7th, 2008, 9:49 am

Occam wrote:Many tend to think of humanism as synonymous with atheism. I see my atheism as a disbelief in a god or similar force, but my humanism as a philosophical outlook and code of behavior. As I understand it, Spiritual Humanists want to adopt the humanistic principles but still believe in a god or central force.

It appears that they just can't or aren't willing to give up their early theological inculcation. The good is that they aren't likely to proselytize theologically, but the bad is that they dilute my brand of Humanism.

Occam


That may be true of people who generally describe themselves as spiritual or religious humanists but I don't think it applies to members of the particular 'Church' whose website Jem linked to.

On their 'What is it?' page it says:

Spiritual Humanism Solinox logo

A religion based on the ability of human beings to solve the problems of society using logic and science.
Most people need a religion to help guide them through life's challenges and difficult moral decisions. Recognizing how the power of religious rituals, methods, and communication can impact human behavior, Spiritual Humanism fuses traditional religious behaviors onto the foundation of scientific humanist inquiry.

While it is impossible to remove age old traditions from human culture, we can redirect them by redefining their underlying significance and meanings. Spiritual Humanism is natural, not supernatural. By using a method of scientific inquiry we can define the inspirational, singular spark inherent in all living creatures.


I don't think that implies a God or similar force. I think it merely recognises that many people enjoy the community and ritualistic aspects of religion and is trying to keep these while dispensing with the belief in the supernatural.

They maybe have a point though, of course, for everyone who likes lighting candles and meditating there is another who would disdain such practices.
It is the still and silent sea that drowns a man. -- Old Norse Proverb

Occam
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Re: Spiritual Humanism - religion based on reason?

#9 Postby Occam » May 8th, 2008, 12:49 am

Interesting that there is now a church calling itself that. My experience with Religious Humanists was when I saw a booth of them at the U.S. Unitarian Annual Assembly a few years ago. They did have an organization, but not a church then. Rather, most of them were also Unitarian- Universalists. {The type sizes indicate the relative importance of the two competing philosophies to them.}

Occam

Scotteh
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Re: Spiritual Humanism - religion based on reason?

#10 Postby Scotteh » May 16th, 2008, 12:18 pm

Their web site imitates that of a company wishing to sell custard creams. Natrually i was highly dissapointed by the lack of custard cream contents, as such this site fails to get my approval.

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Alan H
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Re: Spiritual Humanism - religion based on reason?

#11 Postby Alan H » June 30th, 2008, 9:55 pm

Came across this:
********************************************************************************
Couple offers weddings outside of religious sites : Local Business News : Redding Record Searchlight
http://www.redding.com/news/2008/jun/30 ... ous-sites/
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Couple offers weddings outside of religious sites

By David Benda (Contact)
Monday, June 30, 2008
Bill Shockley operates Weddings Out of the Ordinary with his wife, Elisabeth Steadman. Shockley recently did a wedding at the Sundial Bridge in Redding.

Photo by Nathan Morgan / Record Searchlight

Bill Shockley operates Weddings Out of the Ordinary with his wife, Elisabeth Steadman. Shockley recently did a wedding at the Sundial Bridge in Redding.
Bottom line

• What: Weddings Out of the Ordinary.

• Where: Bella Vista.

• Owners: Elisabeth Steadman and Bill Shockley.

• Phone: 472-1617.

• Web site: http://www.out-of-the-ordinary.org.

They officiated their first wedding at Burning Man - the art and self-expression extravaganza that each year draws thousands to the Nevada desert.

Touched by the lives of the couples they wed, Elisabeth Steadman and Bill Shockley came back to the north state and started Weddings Out of the Ordinary.

The married couple have been performing nonreligious weddings since 2000. Weddings Out of the Ordinary also offers vow renewals, baby-welcoming ceremonies and hand-fasting ceremonies, typically a Pagan wedding ritual.

Given the fact the business is based in the predominately conservative north state, Steadman and Shockley know they're going after a niche market.

"We have been asked by people to meet them, and when we get there, they're surprised we don't do religious ceremonies," said Shockley, an ordained clergy member in the Church of Spiritual Humanism. "There are plenty of people in Shasta County that offer that (religious ceremonies)."

With the state Supreme Court legalizing same-sex marriages - the first such unions were performed across California on June 17 - Shockley and Steadman have started offering their services to same-sex couples.

"It's an historic decision; we wanted to support the gay people in the community," said Steadman, an ordained minister in the Universal Life Church and an ordained clergy member in the Church of Spiritual Humanism.

Steadman, 48, added that everybody deserves a special and intimate place to share with their friends and family.

"There aren't too many places to go besides the courthouse," Steadman said.

Weddings Out of the Ordinary has yet to perform a same-sex wedding.

Steadman and Shockley charge $200 for a standard ceremony, which includes a consultation with them. A civil ceremony costs $100.

Standard ceremonies can be performed at a specific location or Steadman and Shockley's home east of Redding near Highway 299. Site rental rates start at $250 for a party up to 30.

With the help of its Web site, Weddings Out of the Ordinary has done ceremonies across the West.

Maybe one of the more unique and beautiful weddings happened in Truckee in January 2006, Shockley, 58, recalled.

They hiked to the wedding site in snowshoes in near blizzard conditions. Almost on cue, the snow stopped falling when they arrived at the spot.

"There were two enormous pine trees coming out of the snow. It was just perfect," Shockley said.

Both Steadman and Shockley came to the north state from Southern California. Steadman retired from a career as a marketing executive. Shockley wrote short stories for science fiction and Western-themed publications. They met on Match.com.

"He e-mailed me, and we just corresponded for a while before our first date," Steadman said.

They started dating in 1998 and were married in 2006.

Reporter David Benda can be reached at 225-8219 or at dbenda@redding.com.

[Captured: 30 June 2008 21:53:53]

###################
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?



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