How Far Back?

I have been working on a lecture to serve as an introduction to humanism for non-believers and as usual the difficulty of where to begin arises. Certainly, I could start with the Ionian philosophers, Thales and Anaxagoras, but I am certain that they are the folks who articulate some of principles of a human state…

Canada’s Social Potholes

I think we are justly proud of Canada’s society. However, pride must include recognition of its potholes just as one can be proud of one’s house, but must recognize its need for improvement and repair. There are some serious and deep potholes in Canada’s social pavement and they can not be repaired with the temporary…

The Ethics Challenge Question

All ethical philosophies have lists of ideals. Religions certainly have them: ten commandments, five pillars, six hundred laws. Secular humanists do to: Epicurus’ forty principal doctrines, or the boiled down eight principles that one can find at http://www.sofree.ca. The question is, how do we achieve or at least come close to achieving these ideals? This…

Be a Good Secular Humanist Canadian

The federal election of 2019 is coming. Now is the time for all good secular humanist Canadians to come to the aid of a party. I know a number of secular humanists who are involved politically. That is, they belong to a political party, usually at the local level and they are involved at some…

Secular Humanism: A Movement in Canada? I Wish.

A while ago, after a frustrating time gathering signatures for Secular Connexion’s e-petition, I pointed out that the term humanism isn’t strictly speaking applicable to Canada. In traditional English, an “ism” is a movement to promote a philosophy or ideology – Communism promotes the idea of a communal economy, conservatism, conservative values, etc. So, is…

The “ism” Complacency

A few years ago, a minister claimed that agnostics were too aggressive. I was puzzled then, and remain puzzled about how saying, “I don’t know” is aggressive, or how it can be made aggressive. Secular humanists, at least the Canadian variety, are also not good candidates for that nomination. We could be, in fact, we…