opinion

The Business of Government -- Prayer and Pledge Go Hand-in-Hand

[Editor's note: This post is by Ellery Schempp, plaintiff on the 1963 Abington v. Schempp Supreme Court case against school prayer and soon-to-be recipient of the UU Humansts' 2014 Religious Humanist of the Year award. The graphic is by member Brian Lofgren.]

I am extremely disappointed in today's Supreme Court decision (Greece v. Galloway) affirming that sectarian prayers at city council meetings do not violate the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment.  The 5-4 decision severely diminishes the non-establishment principle and effectively endorses majoritarian displays of public piety. Read more about The Business of Government -- Prayer and Pledge Go Hand-in-Hand »

I prefer religious language - no snark! Well, almost none.

[Editor's note: this is a response to David Breeden's Sneaking One Over on the Humanists post and the religious language poll.]

That's right I'm one of the ten percent of respondents in the poll who expressed a preference for religious language - not because I use it a lot, but because it is useful to me in a much wider universe, than is "non-theistic" language alone.  I do use a lot of non-religious language too - in the meetings and on the advisory board of the large Midwestern Secular community (CFI Michigan) to which I belong. And much of the time, in the UU congregation (Berrien UU Fellowship - about half humanist in membership) in which I am active. And in the overwhelming majority of my dealings with HUUmanists.   Read more about I prefer religious language - no snark! Well, almost none. »

Sneaking One Over on the Humanists (warning: snark)

By David Breeden

[Editor's note: This is the second article published recently that makes a case against the use of traditional religious language in Unitarian Universalism. As the poll of our members and friends indicates (at least with the current sample) about a third of you have no problem with such language though, unsurprisingly, few UU Humanists prefer it. I would like to publish an article that makes the case that using traditional religious language is not an issue. Please consider submitting one.] Read more about Sneaking One Over on the Humanists (warning: snark) »

Brilliant Videos About Humanism from the British Humanist Association

The British Humanist Association has put together four fantastic "sketch-art" videos in a series called That's Humanism!, narrated by the great Stephen Fry, which clearly and elloquently answer four important questions from the Humanist perspective.

How can I be happy?

How do we know what is true?

The UU Congregation: Habitat for Humanism

This article was originally published in the Humanist Network News. HNN is a weekly news e-zine of the American Humanist Association with a circulation of around 44,000. 


When the topic of Humanist community comes up someone is bound to mention Unitarian Universalism. That is because UUs have what Humanists who want community are looking for. Unitarian Universalism also comes up because a significant number of UUs are Humanists and because organized Humanism was in large part an outgrowth of Unitarianism in its early days. Humanism and Unitarian Universalism go together, and I assert that theover 1,000 UU congregations are natural and practical homes for local Humanist communities. Read more about The UU Congregation: Habitat for Humanism »

Religious Humanism Comes of Age

[Editor's note: This text was first presented as a sermon at the Unitarian Universalist Society of Amherst, MA, 10/21/12. An shortened version of it appeared in the Fall 2012 issue of the journal, Religious Humanism.]

When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. (I Corinthians 13:11)

I’ve come to realize that this simple description of the necessary transition from childhood to adulthood applies not just to individuals but also to cultures and societies, and ultimately to the human species itself. Read more about Religious Humanism Comes of Age »

"Why I Am a UU Humanist", by Brian Lofgren

Editor's note: this is the first in a series of essays on this topic. Please, share your story.

Why I Am a UU Humanist

In my case, it took thirty-nine years to arrive as a Unitarian Universalist (UU) Humanist. I’m writing this essay just nine years beyond that memorable crossroad. I was raised in Christian culture. Like my Methodist parents and grandparents, I was conditioned from childhood to suspend critical thinking where religion was concerned, and just believe. This message was reinforced in the Lutheran school I attended from fourth, through eighth grade.

The popular God, the “Everything-God”, was the 'face' that personified not only the known, but the vast unknown. Religious systems may help followers meet some of their emotional, psychological, and social needs. However, readily accepting mythical-sounding stories as fact came at a cost. Read more about "Why I Am a UU Humanist", by Brian Lofgren »

The UU Humanist Association Supports Humanist Chaplains in the Military

Jason Heap is eminently qualified to be a military chaplain and he has the endorsement of a religious organization, the Humanist Society. In a recent Washington Post "On Faith" article titled Humanists want a military chaplain to call their own, Kimberly Winston quotes Heap,

“This is my chance to give back to my country,” said Heap, 38. “I want to use my skills on behalf of our people in the service. Hopefully, the Navy will see where I can be useful.”

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