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Mon Apr 9, 2012, 05:58 PM

I'm a secular humanist and that informs all my political views...

Ultimately I believe that using the powers or reason, rationality and altruism, we can come to a consensus on how human society should take shape.

I recognize that nothing is ever written in stone, that with new information, we come to new conclusions about what is best for society and for the individual. Certain conclusions such as what form government should take, and what freedoms and powers individuals have must be balanced to maximize both stability in society and individual pursuit of happiness.

The founding fathers, for all their faults, recognized that the United States were in a post colonial era with a religious diverse society, and that it was best to maintain neutrality and secularism in the government to keep that society stable. Founded on many of the ideas of the Enlightenment, this country was and is a great experiment, one that hasn't ended yet.

Values such as compassion and altruism, human rights and dignity should be of paramount importance for the government. The needs of society demand this, in addition to fairness.

11 replies, 1911 views

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Arrow 11 replies Author Time Post
Reply I'm a secular humanist and that informs all my political views... (Original post)
Humanist_Activist Apr 2012 OP
bayareamike Apr 2012 #1
mistertrickster Apr 2012 #7
bayareamike Apr 2012 #10
Electric Monk Apr 2012 #11
banned from Kos Apr 2012 #2
Humanist_Activist Apr 2012 #3
TroglodyteScholar Apr 2012 #4
Humanist_Activist Apr 2012 #5
mistertrickster Apr 2012 #6
kctim Apr 2012 #8
MineralMan Apr 2012 #9

Response to Humanist_Activist (Original post)

Mon Apr 9, 2012, 06:26 PM

1. Just yesterday as I was discussing the Palestinian-Israeli conflict

with my very conservative grandmother (whom I would do ANYTHING for), she cited Biblical precedent in making the case as to why the Palestinian people should not have any say, rights, etc. in the context of the conflict. Israel, in her opinion, is justified in any of its actions because of what the Bible says.

It's funny. Other than her political views -- which, admittedly, are pretty far right -- she is an absolute saint. The point is that religion, rather than logic and humanist values, dictate her arguments and beliefs. I think this is true for many well meaning people in this country and throughout the world. "They" are good people and do want to live good lives, but hold some pretty crazy opinions based on religious conviction and not logic.

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Response to bayareamike (Reply #1)

Tue Apr 10, 2012, 10:25 AM

7. I have to disagree with your conclusion.

 

The Bible is not a history book or a science book or a map for real estate--I say that as a committed believer.

It is a book to justify the ways of God to humans (to paraphrase Milton).

It is arrogant in the extreme to believe that the Bible says God wants Zionists to kill Palestinians so they can steal their land. BTW, some of those Palestinians are Christians. See the book "Blood Brothers" by Chacour.

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Response to mistertrickster (Reply #7)

Wed Apr 11, 2012, 01:15 AM

10. As a Christian myself, I'm not sure what we're disagreeing on.

I was pointing out how my grandmother was using it to justify Israel's actions. I would never.

It is arrogant to believe that the Bible can be used to justify such action -- that is exactly the problem that we face. Many do use it to justify political action; in fact, many base their policy decisions on religion and the Bible. See: the GOP.

Also, I'm very aware that the region is religiously diverse. Historically, Christians, Jews, and Muslims got along peacefully in the region. Contrary to the popular opinion/talking point that "there has always been conflict in the Middle East", that is not historically accurate.

So, again. What are we disagreeing on?

Edit: I'm paraphrasing, but she said: biblically the land belongs to the Israelis. The Muslims/Arabs/Palestinians/etc. should be forced out.

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Response to bayareamike (Reply #10)

Wed Apr 11, 2012, 03:17 AM

11. Don't hold your breath waiting for a reply

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Response to Humanist_Activist (Original post)

Mon Apr 9, 2012, 06:30 PM

2. Agree. Its important to break that term down.

 

Secular = without government intervention.

Humanist = Humans solve problems and no other being can.

The two fit so well together.

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Response to banned from Kos (Reply #2)

Mon Apr 9, 2012, 07:42 PM

3. Uhm, secular means without religion...

to use your terminology. Just want to be clear.

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Response to Humanist_Activist (Reply #3)

Mon Apr 9, 2012, 07:52 PM

4. Your "clarification" is misleading.

Let's ask Merriam-Webster's dictionary:

1
a : of or relating to the worldly or temporal <secular concerns> b : not overtly or specifically religious <secular music> c : not ecclesiastical or clerical <secular courts> <secular landowners>
2
: not bound by monastic vows or rules; specifically : of, relating to, or forming clergy not belonging to a religious order or congregation <a secular priest>


"Secular" does not mean "without religion." Just want to be clear.

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Response to TroglodyteScholar (Reply #4)

Mon Apr 9, 2012, 08:36 PM

5. I think worldly or temporal fit best. n/t

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Response to Humanist_Activist (Original post)

Tue Apr 10, 2012, 10:20 AM

6. Good for you. And like every other community here

 

you have my complete respect and support.

It's called "embracing diversity," and I do embrace it.

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Response to Humanist_Activist (Original post)

Tue Apr 10, 2012, 10:30 AM

8. It doesn't matter where ones beliefs come from

 

If you are forcing them onto others, you are wrong.

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Response to Humanist_Activist (Original post)

Tue Apr 10, 2012, 10:36 AM

9. Well said. Thanks.

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