The UU Humanists' Blog is a curated blog -- this means we highly encourage members and those with an interest in Humanism within the Unitarian Universalist tradition to submit articles for publication. The blog is curated so we may negotiate edits for clarity or length and we reserve the right to not publish every submitted article.

This means that the blog's content reflects the diversity of the opinions of the authors and is not just the "official party line" of the Association. As Humanists, we welcome diversity of opinion and encourage civil discourse through comments on these posts and on our social media pages. 

Humanist Voices in Unitarian Universalism: A Book Review

Humanism (with either upper or lower case "h"), whether labelled a philosophy, life stance, worldview, movement or "religion", dates back to the ancient Greece and Rome of Eipicurus and Lucretius.  After lying dormant for centuries it began to reawaken following the Renaissance, the Reformation, the Enlightenment, and the development of science. The Deism of Voltaire and Paine and Jefferson was a sort of proto-humanism. The 19th century growth of democracy, science, public education,  and industry - aided by  Darwin's breakthrough in science - spurred the advances of freethought and rationalism. The Ethical Society movement took off after the Civil War and Unitarian congregations moved leftward theologically toward naturalistic Humanism.

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Video: Listening to Humanist Voices

There is a new book on UU Humanism to be published by the UUA's Skinner House press this Fall, Humanist Voices in Unitarian Universalism. At General Assembly in Columbus, on Saturday, June 25th, there was a panel discussion about topics from the book. On the panel, seated left to right, were David Breeden, John Hooper, Maria Greene, Amanda Poppei, Kendyl Gibbons, and T. K.Barger.

This is the description of the session from the GA Program Book:

Authors from the new book, Humanist Voices in Unitarian Universalism (Skinner House, Ed. Kendyl Gibbons and Bill Murry), share their hopes for humanism. Can our humanist ancestry reach today’s “unaffiliated” and “spiritual but not religious?” What is the future of humanism in a spiritually pluralistic Unitarian Universalism?

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Video: Religious Humanists of the Year, Michael Dowd and Connie Barlow

Outgoing UU Humanist Association president John Hooper had the pleasure of awarding the 2016 Religious Humanists of the Year award to Michael Dowd and Connie Barlow at this year's UUHA Annual Meeting. The meeting was held at the UUA General Assembly, Friday, June 24, 2016. Below is the video of their address, titled "Evolutionary Eco-Humanism".

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Applying The Scientific Method To Charity

[Editor's Note: If you are interested in the topic of Effective Altruism, there is a Coursera course by that name being taught right now by the well-known philosopher Peter Singer of Princeton University! Coursera courses are free and there is an entire week devoted to the Giving Game including an opportunity to play online as part of the course.]


“Thank you. I never thought of applying the scientific method to charity. My giving will never be the same.”

I was delighted to hear this feedback from a participant in a workshop I ran for my local Unitarian Universalist Humanist group at the First Unitarian Universalist Church of Columbus in late July 2016. The workshop, called a Giving Game, aimed to help facilitate rational thinking about our positive impact on the world through applying the scientific method to charity. Read more about Applying The Scientific Method To Charity »

Fake Fights

Oooh, fights. We either run from them, run toward them, or pretend they’re not there (haven’t we all just smiled while passing the sweet potatoes at Thanksgiving?). And many of we Unitarian Universalists have been thinking a lot about fights, since hearing the Rev. Nancy McDonald Ladd’s sermon on “Fake Fights” at this year’s General Assembly.

As blogger (and fellow UU Humanist Association Board member) Adam Gonnerman noted in his great post about the sermon, some humanists have been nervous that Rev. Ladd was pointing to the ongoing humanist-theist conversation within Unitarian Universalism as one of those fake fights. Those folks are likely remembering Ladd’s mention of how we are “still fighting about who’s a humanist and who’s a theist--as though those two terms are mutually exclusive in the first place.” Read more about Fake Fights »


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