Read Creating Change Through Humanism by Roy Speckhardt Online


Americans who do not identify as religious now make up 21 percent of the population, according to the 2014 General Social Survey. With the dramatic increase in the number of secular Americans, the time is ripe for Creating Change Through Humanism , which lays out how and why people can lead moral and ethical lives without belief in a higher power. Abandoning traditional reAmericans who do not identify as religious now make up 21 percent of the population, according to the 2014 General Social Survey. With the dramatic increase in the number of secular Americans, the time is ripe for Creating Change Through Humanism , which lays out how and why people can lead moral and ethical lives without belief in a higher power. Abandoning traditional religious faith is just one step on a path to a better way of thinking. This book explains how to take the next steps with the empathy and activism that characterize humanism today.Defined by author Roy Speckhardt as “the radical idea that you can be good without a god,” humanism has inspired generations of individuals to improve themselves, their communities and their society. Creating Change Through Humanism describes how a humanist lifestance has influenced and can continue to advance diversity and equality. Humanist ideals pervaded the U.S. from its founding, starting with the innovative idea of separating church and state to maintain a religiously-neutral government. Humanism has continued to propel our nation toward social progress by promoting basic human rights and dignity. The humanist movement, with its forward-thinking outlook and emphasis on critical thinking and self-reflection, is at the forefront of such pressing social issues as civil rights, women’s rights, LGBTQ equality, responsible scientific freedom, and the environment and population dynamics.Throughout this comprehensive and concise history of the humanist movement, Speckhardt interweaves personal stories, including his own, of individuals who journeyed from organized religion to humanistic convictions. He encourages his readers to be open about their nontheism and to become active in social and political causes, so they can put their positive values into action and combat the anti-humanist prejudice propagated by the religious right. By highlighting the achievements of individual humanists and the progress made by humanist and secular organizations such as the American Humanist Association, Speckhardt illustrates that a worldview reliant on empathy and critical thinking is sorely needed to advance progressive aims for American society....

Title : Creating Change Through Humanism
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780931779657
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 192 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Creating Change Through Humanism Reviews

  • Jason Schneeberger
    2019-03-25 07:52

    Having grown up in and around religion, it was something that was a constant struggle for me. The indoctrination of guilt and the "fear of God" was something instilled in me from an early age, but I always knew deep down that religion wasn't for me. A little more than a year ago, I discovered the American Humanist Association and it was like the great awakening that I had always craved. All of the thoughts, feelings, beliefs and desires that I had for many years since permanently departing the church in 2002, were all within this organization. I realized "I'm a Humanist....and have unknowingly been one for many, many years."Finally. This past January, I became a member of the AHA and part of their introductory packet, was this book. I thoroughly enjoyed this. For me, it was a case of "preaching to the choir" because it's basically laying out the principle philosophy of Humanism and ways to implement it into your life, if it is what you so desire. It's a brief, 150 page book, but it's basically a Humanist "bible", in that everything you need to know about current Humanism, is all right here.If you're curious about Humanism and living your life to be good to other humans just because it's how you should be, instead of how a religion tells you should be so you can expect a post life reward, then this is a great starting place. And always remember, you don't have to have a God in your life to be a good person!

  • Lane Sawyer
    2019-03-23 01:50

    Creating Change Through Humanism should be a must-read for aspiring humanists. It provides an outline of secular humanism, which is the natural conclusion and positive belief system for atheists. Being a humanist gives us a label we can use to explain what we DO believe, as opposed to only describing what we don't.The book essentially lays out the basics of humanist beliefs, but the author is always quick to remind us that not all humanists agree on every point, as there is no official dogma that must be followed. That said, our beliefs are based on evidence and the fact that all humans have inherent worth. Humanism is always on the forefront of positive change. We have been the first to push for abolitionism, equal rights for women, minorities, the LGBT community, and the complete separation of church and state. A track record like this is impressive and hints and the power of evidence-based belief. The whole book demonstrates time and time again that humanism is an effective belief system for those who want to create a better world for every person, animal, and the environment itself.At this point in my transition out of Mormonism and into a secular worldview, this book was a godsend. While I have been a secular humanist from the instant I left Mormonism, I never really used that description because I didn't know about it. This book helped me realize that I can wear the label proudly and has taught me the best ways to share my new worldview: that all humans should be respected, given the freedom to live their lives the way they see fit, and that evidence-based truths will always trump non-substantiated dogma.If you're curious about secular humanism is, whether a believer or not, I highly recommend this book. Atheism is much more than just fighting against dogmatic religion; it's fighting for a better world.

  • Daniel Watkins
    2019-03-22 03:49

    At times it felt like reading a brochure, or a piece of polished ad copy about how great the AHA. But as I got further in the book, it became more informative, then downright inspiring.

  • Margaret
    2019-03-14 02:57

    Five stars for this one. Not for literary style, just because it makes more sense than anything I've read for a very long time.

  • Leland Beaumont
    2019-03-08 03:41

    This handbook for prospective humanists is an important resource for thoughtful people who are seeking real good. The book tells us what humanism is, why it makes sense, how it addresses real problems, and what we can do to create positive change.American Humanist Association Executive director, Roy Speckhardt, declares “Humanism is the radical idea that you can be good without a belief in god” and goes on to demonstrate why this simple idea is so sensible and so powerful. Those who will enjoy this book are readers who prefer: science over dogma, common sense over obsolete texts, reality over mysticism, exploration over obedience, coherence over dissonance, inclusion over exclusion, evidence over ideology, and real humans over imagined deities.The design of this book accommodates a wide range of readers’ readiness to accept and promote humanism. People new to humanism are provided a thorough and accessible introduction to the principles, philosophy, and application of this lifestance. Readers who may have already identified as humanists now have a comprehensive account of it. Experienced humanists who wish to advocate for their beliefs are provided with resources for taking action and creating change. In the second chapter the author tells his personal story of growing up Catholic, questioning dogma as a youngster, learning that many bible stories originated as pagan traditions, studying social ills rooted in ignorance, and starting his own progressive thinking website before joining the humanist movement. The powerful stories of Dr. Anthony Pinn, and Dr. Janet Jeppson Asimov describe their personal struggles to cross the Theistic divide and embrace Humanism. Whereas religious beliefs are taught to us, chapter three describes a natural and innate basis for humanism. Research demonstrates that even very young children have a good sense of morality. Our reliance on careful analysis of the observable world is our most reliable source of knowledge not only within, but also beyond the bounds of scientific disciplines. Accepting the scientific process as the best method for determining all types of knowledge allows us to continue to build humanity’s knowledge base. Because empathy allows us to understand others’ feelings, it informs our reasoning toward doing the right thing. Chapter 4 provides a history of the American Humanist Association, and chapter 5 describes the many very real prejudices against atheists. While these chapters are necessary for completeness, I found them a bit tedious primarily because they look back rather than move forward.Humanism is marked by its positive approach, and chapter 6 provides an inspiring vision of a bright future that can be attained by applying the principles of Humanism. Many prejudices based on ignorance and sustained by religious fundamentalist will be overcome. “People will understand that science is a way to seek answers, not something to ‘believe’ in.” Future political leaders will position their belief systems in humanistic terms. “Humanists will encourage empathy, along with the compassion and a sense of inherent equal worth that flows from it, in a way that honors human knowledge about ourselves and our universe.” These ideas can become unifying forces.Part II of the book applies the philosophical foundations of humanism to solving problems. These principles are described fully in the appendix Humanism and its Aspirations, and explored in chapter 7. Core humanist issues are explored in chapter 8. Here the contentious issues of civil rights, women’s rights, LGBTQ rights, environment and population dynamics, church-state separation, death with dignity, and responsible scientific freedom are each analyzed from a humanist perspective. Clear thinking supports clear positions on each issue. Chapter 9 advises readers how to live as a humanist. Advice from a humanist perspective is provided on essential life issues, including: origin stories, family life, personal fulfillment, joy, free-will, death, and immortality. Chapter 10 is a guidebook for activism in politics, charity, social change, community, and advising young people. The final chapter strengthens the call to action, encouraging us to: “come out as humanists at every opportunity,” explain humanism to others, frame humanist positions in positive language, seek and mobilize allies, and raise public awareness. The appendix includes three useful references: the third Humanist Manifesto describes the concepts and boundaries of humanism, the Ten Commitments provide guiding principles for teaching values, and a glossary defines several movement terms.Although the basis of humanist philosophy is inherently universal and inclusive, this book addresses US-based readers. A bibliography provides useful references for further study, yet claims made throughout the book are not linked to supporting citations. The review copy lacks an index.Start where you are, read this book, decide for yourself what you believe, and move forward. The book is thoughtfully conceived, well written, clearly argued, and backed by reliable evidence.

  • Karol Gajda
    2019-02-23 08:38

    Although I've been following the American Humanist Association (of which Mr Speckhardt is the Director) for years I've never really considered myself a humanist. I always felt like it was a bit of a cop out. Or a cloak. Hiding behind the term atheism. But after reading this (which I purchased after reading a Reddit AMA with Mr Speckhardt) I guess I am a humanist. Creating Change Through Humanism is a well written account of the challenges that face non-believers in a world of believers along with a historical breakdown of where humanism began and how it's growing. More importantly it's an account of how to create change through positive action. It's not about proselytizing or converting, but about being out in the open and doing good things for the sake of doing good things. For humans, animals, the Earth and the universe alike. I think we can all appreciate that message.

  • Mark Abrams
    2019-02-23 00:47

    I found this to be an excellent book about humanism. This 172 page read was a very concise and easy to read introduction for atheists, agnostics, and doubters of all kinds. It talks about humanism in a way that is not anti-religion, by any means, and discusses the alternative possibility of being good without a belief in any gods or other supernatural forces, and focuses on an open-minded study of science and its philosophies.It goes further than just explaining what it is, but also how to be active and make some significant changes in your life and the world in general. It is a work that is clear and concise in style, surprising in many ways, and well worth reading!

  • Benita Nordenstrom
    2019-02-22 01:00

    I wanted to like this book, I've met Roy Speckhardt and appreciate his work with the American Humanist Association. Unfortunately, his personality did not come through and the book was rather dry. I wasn't able to get through it all. There is some good information there, definitely, just not entertaining enough for me to finish...

  • Mark Johnston
    2019-03-05 03:48

    I feel a little guilty for giving this book such a low rating. If nothing else, the book does give a clear and complete view of the current vision of the American Humanist Association. Only chapter 4, a brief overview of the history of (H)umanism, seemed really valuable to me.

  • David
    2019-03-16 00:55

    Good and concise overview of Humanism and its key aspects today. No surprises here, but a good roll up, and an excellent introduction for those "nons" interested in something more.

  • Joshua
    2019-03-03 00:58

    Clear, concise and informative. For anyone interested in learning what Humanism is.