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Decrees of Humanism
The decrees of our universal humanist moral and ethical code, taken either singly or combined, relate to all / any isssues that affect or effect human well being.
Humanism, the outcome of a long tradition of free thought *D1. has inspired many of the world's great thinkers and creative artists and gave rise to science itself *D2. The decrees of modern Humanism are :
1. Humanism . . . is ethical *d1. It affirms the worth, dignity and autonomy of the individual *d2. and the right of every human being to the greatest possible freedom, compatible with the rights of others *d3. Humanists have a duty of care to all of humanity including future generations *d4. Humanists believe that morality is an intrinsic part of human nature based on understanding and a concern for others, needing no external sanction *d5.
2. Humanism . . . is rational *d6. It seeks to use science creatively, not destructively *d7. Humanists believe that the solutions to the world's problems lie in human thought and action rather than divine intervention *d8. Humanism advocates the application of the methods of science and free inquiry to the problems of human welfare *d9. But Humanists also believe that the application of science and technology must be tempered by human values *d10. Science gives us the means but human values must decide the ends *d11.
3. Humanism . . . supports democracy and human rights. *d12. Humanism aims at the fullest possible development of every human being *d13. It holds that democracy and human development are matters of right *d14. The principles of democracy and human rights can be applied to many human relationships and are not restricted to methods of government *d15.
4. Humanism . . . insists that personal liberty must be combined with social responsibility *d16. Humanism ventures to build a world on the idea of the free person responsible to society *d17. and recognizes our dependence on and responsibility for the natural world *d18. Humanism is not dogmatic, imposing no creed upon its adherents *d19. It is thus committed to education free from indoctrination *d20.
5. Humanism . . . is a response to the widespread demand for an alternative to dogmatic religion *d21. The world's major religions claim to be based on revelations fixed for all time, and many seek to impose their world-views on all of humanity. Humanism recognises that reliable knowledge of the world and ourselves arises through a continuing process of observation, evaluation and revision *d22.
6. Humanism . . . values artistic creativity and imagination and recognizes the transforming power of art *d23. Humanism affirms the importance of literature, music, and the visual and performing arts for, personal development and fulfilment *d24.
7. Humanism . . . is a life stance aiming at the maximum possible fulfilment through the cultivation of ethical and creative living, offering an ethical and rational means of addressing the challenges of our times *d25. Humanism can be a way of life for everyone everywhere. Our primary task is to make human beings aware in the simplest terms of what Humanism can mean to them and what it commits them to *d26. By utilizing free inquiry, the power of science and creative imagination for the furtherance of peace and in the service of compassion, we have confidence that we have the means to solve the problems that confront us all *d27. We call upon all who share this conviction to associate themselves with us in this endeavour. www.iheu.org.uk