River Wissey Lovell Fuller


August 2010

Janet explains the principles of Humanism and invites readers to join the Lynn Humanists

Some of you may have noticed my advertisements for the meetings of Lynn Humanists and may even have wondered what we are about. I thought I might try to explain.

With a speaker to lead off, we have talked about education, climate change, ethics, meditation and much else, and though topics generally have a serious side events themselves are cheerful enough. Visitors are welcome and join in discussion or not as they please. Most of our topics don't actually focus on belief and the group includes a range of outlooks from simply atheist to moderately religious.

Humanism itself goes back at least to the Renaissance with its readiness tO look at evidence afresh and to the later gradually developing scepticism about the supernatural as science presented new evidence and explanation to replace old assertions. Many 19th century freethinkers were very concerned about social conditions and took part in the struggle for things that we now take for granted such as education for all, opportunity not limited by faith, and the practical options of contraception, anaesthesia in childbirth and cremation.

Humanism places no faith in the existence of a creator or god. Believing this life to be all we have makes the need for morality and compassion all the greater if we are to get along together as well and happily as possible. Humanists think individuals should take responsibility for their actions and they favour tolerance and education about the variety of beliefs. You may already have had contact with humanism, perhaps at a funeral or marriage ceremony, and I hope you have found it a positive way to view life.

Our main meetings are on Wednesday evenings at the Quakers in central Lynn and simply coming along is a good way to meet us and find out about other activities (including daytime and distant participation). For information you can phone me on 01366 500757, e-mail our coordinator Edwin Salter on new.sec@hotmail.com or find the British Humanist Association on the net. Our autumn theme is to be the arts (that's on 22/ 9, 27/ 10 and 24/11) and I hope you might join us for an evening.

Janet Bums

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