Humanism and Atheism

By Sean Nolan

For some the journey and discovery that you are an atheist could be a radical, extreme or even dangerous realization. Many non-believers will feel alone or exiled from their family and friends because of their secular beliefs, especially if no one around them understands or shares those beliefs. This is where Humanism and the Humanist society steps in, as it gives non-believers a community environment in which they can openly communicate with others who share their secularism. As opposed to many theistic groups, the Humanist Society welcomes people with a plethora ofideologies and opinions to have friendly debates and discussions rather than being bound to total compliance.

To me, as an atheist, the word “atheism” is vague and subject to a breadth of interpretation. To use it to refer to all non-believers around the world is unsatisfactory and indefinite. Atheism means nothing more than not believing in a god or gods. With “Humanism” it states that this particular person is more than just a atheist/agnostic but someone who supports science and discovery, equality for LGBT persons, separation between church and state and equal rights for non-believers and believers alike.

Finally, many view religion as the only way to retain your morality and key values. I myself have witnessed the idea that only Christians do charity work, this of course being a naive and ignorant thought. The Humanist Society challenges these stereotypes by showing that non-believers can help those living in poor/unsatisfactory conditions. Following in the footsteps of famous non-religious people like Bill Gates and Warren Buffet, who have contributed billions of dollars to help those in need, the society aims to improve and aid communities whenever possible.

This is why, to me as a 16 year old atheist, the Humanist Society is a valuable facet of Singapore’s society.