I wrote the other day about Jerry Newcombe’s absurd arguments about the Ten Commandments and I included Christopher Hitchens’ well-known attempt at developing a secular version of those rules. And wouldn’t you know it, the American Humanist Association has a suggested list of their own:
1) Thou shalt strive to promote the greater good of humanity before all selfish desires.
2) Thou shalt be curious, for asking questions is the only way to find answers.
3) Harm to your fellow human is harm to humanity. Therefore, thou shalt not kill, rape, rob, or otherwise victimize anyone.
4) Thou shall treat all humans as equals, regardless of race, gender, age, creed, identity, orientation, physical ability, or status.
5) Thou shalt use reason as your guide. Science, knowledge, observation, and rational analysis are the best ways to determine any course of action.
6) Thou shalt not force your beliefs onto others, nor insist that yours be the only and correct way to live happily.
7) If thou dost govern, thou shalt govern with reason, not with superstition. Religion should have no place in any government which represents all people and beliefs.
8) Thou shalt act for the betterment of your fellow humans, and be, whenever possible, altruistic in your deeds.
9) Thou shalt be good to the Earth and its bounties, for without it, humankind is lost.
10) Thou shalt impart thy knowledge and wisdom gained in your lifetime to the next generation, so that with each passing century, humanity will grow wiser and more humane.
Seems like a pretty good list to me. What I’d like to see, as I’ve said many times, is a monument with a list of humanist precepts like this that can be proposed wherever there are Ten Commandments monuments on public property.
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