Opinion Former Article

BHA and patrons launch new campaign to promote understanding of Humanism

Humanist filmmakers, philosophers, writers, academics, broadcasters, comedians, actors and more besides have teamed up with the British Humanist Association (BHA) to launch ‘Simply Humanism’, a two-week social media campaign to promote awareness of Humanism as an ethical life stance shared by millions of people in the UK.

Contributors to the campaign include new BHA President Shappi Khorsandi, broadcaster and historian Dan Snow, director Ken Loach, comedian Sara Pascoe, actor David Baddiel, broadcaster and physician Dr Christian Jessen, journalists Polly Toynbee and Zoe Margolis, and the philosopher A C Grayling, among various others.

The high-profile humanists, all patrons of the BHA, have contributed short quotations which sum up their responses to some of life’s big questions, such as ‘How do we live with purpose?’ or ‘How can I find happiness?’

The BHA hopes to use the graphics it shares on social media under the ‘Simply Humanism’ banner to reach hundreds of thousands of non-religious people in Britain who already look at life from a humanist point of view, but who may not have considered that their outlook constitutes a fully formed worldview – a coherent, fulfilling, and widely shared way of thinking that has a name of its own: Humanism.

BHA Chief Executive Andrew Copson commented,

‘The humanist perspective on life has always been around – there have always been those of us who view this life as the one and only life we have, who have seen science and reason as the best guides to objective truth, and who have appreciated that life’s colour and value doesn’t come from on high, but simply from our relationships with one another.

‘The BHA was founded in 1896 to advance understanding of this worldview and provide a voice for the non-religious. Even as we celebrate our 120th anniversary and find that our values have become accepted as the mainstream liberal values of the day, we know that we still have work to do to reach people whose family backgrounds or personal situations make it harder for them to express the values they hold confidently and openly.

‘We know from our experience that Humanism strikes a chord with many people when they hear of it: they suddenly realise that they have been humanists all their lives. We hope that many thousands of new people will come to that realisation as a result of this new campaign.’


Notes

For further information or contact, please email Communications Manager Liam Whitton on liam@humanism.org.uk.

The British Humanist Association is the national charity working on behalf of non-religious people who seek to live ethical and fulfilling lives on the reason and humanity. It promotes a secular state and equal treatment in law and policy of everyone, regardless of religion or belief. In 2016, it celebrates an important anniversary: 120 years since its original foundation in 1896.

The BHA has well over 150 patrons who support its work in various ways through their expertise and prominence in various fields. Existing patrons include significant figures from the spheres of science, philosophy, human rights activism, politics, the arts, and broadcasting. The BHA’s President is the writer and comedian Shappi Khorsandi, who is supported by Vice Presidents Professor Jim Al-Khalili, Professor A C Grayling, and Polly Toynbee. For a full list of patrons, see https://humanism.org.uk/about/our-people/patrons.

The BHA will principally be sharing content from Simply Humanism through its Facebook and Twitter profiles. You can also follow the BHA’s accounts on Instagram, Tumblr, and YouTube.

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