What is skepticism? -- Skepticism as selective doubt -- Scientific method and rational skepticism -- Skepticism and the new enlightenment -- The growth of antiscience -- Skepticism, science, and the paranormal -- Should skeptical inquiry be applied to religion? -- Skepticism and religion -- Are science and religion compatible? -- Skepticism and political inquiry -- Skepticism and ethical inquiry -- Moral faith and ethical skepticism reconsidered -- Skepticism and eupraxsophy -- The new skepticism: a worldwide movement -- Skeptical inquiry: my (...) personal involvement -- Science and the public: summing up thirty years of the skeptical inquirer -- The new skepticism: a statement of principles. (shrink)
We need to clarify “humanist” and “humanism,” terms that have been open to considerable philosophical definition-mongering. I wish to propose a minimal core definition. Although this is normative, it is continuous with common usage. First, humanism expresses a set of values and virtues. emphasizing human freedom and autonomy. This ethical theory contrasts with divine-command ethics. Second, humanism, particularly secular humanism, rejects supernaturalism. Humanism should not be simply equated with atheism; however. it proposes a reflective form of agnostic or skeptical atheism. (...) Third, secular humanism is committed to a key epistemological principle: amethod of inquiry that emphasizes reason and scientific objectivity. Fourth, it has a nonreductive naturalistic ontology drawn from the sciences. Last, humanist philosophers should not only be concerned with theoretical issues, but with the role of humanism in practical life as an alternative to theistic religion. (shrink)
The failure of theistic morality -- Ethical inquiry -- The common moral decencies -- Excelsior : the ethics of excellence -- Responsibilities -- Education for character and cognition -- Human rights -- Privacy -- The tree of life.