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HUMANISM

Why, What, and What For, In 882 Words


HUMANISMO: Por qué, qué y para qué, en 856 palabras

Consider your biggest problems and grandest wishes. Chance aside, doesn't solving your problems and fulfilling your wishes depend on the actions of human beings–yourself included?

Consider the most important moments of your life, your greatest achievements, your biggest satisfactions and enjoyments. Weren't they the product of nature, mostly of humans as part of nature–yourself included? Even the most transcendent mystic or religious experiences you think you have had, don't you owe them to human beings, who have conceived mysticism, have inculcated and don't let it vanish in you, with influential presentations; and that make you feel accompanied in your faith?

Or consider the worst events in your life. Again, chance aside, haven't human beings had decisive roles in these events, either from action or inaction? Either from force of will or no will, haven't they even provoked some of these events outright, most probably due to a faulty education or crooked rearing? Including the human in yourself among those probable responsibles!

So it should be easy enough to conclude that the human condition in the rest of the people and in yourself–the capabilities, feelings, and actions of all of us–is the most important thing in your life.

The Human Being is the supreme product of nature, as a result of slow processes of interaction over millions of years. It is hard to conceive of processes that take place over such long time periods, so many times a human lifespan, which because of that can produce creatures and structures so sophisticated.

Likewise, the wonderful environment we have, ideal for our requirements, was also formed, which we can use and enjoy forever if we do it wisely.

We are predominant in nature because we can rationally and increasingly understand the world we are part of, and because we can control our instinctive actions when necessary. We seek clear and verifiable relationships between objects and phenomena, because these are the only useful ones. We avoid those ideas that are only popular, ancient, or products of the imagination or rhetoric. We increasingly understand ourselves as wonderful machines, made of a huge number of combinations of simple structures. While we research to know more and better, we use what we already know in so much there is to do, and we seek to spread existing knowledge, for the more of us who can use it to contribute to progress the better.

Our brain has fundamental functions that are not part of the rational thinking, like our emotionality, intuition, and the artistic sensibility and creativity. All of which we cultivate in cooperation with our rational mind.

Perhaps more important than the nature we are born with, are the effects on us of education and other experiences interacting along our lives. From basic skills like talking and standing upright, to qualities like honesty and perseverance, all are fruits of education and experience. We are like chunks of fantastic clay which can become extraordinary creatures. Hatred, envy, greed, and gullibility, for example, are consequences of a faulty education. To believe in the human being includes the full appreciation of both the value of each individual and of his or her enormous potential to be developed.

We each have our own personalities, while we combine to form the great universal human entity. What we crave most is appreciation from others. We are proud of the deeds, talents, virtues and beauties of others, because they show how we are, and how much we are capable of. The new skills and nobleness of youngsters touch us especially, because they are proof that we are advancing and essentially good. We revere and care for our elders, because each of them represents an entire lifetime of human existence, contributing his or her deeds, experience, and affection. When we fully appreciate another's human condition, our aprehentions and underestimation that could arise because of ethnic, economic, cultural, or gender differences are rendered groundless. We continue to live after we die through others' use of what we achieved and left behind.

Our judgement of right and wrong comes from thousands of generations of human experience, coexisting with others, which teach us what is constructive, what brings lasting good, and what does the opposite.

The social system is interwoven with our human nature. We need to relate to others in order to lead our lives, profit from our capabilities, and be happy. Society is nothing but a necessary, beneficial and even vital agreement between everyone. An agreement not imposing arbitrary constraints on us, but protecting all from abuse, and providing for the well-being, and development, and the most fruitful life of all of its members.

It is a magnificent reality that each of us is a fabulous organism, with possibilities that seem boundless. Knowing how much we are worth, knowing how important each one of us is to all the rest, and all the rest to each of us, knowing we are both nature and nurture, knowing our reciprocal dependence on the rest of nature, seeing that all the other people know such vital facts, and using our capacity to solve problems by understanding them, we will improve on the way all of us lead our lives, and we will reach–as individuals, as nations, and as a species–superlative levels of well-being.

1996 Rev. 97,98,04,07


> > This English version of this document is preliminary. All your comments, criticisms and corrections are very welcome.


Is There a New Humanism? Comments on the New Humanism Movement.

To Believe in The Human Being

Movimiento Humanista Evolucionario Cubano
(Cuban Evolutionary Humanist Movement)

P.O. Box 650264, Fla. 33265-0264, U.S.A. Tel. 305-226-4340
Coordinador@MHECnet.org



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