Humanistisch Verbond

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The Humanistisch Verbond (HV, sometimes translated as Humanistic Association Netherlands,[1] Dutch Humanist Association[2] or Dutch Humanist League[3]) is a Dutch association based on secular humanist principles.


The foundation of the HV is that everyone is responsible for their own actions, but also has co-responsibility for the environment and others. The HV strives to spread and protect values such as self-determination, equal treatment and toleration. These have freedom of choice and personal responsibility at their core.

The HV uses slogans such as:

  • Zelf denken, samen leven ("Thinking for yourself, living together")
  • Het Humanistisch Verbond wil een inspiratiebron en ontmoetingsplaats zijn. Het behartigt tevens de belangen van mensen die zich in het humanisme herkennen ("The Humanistisch Verbond wants to be a source of inspiration and place to meet up. It also looks after the interests of people who identify with humanism") In 2022, the organisation stated that it had about 17,000 paying members,[4] up from 13,000 in 2016 [5]

The services offered by the HV include speeches at funerals, humanist mental care and celebrating relationships.


Ruard Ganzevoort at an HV event.

The Humanistisch Verbond (HV) was founded on 17 February 1946[6] as a response to 'spiritual nihilism' - that was held partially responsible for the atrocities of the Second World War - and the slighting of the non-religious in the Netherlands. The initiators were, amongst others, Jaap van Praag, Garmt Stuiveling and Jan Brandt Corstius. The widow of the prominent freethinker and humanist Leo Polak, Henriette Polak, was also closely involved in the foundation. The goal of the HV was uniting all humanists and deepening, spreading and defending the humanist worldview. Nowadays the HV focuses on the motto Zelf denken, samen leven ("Thinking for yourself, living together") to fulfilling two core tasks:

  1. Formulating humanist perspectives to current worldview and personal questions;
  2. Reinforcing and establishing humanist services, including humanist mental care, humanist funeral guidance and humanist formative education.

The Humanistisch Verbond is one of the founders of the Dutch humanist umbrella, the Humanistische Alliantie, and is member of the European Humanist Federation and International Humanist and Ethical Union.[1]


Chair of the Humanistisch Verbond were:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Our members - Humanistic Association Netherlands (Humanistisch Verbond Nederland)". IHEU website. International Humanist and Ethical Union. Retrieved 7 November 2015.
  2. ^ Peter Derkx, "The Future of Humanism" in: Copson, Andrew; Grayling, A.C. (2015). The Wiley Blackwell Handbook of Humanism. John Wiley & Sons. p. 434. ISBN 978-1118793350. Retrieved 7 November 2015.
  3. ^ van Praag, Jaap (1979). "Moral Education in the Netherlands". Journal of Moral Education. 8 (3): 202–205. doi:10.1080/0305724790080306.
  4. ^ "De vereniging". Retrieved 2022-03-19.
  5. ^ "Factsheet". Archived from the original on 2016-07-02. Retrieved 2020-04-09.
  6. ^ Bert Gasenbeek; Hans Blom; Jo Nabuurs (2006). God noch autoriteit. Geschiedenis van de vrijdenkersbeweging in Nederland. Amersfoort: Boom. p. 73. ISBN 978-9085063582.
  7. ^ "Factsheet". Website HV. Humanistisch Verbond. Retrieved 13 August 2015.
  8. ^ "Mardjan Seighali nieuwe voorzitter Humanistisch Verbond". Humanistisch Verbond. 21 November 2020. Retrieved 21 November 2020.

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