List of secularist organizations
Secularist organizations promote the view that moral standards should be based solely on concern for the good of humanity in the present, without reference to supernatural concepts, such as God or an afterlife, any desire to do good for a reward after death, or any fear of punishment for not believing in life after death. The term secularism, as coined and promulgated by George Jacob Holyoake, originally referred to such a view. Secularism may also refer to the belief that government should be neutral on matters of religion, and that church and state should be separate. The term here is used in the first sense, though most organizations listed here also support secularism in the second sense.
Secularists, and their organizations, identify themselves by a variety of terms, including, bright, freethinker, naturalist, rationalist, or skeptic. Despite the use of these various terms, the organizations listed here have secularist goals in common. Note that, while most of these organizations and their members consider themselves irreligious, there are certain exceptions (Ethical Culture, for example).
In some jurisdictions, a provincial or national humanist society may confer upon Humanist officiants the ability to conduct memorial services, child naming ceremonies or officiate marriages — tasks which would be carried out by clergy in most organized religions.
- The Brights' Net is a nonprofit educational organization dedicated to "building a constituency" and "constructively address[ing] the marginalized situation of persons who have a naturalistic worldview."
- The Clergy Project provides support, community, and hope to religious professionals who no longer hold supernatural beliefs.
- European Humanist Federation is a union of "numerous humanist organisations from most European countries" whose purpose is to promote humanism and secularism in Europe.
- International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU) is "the sole world umbrella organisation embracing Humanist, atheist, rationalist, secularist, skeptic, laique, [sic] ethical cultural, freethought and similar organisations world-wide." IHEU is a union of over 100 Humanist or secularist organizations in more than 40 countries. It is an international NGO (Non-governmental organization) with special consultative status with the United Nations.
- International Humanist and Ethical Youth Organisation (IHEYO), IHEU's youth wing
- International League of Humanists
- Rationalist International
- Sunday Assembly
- Council of Australian Humanist Societies
- National Secular Lobby
- Rationalist Society of Australia
- The Secular Party of Australia
- Brazilian Association of Atheists and Agnostics (ATEA)
- Sociedade da Terra Redonda
- Secular Humanist League of Brazil
- Centre for Inquiry Canada
- Freethought Association of Canada
- Humanist Canada, formerly Humanist Association of Canada
- Mouvement laïque québécois
- Secular Connexion Séculière
- Toronto Secular Alliance
- Comité Laïcité République
- Comité national d'action laïque
- Fédération nationale de la libre pensée
- Union des athées
- Union des familles laïques
- Union Rationaliste
- Bund für Geistesfreiheit
- Central Council of Ex-Muslims
- German Freethinkers League
- Giordano Bruno Foundation (Giordano Bruno Stiftung)
- International League of non-religious and atheists
- Humanistischer Verband Deutschlands
- Party of Humanists (Partei der Humanisten)
- Sidmennt – Icelandic Ethical Humanist Association
- Indian Rationalist Association
- Atheist Center
- Dakshina Kannada Rationalist Association
- Federation of Indian Rationalist Associations
- Indian Humanist Union
- Kerala Yukthivadi Sangham
- Dravidar Kazhagam
- Thanthai Periyar Dravidar Kazhagam
- We The Sapiens
- Essense club
- Humanist Society of New Zealand
- New Zealand Association of Rationalists and Humanists
- New Zealand Skeptics
- Human-Etisk Forbund HEF has over 78,000 members, making it "the largest group [in Norway] outside the State Church."
- Norwegian Heathen Society
- Humanist Society Scotland
- Scottish Secular Society, founded in 2012, identifies itself as Scotland's largest secular group.
- Association for the Support of Contemporary Living
- Association of Atheism
- Atatürkist Thought Association
- Republican People's Party
- İyi Party
- Humanists UK, founded 1896, is the largest such group.
- Conway Hall Ethical Society, founded in 1793, identifies itself as "the oldest freethought community in the world." Conwall Hall
- Humanist Society Scotland
- Scottish Secular Society
- National Secular Society
- Rationalist Association, which publishes New Humanist
- Camp Quest UK
There are many local humanist groups around the United Kingdom, most being affiliates of Humanists UK and the National Secular Society. Of these, Leicester Secular Society has particular claim to fame in being the world's oldest secular society, founded in 1851. Others include North East Humanists.
- American Atheists – dedicated to separation of church and state issues
- American Ethical Union – a federation of about 25 Ethical Societies representing the Ethical Culture movement founded in 1876 by Felix Adler.
- American Humanist Association, organization promoting Humanism in the US.
- American Secular Union
- Americans United for Separation of Church and State is a nonpartisan organization dedicated to preserving church-state separation to ensure religious freedom for all Americans.
- The Atheist Agenda
- Atheist Alliance International
- Atheist Community of Austin (TX)
- Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty, "The Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty" represents multiple Baptist groups (but not the Southern Baptist Convention) in supporting religious liberty and the separation of church and state.
- Camp Inquiry, a summer camp run by the Center for Inquiry.
- Camp Quest, "The Secular Summer Camp", is a residential summer camp in the United States for the children of those who hold a naturalistic world view.
- Center for Inquiry
- City Congregation for Humanistic Judaism
- Committee for Skeptical Inquiry
- Council for Secular Humanism is a non-profit educational association.
- Fellowship of Humanity
- First Humanist Society of New York
- Freedom From Religion Foundation, according to its website, is the "largest group of atheists and agnostics in North America."
- The Humanist Institute
- Institute for Humanist Studies
- Internet Infidels is "a nonprofit educational organization dedicated to defending and promoting a naturalistic worldview on the Internet."
- Military Association of Atheists & Freethinkers
- Military Religious Freedom Foundation
- North Texas Church of Freethought
- Practice What You Preach Foundation is a "non-profit organization that builds bridges between faith communities and secular organizations in the Greater Los Angeles Area."
- Rational Response Squad
- The Reason Project
- Secular Coalition for America
- Secular Student Alliance
- Society for Humanistic Judaism offers cultural and secular Jews a non-theistic alternative in contemporary Jewish life.
- United Coalition of Reason
- List of skeptical organizations
- Lists of secularists: Agnostics, Atheists, Humanists, Nontheists, Skeptics
Notes and references
- "Secularism". Oxford English Dictionary, Second Edition. Oxford University Press, 1989.
- The Secular Coalition for America, which has been identified by Brights.net as representing the interests of "secularist organizations", describes its constituency as "nontheistic Americans", including those who go by the labels "atheist, humanist, freethinker, agnostic, skeptic, bright, ignostic, materialist, and naturalist, among others." Who does the Secular Coalition for America represent? Archived 2008-04-16 at the Wayback Machine at the Secular Coalition for America website (Accessed 5 April 2008)
- Some less common secularist labels include: apatheist, godless (in the non-pejorative, literal sense), ignostic, infidel (or unbeliever), heathen, materialist, or realist.
- "Humanist Canada: Humanist Weddings". Archived from the original on 2012-12-28. Retrieved 2014-11-23.
- American Humanist Association: Humanists Stand Ready to Perform Same-Sex Marriage Ceremonies
- The Humanist Society Listing of Humanist Celebrants
- The Movement, The Brights' Network, 2008 (Accessed 9 April 2008)
- Presentation, European Humanist Federation website, 2006 (Accessed 10 April 2008)
- Laïque (French): "secular"
- About IHEU Archived 2008-07-05 at the Wayback Machine, IHEU website (Accessed 5 April 2008)
- Eroakirkosta.fi – Internet Deconstructing State Church in Finland
- "Les non-religieux veulent aussi être consultés". L'essentiel (in French). Edita SA. 18 January 2015. Retrieved 21 November 2015.
- The Norwegian Humanist Association Archived 2008-04-12 at the Wayback Machine, Human-Etisk Forbund website (English version), 2011 (Accessed 5 February 2011)
- Membership Archived 2007-10-30 at the Wayback Machine, Human-Etisk Forbund website (English version), 2004 (Accessed 9 April 2008)
- South Place Ethical Society website (Accessed 5 April 2008)
- Leicester Secular Society website (Accessed 5 April 2008)
- Organizations lists at the Secular Web.