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What is humanism?

Humanism is the proposition that human beings can solve human problems. By this proposition, Humanists accept moral responsibility for humanity, all living things, and the planet itself. 

Humanism asserts that religious and philosophical traditions are created by human beings and are therefore at their best when they best serve the human need for meaning and purpose in this world, now. 

Our Aspirations

  1. We aspire to live joyfully and ethically, in loving, reverent relationship with humanity and nature.
  2. We aspire to make the change we need for a more just, compassionate, and peaceful world.
  3. We aspire to pursue wisdom through reason, science, art, and the stories of civilizations.
  4. We aspire to support one another’s journey toward meaning and connection in the here and now.

As stated in one of our four Aspirations, we explore and express meaning through “reason, science, art, and the stories of civilizations.” Yes, we put an “s” on “civilizations.” Why? Because there have been and are so many! The humanist idea stretches back millennia and crosses the globe, from ancient Africa, China, India, Greece, and wherever human beings have attempted to make sense of the cosmos we find ourselves a part of.    

Are humanists atheist? Many are. Many are agnostic. And many are unconventional in their views. What is the common denominator? We insist that human beings can solve human problems. The human search for truth has led to many solutions. We respect all of them, insisting that human beings are more important than our ideas. 

Humanism is a worldwide movement reflecting human cultures in their many varieties. Humanism is a grassroots movement, and the sheer number of humanist options reflects this. Two varieties reflected in the United States are secular humanism and congregational humanism. What is the difference? Congregational humanists congregate! That is, we gather in groups and celebrate the joys, sorrows, and milestones of our lives together. 

First Unitarian Society of Minneapolis is the birthplace of congregational humanism. As a congregation, FUS has been instrumental in the development of humanism in its several forms. Our goal is to be radically inclusive in thought, word, and deed.

We invite you to join us in the quest for meaning and purpose in the here and now.

Humanist logo of abstract human swaying.


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American Humanist Association

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Dr. Rev. David Breeden, Senior Minister

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