IMPORTANT NOTE: The Humanist Symposium has been discontinued. See this post for details. —Ebonmuse
A gathering for freethinkers to celebrate all that life has to offer.
The Carnival of the Godless, founded in March 2005 by Brent Rasmussen of Unscrewing the Inscrutable, is a wonderful forum for atheist writing and is still going strong. However, since that time there's been a proliferation of new atheist weblogs that deserve to be better known. I believe there's more than enough room and interest for multiple godless carnivals to showcase this excellent freethought writing, and with that in mind I've created the Humanist Symposium. So as not to just duplicate the COTG, this one will have a slightly different emphasis.
Schedule: New editions of the Humanist Symposium will be posted on Sunday, because what better time is there for humanists to gather than when everyone else is in church? The deadline for submissions will be midnight on the preceding Saturday. For now, new editions will appear every three weeks; if there's sufficient interest, I'll move the schedule up to bimonthly.
1. The Humanist Symposium is open to atheists, agnostics, and freethinkers. Posts supporting or defending traditional, mainstream religions are ineligible. Posts written from the standpoint of a theistic but non-organized belief system (e.g., deism) are eligible at the host's discretion, but should still follow the guidelines explained below for what type of entries we're looking for.
2. The Humanist Symposium is not intended to be a forum for all types of atheistic thought, but original posts that specifically support the philosophy of humanism. Humanism is a way of thought that affirms the inherent dignity and worth of human life and our ability to seek truth, gain wisdom, and tell right from wrong through the application of reason. Submissions should touch on one or more of the following categories, or on topics similar to them:
- The happiness and freedom of life as an atheist, or other positive aspects to living a life without religious belief
- Efforts to evangelize for atheism, and stories of people who have recently deconverted from religion
- How to find meaning and purpose in a godless life
- How non-religious people deal with weddings, child-raising, deaths, and other significant life events
- Posts that stir up the human sense of awe and wonder
- The ethics and moral philosophy of the non-religious
- How nonbelievers can foster and nourish a sense of community
In short, the purpose of the Humanist Symposium is not primarily to criticize religious beliefs or debunk the latest superstition, but to offer and discuss a positive alternative to belief systems based on the supernatural. If in doubt whether a post qualifies, submit it! You have nothing to lose by doing so.
3. There is no hard limit on the number of posts that should appear in each edition. The host is free to use their own discretion in deciding whether to accept a given submission.
4. You may submit one of your own posts or a post written by someone else.
5. No more than one post from the same author should appear in each edition. If there are multiple entries by the same author, the host may select any one of their choice. However, if one submission from a given site is by the author and one is by someone else, priority should be given to the author's selection. In the case of a group blog, one entry per author is allowable, not just one entry per site.
6. Entries for a given edition should have been written recently, ideally since the last edition. Allowances may be made for particularly excellent older posts.
7. Entries should ideally be from a blog, i.e., a chronologically organized website that allows real-time user comments. However, occasional allowances may be made for humanist writing from other sources.
Submissions: Submissions should be sent through the BlogCarnival form. Alternatively, they may be e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org, or to the host of the upcoming edition, with the subject line "Humanist Symposium Submission". Please include the name of the blog the submission is from, the title of the post, the author's name or handle, a stable link to the post, and a short description.
Hosting: If you're interested in hosting an upcoming edition of the Humanist Symposium, send e-mail to email@example.com.
Want to promote the Humanist Symposium on your website? Feel free to download and use one of these banners:
Thanks to Interhuss Designs for contributing these images.
Thanks to Michael White for this image.