Psychadelic Humanism.

Author:Campolo, Bart
Position:LETTERS - Letter to the editor
 
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Thanks for publishing Tom Krattenmaker's thoughtful essay, "A New Vision for Secular Transcendence" (S/O 2018). I agree that extending ourselves to our fellow humans, to the earth to which we are inextricably bound (so far, anyway), and to the future of both are vital elements of secular spirituality. However, the transcendence that supernaturalists think we humanists are missing isn't simply about greater meaning but about those overwhelming, temporarily ego-erasing experiences, which for them confirm and embody that greater meaning.

Alain de Botton rightly points out that such experiences have been and still can be generated by powerful institutions, which is one reason I'm committed to adding more rituals, choral music, structure, and consistency to the practice of humanist community-building. Even so, I seriously doubt our communities can provide enough comfort for this age using only the meaning-making tools of the last. For that we'll need a vehicle that takes us far beyond Krattenmaker's "principled individualism" and "personal authenticity" by enabling us to viscerally experience the scientifically...

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