"For years," writes Bob W. Holmes, "I have been teaching people a form of spirituality that eliminates the need for a god formed in man's image; that does not require angels, devils, or other mythical entities. There is none of the ancient cultural influences, such as sexism, elitism, or racism. The teachings are based upon reason." Holmes briefly and gently explains his advocacy for what he calls Reasoned Sprituality. For details, read. Or visit his Reasoned Spirituality webpage, or contact him at <bwholmes (at) reasoned (dot) org>.
Why I am an advocate for Reasoned Spirituality
Even from childhood, I was unable to accept the anthropomorphic mystical representations that are inherent to religious belief systems. Although such beliefs are, logically, not to be taken literally; and are merely symbolic ways to communicate concepts of morality to people who are unable to grasp the complexities of abstract reasoning: I found it difficult to tolerate the fact that so many individuals required magical solutions to life's challenges. Atheism did not appeal to me, due to its tendency to focus only on negativity.
Many atheists do not simply express a non-belief in god/gods; but adopt a contrary, and frequently superior, attitude toward theists. To belittle the beliefs of others, without providing these people with a valid alternative which fulfills their need for purpose and hope for the future; is incompatible with my altruistic nature.
The fact that atheist organizations are basically manifestations of the same pack dynamics that cause the formation of religious groups, only with a "faith" in the non-existence of God; conflicts with my desire to reason independently. Agnosticism was not an option: concluding that some things can never be known is defeatist; concluding that you are unsure of a conclusion is paradoxical.
These points led me to adopt Reasoned Spirituality: a discipline that is neither theistic nor atheistic, but a pantheistic philosophy that shares aspects of the two ends of the spectrum. It is important to tolerate the beliefs of all people, provided they cause no significant harm to others, because every individual has differing mental capabilities, and consequently, each requires a different manifestation of the reasons to lead a moral, honest, and rewarding existence.
To decide that everything is the result of the actions of a deity/deities created in the image of man, or to conclude that the universe is basically a chaotic grouping of molecules, are both beliefs that ignore the science our remarkable species has created. To me the philosophy seems the only logical alternative.