Have you heard of Humanism? This can be a term used often in social sciences throughout multiple aspects of post-secondary education. I'm sure you know we are all humans....but are we all humanistic?
Before about 5 days ago I did not know the significance of Humanism in our world today and since then I have wanted to share my recent findings on this topic.
The definition of Humanism, as stated from The Humanist Society, goes as "The principles of humanism include helping others, concern for our environment, meeting in community with others of like mind, making connections and growing by connection with others who hold diverse beliefs, and building a legacy that makes our world a better place" (http://thehumanistsociety.org/about/humanism/).
This may not make complete sense as of now but I intend to deepen your understanding of the definition and the importance of Humanism in our society today throughout this blog post.
This concept came into my understanding during a Foundation of PE, Sport & Coaching class last week at Douglas College. We were given the following reading as homework which I became very interested in.
If you have the time, I would encourage you to read through this article to fully understand this concept. The article is written for Sport Science students and relates back to sport and recreation often however it can be applied to more than that. If you are not interested in reading the article, I will be giving a summary of it along with my own thoughts and understandings throughout this post. Feel free to do both.
Is "both an old and new philosophy" (Lunn, 2013). Humanism can be related to our everyday lives, the future and the past. The reading states, "Its goal is “full and healthy human living” (Buhler & Allen, p. 1), and the growth of the “fully-functioning” person"" (Lunn, 2013). This is significant to myself since I am interested in human development and growth and of course, encouraging others to allow themselves to grow also.
The main ideas of this concept are:
RESPECT (for oneself, other human beings and our surroundings)
BECOMING (the pursuit of potential)
HELPING (the helping relationship)
Now I will go into each with some detail.
The RESPECT aspect of Humanism is relating to how you value yourself and others. Each human is worthy of respect. What does respect mean to you? Do you respect yourself? Others? Your environment? This article states "To respect someone also means that you have a genuine concern for their growth and development" (Lunn, 2013). DO YOU care about others enough to give concern on their personal journey? Basic respect should be introduced at a young age however; many people may not portray respect in their everyday life until they realize how important it is to build relationships. We should all be respecting others to allow for positive connections and self-esteem. Respect can go a long way and is necessary is most aspects of life.
*If you notice yourself disrespecting someone, yourself or the environment, take a step back and ask yourself why? How can you change this?*
The BECOMING aspect of Humanism is relating to human growth and development. This article reiterates the importance of growth through our lifetime by saying ". One of the foundational beliefs of humanism is that people are meant to grow, that people want to grow, that people ought to grow. Just as an acorn is meant to grow into a healthy oak tree, each human being is meant to grow into a unique and happy person. Abraham Maslow asserts that each human being possesses “the ‘will to health’, the urge to grow, the pressure of self-actualization, the quest for one’s identity” (1968, p. 193)" (Lunn, 2013).
Growing is a lifelong experience full of highs and lows. It can take time to find out what is right for yourself and along the way you may experience some trouble. Troubling situations allow for growth in a sense that they teach you how to handle it better in the future. You learn from your mistakes.
""The term “becoming” is used to refer to the pursuit of one’s potentials. It is the process of becoming the unique, expressive, fulfilled individual that you can be; that you were meant to be"" (Lunn, 2013). We are all becoming into our future selves. Although we do not know who we will become or how our experiences will shape us, we know that becoming is a necessity in the human cycle. In this process of "becoming", we can encourage goal setting, to allow personal development to reach its full potential.
GOALS ARE SO IMPORTANT TO ACHIEVE AND ACCOMPLISH.
*Take some time today to write down one current goal, one short term goal and one long term goal*
The last part of humanism is the importance of HELPING. This is where the authors brings in the helping relationship (Lunn, 2013). A relationship where each partner encourages the other to grow, to flourish. This includes helping others realize their potential as they might not see it themselves. The helping relationship can happen between romantic partners, family members, teacher and student or coach and athlete. Whomever it includes, it is focused on wanting to aid the other in their own personal development to become successful throughout life.
This relationship goes into depth in the paper of how it includes 3 core concepts.
2. Unconditional Positive Regard
If you do not know what these concepts mean, please refer to the text. They are all majorly significant to Humanism.
*If you notice yourself judging others, try to put yourself in their shoes. Being empathetic can brighten many relationships*
Throughout this brief overview of Humanism, I have touched on the major concepts of what it is and why we should take part in it. Without Humanism, our relationships would be challenging and would not grow. We need growth. We need change. We need personal development.
Growing is very important to me and is one of the main reasons I started my personal journey on this blog. I grew out of old relationships, old habits, old environments and you can too. If you are feeling lost, focus on positive fact that you HAVE the ability to grow each and every day. Whether that is physical, mental, social or emotional YOU are the one who needs to make the decision to start your personal growth.
Engaging in relationships that aspire to raise others up could lead to more personal and group accomplishments. I am hoping you can apply this to yourself or to others to inspire your holistic growth. I found this topic very interesting and like most of the information I am learning I ask myself "Why didn't I learn this in high school?". I continue to learn new things every day that I believe should have been taught in younger grades. This stuff is necessary for life.
I hope you enjoyed this read. Thank you for following How To Flourish.
Check out this link https://www.humanistcanada.ca/about/humanism to read about "The 12 Principles of Humanism".