You are here for some reason. Perhaps curiosity, obtaining knowledge or searching for a better paradigm of belief. Perhaps merely browsing. You will not be wasting your time. Provided in the following pages is a condensation of thinking within the Religious Naturalism community. A few of its most eminent scholars are referenced on the Looking Ahead page. They provide individual understandings of Religious Naturalism. Most have Wikipedia bio articles about them. Several are world famous which shows the respect this belief is getting. You will find much of value here regardless of why you dropped in.
A very minimal statement of what it is
Religious Naturalism is the belief devoid of supernaturalism that Nature is real, sacred and rightfulness is the path to proper human behavior.
Religious Naturalists are people who admit to being one. They believe Nature is real, sacred and lawful. Its realness is proven by evidence. The sacredness is an emotional response to their spiritual awareness of that realness. Because Nature is lawful, it works. There are various perspectives within this community so it is pluralistic. It has two main ways to find meaning in the world. One way is objective and the other subjective. This makes it dualistic. On the other hand this reality is one unitary whole with no independent parts so it is monistic in this respect. It is a modern belief having emerged in the last seventy years. But some aspects of it can be traced back to Greek philosophers.
Religions are possible without supernatural entities. There in no need for them. The US Supreme Court affirms this. Buddhism and Taoism are good examples. Naturalism says the universe is real. Religious Naturalism says it is also sacred. Nature by evidence of its natural laws is lawful. It can be felt personally. This provides the religion attributes. Nature is awesome, eternal, vast and held in high esteem. It is mystical and worthy of veneration. This is sacredness. Experiencing this sacredness is naturalistic spirituality.
Natural forces can account for all phenomena. Matter and energy account for all substance. Life is a natural substance. Scientific methodology explains these components. For centuries it has been by far the best way to understand our being. It has satisfied the largest community of international investigators in human history. Science offers universal explanations while religion is a personal acceptance. This universality give science advantages over religion in conveying meaning.
Religious Naturalists strive for clarity of language but do not rule out metaphoric or poetic language to enrich their discourse. It is similar to other beliefs in this respect. They rely on human reason, feelings, arts and culture to provide understanding where they can do this better than science.
Note: This paradigm has been up to now a scholarly subject. There is presently no official doctrine for a Religious Naturalist to follow. There is not yet a centralized agency to provide it. And there is some resistance to developing it. Most Religious Naturalists are not big on dogma. The material presented here should be regarded as only one rendering of this emerging paradigm. It is offered as an introduction to a tantalizing approach for addressing life. You are encouraged to form your own opinion on it. Those who are enthusiastic about Religious Naturalism find it richly life-enhancing and its components of value. You too may find it a very satisfying outlook. Many objective and progressive thinking people find this to be the case. You are invited to read more.
Several pages have sub-pages that supply additional details. They are linked at the bottom of pages on the right side. The next page is also linked on the left to aid your navigation. At the bottom of some pages are YouTube videos. These supplement the verbiage presented here and enhance you experience here. Check them out. They all are worth your time.
Peter Mayer - Religious Naturalist
Fundamental to Religious Naturalism is that now everything is holy and a miracle.