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Article Announcement and Review

The Establishment of the Religion of Secular Humanism and Its First Amendment Implications, by John Whitehead and John Conlan. Copyright 1978 by The Texas Tech Law Review, Texas Tech School of Law, Lubbock, Texas. The Government's increasing encroachment upon American Religious Liberties and Freedoms is a frightening reality in today's Twentieth Century Society. No less startling is Secular Humanism's ceaseless attempt to disembowel the foundations of law and truth. Secular Humanism is a religious belief whose establishment by the State must be halted today.

The Texas Tech Law Review is pleased to announce the publication of John Whitehead's and John Conlan's extensive article defining and exposing the establishment of the religion of Secular Humanism to be published in Vol.10, No. 1(1978). The article is divided into two pans. The first pan focuses on the development of the judicial definition of religion and its transition from traditional theism's definition to the Supreme Court's definition of "belief as-ultimate-concern." Whitehead and Conlan trace the Supreme Court's gradual shift from religion founded upon the absolutes of traditional theism to the advent of "belief' apart from "exercise" and the humanistic relativism that persists today. The article's well-researched history of the First Amendment religion clauses reveals the stark contrast between the Supreme Court's present definition of religion and that which the founding fathers intended. The founding fathers who wrote and debated each word of the Constitution understood and intended "religion" to mean a transcendent relationship between the Creator and his creatures. However, humanistic relativism has permeated the Supreme Court's thinking to the extent that today "religion" does not even conceive of a Creator who gives absolute meaning and value to life, but rather is regarded as anything which has an "Ultimate concern" to the particular individual possessing such concern. Whitehead and Conlan correctly note that under the Supreme Court's progressive interpretation of religion everyone has a religion and all things or mental processes of an individuals mind are religious.

The second part of the article thoroughly defines Secular Humanism and its beliefs. Whitehead and Conlan discuss the six basic tenets of Secular Humanism the denial of relevance of Deity or supernatural agencies; the belief in the supremacy of "human reason"; the belief in the inevitability of progress; the belief in science as the guide to human progress and the ultimate provider of an alternative to both traditional theism and morals; the belief in the self-sufficiency and centrality of Man; and the belief in the absolutism of evolution.

The last tenet is discussed in great detail because of its importance and breadth. The inescapable conclusion is that Secular Humanism is a religion whose object of worship is Man and because it is a "religion" the establishment of Secular Humanism in our society through the organs of the State is unconstitutional. This article will stand as a masterful research tool and analysis of the Law of Religious Freedom in the United States and its message is essential to anyone desiring true religious freedom. The authors should be applauded for their scholarly work amid a field of hostility and bitterness.

Charles Bundren, Lead Articles Editor, `78-79 Texas Tech Law Review

 


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