Here at the Spiritual Naturalist Society, we do more than just publish weekly internet articles. We’ve got a website that has many resources of interest to people who embrace many different kinds of spiritual naturalism. There are, after all, many ways for naturalists to be spiritual! And, if you’re wondering what spiritual naturalism is, our website has a great introduction to spiritual naturalism.
To put it simply, spiritual naturalism is a kind of naturalism. Naturalists tend to believe in reason and evidence. And so, conversely, we tend not to believe claims about human life that aren’t backed up by any reasons or evidence. Since many older religious claims aren’t backed up by reasons or evidence, this means that many of those older religious claims don’t fit well into a naturalistic way of living. Unfortunately, this tends to make people think that naturalism is meaningless, pessimistic, or nihilistic.
Here’s where the spiritual part of spiritual naturalism comes in. We think of spirituality as a kind of flourishing, a kind of positivity in living, feeling, and thinking. It’s more than just the emotion of happiness, but different spiritual traditions will define it in different ways. The Buddhists will talk about mindfulness, the Stoics about freedom from bondage to negative emotions. But all the traditions of spiritual naturalism talk about a kind of excellence in living – a kind of existential well-being.
Our website hosts the Spiritual Naturalist Academy, which has an online course (SNS 101) that goes deeper into the principles of spiritual naturalism. We have the archives of our Podcast, which contains interviews with many leaders of spiritual naturalism. We have information about our regular events, including online spiritual practice groups.
Our website features pages for the different “traditions” of spiritual naturalism. So far these include Secular Buddhism, Naturalistic Paganism, Stoicism, Humanism, Science & Spirituality, Humanistic Judaism, Pantheism, and Christian Naturalism. These pages can give you some introduction to these traditions, with recommended readings and other insights.
However, our website is incomplete, and this is where we could use your help. We like our traditions pages to have “curators,” who can keep them up-to-date and make sure they contain relevant information, and links to related sites. We need curators for our Secular Buddhism page, our Science & Spirituality Page, and our Pantheism page.
And we’d love to include more traditions! For example, Secular Yoga is growing, so we’d love to have somebody help us out with a Secular Yoga page. And while many approaches to “wellness” are not supported by evidence, there are people in the wellness movement who want evidence-based practices. So we’d love to hear ideas for a Wellness page. There are spiritual aspects of the various hacker groups: consciousness hacking, self-hacking, and life-hacking. We’d love to hear ideas for pages on those themes.
We run regular mindfulness practice groups online. But we’d love to try to expand our roster of practices to include yoga, Stoicism, and other naturalistic practices.
Our mission is to help inform people about spiritual naturalism – to get the word out to people that there are ways to live rich lives that don’t require superstition.
Mostly, we need your help. We’d love to hear more about what you’re interested in, and how you conceive of spiritual naturalism. What “traditions” should we add? And would you be interested in being a curator for a tradition? Of course, our mission requires resources, and our supporting members provide those resources. So we’d love to have you join us as a member!
The Spiritual Naturalist Society works to spread awareness of spiritual naturalism as a way of life, develop its thought and practice, and help bring together like-minded practitioners in fellowship.