Spirituality without a soul: can Humanism contribute to spiritual development in schools?

The word ‘spiritually’ is one that often divides Humanists, but Jackie Watson, our November speaker, made a strong case for why we, at least sometimes, need to embrace it.

She started by getting the audience to write down their definitions of spirituality, and straight away it was clear there are many ways to define the word that most humanists would be happy to adopt. She then went on to look at how other people have defined the word and how many well know atheists and humanists have talked about their approach to life in a way than could be described as spiritual.

Jackie also talked about how the word is already adopted in educational and health care settings, so requiring any Humanist working in those fields to be comfortable using the word, and having a way of describing spirituality than encompasses a humanistic outlook on the world. Schools have a responsibility for the "spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of all pupils", and it's important that Humanists can play their part in that

The talk ended with a really lively and enjoyable question and answer session where we explored ‘Humanist spirituality’ further.