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Author Archive | Roger Heppleston

Re-wilding

I listened to George Monbiot promoting his new book Feral which advocates the re-wilding of Britain. It was an inspiring talk for all those interested in promoting nature in all its diversity. Monbiot explained that , far from being a natural environment, Britain’s National  Parks and most of the countryside are  controlled to be largely […]

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Assisted Dying

Religious leaders gained a rare victory this week in the House of Commons; they managed to persuade MPs to reject Rob Marris’ private members bill about assisted dying. This would have allowed people with six months to live to take a lethal medication. A similar measure passed in the Lords last year before running out […]

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Human Evolution

Why has human evolution been so different to other mammal species?  Have you ever asked yourselves this question? In the old days the answer was obvious. We all knew, because the Bible told us, that man was created by God to rule over the animal kingdom: ‘to have dominion over the fish of the sea, […]

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Is humanism a philosophy of life?

Humanism is defined in the Oxford dictionary as a ‘rationalist outlook or system of thought attaching prime importance to human rather than divine or supernatural matters’. This falls short of being a philosophy of life. The denial of supernatural forces does not provide a positive statement of what humanists stand for. The British Humanist Association […]

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Refugees

The problem of desperate refugees from wars, brutal regimes and failing states is one of the most intractable problems facing governments of rich nations. Europe has seen a regular stream of people fleeing Syria, Libya, Afghanistan, Eritrea and other states which are failing to provide a secure livelihood to their citizens. Humanitarian instincts drive us […]

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Failures in society

There are three apparently intractable problems facing Western nations: the nihilistic violence of ISIS, the problem of immigration from disadvantaged countries and the attraction of young Western Muslims to fight for a religious cause. They should not be a surprise; they are the inevitable result of failures in society.  For evolution to function there have […]

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Climate change is a moral issue

Professor Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, founding Director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research and an adviser on climate change to the German government and Pope Francis, spoke at a recent scientific conference in Paris about climate change. Here are three quotes on what he said: “In the end it is a moral decision. Do […]

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Pastoral Care

Being in hospital or prison is a time of high anxiety for many and sharing fears and worries with sympathetic listeners is important.  Religious people have access to paid support from chaplains. The majority of us who are non-religious have no access to pastoral care outside our own families. The British Humanist Association is starting […]

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