A Naturalistic Creed, by B. T. Newberg

Editor’s note: Recently, Maggie Jay Lee wrote here about Michael Dowd, author of Thank God for Evolution, and his naturalistic creed. In the comments to Lee’s essay, our own B. T. Newberg offered the following draft of a Naturalistic Pagan credo. We would love to hear your thoughts and recommendations for what a Naturalistic Pagan creed might look like. Share your thoughts in the comments.

(1) Reality is my pantheon;

(2) Evidence is my oracle;

(3) Big History is my mythology;

(4) Ecology is my tradition;

(5) Integrity is my ritual;

(6) Ensuring a just and healthy future is my offering.

About B. T. Newberg

B. T. Newberg

B. T. Newberg

B. T. founded HumanisticPaganism.com in 2011, and served as managing editor till 2013.  His writings on naturalistic spirituality can be found at PatheosPagan Square, the Spiritual Naturalist Society, as well as right here on HP.  Since the year 2000, he has been practicing meditation and ritual from a naturalistic perspective.  After leaving the Lutheranism of his raising, he experimented with Agnosticism, Buddhism, Contemporary Paganism, and Spiritual Humanism.  Currently he combines the latter two into a dynamic path embracing both science and myth.  He headed the Google Group Polytheist Charity, and organized the international interfaith event The Genocide Prevention Ritual.

In 2009, he completed a 365-day challenge recorded at One Good Deed Per Day.  As a Pagan, he has published frequently at The Witch’s Voice as well as Oak Leaves and the podcast Tribeways, and has written a book on the ritual order of Druid organization Ar nDriocht Fein called Ancient Symbols, Modern Rites.  Several of his ebooks sell at GoodReads.com, including a volume of creative nonfiction set in Malaysia called Love and the Ghosts of Mount Kinabalu.

Professionally, he teaches English as a Second Language.  He also researches the relation between religion, psychology, and evolution at www.BTNewberg.com.  After living in Minnesota, England, Malaysia, Japan, and South Korea, B. T. Newberg currently resides in St Paul, Minnesota, with his wife and cat.

B. T. currently serves as the treasurer and advising editor for HP.

See B. T. Newberg’s other posts.

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8 Comments on “A Naturalistic Creed, by B. T. Newberg

  1. I really really really like this. The only stumbling block for me is ecology. How is ecology a tradition? Also, it seems like science maybe should be mentioned, but I don’t know how.

  2. Credos are about beliefs and increasingly I couldn’t care less what people believe. I’s much more interested in what they love and to what they aspire, and where they find joy and what brings them pain. So in that spirit I offer the following anti-credo:

    We seek knowledge, but know that we don’t know.

    We seek wisdom, but recognize our foolishness.

    We seek to be generous and loving, but recognize we are often selfish and resentful.

    Knowing all this should make us forgiving, but we fail at that too.

    We try to do our best and try to find beauty and joy in our brief sojourn on this remarkable earth, and sometime we succeed wonderfully.

  3. This is interesting. I really like the first 3. The last 3 don’t feel quite right to me. The fourth…ecology is not MY tradition, but for some naturalistic pagans, like deep ecologists, that seems very true. If had to say something was my tradition, I might say science. I like, “integrity is my practice,” instead of my ritual, because ritual makes it sound set apart from day-to-day. On the other hand, I like “Life is my ritual” because it emphasizes the way all aspects of your life should have that sense of connection to something greater.

  4. les comento que el MOVIMIENTO SCOUT, fundado por SIR BADEN POWELL…se estimulaba al niño a HACER LA BUENA OBRA DEL DIA..( YA HICISTE TU BUENA OBRA HOY?9…A DEJAR EL MUNDO O NATURALEZA MEJOR DE LO QUE LO ENCONTRO… En fin…muchas bellas regilaciones que están en armonia plena con la Ecologia, el mundo natural etc…pero la gente se dejo engañar con los simpaticos uniformes y pañuelos que ostentamos, porque yo soy una Dirigente SCOUT…Asi que mas alla de los campamentos…la verdadera felicidad esta en la alegria de ayudar y servir al projimo..Atte. ALEJANDRA

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