An Ethical Philosophy of Life by Felix Adler
$15.95, 390 pages, Purchase on Virtual Bookworm
Available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble
“An Ethical Philosophy of Life, Presented in its Main Outline” is divided into four parts. The first is an autobiographical introduction describing the various milestones by which Adler arrived at his worldview. The second part expounds on the philosophical theory. The third part contains applications of the theory to the more strictly personal life, under the captions of the “Three Shadows of Sickness, Sorrow and Sin.” The final part applies the theory to social institutions, the family, the vocation, the state, the international society and the Church.
Creed and Deed – A Series of Discourses by Felix Adler
$13.95, 232 pages, Purchase on Virtual Bookworm
Felix Adler (1851-1933) was a professor of political and social ethics and a social reformer who founded the Ethical Culture Movement. Adler was also a popular, dynamic speaker and lecturer. “Creed and Deed: A Series of Discourses,” originally published in 1880, contains popular lectures that were requested by the New York Society for Ethical Culture, which Adler established. This reprint is taken from the original publication, which abridged and condensed Adler’s lectures on immortality and religion. The other lectures are in their original form without any serious modification. “The First Anniversary Discourse” reviews the work of the year, and gives a brief account of the motives which prompted the Society to organize and the general animus by which its labors were directed. The lecture entitled “The Form of the Ideal” foreshadows the constructive purpose of the Movement.
Ethical Humans by American Ethical Union
Purchase on Shutterfly (Use discount code SHIP39 to reduce shipping)
The American Ethical Union is a national organization dedicated to ethical humanism, social justice, equality, and community. Through a public relations Ethical Humans campaign, Momentum Communications had the privilege of highlighting the wonderful stories of our Ethical Culture community. While this campaign celebrated our differences, it also showed that we are all tied together by our collective effort to make the world a more ethical place.
Ethics As A Religion by David Saville Muzzey
$14.95, 296 pages, Purchase on Virtual Bookworm
Why are we here? What is the good life? More than ever today, many people are searching for a religious belief that will answer these persistent questions and yet do no violence to their intellectual and humanistic convictions. It is to these seekers, numbering in the millions, that David Muzzey’s book is addressed. Republished now after the final closing of his long, vigorous career at 95, “Ethics as a Religion” is a clear and persuasive guide for those who have found the formal religions unsatisfying. Ethical Culture is the centerpost of Dr. Muzzey’s book. Out of his long association with that Movement, including many years as one of its Leaders, he weighs the ethical content of Christianity and other world faiths, comparing them with the Ethical fellowship and setting forth what he calls “a religion for adults”—one that seeks to bring out the best in men in their day-to-day relationships.
Felix Adler and Ethical Culture – Memories and Studies by Horace L. Friess
$14.95, 302 pages, Purchase on Virtual Bookworm
Social and ethical questions become ever more urgent while the creedal religions speak in increasingly diverse voices. The Ethical Culture movement, founded in 1876, was early in recognizing that this would occur, and its creation made available a membership society organized for people who felt it important to adopt a moral and spiritual identification that necessitated commitment to ethical knowledge and practice. This book speaks for itself. It describes the Ethical Movement as viewed by a member of its Board of Leaders who also served as Professor of Philosophy at Columbia University. The fact that the author was a son-in-law of Dr. Felix Adler gave him a privileged position from which to prepare this personal, yet scholarly, study. While this book is not an official publication of the Ethical Culture Movement, it throws light upon its origin and development and should be of special interest to those who may find in Ethical Culture an answer to their moral and spiritual quest. -Sidney H. Scheuer
Felix Speaks: Adler’s Ethical Culture by Marv Friedlander
$8.05, 110 pages, Purchase on Amazon
Felix Adler, founder of the Ethical Culture Movement, dedicated his life to espousing the idea that every person possesses an intrinsic worth that needs nurturing. His emphasis on ethics, or the development of “right relationships,” moved a whole generation of humanists who sought to live out such a philosophy. Now, those involved in ethical or humanist societies, as well as those who simply have an interest in learning more about humanism as a whole, can study Adler’s ideas in a language that is more accessible than ever. Beginning with a brief biography of the man behind the movement, Friedlander then introduces a series of short articles and essays based on the essential ideas of Adler’s philosophy. Imagined conversations between Adler and his wife, or Adler and a fellow member of the Ethical Society, enliven the philosophic ideas in a way that make them easier to comprehend—and provide an ideal launching pad from which to generate conversation among those who seek to make a difference.
The First Book of Ethics by Algernon D. Black
$12.95, 76 pages, Purchase on Virtual Bookworm
Ethics, the study of how people treat other, is a hunt for truth as every person becomes a judge of right and wrong. It is also the way to become a free person, since it helps one know what the choices are in life. “The First Book of Ethics” is about how people have tried to find the answers, and how each person may find them. This is a great book to read to children or use in Coming of Age programs (for students ages 11-14). It is also recommended for anyone starting to explore how to live a more ethical and meaningful life.
How to Live a Good Life: A Guide to Choosing Your Personal Philosophy edited by Massimo Pigliucci, Skye C. Cleary, and Daniel Kaufman
$16.95, 320 pages, Purchase on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, IndieBound, or Zeebra Books
Philosophy professors Pigliucci, Cleary, and Kaufman deliver on their goal of providing a “glimpse of how the world looks through [the] respective lenses” of 15 major philosophies in this anthology featuring an impressive array of contributors. The short essays are divided into four categories—ancient Eastern philosophies, ancient Western philosophies, religious traditions, and modern philosophies—and admirably avoid jargon. Anne Klaeysen, Leader Emerita of the New York Society for Ethical Culture, explores the appeal of “ethical culture” regardless of belief using instances in which religion has been irrational and dangerous—as when a transgender woman was shunned by her ultra-Orthodox community. Readers interested in thinking more about their life-choices and options for change will be grateful for this practical guide to, as the authors write in their conclusion, the “possibilities to learn from, ponder, and perhaps adopt.”
The Humanist Way – An Introduction to Ethical Humanist Religion by Edward L. Ericson
$13.95, 220 pages, Purchase on Virtual Bookworm
“Humanism is a view of the world, of each person’s relation to other people, of the unity of humanity, of its place in the whole fabric of life against the background of our planet and our universe, of—but read Ed Ericson’s book and see.” – Isaac Asimov “‘The great use of life is to spend it for something that outlasts it,’ wrote Bertrand Russell. Wise and thoughtful men and women in all ages have agreed that the greatest lives are those given to the well-being of others.” “Many who belong to no church or sect—along with many who do—when asked to identify their creed, will reply simply: ‘My religion is the golden rule.’ Or they will answer ‘Formal church doctrines and theologies are not important to me. The way I relate to others and to myself is all that finally matters.’ Without perhaps having a label for their faith, such people—to the degree that they live by these convictions—are practicing the essence of Humanist religion.” – Edward L. Ericson
James Baldwin Speaks: The Man Who Talked Back by Marv Friedlander
$11.59, 124 pages, Purchase on Amazon
In this biography, Marv Friedlander brings James Baldwin alive by providing a glimpse into the wit and artistry of the man who boasted that “I disturbed the peace and threatened society’s sense of safety.” Adored as a prophetic witness and reviled as a forbidden pervert, Baldwin offered a perspective of an America that never fully accepted him.Previously, Friedlander profiled two early twentieth century icons. Felix Speaks: Adler’s Ethical Culture, describes the ideas and life of the founder of an ethical alternative to a deity-based religion. Du Bois Speaks presents a penetrating look at a civil rights icon who heralded a critical and honest perspective of race in America. Now, he provides a highly readable view of one of the great black intellectuals who spoke and wrote to America with stridency, humor, and honesty. For example, Baldwin wrote the following blunt statement: “A very brutal thing must be said: The intentions of this melancholic country as concerns black people…they needed us for labor and for sport. Now they can’t get rid of us.” Despite cynicism born of rage and fear between black and white people, Baldwin describes how we might learn to overcome our deeply- held prejudices. His views are relevant for today and tomorrow.
Life and Destiny by Felix Adler
$12.95, 74 pages, Purchase on Virtual Bookworm
Considered by many to be one of the major influences on modern Humanistic Judaism, Felix Adler (1851-1933) was a professor of political and social ethics and a social reformer who founded the Ethical Culture Movement. First published in 1903 “Life and Destiny” contains quotations from Adler’s lectures for the New York Society for Ethical Culture in its early years. It covers such things as the meaning of life, religion, immortality, moral ideas, the ethical outlook, and related topics.
The Reconstruction of the Spiritual Ideal by Felix Adler
$13.95, 224 pages, Purchase on Virtual Bookworm
Considered by many to be one of the major influences on modern Humanistic Judaism, Felix Adler (1851-1933) was a professor of political and social ethics and a social reformer who founded the Ethical Culture Movement. Adler was also a popular, dynamic speaker and lecturer. “The Reconstruction of the Spiritual Ideal” is a compilation of lectures he gave at Manchester College at Oxford in 1923. Topics include the spiritual ideal, marriage, social reconstruction, the society of mankind and the attitude toward life.
The Religion of Duty by Felix Adler
$13.95, 192 pages, Purchase on Virtual Bookworm
Felix Adler (1851-1933) was a professor of political and social ethics and a social reformer who founded the Ethical Culture Movement. Adler was also a popular, dynamic speaker and lecturer. “The Religion of Duty” documents some of the best thoughts he presented over the years. Topics include the first step towards a religion, changes in the conception of God, teaching of Jesus in the modern world, standards of conduct based on the religion of duty, the ethical attitude toward pleasure and suffering, and the essential difference between ethical societies and the churches.
Speaking of Ethics: Living a Humanist Life by Joseph Chuman
$14.99, 324 pages, Purchase on Amazon
As societies continue to grow and change, humans find themselves facing many important ethical questions. Is the pursuit of happiness a worthwhile goal? Should religion be immune to criticism? These questions and many others are addressed in Speaking of Ethics, a collection of the works of Dr. Joseph Chuman, highlighting his main ethical concerns. For the past forty-five years, Chuman has been serving as an Ethical Culture leader, inspiring his congregants through some of their toughest personal challenges. These experiences paired with his academic acumen, give him a fresh and astute perspective on ethics today. Chuman takes a broad-view approach that addresses the conditions that create dilemmas, rather than focusing on oversimplified right/wrong situations. Speaking of Ethics, with its conversational tone and accessible language, shares Chuman’s thoughts in a way that provokes contemplation and discussion among its readers. The sections of Speaking of Ethics give a stimulating glimpse at the foundations of Ethical Culture, as well as some of the biggest philosophical questions regarding private and public ethics.
Spelling God with Two O’s: Inspirational Notes by Arthur Dobrin
$20, 194 pages, Purchase on Amazon
Together we seek the highest, attempting to create again and again the holy ground that is always new and right here below our feet, from Community. Our knowledge will always be partial and we can never be sure of the outcome. Yet there is no choice but to act, doing the best that we can within the limits that we have, from Conduct. When we value the worthy things, we become precious ourselves, from Appreciation. As surely as a fish must swim in water, we must live with other human beings. And just as a fish will suffer in polluted waters, our spirit will die in a land that is brutish and cruel, from Doing. When we acknowledge the blessings we already have, we are free to receive the blessings that are waiting to be born, from Blessings. To participate in the pleasures and sorrows of someone we love is to know one of life’s great satisfactions. To feel the misfortunes of those we don’t know personally is the basis of social justice, from Empathy…A timeless collection of inspiring words!
Teaching Right from Wrong: Forty Things you can do to Raise a Moral Child by Arthur Dobrin
$13, 224 pages, Purchase on Amazon
Caring parents want to raise children who are kind, trustworthy, considerate and fair. There’s no shortage of bad examples to lead them astray. Based on sound psychological theory, drawing on research and rooted in the real world, this book shows how children develop a moral sensibility, and what parents can do to refine and reinforce it. Wise, warm, and thoroughly practical, this is an essential book for all loving parents—who want to raise loving children. Parents will learn…
*How “ethical intelligence” can be nurtured—even in a child’s earliest years.
*How television, religion, and peers can shape—or short-circuit—a child’s moral development.
*How to recognize and avoid some of the most common errors parents make.
Toward Common Ground by Howard B. Radest
$14.95, 322 pages, Purchase on Virtual Bookworm
The experiment in moral religion called Ethical Culture was begun in America in the turbulent years following the Civil War. In 1876 its guiding impetus came from Felix Adler, whose quest for idealism drew to a “common ground” men and women from different walks of life, different faiths, even with different interpretations of moral religion. This diversity vitalized the Movement that held as its “credo” the need to dissociate religion from myth, to evaluate changing values, and to incorporate what was worthwhile in contemporary values into the daily lives of men and women. This is an official history of Ethical Culture from its founding in 1876 up to its 75th Anniversary. Prof. Radest spent years compiling an archive of the Movement’s history from interviews with members who recalled the glowing early years of social reform and philosophic controversy, from letters and personal memoirs by Leaders, and from scrupulous research into the programs and policies initiated and evolved over the years. It is never dry history: a history of Ethical Culture is a history of its times. Many programs of social reform received impetus or were aided by the Society—schools, settlement houses, home visits by nurses, legal aid, child-care, civil rights. Here is persuasive evidence that the vitality of Ethical Culture is retained in its commitment to idealism as a challenge for the present and future. And the reading will be rewarding for all who are interested in American history—religious or social.
Without Burnt Offerings: Ceremonies of Humanism by Algernon D. Black
$15.95, 342 pages, Purchase on Virtual Bookworm
“In this book I share some of my experiences with the ceremonies of Humanism as I have known them. The calls for our services have come from individuals and families of all religious, racial, national, and class backgrounds. “A ceremony cannot make the sun rise or stop an earthquake, even if people believe it will. It cannot cause some power outside of man to intervene in the laws of nature on behalf of an individual or group or nation, a particular race or religious set. It cannot assure favor to those who are more honest or just or loving than most. Nor can it save the human species if human beings persist in working destruction and death against each other and against life itself. “A ceremony can bring people together. It can bring them together at an important time to share responsibility and make common commitment. It can celebrate the joyous and challenging situations of life. It can commemorate and keep alive the memory and influence of persons and achievements. The ceremonies of Humanism can meet needs that lie at the heart of human experience. They can enrich and bring meaning to the spiritual lives of mankind. They can help human beings continue the search for a faith to live by; a faith consistent with the best in human thought and feeling, a faith which will help the individual fulfill his potentialities for a creative life. They can help humankind find ways of meeting the challenges of nature and the most difficult problems of the world of human relationships.” – Algernon D. Black