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Swedish Humanist Association

Humanisterna logo.

The Swedish Humanist Association (}

}}: Humanisterna, "the Humanists") is the largest International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU).

The SHA works for a secular life stance founded on reason, compassion and responsibility. Its goals include a completely secular society, free of religious oppression, discrimination and other infringements on human rights. The SHA also promotes science as the primary method for finding answers to empirical questions, staunchly opposing for instance pseudoscience.

The SHA is the fastest growing humanist organisation in the world, having increased its membership by over 150% during 2006.


  • Organisation and history 1
  • Secular ceremonies 2
  • Humanisten 3
  • Ingemar Hedenius Award 4
    • Previous winners 4.1
  • Kristallkulan 5
  • External links 6

Organisation and history

The organisation was founded in 1979 and was then called Human-Etiska Förbundet ("Humanist-Ethical Association"). The name was changed into the more international Humanisterna in 1999.

Christer Sturmark has been chairman of the organisation since February 2005.

There are several local groups, situated in

Secular ceremonies

The majority of coming-of-age summer camps for teenagers where the participants get to discuss ethics, philosophy, religion, human rights, discrimination and other important issues. These camps are analogous to Christian confirmation camps, although a person does not need to be a member of the SHA or share the humanistic worldview to participate and no confession of faith is made.


The SHA publishes a bi-monthly magazine called Humanisten ("the Humanist"). Every issue contains an interview with noteworthy people (e.g. Dilsa Demirbag-Sten), as well as articles and debate concerning humanism, rationalism, religion, philosophy, science and pseudoscience, culture and politics.

Ingemar Hedenius Award

The yearly award commemorates the Swedish philosopher Ingemar Hedenius, whose views - expressed in his book Tro och vetande ("Belief and knowledge") - were instrumental in starting the cultural debate that eventually led to the separating of the Swedish church and state. Its purpose is to acknowledge and support individuals who have worked, as Hedenius did, for a humanistic life stance, rationalism and critical thinking. The award was founded in 2000.

Previous winners


Kristallkulan ("the Crystal ball") is a prize of 100,000 SEK that will be awarded to anyone who can demonstrate beyond doubt that they possess a paranormal or supernatural talent that cannot be explained by conventional science. The award is similar to the One Million Dollar Paranormal Challenge offered by the James Randi Educational Foundation.

External links

  • Official website
  • Humanisten
  • Exkristen

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