George Holyoake

George HolyoakeIn existographies, George Holyoake (1817-1906) (FA:107) was a British editor, commonly known as the coiner of the term "secularism" (1851), noted for []

In 1841, Holyoake, together with radical bookseller Charles Southwell (1814-1860), dissented from the official policy of Owenism, i.e. the utopian socialist philosophy of 19th-century social reformer Robert Owen and his followers and successors, that lecturers should take a religious oath, to enable them to take collections on Sunday; founded the atheist publication Oracle of Reason, because of which he was soon imprisoned because of its content; Holyoake took over as editor, and was moved to an atheist position as a result of his experiences.

In 1846, Holyoake became the editor of the free thinker paper The Reasoner, wherein the famous atheist “human chemistry” coiner E.B. published several noted articles.

In 1851, Holyoake coined the term “secularism” because (Ѻ)(Ѻ) he regarded “atheism” as a negative word. [1]

Holyoake was influenced by Auguste Comte, Jean Lamarck (Hecht, 2003), and Charles Darwin; he was an associate of Harriet Martineau, an atheist oft-said to have been the first female sociologist, who notable wrote to Holyoake upon reviewing Darwin’s On the Origins of Species. [2]

In 1871, Holyoake, in his The Principles of Secularism Illustrated, discussed Thomas Jefferson’s god questionings. (Ѻ)

Quotes | By
The following are quotes by Holyoake:

“I do not believe there is such a thing as a god.”
— George Holyoake (1868), London lecture [3]

“Free thought means fearless thought. It is not deterred by legal penalties, nor by spiritual consequences. Dissent from the Bible does not alarm the true investigator, who takes truth for authority not authority for truth. The thinker who is really free, is independent; he is under no dread; he yields to no menace; he is not dismayed by law, nor custom, nor pulpits, nor society-whose opinion appalls so many. He who has the manly passion of free thought, has no fear of anything, save the fear of error.”
— George Holyoake (1896), English Secularism: A Confession of Belief (pg.18) (Ѻ)

1. (a) Holyoake, George. (1871). The Principles of Secularism Illustrated. Book Store.
(b) Holyoake, George. (1896). The Origin and Nature of Secularism: Showing that where Freethought Commonly Ends Secularism Begins. Watts.
(c) Smith, George. (1991). Atheism, Ayn Rand, and Other Heresies (pg. 172). Prometheus Books.
(d) Secularism – Merriam-Webster Collegiate Dictionary, 2000.
2. Hecht, Jennifer M. (2003). Doubt: A History: The Great Doubters and Their Legacy of Innovation from Socrates and Jesus to Thomas (pg. 403). HarperOne.
3. Haught, James A. (1996). 2000 Years of Disbelief: Famous People with the Courage to Doubt (pgs. 192). Prometheus.

External links
George Holyoake – Wikipedia.

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