Paris, 07.07.2005

Greetings to the IHEU-General Assembly

In the name of the atheists, freethinkers, free humanists, free-religious and unitarian people in our free sekular umbrella-organization in Germany, I send you the best wishes and kindest regards. Our associations in Germany look at the 16th World Humanist Conference of the International Humanist and Ethical Union in Paris with the topic "Separation of Religion and State" as an important strengthening of the worldwide humanist movement. Our German sekular humanist associations want to extend good friendship relations to all other free and freethinking organizations of humanism.

The humanist movement needs more and more intensively social activities, especially for poor, weak and helpless people and nations. So we admire the social engagement of a lot of humanist associations. And the popular scientific and educational work is important for the fight against superstition, ignorance and religious fundamentalism and for the educational development of the children in a better social future. We appreciate the campaigns for a better health for everybody and the social work especially for children and women.

Everybody can learn a lot about the neighbours in our global village. Secular humanism is a positive way of life. You can find this way with the realization of the universal human rights and of secular humanity in tolerance for all human being. Everybody is afraid of war and destruction, hunger and poverty, unequality, oppressions and dependence. The way of humanism is associating with our activities for self-respect and against cultural, sexual and religious intolerance. We want peace and freedom all over the world, especially now!

Our humanist Umbrella Organization of Secular Associations in Germany wants to develop more and more better communications and cooperations with other secular humanist organizations in Europe and in the world. Our cooperation and good friendship relations are an important condition to work together and effective on the problems of our present. To work together as friends and partners with equal rights - that is the first step to an effective public work of our secular humanist organizations.

Especially for our young atheist people and freethinkers we have found a way to find together and to recognize the "membership" in the global family. We have humanist Youth-exchange programs as a great contribution for a better understanding and want to continue them. Our young humanists can learn together, they can understand the problems in the different parts of our earth, they enrich their own life with the cultures and traditions of friends.

Freethinkers, secular humanists and positive atheists search for their own way of life. In Germany the freethinkers, free religious people and humanists of my association say: we are thinking free, working humanly and developing an ethical life without a god. We are in our association non-confessionel people, they never need the Christian Churches and religious dogmas and prejudices for their life and their thinking. We live with ideas of a secular humanism, our meaning is free. We are thinking without tabus, superstitions and spiritual dreams. We like to live in tolerance, humanity and peace with all other people.

The freethinker-movement in Germany is in the tradition of the European enlightenment and of the emancipation from theology and dogmatism. Our organizations in Germany started more than 150 years ago. During the barbarian Hitler-system and World War II most freethinker- and humanist-associations were destroyed. Several of our leaders were killed during the fascism.

Today we want a parting of church and government. Christian Churches have in Germany a great influence in the political life and on the government. Our demand is to accept the equality for all ethical live stances, for all communities of faith and convictions, also for us as free- and non-religious ethical communities.

The idea of an European Constitution for a laicistic Europe is part of that process. A truly laicistic Germany would be the first step in that direction. The idea is both a call to cosmopolitican action and the prerequisite for the development of global reform in which the rights of Europeans should not come at the price of injustice to non-Europeans.

Our program for free thought, human rights and dogmafree living is not outdated. It is the expression of New Thinking and a continuation of atheism and humanism. Enlightened New Thinking is interconnected with an identity as a world-citizen, free thought and human rights worldwide and leads to real humanism.

Our Umbrella Organization in Germany today stands up for the ideals of freedom, equality, brotherhood and solidarity between the people - independent from their political opinion, social and ethical background, sex, age and kinds of sexuality. We work for protection of nature, for humane dignity and human rights for every body and for equal rights for women. The human rights are universal and undivisible.

In our practical work in Germany we support for people with social problems, especially for poor and homeless people and for handicapped people. We help for self-help for instance in self-help-groups. We have educational projects, youth-clubs, youth-travels, meetings and seminars and international exchange programs. So we help especially children and young people in Germany to find their way of live in self-respect and self understanding. We learn to live together in tolerance in one world!

We all in Europe, in all over the world come together to a powerful international movement of peace, tolerance und secular future. That is real secular humanism!

We are a global family of secular humanism and positive atheism!

Dr. Volker Mueller
President of Dachverband Freier Weltanschauungsgemeinschaften, Germany