Humanism is a philosophical current which has had a great influence both on psychology and politics and on the social sciences in general. however, it does not exist as a homogeneous thing, but there are different types of humanism.
Each of these classes of humanism expresses, in its own way, the fundamental idea of this way of thinking: that the life of all human beings matters and that, by default, the lives of others must be respected without seeking to alter them. . . in an unjustified manner or without taking into account their opinion. Let’s see how they do it.
What is humanism?
Humanism is a way of thinking emphasizes the value of each person’s subjective and private experiences. So, for example, humanistic psychology takes many influences from phenomenology (each person’s private and conscious sensations and experiences are precious and unique) and existentialism (each person constructs a vital narrative that gives meaning to their existence) .
In practice, in psychology, humanism has been noticed in therapeutic proposals such as Gestalt Therapy by Fritz Perls and the contributions of psychologists such as Abraham Maslow or Carl Rogers. This group of thinkers defended the idea of not imposing a rigid system of intervention on people, but of adapting to each case by letting the person take the reins of the sessions.
The main types of humanism
These are the basic characteristics of the different types of humanism. However, to fully understand them, it should be borne in mind that each emerged in a different historical context, And cannot be understood without understanding the degree of technological, philosophical and ethical development that existed at the time of its emergence.
1. Theocentric humanism
This kind of humanism he bases all his morality on the existence of a god determined to reveal what is good and what is bad and therefore how humans are to be treated.
2. Historical humanism
It was a type of humanism born in Florence at the end of the Middle Ages. In him, the arts and intellectual activity gradually became focused on the human, no longer considering the divine to be the center of everything.
3. Anthropocentric humanism
This type of humanism began to characterize Western societies from the Renaissance and especially from the Enlightenment.
Here the figure of God ceases to be the center of the moral system, and the human being takes all the importance. So much attention is paid to the code of conduct written in sacred texts and new forms of humanistic ethics are formulated.
Likewise, the idea that one human being can control another is rejected; what can be controlled and mastered is nature, seen as a set of resources that can be used for the welfare of the species.
4. Empirical humanism
It is one of the types of humanisms that try to differentiate themselves from others by being more practical and diligent. While other forms of this stream of thought rely more on abstract ideas, such as the need not to dominate other human beings, this it focuses on rejecting or accepting certain specific actions or attitudes.
For example, empirical humanism rejects violence, declares complete freedom of expression and belief, and insists on the need to highlight the lifestyles of minorities.
5. Existentialist humanism
This form of humanism emphasizes the importance of rejecting material and intellectual totalitarianisms that force people to be recruited for a specific cause, preventing them from thinking beyond.
For existentialist philosophers like Jean-Paul Sartre, it is the individual who must build meaning in his own life without others interfering in this system of ideas and symbols.
6. Marxist humanism
Very based on the philosophy of the philosopher Karl Marx, this type of humanism from World War II emphasizes the idea that human beings it is a social being whose identity emerges only from the interaction with others, Authorized thanks to the bonds of solidarity present in solidary and united societies.
This philosophy rejects the individualism of most other types of humanism and emphasizes that the well-being of the individual depends on collective phenomena in which all must participate in order not to be manipulated.
7. Universalist humanism
It’s a way of thinking strongly influenced by postmodern philosophy. It stresses the need to create inclusive societies for all, to respect the different cultures present in society and not to be guided only by rigid codes of conduct, but on the contrary: to appreciate spontaneity and creativity in all aspects of life.