The Online Encyclopedia and Dictionary






Fellowship of Reason

The Fellowship of Reason is a moral community based in Atlanta. Its founder, Martin L. Cowen III, calls himself a "non-theist", and says that although he does not believe in God or other things supernatural, he nonetheless thinks that churches serve a useful function by providing "moral communities." Wishing to have a moral community that is not theistic (although not officially opposed to theism) he founded that organization.

Fellowship of Reason is also the title of Cowen's book.

The purpose of the organization is to provide a social context, in the form of a moral community, in which individuals interested in personal flourishing, meaning in life, and happiness may find it easier to achieve these through self-improvement in the company of fellow travellers.

The group's philosophical stance has a number of influences, notably Ayn Rand's tenet that "Reason, Purpose, [and] Self-esteem" should be the three highest values guiding human life, Abraham Maslow's writings on self-actualization, Joseph Campbell's study of myth, as well as Aristotle's and the Stoics' ideas regarding eudaimonia as the ultimate aim of life.

The organization calls its stance Eudaimonism, and the people who hold this stance are called Eudaimonists.

The organization advocates human relations based on reason and goodwill.

Six essential activities of the organization

Participants in the Fellowship of Reason® practice CEFLOR:

  • Celebration: They participate in ceremonies that symbolically mark significant life events or uphold important values.
  • Enjoyment of Art: They enjoy art as a means of gaining emotional fuel.
  • Fellowship: They gain greater awareness of themselves through friendships with others of similar values.
  • Learning: They discuss philosophy and literature to learn to live more wisely.
  • Orientation: They remind themselves of their chosen values and principles regularly.
  • Reflection: They take time to quietly reflect on the challenges of their lives in order to improve their ability to meet them.

External link

Fellowship of Reason®

Last updated: 08-07-2005 13:24:27
Last updated: 09-12-2005 02:39:13