Oliver L. Reiser
Reiser, Oliver L. (1895–1974)
Reiser taught philosophy at the University of Wisconsin and the University of Pittsburgh. He is well-known in humanist circles because of his Promise of Scientific Humanism (1940). In addition, he founded the International Committee on Scientific Humanism in the 1950s. In describing his own humanism, Reiser has written,
- The one great hope for democracy lies in the development of a non-supernaturalistic religion which, unlike other intellectual movements, will be non-academic in its appeal to all civilized individuals. This new foundation for a coming world-order must be the emergent outcome of the thought-content of a universalized culture. In providing this unification of man’s intellectual-emotional make-up, through a synthesis of the world of facts with the world of values, scientific humanism rediscovers democracy in man’s creative cooperation for a better world. The major contribution of a coming philosophy will be the answer to the cry of people everywhere groping toward a view which will give them at once a confidence in the future, a motive for work, and a goal. The god of this coming world-religion, that is the object of reverence of scientific humanism, is the spirit of humanity in its upward striving - the fearful and wonderful quest to explore the depths and shoals of the cosmic environment and tame the universe for social weal and further human adventure.
Included among Reiser’s books are Humanistic Logic for the Mind in Action (1930), and an introduction to scientific humanism entitled Planetary Democracy (1933).
In the 1950s, Reiser was on the advisory board of Charles Francis Potter’s First Humanist Society of New York.