Bowland Press

Believing in Nothing
and Something
  About the Author
  Read the Preface
List of References
Seminar Papers
About Bowland Press
Cover of Believing in Nothing and Something
 Click to enlarge

Believing in Nothing and Something
An Approach to Humanist Beliefs and Values
by Geoff Heath

ISBN 0-9544221-0-4 • 144pp paperback

Order by Post:  UK: £11.95 inc. postage & packing from BBR Distribution, PO Box 625, Sheffield S1 3GY (cheques payable to 'BBR')
Outside the UK: Please see the BBR Academic Bookshop for prices
Order Online: 
BBR Academic Bookshop
BBR Academic Bookshop
(credit cards accepted securely online through PayPal, as well as by post or fax; book usually ships within 1–2 weeks)
Amazon logo
(credit cards accepted securely online; book usually ships within 4–6 weeks; extra handling charge of £1.99+VAT)

"There is no truth sure enough to justify persecution" – John Milton

Beliefs and values have erupted into a high level of public awareness following the destruction of the Twin Towers on 9/11 and the hostile accusations of heresy made against the beliefs of the new Archbishop of Canterbury and of the Chief Rabbi. When beliefs are mistaken for certainties they sometimes result in the desire to kill, or to destroy the reputations of those who believe differently.

Beliefs are, however, central to our human be-ing whether we are religious or humanist. They define our sense of self and our attitudes to others. Beliefs are the source of our agency in the world.

So what do humanists believe and what are their values? This book explores a contemporary humanist approach and presents views which are a positive invitation to both scepticism and debate.


  • Preface
  • Introduction
  • On beliefs and orthodoxy
  • My approach to nihilism
  • Intimations of nihilism
    —Scientific influences
    —My sense of subjectivity
  • Believing in something
    —My approach to humanistic beliefs and values
    —The values in which I believe
  • My inconclusive conclusion
  • References
  • Index

"I was impressed by your facility to present complex ideas in a very straightforward manner without unnecessary or irresponsible oversimplification. I will certainly recommend your book to students interested in/engaged with such debates and wish you every success with it. The issues it tackles are, to my mind, of utmost importance. I wish that more in the counselling and psychotherapy arena were willing to consider and address them as you have done. Good on you!"
–Ernesto Spinelli, Professor of Psychotherapy, Counselling and Counselling Psychology and Senior Academic Fellow, Regent's College, London

"Geoff Heath writes in a flowing, engaging style and draws on an impressive range of contemporary sources which are cleverly interwoven with personal narratives. It is clear that writing this book has been a thought-provoking, and at times, disturbing, experience. It will appeal to anyone interested in applying philosophy to their own values and beliefs, but beware – it is likely to challenge you!"
–Dr Robert Shaw, author of 'The Embodied Psychotherapist'

"Whilst it rejects key categories of traditional religion, and refuses to take refuge in a vague post-religious spirituality, this passionate book is not an example of simplistic reductionism. Rather it is an invitation to join the author in continuing to wrestle honestly with the contingency and surprise of life as a human being."
–Paul Weller, Professor of Inter-Religious Relations, University of Derby
 Top of page

© Bowland Press, PO Box 446, Chesterfield, S42 7LZ, UK | Send comments to our Webmaster