What do you believe in?
I am, as an athiest, occasionally asked what I believe in, in a tone that implies that without religion I cannot be living a moral life. I appreciate this answer from an essay published recently:
I believe in the Principle of Freedom: All people are free to think, believe, and act as they choose, so long as they do not infringe on the equal freedom of others.
I believe in civil liberties, civil rights, and the freedoms guaranteed in the United States Constitution, including and especially freedom of speech, freedom of association, freedom to assemble peacefully, freedom to petition grievances, freedom to worship (or not), freedom of the press, freedom of reproductive choice, freedom to bear arms, etc.
I believe in the sanctity of private property, the rule of law, and equal treatment under the law.
I believe in free will, free choice, moral culpability, and personal responsibility.
I believe in truth seeking and truth telling.
I believe in trust and trustworthiness.
I believe in fairness and reciprocity.
I believe in love, marriage, and fidelity.
I believe in family, friendship, and community.
I believe in honor, loyalty, and commitment to family, friends, and community members.
I believe in forgiveness when it is genuinely asked for or offered.
I believe in kindness, generosity, and charity, especially voluntary aid to others in need.
I believe in science as the best method ever devised for understanding how the world works.
I believe in reason and logic and rationality as cognitive tools for answering questions, solving problems, and devising solutions to life’s many problems and quandaries.
I believe in technological growth, cultural advancement, and moral progress.
I believe in the almost illimitable capacity of human creativity and inventiveness for our species to flourish into the far future on this planet and others.