We all know celebrity atheists like Bill Maher, Ricky Gervais, and Angelina Jolie. But what about “spiritual but not religious” celebrities? With the “nones”—or religiously unaffiliated—being all the rage, who among them have let go of their traditional religious upbringing to formulate their own spirituality? And are any of these likely to take the extra step and become a humanist? Check out our list of “almost humanists” below!
|Ben AffleckAlthough raised Episcopalian, uber liberal Ben Affleck show many signs of humanism. Affleck was active in charity work and politics in his teens and continues his activism today, supporting humanitarian aid work and political campaigns for Hilary Clinton, Al Gore, and Barack Obama. Affleck has been quoted saying, “I have my own spirituality, which is of Western Christian spirituality, that is very effective for me.”
|Bill De BlasioNew York City’s 106th Mayor may be a spiritual man, but is no man of faith. Although De Blasio was brought up in a religiously influenced household, belief and practice was never expected by him. In a Reddit article, De Blasio says, “Although my mother was raised a Catholic, she did not bring me up in the Church. I considered myself a spiritual person but unaffiliated, and I was definitely vey influenced by the liberation theology movement in Latin America. And boy, am I a fan of Pope Francis.” His “none” image is non-threatening and appeals to the religious melting pot that is New York City.
|Jessica SimpsonAlthough singer Jessica Simpson was raised Baptist and has remained devout for most of her life, she recently has begun exploring other options. Simpson isn’t the most political, liberal, or radical but over the course of her career she had become more outspoken about her sexuality so much that the church could no longer accept her as a true believer. She was quoted saying, “Me and my family got out of that [Christianity] and came to LA… To see all forms of meditation and prayer made me less judgmental.”
|Helen MirrenOscar-winning actress Helen Mirren has gone on the record to say she doesn’t believe in God and even extends her atheism by saying, “But I do believe in treating other people as you’d want to be treated and being empathetic.” So why is she on the list? Because she believes in other supernatural things. She stated, “I am quite spiritual. I believed in the fairies when I was a child. I still do sort of believe in the fairies. And the leprechauns. But I don’t believe in God.” Maybe she was kidding?
|Justin TimberlakePop artist Justin Timberlake doesn’t attribute his success and fame to God. Singer, producer, actor, humanitarian, and all around loveable guy JT will tell you he is a spiritual guy, not religious. Although Timberlake will engage in religious-like rituals and beliefs, he doesn’t subscribe to one system in particular. As a huge humanitarian relief supporter and contributor to countless charities, Timberlake is certainly doing “good without a god.” Could humanism be the next stop for this mega-star?
|Miley CyrusIn 2012, pop singer Miley Cyrus caused controversy after she retweeted a photo of a Lawrence Krauss quote that stated, “You are all stardust…So forget Jesus. Stars died so you could live.” Many of her followers thought she had abandoned the religion of her upbringing, Christianity, and became an atheist. Cyrus later said, “How can people take the love out of science and bring hate into religion so easily? It makes me sad to think the world is this way. Like Einstein says ‘Science without religion is lame. Religion without science is blind.” Though she claimed to be a Christian in 2010, has she adopted a more humanistic viewpoint?
Are there other “Almost Humanist” Celebrities you can think of? Let us know in the comments below!