Great to hear it! You’re one of millions around the world who are committed to using evidence and reason (so rejecting supernatural beliefs) and who grant moral consideration to all sentient beings. Most of them haven’t heard the term Sentientism yet.
As more of the world’s population come to agree with us, we’ll have a stronger chance of making a better universe for all sentients. Evidence, reason and compassion can help us solve every problem we face.
If you’d like to let the world know “I’m a sentientist” you can add your name here and you’ll appear in a tile on our wall below. You can just leave a first name, or, if you feel comfortable, add a picture, a social media link and a comment on why you’re a sentientist:
So far, 233 rational, compassionate people have added their names. That's 2.987179487179E-8 % of the world's population. We're well on our way to 8 billion... 😃
If you want your wall tile deleted or changed later, get in touch using the comment form below or the contact form to the right and we'll make the change for you.
Many others have joined one or more of our online community groups. You would be very welcome too. Our liveliest are our Facebook group (private) and public page, with people from around 70 countries so far, but there's a longer list of our accounts and forums here.
To find out about other sentientists, some "notable" ones are listed on the Sentientism Wikipedia page. There's also a public list of sentientists and suspected sentientists on Twitter that you can subscribe to. Get in touch if you'd like to be added.
If you'd like to get updates from this site, drop your name and email in the boxes to the right and we'll update you with new posts. I've kept this separate from the "I'm a sentientist" so that you can do either, both or neither.
This rationale could not be more urgent and more appropriate to the times.
Sentience matters for moral consideration. Evidence, Reason, Universalism.
I selected all sentient perceptual experience as my ultimate ethical value after studying philosophy and completely rebuilding my ethical beliefs without previous dogmas. It came as a result of thoughts that emerged around the being-for-itself concept in Jean-Paul Sartre’s Being and Nothingness book and Peter Singer’s work. Consequently I have become an act utilitarian, vegan and an effective altruist. The concept has had a profound impact on my significant long-term decisions. I am confident that the world would be significantly better for everyone if everyone valued sentient experience, maximised positive perceptual experience and minimised negative perceptual experience.
Differences don’t matter, only sentience does.
I am a Sentientist because of an inner strong compulsion to express my real human nature. The one that acknowledges that we are not the pinnacle of this planet. We are not superior by any means. We are just a part of life’s web. And we have the potential to shift from being destructors and conquerors to being nurturers and regenerators. To respect and care for all sentient beings including our own kind.
All animals think and feel whether an ant or elephant, shark or lobster. We are not outside of the animal kingdom, we are part of it.
Basic rights are not limited to one species, even if we pretend they are.
AJ is an American journalist, author, and lecturer best known for writing about his lifestyle experiments, including “The Year of Living Biblically”. He is an editor at large for Esquire and has worked for the Antioch Daily Ledger and Entertainment Weekly. Jacobs is a member of Giving What We Can and pledges 10% of lifelong earnings to charity. He donates to the Against Malaria Foundation and other Effective Altruism organizations. He is ~vegan and an atheist (raised secular Jewish). He has said “I love the Sentientism philosophy – we should see all sentient beings as our extended family”.
My “Sentientist Conversation” interview with AJ on YouTube and on our Sentientism Podcast (also on Anchor)
AJ on Wikipedia
I believe that suffering experienced by sentient beings is the greatest “evil” in this world, and I’m committed to doing everything I can to reduce it.
Zion is an author and activist known for her environmental work and science communication. She is UK director of Environmental Progress. She has been a spokesperson for Extinction Rebellion (XR) UK on TV and radio, and founded and edited XR’s Hourglass newspaper. She has written for The Huffington Post, authored the evidence-based nonfiction book The Ultimate Guide to Green Parenting, and given a TEDx talk. She is vegan and has a naturalistic worldview.
Zion on our SentientistConversations YouTube series and Sentientism Podcast – “Do you want a habitable planet for your children?”
Zion on Wikipedia
Compassion and reason the cornerstones of a peaceful and progressive society, and I personally wouldn’t mind calling myself a sentientist. However, as a person who dabbles with faith and faith traditions, I have to respect the beliefs of many, which cannot always be backed by reason. As long as people find their peace. 🙂
Urmi’s Centre for Interfaith Peace and Dialogue on Facebook
Because it is altruism that makes sense!
I’ve chosen to follow this idea because I believe all life is worthy of freedom, happiness, and love with very general intrinsic value surviving in a world which they choose to avoid death and suffering as far as practicable, I also think it’s very anthropocentric to trivialise the exploitation of non-human animals as commodities simply because they’re different forms of life. We should really put into regard that these are sentient beings who feel pain, emotion, and nonsensically & unnecessarily suffer everyday for the sake of human gratification.
I’m a sentientist because the collective denial of the suffering of other beings makes us unworthy of our privileged place among the creatures of this planet.
Richard is a writer, psychologist, and animal rights advocate. He coined the term “speciesism” in 1970 and was one of the first to use the term “Sentientism” in a positive light, after it was first used in a derogatory sense by John Rodman in 1977 to criticise Peter Singer and Richard’s thinking. Richard developed the term sentientism in a naturalistic context – using evidence and reason to infer sentience and to grant moral consideration to sentient beings. More recently, Sentientism has been re-cast to include a wider naturalistic commitment – using evidence and reason in all domains. Richard still considers himself a sentientist today. He has also developed painism, a sub-set of the sentientist worldview that focuses on the moral importance of pain over that of positive experiences.
Richard on Wikipedia
Ethics demand that the strong inflict no harm on those who feel pain and fear. Humans are animals, too.
Why I’m A Sentientist:
– All suffering matters morally.
– No sentient being deserves to be treated as a commodity.
– Existing treatment is neither necessary for survival or morally justifiable.
– Cognitive science will continue to expand our understanding of the many forms of sentience.
– Recognizing our underlying genetic unity (ex. LUCA) is reason enough to universalize our compassion.
“I’m a Sentientist because all suffering matters morally and because evidence and reason are the only ways to really understand our world.”
Peter is a moral philosopher. He is the Ira W. DeCamp Professor of Bioethics at Princeton University and a Laureate Professor at the Centre for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics at the University of Melbourne. He specialises in applied ethics and approaches ethical issues from a secular, utilitarian perspective. He is known in particular for his book Animal Liberation (1975), in which he argues in favour of veganism, and his essay “Famine, Affluence, and Morality”, in which he argues in favour of donating to help the global poor. In 2004 Singer was recognised as the Australian Humanist of the Year by the Council of Australian Humanist Societies. In 2005, the Sydney Morning Herald placed him among Australia’s ten most influential public intellectuals. Singer is a cofounder of Animals Australia and the founder of The Life You Can Save.
Peter on Wikipedia
I believe in extending moral consideration to all sentient beings as individuals with their own interests and values. I am also a longtime Humanist and member of the AHA because I believe in the separation of church and state and the promotion of a scientific rationalist point of view.
I’m a sentientist because I believe that non-human animals have the same right to freedom from enslavement, exploitation and torture, as human animals. They have the same capacity for pleasure and suffering and should therefore be protected from being reduced to an unfeeling asset.
I like to think I spend my time on this planet developing – my intellect, my reason, my compassion. It takes discipline of thought and love to rise above our basic instincts, and I am happy and willing and loving enough to work towards that discipline for the sake of my fellow sentient beings.
Amanda on Wikipedia
I don’t believe humans are qualitatively more special than other creatures, except insomuch as we flatter ourselves.
All sentient beings have interests that deserve full and rational consideration
Curiosity helped me the most. Knowledge fills you up. Observing something is a pleasure, deducing something else from it is another. I do Science just for the sake of it – I do research, publish and teach without being paid affiliated with academics, and it just makes sense for me.
Without evidence why believe a thing?
Because we all share a common ancestor and common instincts and biological machinery. To pretend we are very different from our fellow earthlings, particularly other mammals, is hubris.
For all we know, sentient experience is all there is, and even if isn’t, it’s not clear what else could possible matter. Being capable of experiencing happiness or suffering is all it takes to make one morally relevant, for one to matter, on pain of incoherence or inconsistency in our approach and attitude to our existential predicament.
Aatu on Facebook
Sentientism, like veganism for me, is very much a guiding principle in life. It came to me as a revelation in my late teens, that life choices held such hypocrisy. I found myself in turmoil over consuming some animals, whilst protecting others. I began to question the disparity around the world, the human injustice & wanton exploitation of the natural world. I realised I was a believer in sentientism fundamentally…that I was seeking to make decisions based on best insights into science, evidence, reason and supported with a compassionate disposition. It came natural to me, as I chose veganism. Understanding that all life has an innate right to exist..that it is not our place to attribute a ‘scale of value’ to beings, with humankind at the peak. Sentientism is the ultimate liberation from the man-made tyranny of rigid belief systems. It is simply ‘freedom’.
It is my core value that every sentient being deserves a good, happy life. Whatever their race, religion, class, gender, sexuality or species may be. I want their suffering to stop. Reason and evidence is a must when trying to solve questions on how to help those who suffer, to discover who is suffering and how they are suffering. I prefer sentientism over animalism because it doesn’t limit our moral circle to animals, but opens it to any kind of being who may be able to feel pain.
not fully sure yet. i so far like what i hear but like any group like this i like to check out the people and see if they match the words
I’ve considered myself a secular Humanist for the past 35 years or so, but at an even younger age, before the double digits, I felt that the injustices to other sentient beings, for example the suffering of laboratory animals for the benefit of humans and the rape of rain forests and indigenous peoples, was and still is a terribly myopic view of our role as part of life on Earth, and a completely unfair imbalance in favor of one species, or nation, at the detriment to all other sentients. I feel it’s natural that these two philosophies are part of one way.
If an organism seeks to avoid death and can suffer pain–even if not nerve-based as that which we are accustomed to–it is sentient and should be accorded rights. Both nonhuman animals as well as other intelligences, even if their origin may have been artificial.
I give value to beings who are sentient rather than being just alive.
my dad told me about it and i thought yep that sounds like me
Diana is an evolutionary psychologist and senior lecturer at the University of Portsmouth. Her field of research includes the study of disgust, human sexuality, and hormones and behaviour. She is involved in the effective altruism and animal welfare movements and identifies as a feminist and a Sentientist (she just hasn’t joined our “wall” yet). Diana’s 2018 Darwin Day Lecture, hosted by Humanists UK, was part of the inspiration for our work developing and raising awareness of Sentientism.
Diana on Wikipedia
@sentientist (I told you she’s a Sentientist)
I am a sentientist because I believe that no living being is inherently more valuable than another based on immutable traits: race, gender, age, or species. The value of life stems from pleasure, so to enslave or kill a being which can feel pleasure, or might be able to in the future (note that this includes nonsentient embryos and fetuses, but not a being which is braindead or cannot feel) is to rob it of all potential future pleasure.
Because an unexamined life, is not worth living.
It’s a perfect description of my ethical and moral approach to life.
If you take a moment out of your busy day to think about life on Earth, it’s obvious that all sentient life whether arachnids, mollusks, reptiles, insects, birds, mammals, amphibians (in no particular order) is pretty miraculous. Who am I, (as a mammal), to say that my life is more valuable that that of an insect. All sentient life is caring, feeling and complex.
Because every sentient being deserves to live a life free from unnecessary suffering.
We seem to have developed a different attitude to sentient animals based on their utility (or competition) to humans as written about by Jonathan Foer in ‘Some we love, some we hate, some we eat’. Others, as a means of defense, attribute sentience to plants. If we are serious about Humanism, we need to understand that, as rational beings, we have to extend our circle of compassion to those who we exploit including enslaving companion animals for our own enjoyment.
Kevin on FaceBook
Sentient beings feel, have consciousness and emotions, yet they are voiceless, there should a be a charter of animal rights
Humanity should come out of the human-centric bubble. However, too often animals are viewed with partisan sentimentality or ignorant disregard, as economic utility or nuisances. I think we need to be guided by evidence-based reason, wonder, care & curiosity to restore the bond with our beautiful world and minimize all suffering. If we judge ourselves to be capable of any moral progress, we will understand the need to live without being a threat to all living creatures around us.
Carole is a model, actress, singer/songwriter (she wrote “Slow Love” with Prince), writer and animal activist. She has been a contributor for several animal welfare publications including American Dog Magazine, for who she also worked as an investigative journalist. She had an animal welfare column on Newsvine. She is the West Coast Director of the Companion Animal Protection Society, a national non-profit organisation that investigates puppy mills and pet stores. Carole founded the #MeToo movement in France. She is vegan and an atheist. In our “Sentientist Conversation” video she said “Sentientism feels like home”.
Sentientist Conversations with Carole (YouTube) #1
Sentientist Conversations with Carole (YouTube) #2
Carole on Wikipedia
Carole on Medium
Sentientism means that we should take into account all and everyone’s positive and negative feelings, without arbitrary exceptions. No-one and nothing can consistently or reasonably object to sentientism, because disagreeing with sentientism means having negative feelings about it and believing that those negative feelings should not be arbitrarily excluded from moral considerations.
Stijn on our Sentientist Conversations series – “My enemy, which I will destroy, is arbitrariness!”
Commitment to scientific morality.
All the sentient creatures of the earth are deserving of equal treatment. We are born of the same family and it is beyond unethical for one species to lay waste to the earth for the sake of exploiting its kin. All living beings have value and we, as the ethically minded beings of this world, must work to preserve their wellbeing and that of the Earth.
Because I care about what’s true and what’s fair, and would hasten the day when it’s the norm to take seriously the interests of sentient beings, human and otherwise.
If a sentientist is someone who wants to use evidence, reason and compassion for the benefit of all sentient beings, I consider myself a sentientist.
“The good life is one inspired by love and guided by knowledge.” – Bertrand Russell
“… Other things being equal, equally strong interests should count equally.”