Well, if you were seeking for a short answer, I would say that main characteristics of humanism are curiosity, a free mind, belief in good taste, and faith in the human race. This is my opinion I formed out when studying this question. Still, if you need a comprehensive research on it, I would suggest looking for a few articles on the topic, or research papers, for example in the database of StudentShare. For this topic is kinda broad, you need to form out your own opinion on which characteristics of humanism are crucial and necessary. Make your own list based on the research of the topic.
Also, to start your research on a good note, find a selection from Corliss Lamont’s book The Philosophy of Humanism. I think he sets out good points as to what Humanism is about.
The Humanism is an ideology that emphasizes the significance of human beings. Formerly, this term was used by Friedrich Niethammer to describe a new methodology of studying in 1808. Thereafter, the unnamed author wrote the article about the love of humanity, using the term Humanism. Thus, this philosophical ideology started developing and over time became the modern Humanism.
According to this philosophy, people are considered to be a result of the evolutionary process. The Humanism prefers rational thinking and scientific proofs over the spiritual forces. So instead of explaining a phenomenon supernaturally, humanists lean towards the proven facts. The idea of Humanism also considers Nature as an actual reality, utterly independent of the people’s mind and its subjective perception.
One of the points of the Humanism is the lifetime ability to unveil one’s potential. Thus, a human being is the only one responsible for his/her quality of life.
Another essential characteristic of Humanism is the independence in thinking. Neither blind faith nor superstitions impact decisions or developing. The only basis of each opinion opinions is one’s experience.
The main value of Humanism is a belief in a human race. Everyone needs to make an effort in human’s potential growth, science development, and dissemination of the right worths.
Humanism believes that the only way to achieve the happiness is balancing between individual desires and self-growth to contribute to the welfare of the society.