Ten Commandment Alternatives are alternatives to the Ten Commandments in the Old Testament. Different authors have worked out several alternative versions, and people don't agree on any one version. Richard Dawkins recently popularized one alternative in his book The God Delusion. [1]

  • Are the commandments below better for modern living than the Bronze Age commandments in the Bible?
  • The answer should be obvious. They are much better.


If you break any of these commandments which you feel you should keep:-

  1. Don't beat yourself up over it, don't tell yourself you're unworthy.
  2. Instead work out what you can do to help yourself resist temptation for the future.

Richard Dawkins[]

The alternative to the Ten Commandments cited by Richard Dawkins in The God Delusion is[2]:

  1. Do not do to others what you would not want them to do to you. (See Golden Rule.)
  2. In all things, strive to cause no harm.
  3. Treat your fellow human beings, your fellow living things, and the world in general with love, honesty, faithfulness and respect.
  4. Do not overlook evil or shrink from administering justice, but always be ready to forgive wrongdoing freely admitted and honestly regretted.
  5. Live life with a sense of joy and wonder.
  6. Always seek to be learning something new.
  7. Test all things; always check your ideas against the facts, and be ready to discard even a cherished belief if it does not conform to them.
  8. Never seek to censor or cut yourself off from dissent; always respect the right of others to disagree with you.
  9. Form independent opinions on the basis of your own reason and experience; do not allow yourself to be led blindly by others.
  10. Question everything.

Ebonmusing endorses this decalogue. [3]

Christopher Hitchens[]

Christopher Hitchens on the Ten Commandments [4]

  1. Do not condemn people on the basis of their ethnicity or their color.
  2. Do not ever even think of using people as private property.
  3. Despise those who use violence or the threat of it in sexual relations.
  4. Hide your face and weep if you dare to harm a child.
  5. Do not condemn people for their inborn nature. (“Why would God create so many homosexuals, only to torture and destroy them?”)
  6. Be aware that you, too, are an animal, and dependent on the web of nature. Try to think and act accordingly.
  7. Do not imagine you can avoid judgment if you rob people [by lying to them] rather than with a knife.
  8. Turn off that fucking cell phone.
  9. Denounce all jihadists and crusaders for what they are: psychopathic criminals with ugly delusions and terrible sexual repression.
  10. Reject any faith if their commandments contradict any of the above.

A. C. Grayling[]

The Good Book, compiled by A. C. Grayling, features ten commandments in The Good 8:11:

  1. Love well
  2. Seek the good in all things
  3. Harm no others
  4. Think for yourself
  5. Take responsibility
  6. Respect nature
  7. Do your utmost
  8. Be informed
  9. Be kind
  10. Be courageous

These come with the post-thought that the reader "at least, sincerely try" and an addendum in (The Good 8:12), "Add to these ten injunctions, this: O friends, let us always be true to ourselves and to the best in things, so that we can always be true to one another."

Socialist Sunday Schools[]

Socialist Sunday Schools propagated a socialist set of ten commandents.

  1. Love your schoolfellows, who will be your fellow workmen in life.
  2. Love learning, which is the food of the mind; be as grateful to your teacher as to your parents.
  3. Make every day holy by good and useful deeds and kindly actions.
  4. Honour good men, be courteous to all men, bow down to none.
  5. Do not hate or speak evil of anyone. Do not be revengeful but stand up for your right and resist oppression.
  6. Do not be cowardly. Be a friend to the weak and love justice.
  7. Remember that all good things of the earth are produced by labour. Whoever enjoys them without working for them is stealing the bread of the workers. (That should not include disabled people who can't work.)
  8. Observe and think in order to discover the truth. Do not believe what is contrary to reason and never deceive yourself or others.
  9. Do not think that he who loves his own country must hate and despise other nations, or wish for war, which is a remnant of barbarism.
  10. Look forward to the day when all men and women will be free citizens of one fatherland and live together as brothers and sisters in peace and righteousness.


Athenian reformer and lawgiver Solon (~638 BCE - ~558 BCE) had another set (Diogenes Laertius, Lives of Eminent Philosophers, 1.60):[5]

  1. Trust good character more than promises.
  2. Do not speak falsely.
  3. Do good things.
  4. Do not be hasty in making friends, but do not abandon them once made.
  5. Learn to obey before you command.
  6. When giving advice, do not recommend what is most pleasing, but what is most useful.
  7. Make reason your supreme commander.
  8. Do not associate with people who do bad things.
  9. Honor the gods.
  10. Have regard for your parents.

The ninth one is about fictional entities, but the others are good.

Kochhar Humanist Education Center[]

Its Ten Commitments:[6]

  1. Altruism
  2. Caring for the World Around Us
  3. Critical Thinking
  4. Empathy
  5. Ethical Development
  6. Global Awareness
  7. Humility
  8. Peace and Social Justice
  9. Responsibility
  10. Service and Participation

There is a good and a a bad side to Christianity, see the category page

See also[]

Humanist morality


  1. author=Dawkins, Richard |title=The God Delusion |publisher=Houghton Mifflin |location=Boston |year=2006 |pages=406 |isbn=0-618-68000-4 |oclc= |doi=| authorlink = Richard Dawkins
  2. url= title=The New Ten Commandments| accessdate=2009-03-30
  3. The New Ten Commandments, A decalogue for the modern world
  4. Secular Web Kiosk: The Real Ten Commandments by Richard Carrier. Other translations:
  5. KHEC | Ten Commitments

External links[]

Adapted from Wikipedia