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Archive for the ‘Events’ Category

Archaeology Open House

Posted by dystressed on September 16, 2008

IPFW will be hosting an open house for the Archaeology Department on Saturday. Does anyone want to make this a group outing?

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Posted in Events, Science | 3 Comments »

Humanist Symposium #25

Posted by Skeptigator on September 14, 2008

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Welcome to the Humanist Symposium News Channel brought to you by FreeThought Fort Wayne, I’m your host Skeptigator and I want to know, “How are you today?”.

Our top story tonight is the recent announcement that Matter is better than spiritualism coming out of Chromium Oxide Green. Maria Silva asks why the “supposed spiritual world is deeper, and extraordinarily more profound than this mundane world around us, that is composed of matter?”

But first in Technology news Michael Wheeler explores Utopian Neuroscience. He asks, “How happy do you want to be?”

In Education news, we have the recent editorial, Should Social-Emotional Learning Be Part of Academic Curriculum?, from Alvaro Fernandez of Brain Fitness an institute dedicated to creating sharp brains.

On the political front, Canadian talking head, Ian Bushfield of Terahertz, presents Toward Secular Humanistic Politics.

In legal news, the lobbying firm of This humanist is working to expand upon Humanism and Polyamory. Clare, the spokesperson for the group is quoted as saying, “Under law in the UK, polygamy is illegal, but so was homosexual marriage! If we can accept that marriage law concerning homosexuality is outdated and inappropriate, maybe it’s worth taking a second look at the issue of monogamy.”

After the break, we’ll find out what’s happening in Sports and Entertainment news.

Today’s broadcast is brought to you by the word Compassion a service offered by Elliptica, please call Lynet for more information.

Over at the Sports desk, Brian Jay Stanley reports on the latest Olympic news, We Were Gold Medalists in the Sperm Olympics.

Thanks Brian, I feel like a winner already. And now for Entertainment news, PhillyChief brings us the heartwarming story on the positive impact of the movie industry, “Buzz Lightyear got us through”.

Our resident DIY guy, Glowing Face Man, is doing some remodeling, let’s check in and see how he’s doing with A Modernized Version of the Lord’s Prayer.

In Charity news, our broadcast partner, Zach Alexander of the Humanist Chaplaincy at Harvard tells us about, Humanist Relief Work: Children of the Border. And vjack of Atheist Revolution talks about A Different Kind of Atheist Outreach.

Sorry folks, we have to take another break to pay some bills around here. When we return, how to cut back on the Carbs and another edition of our continuing series called Biography.

For one night only, Dereck of I Will Not Die fame and Aaron Ross Powell are joining together for their blockbuster seminar entitled “Purpose and Growth”. Make sure to get your tickets early, Dereck will be giving his award-winning An Essay on Human Growth and Aaron Powell has been packing theaters from coast-to-coast with his What Atheism Offers: A Sense of Purpose Series. One Night Only, this Sat-Sat-Saturday!!! Two speakers, One low price.

The co-host of our on-going series “Biography”, Greta Christina, brings us the little known story of Del Martin, and What Makes a Life Meaningful. Greta’s co-host, Andy Welfle, explores his tell-all auto-biography in From Altar Boy to Atheist: A coming out story.

And now, “Have you been wanting to shed a few pounds lately?”, well LSG has a new diet strategy called, No Bread for Me, Thanks.

In tonight’s editorial piece, I wonder if Jyunri Kankei might have A Better Answer than Originally Given. Also, I stumbled across this piece from Andrew Bernardin from Evolving Mind, Religion as a Replaceable Raison D’être (Reason for Being): Part II. I have a question, “What happened to Part I”, is this like Leonard Part 6, because that movie is just begging for a series of prequels.

I see our producer, Phil for Humanity is giving me the Time is Our Most Valuable Asset signal. So we’ll leave you tonight with a piece submitted by a viewer, Dale, called Awe Sans God.

Please join us on October 5th where our Canadian sister station (with an amazing broadcast strength), Terahertz, will be bringing the 26th edition of the Humanist Symposium.

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Posted in Events | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments »

FreeThought Fort Wayne’s October Meeting

Posted by Skeptigator on September 13, 2008

UPDATE: The meeting location has moved to the Mad Anthony Brewing Co. located at the corner of Broadway and Taylor. We have reserved enough space for 25 hopefully we run out of room 😉

Check out their website for directions: www.madbrew.com

What: FreeThought Fort Wayne October Meeting
When: October  8th, 2008 7PM-9PM+
Where: Main Branch, Allen County Public Library, Meeting Room B
Desc: If you have any ideas or questions please feel free to shoot me an email below or post a topic in the forums. As usual the discussion will be moved to a local pub. Public is always welcome

For more information, contact@freethoughtfortwayne.org

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September’s FreeThought Happy Hour

Posted by Skeptigator on September 13, 2008

Due to the overwhelming success of the last FreeThought Happy Hour, we’re doing it again. The FreeThought Happy Hour is a purely social event, there is no topic or set agenda, just bring yourselves, your significant others or just a friend.

The next Happy Hour will be on Saturday, September 27th beginning at 7PM. We will be meeting at Curly Armstrong’s on Bluffton Road. Map

Please Note: This is a different day and a different venue than normal.

Posted in Events | Tagged: | 2 Comments »

FreeThought Fort Wayne’s September Meeting

Posted by Skeptigator on August 15, 2008

What: FreeThought Fort Wayne September Meeting
When: September 10th, 2008 7PM-9PM+
Where: Main Branch, Allen County Public Library, Meeting Room B
Desc: At this meeting we will decide on the Adopt-a-Highway proposal among other items. If you have any ideas or questions please feel free to shoot me an email below or post a topic in the forums. As usual the discussion will be moved to a local pub. Public is always welcome

For more information, contact@freethoughtfortwayne.org

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FreeThought Happy Hour

Posted by Skeptigator on August 15, 2008

Announcing a FreeThought Fort Wayne Special Event. We are trying something new. FreeThought Fort Wayne will be having a FreeThought Happy Hour (except there won’t be discounted drinks and will likely last longer than one hour).

We will be meeting Wednesday, August 27th @ 7PM at Henry’s downtown. This is a purely social event, there will be no agenda or set topics of any kind. Remember to bring your significant other or a friend or two.

Posted in Events | Tagged: , , , , | 4 Comments »

Tennessee Intolerance

Posted by dystressed on July 31, 2008

About four days ago, I was in a hotel room out of town when the news came on television about a church shooting in Knoxville, Tennessee.

To be perfectly honest, my first thought was that I was glad I was so far away. My next thoughts drifted back to the families of the victims and what could have possibly been going on in the mind of the shooter. I have been kind of lax in my recent posts, so I decided I would take this opportunity to dissect the news and analyze what was going on in the shooter’s mind.

Unlike most of the recent tragic shootings in the U.S., the shooter is alive and well. We actually know why he did it. By his own admission, he wants to kill liberals and put an end to the liberal movement. Now before I get too political, I must warn readers that I am a liberal, so I couldn’t help but take this man’s actions a bit personally.

Jim David Adkisson wrote a letter explaining his actions, and he left his home wide open for police to search because he actually believed he would die in the shooting. As circumstances unfolded, however, he is alive and two good people are dead. Seven others are injured.

Adkisson has no ideology as he was not himself a churchgoer. Rather, he was caught up in the rhetoric of right-wing pundits who blame all of society’s ills on the liberal movement. Since he could not get to the leaders of the liberal movement, he chose to target those who voted them into office. The Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church was targeted particularly because it preached tolerance.

Tolerance, in Adkisson’s perception, was the worst thing about liberals. Tolerance allowed gays to marry… and so on. Adkisson likely envisioned himself as a sort of avenging angel for the wrongs against America, so he bought a shotgun at a pawn shop, packed it into a guitar case, carried it into a church, and started firing at people during a children’s musical.

Knoxville News Sentinel image

Knoxville News Sentinel image

Killing innocent people is absolutely the wrong way of trying to win a culture “war.”

There is a lot of hot air blown by all sides, but the term culture war is a red herring. The culture war itself is nothing more than the eternal battle between divergent points of view. Society does not progress without disussion, debate, reasoning, and most importantly, compromise.

In fundamentalist circles, compromise is known as the tool of the devil. But in reality, compromise is what makes America great. Compromise gave us the tri-lateral, co-equal branches of government, the Bill of Rights, and a bicameral legislature (a congress with two houses, with representatives apportioned by population and Senators apportioned by the number of states). Compromise also got us some negative things, such as the three-fifths compromise, the Kansas-Nebraska Act, and Don’t Ask / Don’t Tell. But by and large, compromise works for altruistic ends. Compromise is necessity. Compromise is a tool of democracy, a tool of freedom.

As important as compromise is, it cannot function without tolerance. Tolerance is defined as “the capacity for or the practice of recognizing and respecting the beliefs or practices of others.

As we rage on in this culture war, with our emotional attachments to our own opinions, we must respect the fact that we do not know everything on our own, nor does some divine power (or right-wing writer) give us all of the answers. It’s just a shame that people don’t think things through before they go off half-cocked.

Posted in Events, Politics, Religion | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

FreeThought Fort Wayne’s August Meeting

Posted by Skeptigator on July 12, 2008

What: FreeThought Fort Wayne August Meeting
When: August 13th, 2008 7PM-9PM
Where: Main Branch, Allen County Public Library, Meeting Room B
Desc: August 13th will be mostly focused on discussing the then recent talk by author Robert M. Price. Bring a snack to share! As usual the discussion will be moved to a local pub. Public is always welcome

For more information, contact@freethoughtfortwayne.org

Posted in Events, Local | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Robert Price to speak for FreeThought Fort Wayne

Posted by Skeptigator on July 11, 2008

FreeThought Fort Wayne is bringing another speaker to the Fort Wayne, Indiana area. On Wednesday, August 6th beginning at 7:00PM, Robert M. Price will be giving a public lecture at the Downtown branch of the Allen County Public Library on his new book, Top Secret: The Truth Behind Today’s Pop Mysticism. Please read the book and come prepared to ask questions during the Question and Answer period.

For more information regarding Robert Price’s lecture in Fort Wayne or FreeThought Fort Wayne, please contact: contact@freethoughtfortwayne.org

Download the Flyer Here (PDF, 716KB)

About the Book

The following is an excerpt from the review of Robert Price’s book, Top Secret,

America may be the land of plenty, but in the midst of our Walmarts, enormous supermarkets, and other signs of material surfeit, it seems that many are experiencing a gnawing spiritual hunger. New religions, spiritualities, and religious therapies attract throngs of believers to megachurches, Yoga classes, and the bestseller bookshelves. The latest popular fad in spirituality is Rhonda Byrne’s The Secret, which promises both success and spiritual fulfillment, and is endorsed by no less than Oprah Winfrey.

If you’re trying to make sense of all the offerings in this confusing spiritual wonderland, Top Secret is just the book for you. Noted religion scholar Robert M. Price examines the historical roots and the current appeal of today’s pop mysticisms. Critical and appreciative at the same time, Price applies his impressive background in theology and biblical criticism to put these trends in perspective. Among other popular movements and books, Price discusses:

  • Eckhart Tolle’s A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose
  • Rhonda Byrne’s The Secret and New Thought
  • Helen Schucman’s A Course in Miracles and the popular works of Marianne Williamson
  • Deepak Chopra’s How to Know God
  • James Redfield’s The Celestine Prophecy
  • The Jewish Kabbalah, recently made popular by Madonna
  • Joel Osteen’s Prosperity Gospel and his popular Your Best Life Now
  • Diedre Blomfield Brown (AKA Pema Chödrön) and American-style Buddhism

Whether you’re a skeptic looking for a rational approach to understanding current religion or a seeker in search of a deeper, more informed understanding of popular spiritualities, Top Secret has much to offer.

About the Author

Robert M. Price is Professor of Biblical Criticism at the Center for Inquiry Institute as well as the editor of The Journal of Higher Criticism. His books include Beyond Born Again, The Widow Traditions in Luke-Acts: A Feminist-Critical Scrutiny, Deconstructing Jesus, and The Incredible Shrinking Son of Man. Forthcoming titles are The Crisis of Biblical Authority, Jesus Christ Superstar: A Redactional Study of a Modern Gospel, The Da Vinci Controversy and The Amazing Colossal Apostle

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Listen to a telephone interview with enhanced graphics with Robert Price about his book “Top Secret”

Posted in Events, FreeThought, Local, Religion, Skepticism | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments »

Inheriting the Wind

Posted by dystressed on June 29, 2008

As I child, I never saw the movie “Inherit the Wind.”

I finally watched it several days ago and it was fascinating. I decided to find out more about it. Here are some things I found out using the wonders of the Internet:

  1. The real Scopes “Monkey” trial was actually a well-orchestrated farce, designed by the teachers to expose the religious influence in the Tennessee state law banning evolution. It was also one of the most ingenious publicity stunts ever concocted. The final resolution of this case and others like it was the 1962 supreme court ruling banning religious instruction in public schools. (Source)
  2. The movie itself was based upon a play. The play was actually written as a fable about McCarthy-era politics. (Source)
  3. There’s a connection to Fort Wayne. Dick York, one of the principle cast members, was born in Fort Wayne.

The film itself is very moving. I would say it’s even divisive. It was mean to the creationists and religious people, and presents the Evolutionists as snotty and condescending.

Now as we examine both sides of the debate today, there is even more of a divergence of views. If anything, the fundamentalists are even more adamant about their position. Evolutionists, at least I’d like to think, are much more enlightened than those in the movie. Advances in science, such as the discovery of DNA, the Hubble telescope, Mars Rovers, et cetera, have given science new insights in the arguments against creation.

In short, science has progressed and evolved since the middle of the twentieth century by leaps and bounds. Religion has stagnated with no new arguments or evidence to back up their position.

Of all arguments in support of science, this simple illustration is the most telling.

Posted in Events, FreeThought, Philosophy, Politics, Religion, Science, Skepticism | Leave a Comment »