Flagstaff Freethinkers Message Board › Starting the discussion

Starting the discussion

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Brian W.
user 26617262
Group Organizer
Flagstaff, AZ
Hello Freethinkers!

I have started a discussion here on Meetup that I wanted to draw your attention to. One of the things that I wanted to accomplish at the Winter Party (besides have fun meeting all of you and drinking some spiced wine) is to have a short meeting about expectation we have for this group. I have a list going already but I wanted to open it up the group first. I would like it if we could start voicing some ideas here which I will collect and organize for the discussion. Hopefully this will make the time more effective and the discussion more focused.

So please take minute sometime over the next few weeks to think about what goals you would like to see the group to work towards, as well as some activities/events that you would like to see us do. Synchronized swimming anyone?

Thank you all for your time and attention!

~Brian
A former member
Post #: 1
The things I want from the upcoming gathering are :
1, Just to be with other atheists. I think it will be nice to be insulated from believers for a while.
2, A good time. Food, wine and Freethinkers. I have a feeling some laughter will be shared.
3, To have the discussion this thread is promising.

Moving forward I would love to have a regular discussion group about real ethics in our modern world. What philosophies make sense? How we should conduct ourselves? Realistic conversations about real world living and issues. Most of what I've read about secular morals has been big picture stuff, I'd like to examine the minutia of what Sam Harris calls 'the moral landscape' and how we deal with specific problems. At our first meeting I'd like to learn if others are interested in these topics and discuss what format such meetings should have. Should there be an organizer and a text to consider or a free form discussion with people putting forth ideas and dilemmas or perhaps a combination of the two?

I think we should also talk about one of Daniel Dennets' big questions, "What should replace religion." and whether we want to experiment with answering that question.

I'd like to have us schedule another gathering or perhaps an outright party before we leave.

Do we want to be an activist group and/or a charitable organization? What activities would be appropriate?

Finally I'd like to learn if anyone else has time to read for pleasure and maybe form a book club.

Brian W.
user 26617262
Group Organizer
Flagstaff, AZ
Post #: 2
Great post Paul! I'm looking forward to the laughing too! (and the wine). Thanks for your in puts, we will definitely be talking about that!

Allen C. D.
user 23318441
Cottonwood, AZ
Post #: 1
The main thing is to have a place to socialize without the stultifying influence of religion. Over time, this will evolve into groups that provide mutual support, even charity, similar to what churches supply to their adherents. We need to get to know each other and engage in the cross fertilization that develops cohesion and dynamism. Up to now, I have felt alone and isolated, my only outlet and source of contact being the somewhat anonymous internet. Now, we can use the internet to seek out and come together with our philosophical brethren.

I'm personally tired of being on the fringes of society. We need to be more of a dynamic force in the world.


Allen C. Dexter, Cottonwood
A former member
Post #: 1
Hey everyone ...

I believe we should focus, somewhat, on dispelling the myth that has made atheism so distasteful to so many people. Reading headlines (Alternet and Mother Jones, for example) about the ignorance of people and their feelings about atheism is discouraging to say the least. Myself, I label 'agnostic' for the reasons above....and being in the animal rights movement as well as marketing my books, makes turning people off highly counter-productive. I wish there were more 'positive' vibes around people like us.

So - I say we talk about becoming a positive influence here in Flag, to start - going to functions with our arms full of things for orphaned children, etc. and doing good things for the community - and showing people that just because we don't believe in fairy tales, does not make us bad people. Teach by example, that we are the 'best of the best' because we choose to think.

So - there ya have it :) Can't wait to meet you all - however, since I'm doing finals at this time in my life - if something comes up (snow, studying, animals, etc.,) I quite possibly could be just a figment of your imagination....
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