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Evolution, Neuroscience, Philosophy and the Meaning of life

At some point or another we all deal with the big questions in life, questions that concern morality, justice, friendships, and relationships. Massimo Pigliucci, in his "Answers for Aristotle: How Science and Philosophy Can Lead Us to A More Meaningful Life" draws from the insights of Darwinian evolutionary biology, modern neuroscience, and timeless philosophical analysis to help us think about our existence and how to navigate it intelligently. Science provides us with answers as to where important aspects of human behavior come from (evolution) and how our brains process them (neuroscience), while philosophy helps us to reflect on the meaning of it all.

This event is free and open to the public. It is co-sponsored by Center for Inquiry–Portland and the BIO student group at PSU.

Attendees are invited to join an informal social gathering after the event at Rogue Hall, a brew pub located at 1717 SW Park Ave.

Parking:

The closest parking available (and free after 7) is in the parking structure on SW 6th and Harrison, but there are a number of additional parking garages around that area.

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  • A former member
    A former member

    It was a super neato event I have to say. I'm grateful for these talks that are free and I'm grateful for the people who organize these lectures. A lot of lectures I would like to go to cost money. Sometimes a lot of it. I'm definitely going to read his books. Love the examples of the stages of love and how at those different stages, key hormones and neurotransmitters are at play. A lot of this may seem like old hat material but I don't think so. He made his argument for the use of philosophy along side science.

    February 14, 2013

  • Gretchen

    Outstanding, well qualified, entertaining speaker generous enough to spend a lot of time with us at the Rogue Hall pub after the event. His book is on my Buy and Recommend list. I hope that we are coming realize how attractive our P.S.U. venue lectures are and will choose rooms with more seating. Many thanks to the organizers!

    February 13, 2013

  • Paul W.

    First, let me say that I appreciate all the effort CFI volunteers expend to arrange these events. I really do. I couldn't get in, because it was packed beyond SRO, even though I got there before seven. Once again, it is confirmed that a finite space with finite seating can fit only a finite number of people. Even though I RSVPed early, I couldn't get in, while undoubtedly some who RSVPed at the last minute got in because they could get there by 6:30. I could have put the hour I spend getting downtown, struggling to find parking, and driving back to much better use. In the future, please limit RSVPs based on venue size. If that's too painful for some reason, at least let potential attendees know what they face, i.e., a Darwinian struggle for space, with the losers left up Shit Creek.

    February 12, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      Paul: Sorry you couldn't get in. I seem to have arrived RIGHT before a huge crush/wave of humans who eventually lined the walls. Apparently you can see/hear everything on video, and that will be nice because you can (I think?) fast forward and you won't have to pick up the litter in the aisle in front of your seat! In any event (;-) the organizers never have any idea how many people will attend, and this wasn't an exclusively CFI event, so ...

      February 13, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    It's funny I posted that comment hoping it wouldn't be crowded, then I totally forgot that comment, and then it was jammed. Scarcely room for cellular division. The talk was not what I expected but I was glad to see so many in attendance and glad to bathe in the Italian accent and the scatterings of anti-creationist jabs. I liked the first 20 minutes best. I agree about the handling of Q&A; there are standard "best practices" for that and I've seen them at Food for Thought lectures and at Bernie's debates. Thanks to CFI for listing this event; keep up the excellent focus!

    February 13, 2013

  • Bernie D.

    Great speaker, one of my role-models.

    February 13, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    My son and my husband enjoyed it very much. I thought it was heavy on the philosophy and too light on the biology. But then, Pigliucci did explain why he took this path, by demonstrating linguistically the ways the US and Europe differ in their view of "science", which comes from the Latin word scientia , which means "knowledge".

    February 13, 2013

  • Laurent B.

    First Rate

    February 12, 2013

  • Ogden M.

    I also would like to say thank you to all the CFI volunteers and also the PSU graduate students for putting on this talk. However, I do have one comment to make about how the Q&A Session. I've been going to OMSI science pub for a for years and really love how they handle Q&A.

    I think they actually tell the speaker in advance to keep the answers short and concise. They also have 2-5 volunteers/staff in the audience that monitor the crowd and do a pretty good job of making sure people get to ask questions based on the order they raise their hands. (they do this by flashing a light at the speaker)

    It seems to help the flow of a Q&A session.

    February 12, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    How am I going to speak inglish?

    February 12, 2013

  • Polly J.

    Talk is one hour. Don't know about questions

    February 12, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Does anyone know how long the talk, and the Q&A, are expected to last?

    February 12, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    It's too bad it doesn't let you pick 'maybe'. I may need to attend a class but might be able to get out of it.d

    February 11, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Sounds interesting.

    February 10, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    I have to make it to this one for sure. I'm particularly interested in neuroscience and it's role in the future of the human race. (Or what we may evolve into next)

    February 10, 2013

  • Sheila M.

    Probably not

    February 9, 2013

  • Gayle M.

    Actually, this is only a yes if I can get a ride to drop me off as close as possible to the lecture. Otherwise, unable to make it.

    January 26, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      Yes, I was going to post that Tri-Met stops at 6th and Harrison.

      February 8, 2013

  • Gayle M.

    My physical condition limits what I can do right now, especially in terms of walking and unknown logistical complications.

    February 8, 2013

  • Cathy W.

    Joel Salatin speaking on sustainability at W.U. that night, tough choice.

    February 7, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    NTBM

    February 7, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Will this event be video taped? If not, would it be all right if I did?

    February 5, 2013

    • SylviaB

      O.k., T, we have permission. I'll send you a message about taping to your e-mail.

      1 · February 7, 2013

    • Deryck W.

      Great. Let me know where I can watch it once its online please. I'm an ocean and a continent away. So attending in person isn't an option. Thanks.

      February 7, 2013

  • Sheila M.

    Maybe

    February 5, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Marie and Jef

    January 29, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    I will not be going to the event, but would like to help with handing out cake and literature in the afternoon. Please let me know when you have more details regarding this. Thanks!

    January 29, 2013

    • SylviaB

      Super, thanks for helping out! The Darwin's Birthday event will take place at Portland State University between Smith and Neuberger from noon to 3.30 p.m. We still have some details to work out and some organizations to invite. Let's e-mail about details.

      January 29, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Hoping this one isn't jammed like the last one I attended at PSU; they ran out of floor space, chairs, walls, and probably oxygen!

    January 28, 2013

  • Gretchen

    Anyone interested in getting together beforehand for dinner?

    January 25, 2013

    • SylviaB

      In addition to any pre-event dinner that is being set up, there's a gathering after the event at the Rogue Hall Pub, 1717 SW Park Ave. I'll modify the post to include that information.

      January 25, 2013

  • Bernie D.

    For sure, one of my heroes...

    January 25, 2013

No one went

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