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Freethought Roundtable

The Freethought Roundtable is an open forum for the discussion of the diverse and often contentious topics of God(s), Religion, and Disbelief. These issues are inextricably linked to philosophy, history, society and the human condition generally and are agreed on all hands to make for profoundly important and interesting discussions.

The Freethought Roundtable is meant to allow people to speak their minds freely and enjoy a lively discussion among friends, following reason where it leads while categorically eschewing notions of dogma and enforced beliefs. While sponsored by SacFAN, the Roundtable is open to both non-theistic and theistic participants.

The conversation is meant to be informal and free to follow any vibrant train of thought, although there will be a topic chosen beforehand. Selected topics will include (but are not limited to):

The Conflict Between Religion and Science
Why People Believe/Don't Believe in God(s)
Creationism/Intelligent Design vs Evolution
Secular Morality - Good Without God
Free Will
"Reason is Larger Than Atheism"
The Place of Religion in a Modern Society
Pseudoscience and Skepticism
What Are Atheism, Skepticism, and Humanism?
An Evolutionary Perspective on the Origins of Religions

...and hopefully other topics if interest is shown.

While no expert on a specific topic is likely to be present at a Roundtable event, we should certainly get a feel for the prevailing opinions and ideas on these important topics. I deeply enjoy a good conversation, and discussions involving religion (or its absence) never seem to disappoint.

The events are currently held at The Coffee Garden (side room).  Outside food and drinks aren't permitted, but they have a great menu so order something on your way in.

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  • frank

    Some good, thoughtful comments and questions.
    Is it possible to be a "Freethinker"? Probably not.
    What is an Atheist? Someone who doesn't believe in Gods. Beyond that an Atheist is free to think most anything.
    Do Atheists have a monopoly on Humanism? Of course not. No one does.
    Can a person of faith be a humanist? Of course they can, many of them not only talk the talk but walk the walk!
    We must avoid talking in terms of us and them and focus on how we can work together to improve this world we share.

    February 20, 2013

    • Bryson S.

      Freethought as a philosophical viewpoint that holds that opinions should be formed on the basis of logic, reason and empiricism (and not authority, tradition, or other dogmas) seems plausibly accessible to everyone. If one wishes to suggest that this is not possible, then clearly the burden is on the person making that claim to substantiate it. Certainly someone of faith can be a humanist, but by commonly agreed-upon definition, they could not be a Humanist. While it is honest (and totally appropriate) to acknowledge differences of opinion between people about what something means, we must also be honest in acknowledging the definitions of terms when they do in fact exist. The identifying characteristic of Humanism is that the in group/out group divide is ultimately illusory; there is no "them" category for other people to occupy, we are all in this together. Thanks to everyone who attended, hopefully we can have a "Round Two" of this topic later in the year!

      February 20, 2013

  • Bryson S.

    Less of a turnout than expected, but still a great event.

    February 20, 2013

  • Derek M.

    Great!

    February 19, 2013

  • Bryson S.

    Just a reminder, we are NOT in the side room of The Coffee Garden for this meetup. The meeting is being held in the Gallery (next door). Also, please remember to purchase something on your way in.

    February 19, 2013

  • Matt M.

    Ugh.. won't be able to make it after all >: ( Next time.

    February 19, 2013

  • Derek M.

    This might be a relevant argument to stir up discussion: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ruy3CJJEIs

    February 18, 2013

  • Bryson S.

    This meeting is going to take place in The Coffee Garden Gallery, which is the separate building immediately adjacent to the normal coffee shop. We will not be meeting in the side room where the New Members meetup is normally held.

    February 10, 2013

  • Bryson Sullivan changed the location from Coffee Garden to The Coffee Garden

    February 7, 2013

  • Bryson S.

    A shorter (but equally relevant) monologue by The Amazing Atheist.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KixIbBVpnVM

    February 4, 2013

  • Bryson S.

    This month we will be discussing the differences and similarities between Atheism, Skepticism, and Humanism. Check the link posted below for a great talk by DJ Grothe on the topic.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r_5JzojYcGo

    January 21, 2013

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