• What is the prism through which we see the world?
    We define ourselves in many ways. Our race, clan, family, genders, sexual orientation, country of origin are just a few. How do we come to identify ourselves? On the flip side, how does a person learn to see others different than them? What is the prism through which individuals see the world and how the world views them. How does this come about? The group will discuss this issue and try to determine how this happens and why. Looking forward to seeing everyone on the 4th. Our hope is to meet at the Multi Generational Center. I have a plan B if this can not be filled. I will keep everyone updated.

    North Tempe Multi-Generational Center

    1555 N Bridalwreath St · Tempe, AZ

    1 comment
  • What Limitations (If Any) Should There Be on Free Speech?
    Should there be any limitations on free speech? Ehh...probably, yes. You can't yell "Fire!" in a crowded theater. So, where do you draw the line? Here's an article that summarizes this topic pretty well: http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/frame_game/2012/09/free_speech_vs_hate_speech_why_is_it_legal_to_insult_muslims_but_not_jews_.html Let's talk about it! For new people: We typically have about 8 to 15 people at our meetings. Someone briefly introduces the topic, and then we start asking each other questions and formulating positions. Some times, people even change their opinions over the course of the meeting! :D You might think 2 hours is a long time, but it tends to go fast.

    Needs a location

    4 comments
  • Are some religions more peaceful or violent than other religions?
    We will discuss the question: "Are some religions more peaceful or violent than other religions?" If you're new to the Secular Freethought Society, here's what to expect: One of us will briefly introduce the topic, and then we will discuss it. For two hours. We could usually go longer, but that's when our room reservation is up. :D The topic generally expands and goes deeper into the underlying questions.

    Needs a location

    2 comments
  • Should government decide that a baby should die against the parents' will?
    We will discuss the question: "Should government decide that a baby should die against the parents' will?" This question is based on the Charlie Gard situation in the UK, but as usual the conversation will go wherever we want it to. :) Here's one position: http://www.glennbeck.com/2017/07/05/uk-death-panel-rules-baby-should-die-with-dignity-history-teaches-a-brutal-lesson-what-comes-next/ Here's another position: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/charlie-gard-the-nexus-of-end-of-life-issues-public_us_5968f39ee4b06a2c8edb4605 If you're new to the Secular Freethought Society, here's what to expect: One of us will briefly introduce the topic, and then we will discuss it. For two hours. We could usually go longer, but that's when our room reservation is up. :D The topic generally expands and goes deeper into the underlying questions.

    Needs a location

  • What impact can one person have, and what are the related moral implications?
    Can one person's vote truly impact an election in a nation of 300+ million people? If not, what does that mean for an individual's moral obligation to vote? Can one person's actions truly impact world hunger? If not, what does that mean for an individual's moral obligation to donate to charity or volunteer? Are those two situations different in a way that the moral implications are different? Join us as we explore and discuss the moral implications of people's ability to create change in the world.

    Needs a location

    1 comment
  • Problems Within the Scientific Community
    Every community creates its kings and queens, and the scientific community is not an exception. Science is able to advance quickly if these elite scientists lead it in a good direction. However, sometimes a scientific field can come to a stand still for decades, if it is led in a bad direction. This may result in wasting talent, time and millions of dollars of tax payer money. In situations where ideas cannot be tested immediately, hypotheses can turn into strong beliefs, slowing down the scientific process and damaging the public image of science. On the other hand, all science fields need leaders. But how can we make sure that the leaders are chosen wisely, are creative enough or discerning enough to do their job well? More importantly, how can we make sure that the scientific community is open to new ideas? Here is an interesting study on how elite scientists can hold back scientific process: Link: Elite Scientists Hold Back Progress (http://www.vox.com/science-and-health/2015/12/15/10219330/elite-scientists-hold-back-progress)

    Needs a location

    17 comments
  • A philosophical problem: Newcomb's Boxes
    Two closed boxes, A and B, are on a table in front of you. A contains ₤1,000. B contains either nothing or ₤1 million. You don’t know which. You have two options: 1. Take both boxes. 2. Take box B only. You keep the contents of the box/boxes you take, and your aim is to get the most money. But here’s the thing. The test was set by a Super-Intelligent Being, who has already made a prediction about what you will do. If Her prediction was that you would take both boxes, She left B empty. If Her prediction was that you would take B only, She put a ₤1 million cheque in it. Before making your decision, you do your due diligence, and discover that the Super-Intelligent Being has never made a bad prediction. She predicted Leicester would win the Premier League, the victories of Brexit and Trump, and that Ed Balls would be eliminated yesterday from Strictly Come Dancing. She has correctly predicted things you and others have done, including in situations just like this one, never once getting it wrong. It’s a remarkable track-record. So, what do you choose? Both boxes or just box B? https://www.theguardian.com/science/alexs-adventures-in-numberland/2016/nov/28/newcombs-problem-divides-philosophers-which-side-are-you-on ***The discussion will strictly focus on this topic.***

    North Tempe Multi-Generational Center

    1555 N Bridalwreath St · Tempe, AZ

    1 comment
  • Socialism - How much should a government be involved?
    How big should a government be? What kind of services should it provide? (Just the basics? Free healthcare? Universal basic income?) How much should it regulate? Is there such a thing as too much regulation? Too little? We will be discussing these questions and others in the same vein.

    North Tempe Multi-Generational Center

    1555 N Bridalwreath St · Tempe, AZ

    1 comment
  • Discussion: Has Capitalism Failed?
    There has been a lot of anti-capitalist sentiments lately. Where has capitalism failed? What other economic systems would alleviate these failures?

    North Tempe Multi-Generational Center

    1555 N Bridalwreath St · Tempe, AZ

  • What kind of life is best?
    We will be considering the following types of lives: Contemplative life qualifies as contemplating what is best Active life is the life of struggle and achievement. Fatalistic life is that says we are lucky to get any of the satisfactions of life as there is no changing you lot - "So it is written" is an attitude. Hedonistic life is the avoidance of pain and the maximization of pleasure. Tranquility is the key to happiness. Which kind of life is best? How do we define "best"?

    North Tempe Multi-Generational Center

    1555 N Bridalwreath St · Tempe, AZ