What we're about

This group is intended to elicit deep conversation with serious people on topics that probe the essence of our existence, consciousness, society, ourselves, and our future. Fundamentally, we’re looking to expand understanding and vision, through openness to new ideas and thoughtful exchange.

If you have any suggestions for topics (or future locations), please feel free to message Mary (Minc) or Leslie through the app to discuss.

SPECIAL NOTES:
1. Until further notice, we will be meeting via Zoom; details included with each event. When we are comfortable gathering indoors again, events will be held at the Franklin Township Public Library.
2. IMPORTANT!! -- Please be thoughtful of others as we may need to limit group size for particular events. We view your “Yes” RSVP as a commitment to join us. If something comes up and you won’t be able to attend, PLEASE update your response accordingly as soon as possible.

3. This group has not historically been heavily focused on "enlightenment" or methods of obtaining such (e.g., meditation, prayer, etc.). Instead, we’ve been finding enlightenment through thought-provoking topics and a myriad of personal perspectives. It’s been a most rewarding way to light up new neural pathways.

Upcoming events (2)

Endangered Species: To Be Or Not To Be (Hosted by Minc)

Please check out the links below for content sure to get your thoughts flowing!

Should we care about Endangered Species? If not, why not? If yes, which species? How do we choose which survive and which go the way of the dinosaur? Isn’t extinction a part of life on Earth? Should we just go with the flow? If we say how with the flow, are we okay if we too end up on the chopping block,

I do not need much convincing regarding the necessity of saving honey bees, a species critical in pollination, an ally to our food production. I understand the need for a biodiversity of plants which contribute to natural health products, air purification, mitigation of flood waters, carbon sequestration, varietal fruits and vegetables so if one succumbs to a blight, others may survive. However, resources are finite. Choices have to be made. I know Pandas are cute, but are they worth saving? According to naturalist Chris Packham we will need to set priorities. “The truth is, pandas are extraordinarily expensive to keep going. We spend millions and millions of pounds on pretty much this one species, and a few others, when we know that the best thing we could do would be to look after the world's biodiversity hotspots with greater care. Without habitat, you've got nothing. So maybe if we took all the cash we spend on pandas and just bought rainforest with it, we might be doing a better job.”

In discussing species worth and not worthy of salvation, should we include human beings? Are we just another Lantern Fly requiring pruning. If you are in one of the areas confronting the infestation of Lantern Flies doing serious damage to trees, both agriculturally and environmentally, you may recognize a fellow culprit. Or do we go full Darwinian, whoever survives can make and break the planet as they see fit. Zoos can keep the interesting animals available for viewing, Pets will continue to be bred according to our fashion and farms havens for animals we want to eat, to suit our culinary preferences.

What are your thoughts, philosophies, suggestions?

CHECK THESE OUT!!
The Endangered Species Act
https://www.endangered.org/importance-of-the-endangered-species-act/

Protecting Biodiversity
https://www.endangeredspeciesinternational.org/overview4.html

Are Pandas Worth Saving
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2009/sep/23/panda-extinction-chris-packham

Anthropomorphism: How much are animals like us? (Host: Leslie)

Be sure to CHECK OUT LINKS AT THE BOTTOM as they will help us use common language in our discussion.

Is a fox really sly? Is an owl really wise? Why do humans attribute human traits to animals, plants, cars, sailing vessels, etc.?

- What are the implications of anthropomorphism on our relationship with the outer world?
- Do you agree with statement in the 2nd video that plants don't have feelings? If you disagree, can you describe those feelings?
- And what implications may all of this have on the development of AI?

Science is now closely studying animal behavior to see how unique our human experience truly is. What might this reveal about their psychology and ours?

Great video to get grounded in concepts/language/current study:
https://www.animalsandsociety.org/human-animal-studies/defining-human-animal-studies-an-asi-video-project/defining-anthropomorphism-with-robert-mitchell/

Reasons why humans anthropomorphize:
https://www.brainfacts.org/thinking-sensing-and-behaving/thinking-and-awareness/2020/anthropomorphism-seeing-the-human-in-plants-pets-and-possessions-110420

Longer, detailed (and interesting) explanations:
https://qz.com/935832/why-do-people-name-their-plants-cars-ships-and-guitars-anthropomorphism-may-actually-signal-social-intelligence/

Past events (54)

Do We Have a Life or Soul Purpose?

Online event

Photos (4)