- GBH Winter Lunch/Lecture: "The Challenges of Collegiate Secular Organizing"
• What we'll do Our neighbors at the Greater Boston Humanists have sent us an invitation to this event, along with their wishes that we all have a very Happy New Year. At this luncheon, we'll be celebrating the recent winter solstice in association with other secular groups. This time around, we'll be enjoying an Indian buffet meal at the India Pavilion in Central Square Cambridge. There will also be a speaking program, featuring the current lead organizer of the Secular Society of MIT, graduate student Sohan Dsouza. Over the past two years, Sohan has revitalized the group through events planning, community building, and interorganizational coordination. His talk is titled "Challenges and Opportunities in Collegiate Secular Organizing". A brief description: "The growth of 'the non-religious' demographic group on the country’s college campuses — as in the general population — would appear to bode well for secular organizing at universities. However, for many in collegiate secular organizing, 'it takes all the running you can do to stay in place'. Many groups continue to repurpose, lapse into inactivity, or cease existing altogether. Especially in the Northeast, secular organizing across universities faces numerous tactical and strategic challenges — from the paradoxical effect of a de facto secular undercurrent on any advocacy, to the spillover from the current political climate of polarization and tribalism, to the continuing evolution of the apologetics and retention techniques of religious organizations. Religious groups on campus remain well-regarded, well-funded, and well-organized. Indeed, even on the more liberal, predominantly non-religious campuses, coming out as atheist and — especially relevant to us — FOR atheism remains difficult for many." Sohan will share his perspectives on these and other challenges, together with opportunities he sees, offering his ideas for secular activism on campus. He'll use his record as social chair and then president of the Secular Society, as well as examples from other collegiate secular organizations. He'll also discuss a few broader issues facing secular organizations and communities, and what these mean for the “secular movement”, on and off campus. The India Pavilion in Central Square Cambridge (vegetarian options, only $14 per person for all you care to eat, not including drinks; bring cash or check, please). Parking in Cambridge is via metered street parking, and several garages and lots in Central Square including several just steps away on Green Street. MBTA red line Central Square station and associated bus stops are also within the block. FOR THE MOST UP-TO-DATE INFORMATION ABOUT THIS EVENT, visit https://www.meetup.com/GreaterBostonHumanists/events/246193138/. • What to bring Attendees will each pay for their own buffet meal. • Important to know Be prepared to socialize, meet new people, and participate constructively in the Q&A with the speaker. This is one of the highlight events of the local secular community calendar, so come with the best intention for making other guests feel welcome.
- Boston Secular Solstice Mixer
• What we'll do Atheists, humanists, brights, agnostics, nones, and the folks who love them -- all are welcome to join us for an evening of cocktails, snacks, and solstice-season celebration. The Boston Atheists will be buying a good lot of shared apps, while individual people can take care of their drinks and any other food they'd like to buy on their own tab. 21+ only. The Tavern is decked out for the holidays, so come prepared to have a lovely time in a festive atmosphere. • What to bring • Important to know
- GBH Lunch/Lecture: Blanqui, The Enlightenment & Communism
Our neighbors at the Greater Boston Humanists invite us to join them for one of their regular lunchtable discussions. For updated information, be sure to check https://www.facebook.com/events/129957954335837. It is important that you let the GBH organizers know you intend to attend, so do not RSVP only here on this page!
- GBH Luncheon lecture, "Archimedes, Galileo & the Revolution in Problem Solving"
Our neighbors at the Greater Boston Humanists invite us to join them for a buffet lunch and lecture gathering at the India Pavillion, in Central Square Cambridge, Saturday, November 4. We'll eat from the buffet (w/vegetarian options, only $14 per person for all you care to eat) starting at 1:30 pm. At 2:30, Russell Doane will speak on "Archimedes, Galileo, and The Revolution in Problem Solving." In 1954 as a student, Russell Doane showed up at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and found that most of his teachers had almost forgotten one of the most important methods to make new technology, something he learned from his own father. Two of the greatest scientists and inventors of all time were aided by the same problem-solving technique, one that Mr. Doane thinks has had its ups and downs over the centuries since. The power to make something new, which nobody had before, — to visualize it and bring it into being — is the essence of what created the modern world. By the end of this talk, Russell will give you a new way to think about the 400-year revolution that has created the world we live in, and the importance of sharing this problem-solving technique with everyone from the children in your life, to the leaders struggling with the problems of governance today. Russell Doane worked for 36 years in electronics for Digital Equipment Corporation, and was on the Board of the Boston Ethical Society for several years. He owns a converted fire station in Tiverton, Rhode Island, and works on boat building and other projects there. A long-time GBH member, he writes a column for the Greater Boston Humanist newsletter. Join us this Fall in community-building and intellectual discussion after our long summer hiatus! RSVP here and come share in our celebration with lively community food for body and mind. Parking is available in a public parking garage just down Green Street, as well as in lots all around Massachusetts Avenue. The restaurant is also just steps away from the Central Square Cambridge MBTA (Metro) station and bus stops. FOR MORE INFORMATION: https://www.meetup.com/GreaterBostonHumanists/events/244387361
- Atheist Alliance Helping The Homeless: Boston Giveaway
The number of homeless families in Boston has DOUBLED since 2008. This Saturday, the organizers of the service group "Atheist Alliance Helping The Homeless Boston" will be distributing items to those in need on Boston Common. How can you help? 1. Spread the invitation to donate via the AAHHB Amazon gift registry: https://www.amazon.com/registry/wishlist/30AGHFBNC3068/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_ep_ws_4YkIzbAN2MA3Y 2. Donate! By clicking on https://www.amazon.com/registry/wishlist/30AGHFBNC3068/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_ep_ws_4YkIzbAN2MA3Y, you can donate an inexpensive but much needed item of your choice that will go directly to those in need at the giveaway. 3. Share the link to the giveaway event page, https://www.facebook.com/events/109316933100940. 4. RSVP to join the AAHHB team at the actual giveaway event, setting up a table, distributing items, and creating a moment of inclusion. Let's work together and do good for goodness' sake. To learn more about how you can work with AAHHB to perform community service as secular Bostonians, contact the organizers at [masked] or connect with the group via https://www.facebook.com/AtheistAllianceHelpingTheHomelessBoston.
- Fight Supremacy! SAB at the Boston Counter-Protest & Resistance Rally
PLEASE VISIT https://www.facebook.com/events/165697793990647/ to find the most up-to-date information about this event, as well as FAQs provided by the organizers. ******************* On Saturday, August 19th, White Nationalists are converging on Boston Common to reinforce their white supremacist ideology and attempt to intimidate the individuals and communities they deem unworthy of equal standing in our society. (And, as stated frankly by a former president of the Boston Atheists during our discussion about this event this week: "It turns out our President is an unalloyed white power apologist.") It is important for people with humanistic values to join with our neighbors and make a mass showing of our rejection of those kinds of values. This march and rally is a chance to do so. From the event organizers: "As we have seen with the events in Charlottesville and around the country, white nationalists are emboldened by the current political administration and growing police state. Rallies and marches organized by white supremacists are more prevalent than in recent years, and—as always—it is the most marginalized who are left vulnerable." Let's make sure that we stand in solidarity with those who are under threat by this administration and its allies who seek the power to implement their retrograde aims. Here's our plan for the day. 8-9 AM: Group members will be meeting at Boston University -- with thanks to the BU Humanists -- to say hello to one another, go over safety procedures for this kind of an event, to make signs, have coffee, and otherwise ourselves right for the day. We'll be in the student union, 775 Commonwealth Avenue. (Call or text if you can't find us). If you plan to make signs, please bring paper/cardboard and marking materials. We don't advise that you bring sticks or anything that could be construed as a weapon. 9 AM: Those of us who met at BU will walk over to the rally point for the start of the march, the Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center at Northeastern, 1350 Tremont Street. This walk is a little under two miles; here's a link to Google Maps showing the route: https://www.google.com/maps/dir/George+Sherman+Union,+775+Commonwealth+Avenue,+Boston,+MA+02215/1350+Tremont+Street,+Boston,+MAfirstname.lastname@example.org,-71.1093879,15z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m14!4m13!1m5!1m1!1s0x89e379f003229f67:0xd8004a9e32046094!2m2!1d-71.108951!2d42.3509178!1m5!1m1!1s0x89e37a265fe3ca6b:0xb427dfa368f8c184!2m2!1d-71.092873!2d42.332043!3e2. 9:45: People who met at BU, as well as group members who are meeting us directly at the march starting point, will gather at the Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center, 1350 Tremont Street. (Call or text if you can't find us). 10 AM: The march begins, as we travel from 1350 Tremont to the Common, 139 Tremont. This walk is about two and a half miles, and should take an hour or less. Map link: https://www.google.com/maps/dir/1350+Tremont+Street,+Boston,+MA/139+Tremont+St,+Boston,+MAemail@example.com,-71.0958013,14z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m14!4m13!1m5!1m1!1s0x89e37a265fe3ca6b:0xb427dfa368f8c184!2m2!1d-71.092873!2d42.332043!1m5!1m1!1s0x89e3709d033474e5:0x1d441d491606cefb!2m2!1d-71.0639076!2d42.3554613!3e2. Noon: Group members who were in the march, as well as group members who are meeting us directly at the Common, will join the counter-protest against displays of ethnonationalism, white supremacy, and whatever other flavors of fascist and anti-human, anti-social factioneering we may encounter.
- Summer Solstice Luncheon and Talk on Uber Economics
Once more, Sunday Assembly Boston is co-promoting a community-wide event hosted by the Greater Boston Humanists. This time around, it's their annual Summer Solstice Luncheon. From the event listing at https://www.meetup.com/GreaterBostonHumanists/events/240386925/: Our Humanist seasonal appreciation of the Earth's tilt is one of many naturalism-based holidays we celebrate in our secular community-building mission. We are joined by Boston Atheists and Sunday Assembly Boston as co-sponsors. Another big part of our mission is providing provocative and engaging talks, so we are happy to welcome well-known editor, writer and radio host Doug Henwood, who will speak on the 'Uber Economy': Uber’s troubles have given the “sharing economy” a black eye, but still, the app-driven, venture-capitalist “disruption” of a host of economic sectors marches on. Drawing on a rhetoric of revolution, empowerment, and community once associated with the political left, firms like Lyft, AirBnB, and TaskRabbit are remaking both production and consumption, transforming the way we live and work. And social media — over a quarter of humanity has an active Facebook account now - are transforming the way we communicate. What’s it all mean? How much of this is the hype that is an inevitable by-product of a bubble and how much is real? Do we have to bow down and worship the silicon gods in all their ruthlessness, or could they be humanized? Doug Henwood published the Left Business Observer, a newsletter on economics and politics, from 1986 to 2013 and has hosted the radio show “Behind the News” since 1995. He is the author of Wall Street: How It Works and For Whom, After the New Economy, and My Turn: Hillary Clinton Targets the Presidency, and is working on a book about the rot of the American elite. His writing has appeared in The Nation, Harper’s, BookForum, The Boston Review, and The New York Times. The luncheon will again take place at the India Pavillion in Central Square Cambridge (vegetarian options, only $14 per person for all you care to eat). Parking in Cambridge is via metered street parking, and several garages and lots in Central Square. There is an MBTA red line station just steps from the restaurant. Come share in our celebration of summer with lively community food for body and mind.
- Annual Regional Summer Picnic hosted by the Greater Worcester Humanists
This year's summer picnic will be held at the home of GWH member Paul Marr, in Grafton, MA. Directions will be provided directly to anyone RSVPing. Use the comments section below to arrange carpooling, or the Meetup mailing list. The organizers will be providing hot dogs, hamburgers, buns and non-alcoholic drinks, and vegetarian options. IF YOU SIGN UP TO ATTEND, please visit the main RSVP page at the GWH Meetup page (https://www.meetup.com/worcesterhumanists/events/239873620/), and check out the comments section to see what dishes other guests will be bringing. Then, sign-up to bring something yourself!
- GBH Equinox Luncheon and Talk: Group Minds in Pursuit of a Future
Our friends and neighbors at the Greater Boston Humanists have invited us to join them for another luncheon event. The following details come from their Meetup event page: Yes, Spring is just about here... On April Fools Day (but seriously), we'll hold our Equinox Luncheon and talk, to be held once again at The India Pavillion Restaurant in Central Square Cambridge. Join us for the all you care to eat buffet with vegetarian options (and more), and a special Talk by Pete Estep of Mind First Foundation, titled "Great Org-isms: Group Enhancement and the Quest for a Future" Humanity and civilization face many critical challenges that can only be met by organized teams with substantial resources. In this presentation, Dr. Estep will argue that we must carefully prioritize our efforts to achieve individual and group fulfillment and civilizational sustainability, key goals of leading “isms” of our time, such as humanism and transhumanism. The Mind First Foundation was established by Dr Estep and key thought leaders to contribute to the achievement of these goals, and the name of the foundation is a declaration of first priority. A central premise of the foundation’s mission is that, rather than focus on individual and independent human traits such as “intelligence” as ideals, we should instead focus on traits to promote cooperation, complementarity and interdependence in order to achieve enhanced group abilities, intelligences, and sustainability. Preston W. Estep, Ph.D. graduated from Cornell University, where he focused on neuroscience; he earned a Ph.D. in Genetics from Harvard University, performing his doctoral research in the laboratory of genomics pioneer Professor George Church at Harvard Medical School. He is Director of Gerontology and a member of the senior staff of the Personal Genome Project, the first "open-source" genome project founded by Dr. Church and based at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Estep is a co-founder and chairman of the Mind First Foundation, a nonprofit organization focused on the treatment of mental disorders and dysfunction. Co-trustees of the foundation include George Church, United Therapeutics founder and Chairman Martine Rothblatt, and Harvard Professor of Health Care Policy Ron Kessler. Dr. Estep is the Chief Scientific Officer of Veritas Genetics, a global genetic testing and genome sequencing and analysis company. He is also founding and acting CEO of Samplify Bio, a Boston-area startup that produces biological sample collection devices and chemistries. He is one of the main subjects of the 2012 documentary film Reconvergence. Dr. Estep advises startup biotech companies and non-profit organizations, and he has presented to audiences throughout the U.S. and the world. He has been a keynote presenter at the Singularity Summit, TEDx San Francisco, and TEDx Lujiazui (Shanghai). Dr. Estep is the author of the 2016 book The Mindspan Diet, which proposes a concept called "mindspan" (a measure of overall health and mental longevity), and shows that key dietary components of longevity leaders of the world promote physical and mental longevity, and limit cognitive decline. So MARK THE DATE for this fascinating talk! And join us for food, community, thoughtful living! PARKING: Parking will be limited on a Saturday in Cambridge, but there is metered street parking and several metered parking lots near Massachusetts Avenue within 2-3 blocks of the restaurant. PUBLIC TRANPORTATION is the best option with MBTA service including the Central Square T stop just steps away. The Central Square bus stop/loading area is across the street from the restaurant.