Past Meetup

Round Table Discussion on Atheism and Critical Thinking

This Meetup is past

16 people went


It's been a while since we've had some true round-table discussions. Accordingly, we are offering a series of four round-table discussions (one per month) that will be led by HFSD member James Hutson. These lectures will take place on the second Thursday of the month starting in July and will be held at the County of San Diego Library, Casa de Oro Branch. These meetings may appeal to members who normally cannot make it to our weekend daytime meetings.

James is graduate student who studies the history of science. His concentration is early 20th century physics, but he has a solid liberal arts background as well.

Please join James for what promises to be an educational and intellectually stimulating series of round table discussions!

Here is a description of each lecture/discussion:

1. July 11, 2013. A brief historical overview of the history of science and philosophy. The lecture will be about a half hour or so from Ancient China and the Greeks to the formalization of modern science in the middle of the 19th century. The discussion will be about an hour to and hour and a half after that.

For the first discussion, the recommended reading is Carl Sagan's Pale Blue Dot (, a record of man's understanding of space and how it has changed, and Steven Weinberg's Dreams of a Final Theory (, which discusses our understandings of physics and our philosophical foundation for it from a historical context. People needn't read these books to enjoy our conversation and are welcome to read anything else that they feel is close to the subjects we will talk about.

Recommended readings will be published for the other lectures when they are posted on our Meet-up page.

2. August 8, 2013. The focus of the second meeting will be where science and philosophy stood in relation to religion and political ideology throughout most of civilization. We will learn and discuss why certain orthodoxies were imposed and how heretical ideas were treated.

3. September 12, 2013. The third discussion will emphasize the modern era from about the middle of the 18th century up to today and the academic course that the sciences, philosophies and religion took as the world globalized and industrialized. The key topic here is the contentions between each of these disciplines, where they disagree with one another and why.

4. October 10, 2013. The final discussion will focus on modern history and a brief overview of the political, economic and general cultural landscape that developed in the world and what impact this had on religion, philosophy and science. What did the common person in the modern era think? What the purpose was of these intellectual investigations?