What we're about

The Greater Philadelphia Thinking Society is a Meetup group that brings together thoughtful people for stimulating and civically minded conversations.

We meet in a relaxed setting on almost every Saturday and Sunday at 10:30 AM and occasionally in the evening. Most of our events aim for a small group ambiance with about 10-12 participants. Sometimes we use larger spaces with different group dynamics and formats.

Almost all our events engage participants in a group conversation to explore a wide range of topics including society & culture, philosophy & religion, design, science & technology, psychology, politics, economics, and current events.

We organize a safe, facilitated forum of inquiry and exploration.

Our interactive format engages participants to speak up and be heard, to explore our assumptions, to listen and hear others, and to find and build meanings.

We value topics that matter, diverse points of view and ways of knowing, sensitive listening, and your contributions to our explorations.

In addition to ideas and resources posed by the event host(s), our conversations are informed by participants exchanging experiences, interpretations, understandings, beliefs, feelings, values, thoughts, and ways of thinking.

Through discourse and consideration these ideas can reveal a web of relationships which participants can form into meaningful insights and new possibilities.

We start the conversation so come participate and accept your own genius.

We are always looking for new discussion leaders and other volunteers to bring new and interesting topics and perspectives to our group. Please see https://www.meetup.com/thinkingsociety/pages/14433542/Discussion_Leader_Guidelines/ if you are interested.

For more information about our group including our list of Frequently Asked Questions, please visit About the Greater Philadelphia Thinking Society (https://www.meetup.com/thinkingsociety/about).

Upcoming events (4)

How is Technology Interacting with Your Life? @ Comprehensivist Wednesdays

We are life long learners who often struggle with the most effective ways to create breadth and depth. The technology available to aid us is incredible yet we often find ourselves overwhelmed with TMI or silly distractions. Some folks have a clear path and strict parameters that keep them on task, while some of us flounder, wondering how we wound up with 12 open tabs on our web browser.

Hope you can join us on May 11th to talk about how you are interacting with the technology in your life.

Do you have a system that takes full advantage of technology and keeps your progress moving forward? Awesome! Come share what it is that works so we can all improve with you.

Or do you struggle, like me, with the occasional trip to the Technology Rabbit Hole?

Come join us on May 11 as we discuss the pros and cons of technology in the modern age of Comprehensivism.

** This Meetup has extended breakout rooms designed to give participants plenty of time to share and formulate their ideas.

Intro Video
Technology : Avoiding The Comprehensivist Rabbit Hole

Here is a written example to think about.

Acquiring a new language (Spanish)

Scenario A : Prospective learner downloads an App like Duolingo to start their bilingual journey. Here they listen to native speakers with context in English provided by the host. The menu covers topics from all Spanish speaking countries so the listener is exposed to a variety of accents and the unique cultural differences between countries. There are transcripts to download where new vocabulary words can be saved in your Google Translator. A mouse click pauses your podcast so you can take notes or rewinds the content for a second or third listen. If done correctly you feel immersed and productive and begin to acquire real language fluency.

Scenario B : Let's say the Duolingo version you downloaded happens to be on your Apple Podcast app. You open it, stoked to continue learning when your eye catches another podcast in your library. It's a political/news app that features a prominent author that you respect greatly. You remember that you left this long form podcast midway so you allow yourself 10 minutes more before going to the Duolingo app. You know what happens next right? The conversation is so engaging that the 10 minutes turns to 30 which leads you to start "looking things up" on the internet to support what you hear. Maybe you take 5 to check the author's Twitter feed too. There you catch a glimpse of the comment section and can't believe how many people completely disagree with you...Arghh!!

How do you say frustrated in Spanish?

By all means we want to hear how you are doing on May 11th!

***

Welcome to the series "Comprehensivist Wednesdays". Transdisciplinarity, Renaissance humanism, homo universalis, and Polymathy are some of the ways of describing this approach which Buckminster Fuller called Comprehensivity and described as “macro-comprehensive and micro-incisive”.

"Introduction to Comprehensivism": a video playlist of selected past events that provide some ways of thinking of comprehensivism

CJ Fearnley's site "Collaborating for Comprehensivism"

52 Living Ideas records Comprehensivist Wednesdays events and posts them on YouTube. Feel free to keep your video on or off as you prefer. Watch past Meetups at 52 Living Ideas

Blindness by Jose Saramago -- On Fragility of Society

Online event

"If we cannot live entirely like human beings, at least let us do everything in our power not to live entirely like animals."

One of the most predominant themes in this book Blindness is the fragility of society. Saramago uses blindness as a metaphor for both personal misfortune and social catastrophe. His book shines a spotlight on how the interpersonal web of interactions in which we live on a daily basis is actually quite tenuous, even though it seems stable. A major theme in the story is deterioration, of society and of government. All around, people are going blind. No one knows why, or how to stop it. The epidemic of blindness is an interesting thought experiment because it does not kill, it merely cripples. This means that it is something that changes mankind in a fundamental, yet non-fatal way. In doing this, the novel is able to bring out many themes of human interaction without having the group face imminent death from the disease itself.

A 2 minute summary that does a good job synopsizing the story: https://www.supersummary.com/blindness/summary
Here is a more in depth summary, including a summary of each chapter: https://www.coursehero.com/lit/Blindness/plot-summary/
Purchase the full book: https://www.amazon.com/Blindness-Jose-Saramago/dp/0151002517

May 1: chapters 1-5, 76 pages to read (pages 1-76)
May 15: chapters 6-10, 83 pages to read (pages[masked])
May 29: chapters 11-13, 80 pages to read (pages[masked])
June 12: chapters 14-17, 87 pages to read (pages[masked])
June 19: Conclusion and Wrap-Up

This literature series is a joint event between The Greater Philadelphia Thinking Society and 52 Living Ideas.

52 Living Ideas will record this event and post it to YouTube. Feel free to keep your video on or off as you prefer.

Blindness by Jose Saramago -- On Fragility of Society

Online event

"If we cannot live entirely like human beings, at least let us do everything in our power not to live entirely like animals."

One of the most predominant themes in this book Blindness is the fragility of society. Saramago uses blindness as a metaphor for both personal misfortune and social catastrophe. His book shines a spotlight on how the interpersonal web of interactions in which we live on a daily basis is actually quite tenuous, even though it seems stable. A major theme in the story is deterioration, of society and of government. All around, people are going blind. No one knows why, or how to stop it. The epidemic of blindness is an interesting thought experiment because it does not kill, it merely cripples. This means that it is something that changes mankind in a fundamental, yet non-fatal way. In doing this, the novel is able to bring out many themes of human interaction without having the group face imminent death from the disease itself.

A 2 minute summary that does a good job synopsizing the story: https://www.supersummary.com/blindness/summary
Here is a more in depth summary, including a summary of each chapter: https://www.coursehero.com/lit/Blindness/plot-summary/
Purchase the full book: https://www.amazon.com/Blindness-Jose-Saramago/dp/0151002517

May 1: chapters 1-5, 76 pages to read (pages 1-76)
May 15: chapters 6-10, 83 pages to read (pages[masked])
May 29: chapters 11-13, 80 pages to read (pages[masked])
June 12: chapters 14-17, 87 pages to read (pages[masked])
June 19: Conclusion and Wrap-Up

This literature series is a joint event between The Greater Philadelphia Thinking Society and 52 Living Ideas.

52 Living Ideas will record this event and post it to YouTube. Feel free to keep your video on or off as you prefer.

Blindness by Jose Saramago -- On Fragility of Society

Online event

"If we cannot live entirely like human beings, at least let us do everything in our power not to live entirely like animals."

One of the most predominant themes in this book Blindness is the fragility of society. Saramago uses blindness as a metaphor for both personal misfortune and social catastrophe. His book shines a spotlight on how the interpersonal web of interactions in which we live on a daily basis is actually quite tenuous, even though it seems stable. A major theme in the story is deterioration, of society and of government. All around, people are going blind. No one knows why, or how to stop it. The epidemic of blindness is an interesting thought experiment because it does not kill, it merely cripples. This means that it is something that changes mankind in a fundamental, yet non-fatal way. In doing this, the novel is able to bring out many themes of human interaction without having the group face imminent death from the disease itself.

A 2 minute summary that does a good job synopsizing the story: https://www.supersummary.com/blindness/summary
Here is a more in depth summary, including a summary of each chapter: https://www.coursehero.com/lit/Blindness/plot-summary/
Purchase the full book: https://www.amazon.com/Blindness-Jose-Saramago/dp/0151002517

May 1: chapters 1-5, 76 pages to read (pages 1-76)
May 15: chapters 6-10, 83 pages to read (pages[masked])
May 29: chapters 11-13, 80 pages to read (pages[masked])
June 12: chapters 14-17, 87 pages to read (pages[masked])
June 19: Conclusion and Wrap-Up

This literature series is a joint event between The Greater Philadelphia Thinking Society and 52 Living Ideas.

52 Living Ideas will record this event and post it to YouTube. Feel free to keep your video on or off as you prefer.

Past events (1,373)

Blindness by Jose Saramago -- On Fragility of Society

Online event

Photos (33)