Past Forum Topics
Sunday, Oct. 12th, 2014 · 10:30 a.m. - 12:00 noon
Red Bank Charter School, 58 Oakland St, Red Bank, NJ 07701
“Sandy Spotlight: Where do we go from here?”
A panel discussion to bring Super Storm Sandy back into view
Sunday, Sept. 14th, 2014 · 10:30 a.m. - 12:00 noon
Red Bank Charter School, 58 Oakland St, Red Bank, NJ 07701
“The Impact of Evolutionary Biology on Society”
Scholars and philosophers have attempted to understand biological change since antiquity. By the middle of the nineteenth century Darwin and others had established the mechanism for that change. This knowledge has had an impact upon society and began a confrontation between science and religion that continues to the present. This talk will cover some of the impact of evolution on American society by looking at the so-called creationist ‘controversy’ and attempts by anti-evolutionists to push back against the facts of the universe.
Older Topics Archive
1. “The Affirmations of Humanism: A Statement of Principles”
2. Ingersoll’s “Humanist Thanksgiving Proclamation”
3. Theater Game: share a secret no one knows about you.
4. Special Guest - Joe Fox, Founder of Humanlight
5. “The Affirmations of Humanism: A Statement of Principles” A Discussion - Share your three favorite and your three most problematic.
6. Discussion - The end of the day Pythagorean Meditation:
“In what have I failed? What good have I done? What have I not done that I ought to have done?”
7. Ethical Question - “Dying with dignity? What does that mean to you?”
8. Ingersoll’s “What I Want For Christmas”
9. The “Brights” movement, a discussion –- Are you a Bright?
10. Deeds Vs. Prayers – What deeds need doing?
11. Discussion of a “National Day of Reason” vs. a “National Day of Prayer”
12. The Soapbox – Your turn to sound off. What boils your Humanist blood? What issues are you passionate about?
13. Discussion of Principle of Humanism: “We believe in…developing our creative talents to the fullest”-. What creative talents (yours or others) make your life worth living?
14. Setting Our Course - Results of the RB Humanists survey – “Who Are We?”
15. Humanist Tithing - Is There an Alternative? (reference: Mark Berger’s article in the Dec/Jan issue of Free Inquiry, "Tithing Without God")
16. A Conversation with Barry Klassel: "Do We Need Humanist Celebrants?"
17. Humanism on the web - A discussion of internet content and resources. Please surf around and bring your favorites. We will add the list of links to our emerging Red Bank Humanists website.
18. Viruses of the mind – A brief introduction and discussion of Memetics, the study of the evolution of ideas, culture and belief.
19. “We believe in the cultivation of moral excellence” – How? What has helped you cultivate your best instincts? The Golden Rule? Studying the great philosophers? Is experience in the best teacher? Is morality an instinct or a skill?
20. Profile: Bertrand Russell (1872-1970) – British philosopher, logician, essayist, and renowned peace advocate, won The Nobel Prize in Literature 1950 "in recognition of his varied and significant writings in which he champions humanitarian ideals and freedom of thought."
21. "Intellectual Midwifery" – Join in a discussion of this Massimo Pigliucci monthly e-column which you can find at http://www.rationallyspeaking.org. How can we give birth to an honest discussion where we don’t talk past each other? Learn how to discuss both sides of an argument…and you might get a surprising result.
22. The RBH Humanist Film Contest – Name a film you think most supports the Humanist philosophy. Comedy, drama, satire, musical? Unlimited entries. However, you must state in 25 words or less why you think your film qualifies. Judges are Humanists and members of Screen Actors Guild. Winner to receive 2 tickets to a film of his/her choice (value $20). Deadline for entries May 28, 2004. Winner announced May 30th at RBH Picnic.
23. How many Planets? Eight, Eleven, More to come? First in a series of reports on scientific discoveries that impact our world and way we think of it. Sedna, a newly discovered object in our Solar System, rekindles the debate over the definition of the word "planet."
24. What is Humanism and why did you choose it? What was your path? How did you get here today? (and don’t tell me you came down Front St. and turned left on Bridge) We’ll share and discuss your personal understanding of Humanism and the various definitions of Humanism.
25. Camp Quest - A report on the progress of the summer camp movement for Humanist children.
26. The Pledge: Under “which” god? What can / should / will we do about this Supreme Court ruling?
27. Worth Reading - Member Arthur Weiner reports on the book, An Intelligent Person’s Guide to Atheism by Daniel Harbour.
28. Letter to the Editor – A follow-up about our response to our July topic: The Pledge: Under “which” god? (What can / should / will we do about the recent Supreme Court ruling?) Action: a letter to the editor.
29. Lenny Bruce a Humanist? - The history of Lenny Bruce, the brilliant yet tragic “sick comic,” taught us many lessons. We’ll listen to his infamous “Christ & Moses” routine recorded at Carnegie Hall in 1961. Lenny a Humanist? Maybe. See what you think.
30. The Election - What would a Humanist ask the candidates? What issues are of concern for Humanists in the approaching election? What issues are the Media ignoring? If a Humanist ran for office, what be on the platform?
31. Humanist Holidays - How to deal with others during religious holidays. What days are worth celebrating for Humanists? Would you join us for the Humanist holiday "Humanlight?"
32. TriCity News Reaches New Low - What is an appropriate, yet ethical, response to fanatical articles published by a super, far-right, religious fundamentalist like Tommy Deseno? How do we defend Secular Humanism (and the Red Bank Humanists) against his malicious, hateful lies and spurious accusations? Doesn't the publisher have a responsibility to the truth?
33. The Election Soapbox - The good, the bad, the ugly. What a range of reactions! Shrinks and therapists are doing a land office business helping people deal with Post Election Stress Syndrome. How are secular humanists taking it and what's the fallout for secular humanists?
34. First Night Update - We have an ad in First Night ad journal. Plus, we want to volunteer at the various venues around town to help our community with this worthwhile event.
35. Charitable Acts/Good Deeds - What kind of charitable acts or good deeds are we currently doing as individuals? What makes us do these things? Why is it important? What types of positive actions could we take as a group to be of service to others? Any specific suggestions?
36 Celebrating Creation - Discussion of short article by Chet Raymo From the book, Science & Religion - Are They Compatible? Edited by Paul Kurtz.
37. The Plot Against Sex - Today's Frank Rich column in the NY Times pointing out the post-election impact of fundamentalist Christians.
38. American Humanist Association Action Alert - United Church of Christ ad too controversial to air because church welcomes gays.
39. Natural Disasters and Their Wider Effect - Notes from Friday's News Hour interview with Simon Winchester, author of "Krakatoa - The Day the world Exploded - August 27, 1883."
40. Typical Human Responses - "Beyond belief: a human strategy for survival" by Dr. Paul Valent, from his piece on The Humanist Network News @ www.humaniststudies.org (January 5, 2005) "Where was God during the Tsunami?"
41. Battlefield Earth - December 8 speech by Bill Moyers, receiving the Global Environment Citizen Award from the Center for Health and the Global Environment at Harvard Medical School. Humans seem to be creating the next "natural disaster."
42. Darwin Day Celebration - Featuring guest speaker Avital Pilpel, Ph.D. "What the Fundamentalists Got Right About Darwin."
Red Bank Humanists is participating in an international celebration to show appreciation for the enormous benefits that scientific knowledge, acquired through human curiosity and ingenuity, has contributed to the advancement of humanity. Darwin's 200th Birthday, which will occur on February 12, 2009, is being celebrated around the world in the years leading to the actual event in 2009. Also celebrated on this date will be the 150th Anniversary of the publication of his famous book, On The Origin of Species.
43. 'Neurotica' And How to Avoid It"
44. "The Art of Living: How to Feel Good Without Feeling Good About Yourself" from the Free Inquiry article by Vincent E. Parr, which you can read at http://www.secularhumanism.org/library/fi/parr_25_2.html
45. What is HABcore? And how can we help? With guest speaker, Steve Heisman,Exec. Director of HABcore.
46. A handbook for progressive strategists. George Lakoff's book, "Don't Think of an Elephant!"
47. HUMANIST ECONOMICS! - Guest Speaker - RAY CAREY Former Chairman and CEO of ADT will speak on "The Harmonization of Democracy and Capitalism." based on his new book, "Democratic Capitalism - The Way to a World of Peace and Plenty."
48. Robert G. Ingersoll Tribute
A. His Creed
B. On Human Rights – the “8-hour work day”
C. Ingersoll Quotes
D. Ingersoll – On the Bible – “The inspiration of the Bible depends
upon the ignorance of the gentleman who reads it.”
E. “MISTAKES OF MOSES” - Excerpt from his famous speech
F. Mark Twain Tonight with Hal Holbrook
- Ben Brantley Review
- Play recording of “Creator’s Pet”
G. Julia Sweeney – Play recording of June 6 This American Life
“The Godless America Show” featuring Julia Sweeney
performing an excerpt from her one-woman show, “Letting Go of
49. Try Your Hand at Some Seemingly Irrelevant Ethical Questions
50. "Destiny" is a Dirty Word – The concept of “destiny” continues to rule our thoughts, even though we know it’s a bunch of hokum.
©Red Bank Humanists 2014