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2017 Pennsylvania State Atheist/Humanist Conference

The Freethought Society is helping to kick off the 2017 Pennsylvania State Atheist/Humanist Conference with its world-famous Friday-the-Thirteenth Anti-Superstition Bash, also known as The Friggatriskaidekaphobia Treatment Center. Please join us on Friday, October 13, 2017 at the Philadelphia Embassy Suites (9000 Bartram Ave), as we put willing participants through an anti-superstition obstacle course, dance to superstition-themed music, create an individual unique silhouette souvenir (at a non-superstituous cost of $13), play anti-superstition games, drink Love Potion #9 (also non-superstitiously priced at $13), enjoy our entertainers, walk-through the Museum of Superstitions and socialize with like-minded folks.  Tickets may be purchased for the Friday night Friggatriskaidekaphobia Party only, day passes for Saturday and/or Sunday, or a full Standard or VIP Weekend Pass to enjoy the entire slate of activities and presentations. There are many fantastic speakers on Saturday (October 14) and Sunday (October 15), including internationally known theoretical physicist Lawrence Krauss.

What:  The Pennsylvania State Atheist/Humanist Conference

Who:  A Full Slate of Fantastic Speakers

When:  October 13 – 15, 2017

Where:  Philadelphia Embassy Suites at 9000 Bartram Avenue (held annually in various locations in Pennsylvania, this year in Philadelphia)

Lawrence Krauss - The Greatest Story Ever Told - So Far

On Monday, March 20, 2017 at 7:00 PM, The Freethought Society and the Philadelphia Ethical Humanist Society will host Lawrence Krauss as an honored speaker. He will discuss his newest book, The Greatest Story Ever Told — So Far, which is scheduled for release just a few days before his appearance. 

Click here for more information on joining!

Lawrence Krauss March 2017

Lawrence Krauss – March 20, 2017 at 7:00PM 

On Monday, March 20, 2017 at 7:00 PM, The Freethought Society and the Philadelphia Ethical Humanist Society will host Lawrence Krauss as an honored speaker. He will discuss his newest book, The Greatest Story Ever Told — So Far, which is scheduled for release just a few days before his appearance. In this book, Krauss connects the world we know with the invisible world all around us. Krauss explains our current understanding of nature and the struggle to construct the greatest theoretical edifice ever assembled, the Standard Model of Particle Physics  and then to understand its implications for our existence.          Continue reading: Lawrence Krauss on March 20, 2017

Do You Have a Soul? Cognitive Scientist Julien Musolino says “No.” Hear Why

Do You Have a Soul? Cognitive Scientist Julien Musolino says “No.” Hear Why

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

SoulFallacy

Soul Fallacy Julien Musolino

Do you believe that you have a soul? If so, do you think that it will it survive the death of your body? Come and hear cognitive scientist, author and psychology professor Julien Musolinodiscuss “The Soul Fallacy,” from his book The Soul Fallacy: What Science Shows We Gain from Letting Go of Our Soul Beliefs, at the Freethought Society’s meeting on Wednesday, August 24 at the Ludington Library, 5 South Bryn Mawr Avenue, Bryn MawrPennsylvania at 7:00 PM.

“I decided to write this book because I’ve been teaching psychology and cognitive science for a number of years now, and I thought that there was one big elephant in the room,” Musolino said. “Students were told all the time about what we call the material basis of mind, but very rarely if ever were they told what this entails for popular conceptions of how we function mentally, the concept of the soul.”

Most people believe they possess an immaterial soul that will survive the death of the body. In sharp contrast, the current scientific consensus rejects the concept of a traditional soul. This conclusion is rarely discussed publicly. Musolino will explain why modern science leads to this controversial conclusion, and he’ll also demonstrate that we don’t lose anything by letting go of “soul beliefs” and that there is something important to gain in doing so.

The aim of Musolino’s scientific work is to understand the functioning and development of aspects of the human mind such as language, reasoning, and critical thinking. His research has been funded by the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation.

“It captures the fallacy that the idea that we have a soul which I think isn’t true,” Musolino said and which he demonstrates in his book, “but also the idea that is constantly repeated in our culture by different voices that unless we believe in the soul, unless people believe in the soul, then our lives would be devoid of meaning and purpose which I think is a fallacy as well. It’s perfectly fine, in fact perfectly normal, for a lot of people to not have those beliefs and live perfectly happy, meaningful lives.”

In addition to being a scientist, author and public speaker, Dr. Julien Musolino is a tenured professor of Psychology and Cognitive Science at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, where he holds a dual appointment in the psychology department and the Center for Cognitive Science. Born and raised in France, he studied at the University of Geneva in neighboring Switzerland; the University of North Wales, Bangor, in the United Kingdom; the University of Maryland; and the University of Pennsylvania. He is the author of numerous scientific articles and is regularly invited to give lectures in the United States and around the world. He has appeared on television programs, including The O’Reilly Factor, his work has been discussed in popular magazines, including Psychology Today, and he’s been a guest speaker on radio and podcast programs in the United States and abroad.

Musolino is also deeply interested in science, the history and development of science, the public understanding of science, and the factors that interfere with the understanding and dissemination of scientific knowledge. His resent work focuses on the implications of the sciences of mind for a range of issues at the interface between science and society. The goal of this work is to promote the role, understanding, and importance of science, reason, and critical thinking, especially in a country like the United States. This work takes on a public dimension, and is represented by literary agencies in New York and London as well as the Speakers Bureau of the Secular Student Alliance.

“As science is more and more subject to grave misuse as well as to use for human benefit it has also become the scientist’s responsibility to become aware of the social relations and applications of his subject, and to exert his influence in such a direction as will result in the best applications of the findings in his own and related fields. Thus he must help in educating the public, in the broad sense, and this means first educating himself, not only in science but in regard to the great isJulien Musolinosues confronting mankind today.”

Julien Musolino’s “The Soul Fallacy” presentation is free and open to the public and takes place Wednesday, August 24 at the Ludington Library, 5 South Bryn Mawr Avenue, Bryn MawrPennsylvania 19010 at 7:00 PM. For more information, contact Margaret Downey, Freethought Society President, at 610-357-9432, or email her at Margaret@FtSociety.org.

 

Barbara Mancini at the Ludington Library, Thursday April 14 at 7pm

 

Barbara Mancini

Barbara Mancini

 

On ThursdayApril 142016 The Freethought Society will host Barbara Mancini at the Ludington Library, 5 South Bryn Mawr Avenue, Bryn MawrPennsylvania 19010.

The presentation entitled “Who gets to decide how you will die?” starts at 7:00 PM.

In 2013 Mancini was arrested and prosecuted in Pennsylvania on the charge of aiding the attempted suicide of her dying 93-year-old father after handing him his prescribed morphine four days before his death. His end-of-life wishes were overridden by a hospice nurse and police authorities. His written advanced directives were also ignored and he was hospitalized and treated. Mancini’s prosecution lasted a year, during which time it garnered national attention, and was roundly criticized throughout the media.

A judge dismissed the case due to “a lack of competent evidence.”

Mancini’s case was featured on National Public Radio and TV’s 60 Minutes. She has traveled the country speaking about her experiences and has become a vocal advocate for end-of-life  choice. Mancini will discuss her case, the broader issues involved, and the impact they have on the end of our lives.