I am new to CFI, but I have been involved in other forums. For example, at Scienceagogo.com there is one such forum. At SAGGO there is a very active area in the forum—the section is called Not-Quite-Science—where posters do a lot of inquiring back and forth about philosophy, religion, the sciences and the arts. Of course we do not all agree with one another. But we all agree to disagree, agreeably. I have made some very good friends there. I hope I will have a similar experience here. Anyone is free to check out the following sites for other information about me: http://www.flfcanada.com & http://www.lindsayking.ca
I am on FaceBook, Twitter, and Linkedin.
Welcome. I might be wrong, but I think it started in the late 70s or early 80s. I’m not sure what subject attracted the most interest though. I think you might find it interesting here, esp with the many topics we discuss. Something should strike your interest, given you have many.
To one of the more experienced and perhaps early members of CFI: When did CFI start? And what topics of inquiry first attracted the most interest?
CFI is an organization founded in 1991, set up as a sort of umbrella over CSI and CSH, which were earlier organizations founded by Paul Kurtz. The first one AFAIK was CSI (originally CSICOP) in 1976, then CSH sometime later. For more, a good place is the Wiki for CFI.
Note that strictly speaking, CFI, CSI and CSH remain separate organizations.
I have no idea about your second question, though of course CSICOP’s earliest interests regarded paranormal and similar sorts of claims.
RevLGKing - 30 December 2011 10:06 PM
BTW, while I respect the art of debating, I like using the dialog method—the sharing of our interests and the knowledge we happen to have about—at least much of the time. It is more welcoming to new members. Some of my interest are philosophy, pneumatology, psychology, economics (the nature and function of money) and the impact they have on what we do, or do not, believe. Also, what actions our beliefs inspire us to take.
We have both dialogues and debate-type discussions on this Forum. It all depends on the subject matter. There is no programming from above as to how members will or should respond, however in general posting material that is credulous or questionable will likely elicit skepticism.
Thanks for the recent graceful and helpful responses. The following is what I had in mind when I first wrote:
MAY I INQUIRE ABOUT THE CENTER FOR INQUIRY? MAY I INQUIRE ABOUT ITS HISTORY, ITS LEADERS, ITS PHILOSOPHY AT THIS POINT AND ITS HOPES AND PLANS FOR THE FUTURE?
I came across this forum while doing a search on philosophical questions about the beginning of things. Decades ago, when I (born in 1930) was 24, I did a two-year program of post-graduate studies at Boston University (1954/1955) on the HISTORY OF KNOWLEDGE. What I learned then, I used—in spoken and written word—throughout my career. It continues to this day.
Because I have always been interested in finding out which came first—mind or matter, the material or the immaterial, morals, ethics, religion, politics, the arts, the sciences—just a few days ago I decided to do some searching the Net. So, using the Google search engine, I asked the following philosophical questions: Which came first, the brain (the physical body)? Or the mind (non-physical being)? The mind (psyche) or the soul (pneuma )? Religion or morals? What does it mean to be humans who exist, and who fear death—not existing
An over-all search gave me the following:
3. http://www.google.ca/search?q=Philosophical questions: Which came first, the brain or the mind? The mind or the soul? Religion or morals?&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mageia:en-US:official&client=firefox-a&source=hp&channel=np
This is what led me to ask, one, or more, of the more experienced and perhaps early members of CFI: When did CFI start? And what topics of inquiry first attracted the most interest?
BTW, while I respect the art of debating, I prefer using the dialog method—that is, the sharing of interests and the knowledge we happen to have about any given topic—at least much of the time. In my experience, many readers tend remain on the fringes, to shy away from participating in a forum, where they fear being treated like an underdog. One such forum to which I first belonged was killed by flamers, over-dogs, who were of the opinion that they had the right and freedom to belittle others anytime they so chose to do so.
Part of the History of Knowledge, some of my interests are: philosophy—process philosophy and non-theistic process theology—panentheism, unitheism, pneumatology, psychology, economics (the nature and function of money) and the impact knowledge and conventions have on what we do, or do not, believe. Check http//:www.torontodollar.com which a group of us helped establish in Toronto, in 1998.
Also, I always ask: What actions do our beliefs inspire us to take?
Beliefs do have power. What it is that motivates terrorists to joyfully kill themselves along with others? Obviously they act on what they believe to be true.
[ Edited: 31 December 2011 09:27 PM by RevLGKing ]
We do have one thing in common, R.G.K. We were both born in 1930. However, as one may guess from my screen name, sig, and assiduous avoidance of most threads in the philosophy section, I don’t have much patience with questions that either are unanswerable or of no consequence to my life. That shouldn’t turn you off because many other members here are delighted to discuss such things.
1. Which came first, the brain (the physical body)? Or the mind (non-physical being)? - Since I believe metaphysics and spirit are hogwash, to me the concept of a non-corporeal mind existing prior to and without the brain in which that mind is merely programming is silly.
2. The mind (psyche) or the soul (pneuma )? - Same thing. The soul is, to me, merely a construct that some people come up with for a variety of reasons, all of which I also consider silly.
3. Religion or morals? - Moral (group supportive) behavior is demonstrated in a wide variety of social species long before they come up with a religion. I believe religion started out as a set of fairytales the elders made up to: a) answer questions that they really didn’t have any answer to; b) a way of gaining more social power by declaring themselves representatives of some mythical powerful being; c) a set of rules of behavior to protect and help the community.
4. What does it mean to be humans who exist, and who fear death—not existing? - It means the person hasn’t developed the maturity to recognize that we are very short time, temporary phenomena and that the best we can do during that time is to enjoy ourselves and help others.
We can do the economics thing later on one of the other subforums.
The motivation is the delusion that by killing an “infidel” or an “unbeliever” one can gain favor in the eyes of god. IMO, it is the very exclusivity claimed by most religions which promotes such (im)moral certainty. Oddly this certainty is based on a belief of understanding a metaphysical (nay supernatural) being. In reality it is an act of megalomania.
Beyond the simple life and species maintaining activities like eating, drinking, breathing, copulating, self-protection, etc., the rest of the actions are driven by motivation. The question seems to be what generates motivation, and that appears to be beliefs. It also seems quite clear that different beliefs will generate different motivations and therefore different actions.
So the question shouldn’t be “What actions?” or “What motivations?”. All we should be interested in is beliefs, and if we wish to change people’s actions we have to work toward changing their beliefs.
This is the section for introduction, but as you posed several questions, I’ll give a short answer to one.
Write4U, thanks for interjecting. Leaving your important comment about Jihadism aside for now, before we go further, I will interject and tell you about how I have used the symbol “4U”.
THE WE-R-4U-UNION—We are 4 U.
More than once, over the last while, in other forums, I have suggested that we need a 4U Union—a union of the Unemployed, the Under-employed, the Under-paid and the Unhappy (the rich among us, including me). In my opinion, here is what I, a pragmatist, feel we need:
WE—GOVERNMENTS AND NGOS—ALL NEED TO WORK FOR A FAIR, REASONABLE, HARMONIOUS AND JUST SOCIETY FOR ALL
In my opinion. such a union—one made up of people from all classes, races and creeds—could serve as the servants of all of us the people and serve as OUR lobbyists to those who, elected or otherwise, we elected to be of service to the total community, but who consider themselves to be our masters…
R.L.G.K., I’ve gone into your post above to clean up the quotation section. When you quote someone the program ends the quotation with a [/ quote](without the space) . If you write before that, it looks as if what you wrote is really part of the post you are quoting. You have to start your answer after the [ /quote] symbol. I know it takes a while to learn the quirks of this website program, but we all had to go through it.
I have a question and a favor to ask. My eyesight is getting worse and I can hardly see the print on the forum. Can you please direct me how to make it bigger and darker?
Sandy, if you’re using Mac (and you should ), you can enlarge the whole screen by using the command key (⌘) and the plus symbol (+). Hold down the ⌘ key first and keep enlarging the screen with the + sign. I am not sure if it works with PCs.
You might get some interesting discussion about ProArgi9 if you mention it in the Alt Med thread.
Traveler, you mention ProArgi9? Beneficial to your health?
THE HOLISTIC AND COMPLEMENTARY-MEDICINE APPROACH TO PHYSICAL, MENTAL AND SPIRITUAL HEALTH HAS ALWAYS BE AN INTEREST OF MINE
By the way, besides theology, I have a background in psychology, including a license in hypnotherapy, which I like to call pneumatherapy—a name I will comment on, later. For details about this, check out: http://www.lindsayking.ca
An old friend of mine told me about ProArgi9, early in 2010, when I was 80. How about you? When did you hear of it—a fruit-like drink, which is designed to help keep our arteries clean? He kept after me until I agreed to start taking it. I started on Christmas Eve, 2011. The challenge is that I have been in relatively good health all my life. During the forty years I served as a minister—though I had days in which I did not feel on top of everything—I never had a day in which I was so ill that I had to cancel an appointment or absent myself from an event.
Re: ProArgi9. How much of it is HYPE? One wonders. I mentioned it to my family doctor and others in the medial field. So far, no real interest or response.