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Why our movements are failing and how we can make them succeed
Posted: 14 April 2009 11:27 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 136 ]
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PLaClair - 12 April 2009 03:34 AM

I’m curious, is there anything you don’t like about my vision of a rockin’ secularist/Humanist meeting place except that it’s successful and attracts large numbers of people?

PLaClair, can’t you come up with an event idea of your own and get it onto the schedule of your local CFI?  If you come up with a successful event, then maybe other CFI communities could mimic your idea with their local stage performers, what do ya’ say?


I like a variety of music: those great rock concerts,  the classical pieces, even some of the church hymns are nice, the wind instruments and piano are my favorite instruments in a classical European orchestra, the old and new Irish musics,  the punk rock for it’s great energy and politics, some of the old rap is fun back when it was meant for fun rather than meant for posing as criminals.  A week ago I heard a band from S. Africa (Ladysmith Black Mambazo made famous via Paul Simon’s Graceland album), from what little I heard I think they do great music, much more embellished than what you hear in an African documentary.  I like the NYer’s of that era too, the Ramones, Simon & Garfunkel, Billy Joel, and some of the beautiful NY singers too like Blondie, Cyndi Lauper, and Barbra Streisand.  Probably my favorite music is from Sonic Youth (heh, old people now-a-days, isn’t that ironic), the noise rock is more complex and nuanced that most others.  I like variety.

53.jpg                      sonic_youth.jpg

I think that there are some people who have an undue prejudice and aversion when they hear the intellectual talk, they react against it.  I don’t understand that reaction, maybe they had some mean teacher in school and wound up failing a class, everyone knows how those childhood wounds (the formative years) can stick with you.  Maybe these are the artistic types, and they are merely a different sort of person.  Shouldn’t Humanists embrace all things human, including the good people who just want to be a part of lively happy culture?  So for that reason, maybe the CFI needs a more friendly easy-going and inviting event to welcome new people. 

On the other hand, I know that many people find it to be a relief to get away from the light-hearted entertainments, and feel badly deprived of the intellectual events.  I have volunteered at my local CFI for years now, the new people who I have seen are always highly emotional about visiting the CFI for the first time (happy, or confused, or almost aggressive and defensive, or a little frightened but very curious), and most of the time they have their guard up and do lots of intellectual challenging.  Maybe what I’ve seen has been biased because of the many intellectual events on the CFI schedule in my locale, and almost none of the energetic happy sort of events?

The difference between the two motivations (intellectual, or energetic happy) shows up in conversation too.  There are two types of conversations which often clash and then people get emotionally hurt, unnecessarily so.  I think that the two types can get along well.  grin  It just takes balance, that’s all.  As I said, I like variety, variety is a wonderful way to achieve balance!  And no-one wants to hurt good people’s feelings by excluding them, right?  That would just be a waste of contributing members.

In my locale we have had some of the musicians who are members perform in conjunction with some other events.  The musicians have been great additions to the events.  Some of the musicians even started writing humanistic lyrics!  grin  I think that the magicians have shown an interest in skepticism too.  Maybe other performers are interested also.  I see cafés serving as art galleries, letting a painter decorate their shop with paintings, while the painter gets to put a tag with their contact information and a price beside the paintings.

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Posted: 14 April 2009 12:17 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 137 ]
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jump_in_the_pit - 14 April 2009 11:27 AM
PLaClair - 12 April 2009 03:34 AM

I’m curious, is there anything you don’t like about my vision of a rockin’ secularist/Humanist meeting place except that it’s successful and attracts large numbers of people?

PLaClair, can’t you come up with an event idea of your own and get it onto the schedule of your local CFI?  If you come up with a successful event, then maybe other CFI communities could mimic your idea with their local stage performers, what do ya’ say?


I like a variety of music: those great rock concerts,  the classical pieces, even some of the church hymns are nice, the wind instruments and piano are my favorite instruments in a classical European orchestra, the old and new Irish musics,  the punk rock for it’s great energy and politics, some of the old rap is fun back when it was meant for fun rather than meant for posing as criminals.  A week ago I heard a band from S. Africa (Ladysmith Black Mambazo made famous via Paul Simon’s Graceland album), from what little I heard I think they do great music, much more embellished than what you hear in an African documentary.  I like the NYer’s of that era too, the Ramones, Simon & Garfunkel, Billy Joel, and some of the beautiful NY singers too like Blondie, Cyndi Lauper, and Barbra Streisand.  Probably my favorite music is from Sonic Youth (heh, old people now-a-days, isn’t that ironic), the noise rock is more complex and nuanced that most others.  I like variety.

53.jpg                      sonic_youth.jpg

I think that there are some people who have an undue prejudice and aversion when they hear the intellectual talk, they react against it.  I don’t understand that reaction, maybe they had some mean teacher in school and wound up failing a class, everyone knows how those childhood wounds (the formative years) can stick with you.  Maybe these are the artistic types, and they are merely a different sort of person.  Shouldn’t Humanists embrace all things human, including the good people who just want to be a part of lively happy culture?  So for that reason, maybe the CFI needs a more friendly easy-going and inviting event to welcome new people. 

On the other hand, I know that many people find it to be a relief to get away from the light-hearted entertainments, and feel badly deprived of the intellectual events.  I have volunteered at my local CFI for years now, the new people who I have seen are always highly emotional about visiting the CFI for the first time (happy, or confused, or almost aggressive and defensive, or a little frightened but very curious), and most of the time they have their guard up and do lots of intellectual challenging.  Maybe what I’ve seen has been biased because of the many intellectual events on the CFI schedule in my locale, and almost none of the energetic happy sort of events?

The difference between the two motivations (intellectual, or energetic happy) shows up in conversation too.  There are two types of conversations which often clash and then people get emotionally hurt, unnecessarily so.  I think that the two types can get along well.  grin  It just takes balance, that’s all.  As I said, I like variety, variety is a wonderful way to achieve balance!  And no-one wants to hurt good people’s feelings by excluding them, right?  That would just be a waste of contributing members.

In my locale we have had some of the musicians who are members perform in conjunction with some other events.  The musicians have been great additions to the events.  Some of the musicians even started writing humanistic lyrics!  grin  I think that the magicians have shown an interest in skepticism too.  Maybe other performers are interested also.  I see cafés serving as art galleries, letting a painter decorate their shop with paintings, while the painter gets to put a tag with their contact information and a price beside the paintings.

These are all good suggestions, so I’ll work on it. Meanwhile, do you have any lyrics you can share?

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I cannot in good conscience support CFI under the current leadership. I am here in dissent and in support of a Humanism that honors and respects everyone.

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Posted: 14 April 2009 04:28 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 138 ]
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Barbra has this other song I just dearly love called “All the Children”.  Marvelously magnificent and great lyrics.  That and I adore her website and been there quite a bit, but that is another story.

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Posted: 14 April 2009 09:05 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 139 ]
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I think humanists could learn alot from religion.  I know the surest way not to convince someone is to try an impress them with your prefect logic.

I’ve heard when Mormons are on the prowl for new members they invite them to their church festivities where there is no religious talk what so ever.  This way they get to know what the people are like.  They get to enjoy their company, and most important they begin to associate the mormons as being part of their “tribe.”  Only after that do the mormons lay down the bs they call their religion. 

lots of us rational types spend so much time thinking we don’t know how to do anything else but argue with people.  If secularism is going to spread I think we need to approach it like the mormons.

Dennitt’s idea about teaching religion is also a great approach but I think we could also just teach pure logic to kids.  we teach them alegabra and geometry which most people never use,  why can’t we teach them logic 101? 

-2 cents

[ Edited: 14 April 2009 09:13 PM by Ipse ]
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Posted: 14 April 2009 09:41 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 140 ]
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Lyrics?  Why do you ask, are you a musician?  A singer?  What are you looking for help to get the ball rolling in writing your own?  Well, the oldies are pretty good examples:

Bad Religion... Maybe you can picture the sound and the spirit of they songs, try to picture a protest chant, picture the energize beat and the spirit saying, “1 2 3 4 We do need you damn war!  5 6 7 8 Stop the killing, stop the hate!”.  Now picture Irish drinking songs (if you can), peopling singing along, raising there glasses, all together, happy fun, people together, their arms swaying left and right, the band leading the songs, a great night for everyone!  Now picture (if you know it) the song by Billy Joel called _Goodnight_Saigon_, a song about Vietnam War veterans, binding people, chanting a bit, masculine romantic strength and the good fight for freedom, a bit sad, and a bit hopeful.  If you can picture all of that, they you’ve got an idea of what Bad Religion sounds like.  Not all, but many of their lyrics are Humanist, _We’ve_Got_The_American_Jesus_ is an anti-religion protest song, _I_Guess_It_Struck_A_Nerve_ is a dramatically impactful song about humanity’s coldness to humanity, _Don’t_Pray_On_Me_ is a smooth rolling anti-religion rock ‘n’ roll protest.  And before you pre-judge the puck rock badly, realize that the lead singer took the money he earned from the band and used it as tuition for his Ph.D, in Psychology I’ve heard. Hey good news, they have refrigerator magnets for sale! grin

270.jpg

Do I have to mention the most obvious humanistic rock song, ever?  John Lennon asked us to _Imagine_ no heaven, and more.

Some of the CFI member musicians by me seem to be inspired by a newer musician, Dan Barker.  His music sounds gentle and amusing, I imagine that this is what he played in church as a Protestant, but I have no little experience with that.  He is atheistic now-a-days and writes lyrics with that message, he’s with the Freedom From Religion Foundation, author of _Loosing_Faith_In_Faith_.

One CFI member by me does a talk show and, the last time that I listened, wrote the opening music, although without lyrics.  Perhaps he’s written a new song with lyrics more recently.

How about a song that shows admiration of what medical science has done for us and the drama of rescuing a life, or romanticize the stars and the science that reaches out to the universe for us, or imagine a song of respect and tribute for Sir Issac Newton (all of science and mathematics), Gottfried Leibniz (calculus), Galileo Galilee (astronomy, anti-Inquisition hero), Leonardo da Vinci (art, medicine, technology), Eratosthenes (calculated the circumference of Earth, a sieve of prime numbers technique), or Archimedes of Sicily (early calculus, early science, Give me a lever long enough and I can move the world.), Elizabeth Katie Stanton (“No gods, no masters”).

I am just tossing some ideas out there, take ‘em or leave ‘em.


I was surprised to see that Barbra has been releasing an album almost every year.  She certainly works for her fame.  grin

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Posted: 14 April 2009 10:02 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 141 ]
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jump_in_the_pit - 14 April 2009 09:41 PM

.

One CFI member by me does a talk show and, the last time that I listened, wrote the opening music, although without lyrics.

I like their podcasts, do you know if they are available on itunes? I’d rather listen while I’m driving.

I was surprised to see that Barbra has been releasing an album almost every year.  She certainly works for her fame.  grin

Barbara is great! grin

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Posted: 15 April 2009 02:52 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 142 ]
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Hawkfan - 06 April 2009 07:35 PM

The sense I’ve gotten from the brief time I’ve spent monitoring this forum fits well with the responses I’ve seen on this thread

Most of the posters have some loose sense of unity with the other posters, at least as an online community.  But, it doesn’t seem to go much beyond sharing some common interest in favoring rational thought and reason over superstition and supernatural beliefs.

Frankly, for me, that’s all I’m looking for and I appreciate it for that.

So, good luck to PLaClair and his crusade to rally people around a humanist banner.  But, I think you’re going to have a difficult a time establishing the church of humanism, at least with this bunch.

I find the secular humanist manifestos peculiar and think a greater emphasis on rational thought and reason might work.  Perhaps linking to aspects of ‘life-long education’.

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Posted: 15 April 2009 07:05 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 143 ]
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It’s pretty evident from these posts and elsewhere that there is no shortage of music that pays tribute to Human works and personages. It’s also clear that there must be some discomfort in assembling a Humanist hymnal, or we’d have a compilation by now, surely.

Has such a project been seen in a “flowers for Hitler” light, are we that uncomfortable with ourselves?

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Posted: 15 April 2009 07:14 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 144 ]
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Martinus - 15 April 2009 07:05 AM

It’s pretty evident from these posts and elsewhere that there is no shortage of music that pays tribute to Human works and personages. It’s also clear that there must be some discomfort in assembling a Humanist hymnal, or we’d have a compilation by now, surely.

Has such a project been seen in a “flowers for Hitler” light, are we that uncomfortable with ourselves?

I like your angle Marty. I already get my Humanist Hymns from such artists(though not exclusively) as: The Moody Blues, Pink Floyd, Miles Davis,The Grateful Dead, Bob Dylan, Black Sabbath.

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Posted: 15 April 2009 04:06 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 145 ]
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asanta - 14 April 2009 10:02 PM

I like their podcasts, do you know if they are available on itunes? I’d rather listen while I’m driving.

Is the IPod not flexible enough to play any .MP3 file?  The man who does that, he knows the audio/music technologies well and probably has some significant reason not to list ITunes on the Indy Freethought web page, he would not merely overlook that famous service.  Maybe ITunes costs more than that libsyn service?  Understand that he volunteers to do that show, I don’t think that he even collects donations!  Why not write him a comment on the web site?

Did I get your sex wrong earlier, Asanta?  I’m sorry.  The Internet does have that annonymity that everyone loves.

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Posted: 15 April 2009 04:40 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 146 ]
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jump_in_the_pit - 15 April 2009 04:06 PM

Did I get your sex wrong earlier, Asanta?  I’m sorry.  The Internet does have that annonymity that everyone loves.

I’m a ‘her’, but not so paranoid as to get insulted if someone calls me a ‘him’  tongue wink

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Posted: 15 April 2009 09:08 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 147 ]
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asanta - 15 April 2009 04:40 PM
jump_in_the_pit - 15 April 2009 04:06 PM

Did I get your sex wrong earlier, Asanta?  I’m sorry.  The Internet does have that annonymity that everyone loves.

I’m a ‘her’, but not so paranoid as to get insulted if someone calls me a ‘him’  tongue wink

Here’s an example (Boyle, Am Idol UK) currently sweeping the Net, I understand, of a woman empowered by a talent. The reaction of the crowd to this moving Humanist scenario is something that ratifies Paul’s faith in this process. And mine as well.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9lp0IWv8QZY

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Posted: 16 April 2009 04:37 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 148 ]
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Martinus - 15 April 2009 09:08 PM
asanta - 15 April 2009 04:40 PM
jump_in_the_pit - 15 April 2009 04:06 PM

Did I get your sex wrong earlier, Asanta?  I’m sorry.  The Internet does have that annonymity that everyone loves.

I’m a ‘her’, but not so paranoid as to get insulted if someone calls me a ‘him’  tongue wink

Here’s an example (Boyle, Am Idol UK) currently sweeping the Net, I understand, of a woman empowered by a talent. The reaction of the crowd to this moving Humanist scenario is something that ratifies Paul’s faith in this process. And mine as well.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9lp0IWv8QZY

Marty, perhaps you should scan the Forum for a related thread. I think you will find that interesting. blank stare

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