Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Finals Week Study Break

Date: Wednesday, December 12
Time: 6:00 pm
Location: Harper 103
RSVP: To come

Details: Done with finals or need a break? Come relax with ice cream, cookies, and a screening of one of the incredible talks from Skepticon 4 (2011) or 5 (2012). Skepticon is the largest meeting of nonreligious people and freethinkers in the country, and the talks are always excellent, so come watch something awesome while getting away from finals.

Third Movie Night: The Wizard of Oz (with dinner!)

Date: Thursday, November 29th
Time: 6:00pm
Location: Cox Lounge, Stuart Hall (map here)
RSVP: Facebook Event

Details: The Secular Alliance is screening that old classic, the Wizard of Oz, a fantasy tale about adventure, defeat of evil, becoming a better person and monetary policy. What does that have to with secularism? Come, and maybe you'll find out! Come hang out, eat the free pizza dinner and enjoy.

As an aside, the wikipedia article for the movie is fascinating. 

Ask an Atheist, Ask a Christian

Date: Monday, November 26
Time: 8:00 pm
Location: Stuart 102. Map of Stuart.
RSVP: Facebook

Details: Atheists and Christians meet to answer tough questions from each other and from the audience. Want to hear an answer to the problem of evil? Wondering how atheists have morals? Come with those burning questions you've always wanted to hear a response to, or your best challenging inquiries to see what the brilliant participants will come up with. Snacks and drinks provided.

Cosponsored by the Intervarsity Christian Fellowship.

Weekly Update 6: No meeting this week and Happy Thanksgiving!

I hope you've all had a lovely week since last we spoke, and if not, it's soon to get a lot better. Turkey and mashed potatoes are nigh, parental care is soon to be plentiful and sleep will abound. Since people tend to leave on Wednesday to rush and wait in long lines at airports, your friendly and thoughtful exec has cancelled this week's meeting so you don't have to be wracked with guilt that you're missing it while you argue with airline agent after airline agent. So go enjoy Thanksgiving, and don't forget to register for classes!

No Meeting Wednesday! But we will have a meeting next week, November 28th.
This gives you lots of time to start thinking about all the events we have left in the quarter! Namely:
  • Ask an Atheist, Ask a Christian is Monday of ninth week, November 26th. Two of our own wonderful members, Brian Green and Lauren Daurizio,are going to be pairing up with two Christians from IVCF (Intervarsity Christian Fellowship) to ask each other questions and to take (almost) any question from the audience. Let's support our members and ask some good and interesting questions! (Time and place TBA).
  • Our third and last Movie Night of the quarter will be Thursday, November 29th. More information to come!
  • Wednesday of tenth week, December 5th, Hemant Mehta, the Friendly Atheist, is coming to talk about critical thinking, education and mathematics at 6:30, in Stuart 105! (This is instead of our meeting) We'll have pizza and hang out with him starting at 6:15 or so, and the talk will start at 6:30. It's going to be amazing.
  • Finals Week Event: If you're done with finals by Wednesday, or need a night off, come to Harper 103 at 6:00 pm to have ice cream and cookies and watch one of the amazing talks from either Skepticon IV or V.
Have a wonderful break!

Weekly Update 5 11/13/12

It's seventh week. Midterms are all over now, right? Right? Ha! Well, in the midst of all that stress it must be nice to come to an SA meeting!

Meeting ReminderIt's going to be a knock-down, drag out, fight to death debate tomorrow, November 14th, at 6pm in the Spirit Cafe, in the basement of Rockefeller Chapel. The topic? "Should girls ask boys out?" This is a very controversial topic, so I expect people to be bringing their A-game.

But really we're going to have a fun debate in which I assign sides and everyone comes up with the silliest/funniest/most compelling arguments on both sides. And it all involves warm drinks and cookies!

Upcoming Events
  • NT Wright is an evangelical intellectual from St. Mary's college, talking tonight at 7pm about the ethos of Christianity and how that relates to the ethos of a university. Like most evangelicals, he thinks homosexuality and abortion are sins and said at the Veritas Forum at Northwestern yesterday that "secularism leads to gas chambers." It's up to you all if you want to go or lead a righteous protest. Facebook event here: https://www.facebook.com/events/408066335909881/
  • Much more excitingly, Hemant Mehta is coming to talk about critical thinking, education and mathematics on December 5th, at 6:30, in Stuart 105! We'll have pizza and hang out with him starting at 6:15 or so, and the talk starts at 6:30. It's going to be amazing.
  • Look out in these emails for our finals week event!
See you all tomorrow!!

Weekly Update 4: Hang outs, relief from the outside world, and Darwin! 11/5/12

It's sixth week! The election's tomorrow! Ahhhhhhh! Everybody go vote, for real, or the god Athe will be very disappointed in you. Here's a relevant xkcd

Meeting ReminderIn the midst of all the madness, we the exec thought it would be nice to have a low-key, hangout meeting. No meaty topics, no discussions of the distant future, no ethics. Unless that's what you all want, of course. But on Wednesday, November 7th, at 6pm in the Spirit Cafe, in the basement of Rockefeller Chapel it's going to be your chance to have warm drinks and cookies, distract yourselves from papers and midterms, and have some relaxed conversations. Let's all get to know each other!

Upcoming Events
  • Movie night this Thursday! 6:30 pm. Cobb 402. It's about evolution and Darwin and science! Also there's a free pizza dinner. Join us and invite your friends! Facebook event here:https://www.facebook.com/events/446441725404040/
  • Hemant Mehta is coming to talk about critical thinking, education and mathematics onDecember 5th! Time and location currently TBD
Hope you all have a wonderful week and that we see you on Wednesday!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Hemant Mehta Talk: Teaching Critical Thinking in Public Schools

Date: December 5th, 2012
Time: Hanging out starts at 6:15, Talk at 6:30
Location: Stuart 105 (map here)
RSVP: Facebook

Hemant Mehta, the one and only Friendly Atheist, is coming to the University of Chicago to talk about math, public schools and teaching critical thinking. This event will be free and open to the public. 

About Hemant:
Hemant Mehta graduated from the University of Illinois at Chicago with degrees in Mathematics and Biology. While there, he also helped establish their first secular student group, Students WithOut Religious Dogma (SWORD). He earned his Masters in Math Education at DePaul University and currently teaches high school math in the suburbs of Chicago. 

He has worked with the Center for Inquiry and the Secular Coalition for America, received scholarships from American Atheists and the Freedom From Religion Foundation, and now serves on the board of directors for Foundation Beyond Belief (a charity organization targeting non-theistic donors) and is the former chair of the board of the Secular Student Alliance (which creates and supports college atheist groups nationwide). 

Hemant appeared on the front page of the Wall Street Journal and his book, I Sold My Soul on eBay (WaterBrook Press), was released in 2007. His blog, the winner of the 2011 Bloggie award for Best Weblog About Religion, can be read at FriendlyAtheist.com. Hemant's book, I Sold My Soul on eBay (WaterBrook Press), was released in 2007. He has appeared on CNN and FOX News Channel.

Hemant Mehta currently runs the blog the Friendly Atheist