This session consisted in Greg emphasising the need for a science based approach to deciding what is true and real and concluding that all forms of supernaturalism and belief in gods ,, one god, spirits and miracles are not based on evidence. Graham responded that as he saw it there is far more too life than what can be weighted and measured by science and that intuitively many believe as he does that behind all that is happening there is a compassionate God .
A lively and reflective discussion followed with everyone present choosing to express their own person opinions while recognising that none of us were that likely to change our minds, except that several of those present described how over the years they had come to move frpm an acceptance of Christian faith either to atheistic humanism, agnosticism or Buddhist practice while some had moved from agnosticism to Christianity. Hearing these personal stories was fascinating.
Greg sent in the following paper to get people thinking.
.Some questions to consider:
How do you define God.
How do you define Atheism?
What practical differences to our lives does it make if we choose to be
A – Atheist B – Agnostic C – Polytheist
As there are different forms of religion and theism, are there not different forms of atheism, non-theism and agnosticism?
On what points can Christians and Atheisms agree and on what are they bound to disagree, particularly in the realm of practical ethics and life-style.
Might Christians and Humanists have common enemies? Who might they be. Don’t Trumpet this out too loud.
IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO BOOK ONE OF OUR TREASURED PLACES PLEASE LET ME KNOW at email@example.com.
Starting 7.30 pm sharp in the Quaker Barn with a £2 charge to cover our expenses.
COULD WE END THE EVENING AFTER OUR DISCUSSION WITH A BRIEF DISCUSSION OF IDEAS FOR THE FUTURE. PLEASE COME WITH IDEAS AND OR SEND THEM TO ME IN ADVANCE.
May puzzlement be ever with you,
And here to remind you is our fulll programme for 2018.
ANVIL Programme for 2018
After running for three successful years we had a good discussion about our future. It was agreed that we meet five rather than six times a year and that we be more adversarial with a speaker introducing a subject and a responder prepared to air a more or less contrary view.
We are a structured discussion group welcoming anyone ready to think and explore challenging ideas. To become an Associate simply send me your email address and phone number so you can be notified and sent preparatory material. You only need come to the sessions that interest you.
We meet in the Quaker Barn on Wincanton High Street by the Quaker Meeting House, Please arrive early as we start promptly at 7.30 p.m. You are asked to contribute £2 towards our expenses when you come. Please email to book one of the 16 places we have for each session. We also provide generous refreshments and end with an informal social chatting time by 10 p.m.
John Baxter email firstname.lastname@example.org tel 01963 34537
See ANVIL on www.johnbaxter.org
Mark In Your Diary Now!
Wed Feb 7th Brian Garton. Schools and Education. Have We Got the Basics Right?
Brian Garton and Dave Wrathall responder. Brian has headed international schools in several countries and thinks education may be in need of a considerable re-think.
Wed April 11th The Future as examined in Harare’s book Homo Deus. John Baxter and Greg Atkins responder. Recommended by Barak Obama and Bill Gates as a must read for the thinking masses this “History of the Future” with his other book SAPIENS is fascinating, readable and challenging.
Wed June 13th BREXIT Where are we going? Derek Hudson. Derek’s background is statistics and banking. You may well ask where will we have got to by the time this session comes up. Responder Dominic Lacey.
Wed September 19th. The Case for Atheism. Greg Atkins. Greg retired as professor of Virology at Trinity College Dublin. He will come fresh from a debate with a Cambridge science professor who is a Christian at the Bournemouth Humanist Society. Responder Graham Stride.
Wed November 14th Julie Arliss. My term in Oxford and the Special Divine Action Project. Recently awarded a Farmington Fellowship to study at Harris Manchester College, Oxford, Julie is the founder and organiser of Academy Conferences. http://www.academyconferences.com/index.php/gifted-and-talented-students/uk-programme. Responder John Baxter.
Currently we have attending those who would call themselves Humanists, Quakers, Anglicans, Catholics, Buddhists, Tories, LibDems, Greens, Socialists, Brexiteers and Remainers and those who are just confused. Well, that goes for all of us. Well, perhaps. And we do not duck controversy. What we have in common is we want to hear issues discussed thoughtfully with some knowledge and an opportunity to debate with and encounter others and express our own views in a friendly atmosphere. If you have friends you think would enjoy and appreciate our sessions, please invite them to come and send me an email.