a Fortuitous *close* Confluence of Events
The causes may be quite coincidental, and completely arbitrary, but still a fortuitously close confluence of events has occurred.
On February 20th 2011, there is a global movement to celebrate One Day, No Religion and on the 17th of February the Durban Chapter of the South African Skeptics will be hosting the monthly meeting of the Durban Skeptics in the Pub (SITP).
Check out the One Day, No Religion website for a full video explanation.
Mark your calendars now, that way we can all celebrate a day without religion together.
The only rule, in compliance with the requirements set out on the One Day, No Religion website is to avoid anything religious to demonstrate that we can be just as moral, just as fulfilled, just as engaged with the wonder of life without it ; consequently even the discussion of religion is out. I am sure we can devise a suitable drinking game for the person who mentions religion at the event.
Although One Day, No Religion is celebrated for the entire day, Durban Skeptics in the Pub will be hosted from 18h00 onwards. The usual venue is Pizzetta, in Davenport, Durban, unless we have a venue change. You can check the South African Skeptics Facebook group for such changes.
The Durban Skeptics in the Pub was started by my good friend the Skeptic Detective in 2009, and we have grown considerably since then. The event is open to anyone who would regard themselves as a freethinker, atheist, skeptic, scientist, evidence based world view holder, intellectual, philosopher, or secularist.
Religious people are also welcome to attend (heck, even if you think the moon landings were faked, or that global warming does not exist as a phenomenon, you can also come along) but should be prepared to have their beliefs viewed with a skeptical eye, and the firm adjustment of nonsense via logical argument and evidence. The individual person is always respected, whereas the acceptance of their beliefs and ideas, based upon evidence and sound argument, are treated with skepticism and respected or derided accordingly. We usually have great discussions and passionate debate about a wide range of topics, and the loquaciousness is usually directly correlated with the blood alcohol level of the participants.
The general principle is that no subject is out of bounds (as it should be – the ideas serve us, not the other way around people!) – everything is open to scrutiny and the skeptical analysis we like to call “The Rack”
(OK, I’m kidding about the rack thing – bazinga!). Basically, there are no sacred cows.
The SITP events also give non religious folk a chance to find some community amongst like minded people, and freedom to express candid opinions about any idea, including religious ideas without fear of offending and without self-censorship.
On this one SITP, in celebration of One Day, No Religion we will refrain from discussing religion (I hear a few of my fellow Skeptical Velociraptors wondering what exactly we will talk about, religion does seem to come up a fair deal at these things).
At the following SITP, religion will be added back onto the menu.
Late Edit: Those holiday gremlins seem to have infected this Dinosaur’s reading of that simple device called a calendar, and I have now updated this entry to reflect the correct dates – SITP Durban Feb 17th, and No Religion day 20th. Apologies for any confusion.