North West Humanist Conference 2011

NWhumanists

                                   united on purpose

 What the world most needs at this moment is a means of convincing human beings to embrace the whole of the species as their moral community.   For this we need to develop an utterly non-sectarian way of talking about the full spectrum of human experience and human aspiration.  We need a discourse on ethics and spirituality that is every bit as unconstrained by dogma and cultural prejudice as the discourse of science is.

Sam Harris Killing the Bhudda

Announcing our inaugural regional conference

Organised by Lancashire Secular Humanists, Liverpool Humanist Group and Greater Manchester Humanists

Humanism for the 21st Century

Saturday 8th October – Sunday 9th October 2011

(Optional pre-conference evening entertainment on Friday 7th October)

St Thomas Centre, Ardwick Green North, Manchester M12 6FZ

(A few minutes walk from Piccadilly station. Ample free on-street parking nearby)

The Conference Objectives are:

  • To enrich the knowledge and commitment of new and existing members
  • To develop links between local Humanist Groups – particularly those in the North West
  • To develop links with other like-minded groups in the North West
  • To help participants move forward in living their lives as Humanists
  • To enthuse participants with the message that we have something really worthwhile to offer
  • To help promote the value of Humanism to the wider public

Programme

Friday 7 October:
Evening Pre-conference entertainment (showing films of interest to Humanists)
Saturday 8 October:
From 9.00 am Registration
9.30 am Opening of conference
9.45 am Keynote address by Andrew Copson, Chief Executive of the British Humanist Association (BHA); followed by break-out groups and plenary discussion
1.00 pm Buffet lunch on site
2.30 pm Panel discussion on conference theme chaired by Guy Otten. Panellists: Andrew Copson; Dr Evan Harris (BHA Vice-President); Professor Ray Tallis; and Professor Carole Truman
5.30 pm Close
Evening: Informal dining at various locations (facilitated get-togethers)
 
Sunday 9 October:
9.30 am “Why more equal societies almost always do better” Kathryn Busby, The Equality Trust
11.10 am “Why bother? – with so many apparently insoluble global problems…” Marilyn Mason, Humanists for a Better World (H4BW)
12.30 pm Conference close

Tickets:          £42 including lunch and refreshments (£36 early-bird reduced price for bookings received by 18 August 2011)

For further information, and to book a place, please download our booking form here.

BHA Holyoake Lecture 2010: John Harris

Holyoake Lecture 2010: John Harris

Date: Thursday 21st October 2010
Time: Doors open at 6:00pm for 6:30pm start
Venue: St Thomas Centre, Ardwick Green North, Manchester M12 6FZ
Cost: BHA members £6; £3 for students; £9 others

NOTE CHANGE OF VENUE: The Main Hall, St Thomas Centre, Ardwick Green North, Manchester M12 6FZ

Holyoake Lecture 2010

Tickets available online – Or call 020 7079 3580 (office hours).

For the British Humanist Association’s second annual Holyoake Lecture in Manchester, Professor John Harris speaks on Taking the “human” out of Humanism. The event will be chaired by humanist philosopher, Raymond Tallis.

Professor John HarrisDiscovery and innovation are creating new technologies which challenge our notions of humanity to and beyond breaking point. These technologies will improve cognitive powers, extend life expectancy and enable us to interact intimately with machines.  It is certain that in the future there will be no more human beings but we may hope that there will still be beings for whom the philosophy of humanism, almost certainly under a new name, is relevant and important.

Speaker

John Harris is the Lord Alliance Professor of Bioethics at the University of Manchester. He has written widely on biotechnology and ethics, including Enhancing Evolution: The Ethical Case for Making Better People, Clones Genes and Immortality, and On Cloning for the Thinking In Action series.

John Harris - Enhancing Evolution John Harris - Clones, Genes, Immortality John Harris - On Cloning

Tickets

Buy your tickets online. Alternatively you can pay over the phone with a credit or debit card at 020 7079 3580. Lines are open 9am-5pm Monday to Friday.

Christian Zionism

The Liverpool Humanist Group presents:-

Christian Zionism

A major obstacle to peace in the Middle East?

a talk by Hilda Reilly


Date: Thursday 14th October 2010
Time: 7.30pm
Venue: The Crown (upstairs room), 43 Lime Street, Liverpool L1 1JQ
Cost: Suggested contribution of £2-3

Many Christians believe that the return of Jews to the land of Israel is in accordance with biblical prophecy and a prerequisite for the Second Coming of Christ. Such beliefs are particularly strong among evangelical Christian groups in America who exert a powerful influence on US policy in the Middle East.

Hilda Reilly is the author of Prickly Pears of Palestine, an account of six months she spent in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. While there she spent some time in an Israeli settlement in the West Bank, getting to know a community of Christian Zionists. She will talk about her experiences there, as well as giving a broader picture of the history and aims of the Christian Zionist movement, and exploring the extent to which it represents an obstacle to the achievement of peace in the Middle East.

From the reviews of Prickly Pears of Palestine:-

In all the political discussion about peace in the Middle East the lives of the Palestinians and their suffering has tended to be forgotten and Hilda Reilly’s book brings out these human aspects so clearly and vividly, making the reader understand what it is really about. Tony Benn

This book gives a tender human face to the terrible suffering caused by the Israeli Palestinian conflict. Clare Short

Prickly Pears of Palestine is a moving and vivid introduction to the realities of life in Palestine/Israel. Bruce Kent

I thought I was well-informed on Palestine, but still reading Hilda Reilly’s Prickly Pears of Palestine was an eye-opening experience. Craig Murray, author of Murder in Samarkand

Objections to Humanism

The Liverpool Humanist Group presents:-

Objections to Humanism

a talk by Andrew Copson

Date:     Thursday 9th September 2010
Time
:    7.30pm
Venue
The Crown (upstairs room), 43 Lime Street, Liverpool L1 1JQ
Cost:
Suggested contribution of £2-3

Andrew Copson is the Chief Executive of the British Humanist Association. He will be presenting a number of frequently expressed objections to the principles on which Humanism is based and demonstrating the fallacy of each.“The human race to which the individual belongs, may not survive, but that should not deter him… Wherever our race comes from, wherever it is going to, whatever his own fissures and weaknesses, he himself is here, is now, he must understand, create, contact.” – E M Forster

Andrew became Chief Executive in January 2010 after five years coordinating the BHA’s education and public affairs work. His writing on humanist and secularist issues has appeared in The Guardian, The Independent, The Times and New Statesman as well as in various journals and he has represented the BHA and Humanism extensively on television news on BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Sky, as well as on television programmes such as Newsnight, The Daily Politics and The Big Questions. He has also appeared on radio on programmes from Today, Sunday, The Last Word and Beyond Belief on the BBC, to local and national commercial radio stations.

He is a former director of the European Humanist Federation (EHF) and is currently a Vice President of the International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU), where he leads on strategic alliances and is a member of the growth and development committee. He has previously served as a delegate of the IHEU to the Council of Europe in Strasbourg and has also represented humanist organisations to the United Nations (UN) and Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE). He has been an adviser on Humanism to the Qualifications and Curriculum Development Authority, the Department for Children, Schools and Families, the BBC, and the Office of National Statistics among others. He is a member of the Advisory Committee for the Humanist Reference Library at London’s Conway Hall and, in a previous post in the office of Lord Macdonald of Tradeston in the House of Lords, he provided the secretariat for the All Party Parliamentary Humanist Group.

Andrew graduated from the University of Oxford with a first in Ancient and Modern History and was a member of the winning team of the 2005 Young Educational Thinker of the Year Programme. He is a Member of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and an Associate of the Centre for Law and Religion at Cardiff University. He came to the BHA in 2005 from the Citizenship Foundation, where he worked on political literacy projects.

August Summer Social – Note Change of Venue

The Liverpool Humanist Group presents:-

Summer Social Meetup

Dates:   Thursday, August 26th 2010
Time
:    6.00pm
Venue
The Everyman Bistro, 5-9 Hope Street, Liverpool L1 9BH
Cost:      Free!

After our successful Summer Social Events in June and July, we have a further Summer Social Meet-up planned for Thursday, 26th August, before resuming a full programme of events in September. Our venue for this meet-up will be the ever popular Everyman Bistro. Join us from 6:00 p.m. for a bite to eat after work, or come along later in the evening for a drink and a chat.

Please note the change in venue from that originally published.

Our main meetings will, in future, be held on the SECOND THURSDAY of each month. We will continue to arrange lectures, discussions and debates about Science, Self, Society, Religion, Philosophy, Politics, and other matters of interest and importance. We can already confirm that Andrew Copson, Chief executive of the British Humanist Association, has agreed to be our speaker for the first lecture of the new season on Thursday, 9th September 2010.

We will continue to hold social meetups on the Fourth Thursday of the month.

We are hoping to offer an Introductory Course -Exploring Humanism later in the year.

The Everyman Bistro, our venue for the August social meet-up, is one of only three venues in Liverpool to get the top A* rating in The 2007 Hardman’s Guide. This ‘*’ is awarded for very good food and the ‘A’ for very good ambience…

The Bistro was yet again commended by Hardens in 2008 and 2009…..and again for their 2010 guide.

The Bistro is beneath the famous Everyman Theatre and there is always an eclectic mix of students, professors, ‘media’ types, local celebrities, Five Rhythms Dancers and Humanists.

Summer Social Meetups – July and August

The Liverpool Humanist Group presents:-

Summer Social Meetups

Dates:   Thursday 22th July 2010 and Thursday August 26th 2010
Time
:    6.00pm
Venue
The 07 Café Bar, 103 Mount Pleasant, Liverpool L3 5TB
Cost:      Free!

After our successful social event in June in celebration of World Humanist Day, we have two more Summer Social Meetups planned for July and August, before resuming a full programme of events in September. Continue reading

Summer Social and Humanist Week Celebration

The Liverpool Humanist Group presents:-

Summer Social and World Humanist Week Celebration

Date:     Thursday 24th June 2010
Time
:    6.00pm
Venue
The 07 Café Bar, Mount Pleasant, Liverpool L3 5TB
Cost:      Free!

This is the first of what Liverpool Humanist Group are planning to be monthly social events, held on the fourth Thursday of each month. These informal social gatherings will be in addition to our regular monthly meetings, which have now moved to the second THURSDAY of each month, when we will continue to arrange lectures, discussions and debates about Science, Self, Society, Religion, Philosophy, Politics, and any other matter we deem of interest and relevance. Continue reading

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