Whose Liberty Matters? Faith, Politics & Human Rights

A discussion-based event jointly presented by the Melbourne University Christian Union & the University of Melbourne Secular Society.

Do certain rights trump others? Can a balance be created between religious and secular freedoms? Come along for an interactive event looking at different questions of liberty within society, particularly considering the place religious freedoms have within our civil society. James Fodor, Rosemary Reilly and Moshe Jasper will kick us off with some preliminary remarks on a few key questions, before opening the event up for general discussion. All welcome!

  • when: Thursday 30th March, 1300  – 1400
  • where: Alan Gilbert 109 (Theatre 2)

Attend the event online

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Regressive Left, Alternative Right: The Place of Reason in Politics

New labels like ‘Regressive Left’ and ‘Alternative Right’, as well as old ones like ‘Liberal’, ‘Conservative’, ‘Socialist’, and ‘Fascist’ are bandied about a lot in today’s political discourse, but what do these terms really mean? In this discussion we will move beyond the slogans and name-calling to examine the diversity of political viewpoints in the contemporary world, and consider how we can pursue a more reasoned and evidence-based approach to political discussion.

Everyone is welcome to attend and discuss your own take on the topic and what you understand of them

  • when: 23rd March, 12:00–13:30
  • where: Medical-N817 (Rand Theatre)

Attend the Event Online

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Science and Religion: Is There a Conflict?

Join us this week as we discuss the longstanding issue of the relationship between science and religion. Are the two locked in perpetual conflict, or are they mutually independent spheres, each addressing separate issues? Can religion have any bearing on the conduct of science? Should scientific findings shape religious or spiritual beliefs (or lack thereof)? Head along for a friendly and engaging discussion!

  • when: Thursday 16th, 12:00–14:00
  • where: Medical-N817 (Rand Theatre)

Attend the Event Online

*EDIT The location for the even was originally Arts West 153 – Forum Theatre, but had been changed to Medical-N817 (Rand Theatre)

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Where Does Morality Come From?

In our event for week 2 we will be tackling the question of the foundations of morality. Do objective moral values exist? If so, where do they come from? What determines whether something is right or wrong? Do moral standards hold across time and cultures? What impact to these questions have on social and political action? Come along for some initial remarks on these matters followed by a moderated discussion. People from all backgrounds and beliefs are welcome.

We will also be providing free pizza!

  • when: 9 March at 12:00–13:30
  • where: Arts West North Wing-153 (Forum Theatre)

Attend The Event Online

*Amendment, the location has been changed due to Venue Booking deciding that we need to change our venue.

 

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What do you Believe? Screening and Discussion

During orientation this year the Secular Society interviewed a number of people from different backgrounds about their faith and non-faith beliefs and worldviews, to produce a documentary showcasing the diversity of views among Melbourne University students.

This event will be the premiere screening of this documentary, which features atheists, agnostics, Christians, Muslims, and Buddhists. We will also present the results of our faith survey, which already had over 100 respondents. The screening and survey results will then form the basis for a moderated discussion concerning faith and non-faith views, how we can evaluate competing perspectives, and what impact such beliefs have on our lives and society.

Join us for this exciting and stimulating event! Respectful persons of all worldviews and perspectives are welcome.

Attend The Event Online

  • when: Thursday 2nd of March, 12:30–14:00
  • where: OId Arts Theatre B

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SkeptiCamp 2016

A reminder for the upcoming SkeptiCamp event

Skepticamp is a grass roots and informal ‘unconference’ for people interested in engaging in critical thinking and science-based skepticism. UMSS is helping to organise it to coincide with the Australian Skeptics National Convention that will be on the same weekend at the University of Melbourne.

Again, if you or someone you know might be interested in bringing what you know about something to bear, get in touch with UMSS President James Fodor at Fods12@gmail.com.

Potential topics are quite broad, ut any topic related to science, philosophy, skepticism, or critical thinking, and can be as simple as a story of applying some new fact or argument you learnt that changed the way you, or someone you know, used to do something.

Attend the event online:
https://www.facebook.com/events/914428628702051/

  • When: Old Arts-155 (Theatre D)
  • Where: 9am to 6pm, Friday 25th November

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This Week: Evaluating Philosopher David Hume

At this event guest speaker Tom Larsen will discuss David Hume’s arguments against miracles. Beginning with outlining the historical context to Hume’s essay on miracles, Tom will discuss both Hume’s general and specific objections to identifying miracles, and provide a critical evaluation of these arguments, esp. drawing on some of the historical respondents to Hume (Adams, Campbell, Douglas, Leland, Paley) as well as some contemporary respondents. Questions and discussions will follow the main presentation. People of all worldviews are welcome.

Attend the event online:
https://www.facebook.com/events/1743344735926793/

About our speaker:
Tom Larsen is a past vice-president of Christian Union at Monash University. He is particularly interested in the intersection of computer science, psychology, and education, using software to optimise human learning, the history and philosophy of science, and historical works on the evidences of Christianity. He has participated in public debates on the evidences of Christianity at the University of Melbourne and Monash University.

  • when: Tuesday 4th, 1200-1400
  • where: Redmond Barry-625

UMSS committee

SkeptiCamp: Contribute Your Story!

Skepticamp is a grass roots and informal ‘unconference’ for people interested in engaging in critical thinking and science-based skepticism. UMSS is helping to organise it to coincide with the Australian Skeptics National Convention that will be on the same weekend at the University of Melbourne.

Anyone interested in presenting a talk or workshop about any topic related to science, philosophy, skepticism, or critical thinking is invited and welcome to contact the club, or email UMSS President James Fodor at Fods12@gmail.com.

Potential topics are quite broad, and can be as simple as a story of applying some new fact or argument you learnt that changed the way you, or someone you know, used to do something.

  • when: Friday 25th November
  • where: Melbourne University Campus

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Rationalist and Secularist House Party

For this weeks event:

This Wednesday, the Rationalist Association of Monash and University of Melbourne Secular Society are having a joint event

Secular Society Club President James Fodor to talk about consensus and how it should inform our beliefs.

If anyone needs a pick up from, or drop off to Clayton station then we will have a car or two helping with transit. A map will also be provided on the night.

Members of RAM and UMSS welcome freely, as are +1s

Attend the event online:
https://www.facebook.com/events/309526276081643/
(member access to the Facebook link only)

  • when: Wednesday 28th 1700 – 2300
  • where: Unit 5, 15 Fregon Road, Clayton

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