Next on ETFF…
Saturday, August 23; 3:00 PM EST
Patricia Churchland: Touching a Nerve: The Self as Brain
The human experience, and the ‘self’, is so rich it must be produced by some transcendent being, some ultimate self that goes beyond the physical body, or so it is claimed. How else can spiritual experience and deep emotion be explained? Can they all be products of the brain?
It turns out that by studying the brain, scientists have gained profound understandings of much of human nature. The brain really is capable of generating the rich, varied human experiences we call ‘spirituality’. But that fact challenges our ideas about who and what we are. If our ‘selves’ are “just” the product of some physical mechanism, even one as complex as the brain, are we really robust human beings?
Patricia Churchland, professor emerita at the University of California, San Diego, teaches neurophilosophy. She’s accustomed to tackling the big philosophical questions with respect to the brain, and has become comfortable with the idea that our ‘selves’ really are our brains. She’ll discuss these questions and more on this brain-twisting episode of ETFF!
Tune in, Pay it Forward, and Question Everything!
Previously on ETFF…
Greta Christina on “The Atheist Condition”
On ETFF we have discussed religion, supernatural beliefs and atheism from a philosophical and political perspective. We have asked why people believe without evidence, what role religion plays in our political landscape, and what role does our political natures play in the sorts of religious teachings we accept or reject. And we have asked what the relationship is between religion and science
But what we may not have talked about well enough may be the more personal aspects of atheism for the non-believer. Why is it so hard, even in 2014, for atheists in some parts of this country to discuss their belief — and not just in public, but even with friends and family? How does one “come out” as an atheist in perhaps the most religious nation in the developed world? Why is it important that atheists do come out, just as the LBGT community has learned over the last several decades? And when atheists DO come out and discuss their beliefs and express their ideas with the general public, why does it seem many believers find us to be obnoxious, arrogant, stubborn, and angry?
Greta Christina will discuss these questions and more with us in just a few moments. Greta is a regular atheist correspondent for AlterNet, Free Inquiry, and The Humanist, and has been writing about atheism in her own “Greta Christina’s blog” since 2005. As a public speaker, she is part of the Speakers Bureau for the Secular Student Alliance and the Center for Inquiry. Greta was a speaker on the Diversity in Skepticism panel at The Amaz!ng Meeting in July, 2011, the Reason Rally in 2012, and the 50th annual convention of American Atheists in 2013.
In that same year, she was named the International Team Honored Hero of the Foundation Beyond Belief (FBB). The Foundation’s teams raise money for The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Greta received the 2013 LGBT Humanist Pride Award from the American Humanist Association.
Her two books we will be discussing with her today are Coming Out Atheist: How to do it, How to Held Each Other, and Why, and Why are you Atheists so Angry: 99 Things that Piss off the Godless.
Listen to Audio Here!
ETFF Presents: The Bunny vs The Son of God!
Listen to Audio Here!
ETFF Talks w/ Santa!
Listen to Audio Here!
The Humanist Interviews…
Equal Time for Freethought’s exec. producer, Barry F. Seidman, had the honor of being the first person interviewed for blogger “Skepoet” for his new series on humanism. Skepoet’s blog, ‘At Crossroads of Critical Thinking and the Humanities,’ contains essays and links about Education, Environmentalism, Humanism, Philosophy, Politics, Science & Skepticism. The Seidman interview can be found here!
Barry F. Seidman interviews Meco Monardo!
Disclaimer: Yes, we know this has nothing to do with Freethought…
The artist who mastered the genre of “symphonic disco” goes by the name of Meco Monardo. “MECO” recorded over 15 albums, mostly from 1977 till 1985, as well as a host of singles some of which were not accompanied by full LPs. MECO did experiment from time to time with original work, but the musical canvas on which he arranged the many marriages of symphony music and disco included the wonderful music from films such as the Star Wars series, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Superman, The Black Hole, Raiders of the Lost Ark, American Werewolf of London, The Wizard of Oz and of course, Star Trek.
MECO’s full name is Domenico Monardo. He was born in Pennsyvania. His father played the valve trombone in a small Italian band, and through him Meco got his first musical education. Meco wanted to play the drums, but his father convinced him that the trombone was the right instrument, and at nine that was the instrument which he was to stay with, however, for Meco the slide trombone was his choice. He joined the high school band while still attending grammar school. At 17 he won a scholarship to the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York, which provided him with a solid classical and jazz music education. There, together with his two friends Chuck Mangione and Ron Carter, he started the Eastman School of Music Jazz Band. Originally not inclined towards pop music, Meco’s heart changed when he heard Petula Clark’s “Downtown”.
He began doing arrangements, for example the horn section on Tommy James’ “Crystal Blue Persuasion.” In an interview with DiscoMusic.com Meco explains that he is probably the only person who has played a jazz trombone solo on any pop record the last 50 years. This happened on Diana Ross’ 1980 album Diana, on the song, “I’m Coming Out.” Around 1973 Meco, Tony Bongiovi and a third person formed the production company Disco Corporation of America, and from 1974 to 1976 Meco worked as a record producer. The team of Meco, Bongiovi, Jay Ellis and Harold Wheeler produced the 1974 Gloria Gaynor hit “Never Can Say Goodbye” and Carol Douglas’ “Doctor’s Orders.”
The ETFF Mission…
To explore and represent an evidence-based world view, thereby providing a forum for social change based on secular humanism, scientific naturalism, and healthy skepticism.
Equal time is sorely needed! Just as WBAI stands in a proud tradition of progressive dissent from the mainstream corporate political system, this show stands in dissent from the mainstream society, which is dominated today by supernaturalism and religious or “faith-based” views. In fact, many of us believe that a vital part of achieving social progress will be freeing humanity from superstition and supernatural beliefs.
We also feel that being evidence-based implies our advocating for a proactive planetary humanism rather than merely articulating what we don’t profess to believe. This means that on Equal Time for Freethought, we explore what a humanist future society might look like via addressing not only secularism or atheism, but also naturalism, spirituality, society, politics, economics, and human potential.
Call in: (212) 209-2900
Pledges: (212) 209-2950
Who is Equal Time for Freethought?
Producers/Hosts: Barry F. Seidman / Arnell Dowret
Barry has worked as a humanist/Freethought community leader and events coordinator for the Council for Secular Humanism and the Center for Inquiry (2000-2006). Barry’s writing has been published in Free Inquiry, Philosophy Now, The Skeptic UK, The New Humanist, the Daily Record of New Jersey, Biotechnology News, Oncology.com, The Sciences, Skeptical Inquirer and EXIT, and he is co-editor of the anthology, Toward a New Political Humanism. He is working on a new book on how to get to a healthy global society based on interviews conducted on ETFF.
Arnell is a writer, radio host, and activist in the humanist community. He is a contributing author to the book, Toward A New Political Humanism, and to the book, The Myth of Free Will. He developed “Secular Connections” an alternative experimental workshop originally offered by Center for Inquiry in New Jersey. He is working on a book about Scientific Naturalism, Determinism, and Progressive Change.
Special Guest Hosts: Matthew LaClair, Xaquri Rzetelny & Michael O’Neil
Matthew is serving as the student President of the Center for Inquiry On Campus. He is currently a student at The New School in New York, NY. Matthew was first noticed by Freethought groups when as a high school student in Kearny, NJ, he challenged (along side the ACLU) a teacher who ignored the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution by promoting Creationism (religion) and other personal religious beliefs in the classroom.
Xaquri is a student at Rutgers University studying both Journalism and Physics with an aim at becoming a science journalist. He identifies as an atheist and secular humanist.
Michael works as a website builder/IT, is a long time radio host, and an activist who has worked on behalf of The Church of Stop Shopping, the NY State Green Party, and others.
Founder: Dorothy “Sara” Klein