Summer is here! It will be official on the 21st. June is a great time for hiking in the mountains. That is, if you aren’t still exhausted from that amazing WeCanReason Conference we had in May. How great was that! If you missed it, don’t worry because we are already planning one for next year. So put May 4th on your 2024 calendar now. If you attended the conference, let us know what you loved about it and also tell us how we can improve it next year. Drop a line to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We would also like to express our appreciation to CFI Canada for including information about our conference in their May issue of Critical Links. The June issue of CFIC Critical Links arrived today and it, too, has an article involving Calgary. However, this article is not as positive as the one about our conference. It seems that an officer in the Calgary Police Service (CPS) reached out to CFIC for some assistance. Officially, on paper, the CPS is completely neutral with respect to religion. However, the CPS officer explained to CFIC that, in practice, on an informal daily basis, the atmosphere at CPS is very Christian, mostly Catholic. This situation makes it very uncomfortable for non-Christians and non-believers. You can read the entire article, Are You (Or Do You Know) An Alberta Lawyer With Human Rights Experience?, here, https://centreforinquiry.ca/christianity-embedded-in-calgary-police/#comments.
In the summer, we often take vacation trips. So, in the WeCanReason Webinar this month, we are going to take a trip with David Spencer, to the land of the Incas. The title of his talk is, Incan Metallurgy and Masonry: Quito, Cuzco, Sacsayhuaman, and Machu Picchu. David travelled to Ecuador and Peru, saw many things, and took many pictures, some of which, he will show us. While admiring his many photos, David will tell us what he learned while on the trip and after he returned home and did more research. David never stops learning and we get to learn from him.
My pick for this month is the Q-Dropped Podcast with Courtney Heard. In her presentation at the conference, Courtney blew us away with her story about how QAnon affected her family when her parents were drawn into the QAnon conspiracy theories. What she learned from her own experience, led Courtney to investigate the experiences of others. What she found was alarming. Many families have been torn apart because a member or several members of the family have fallen down the QAnon rabbit hole. On her podcast, Courtney interviews individuals who have lost one or more family members to QAnon conspiracies. The episodes are fascinating but, in some cases, I recommend that you have a box of tissues nearby.
Note: Some events might not appear on this list because they are not yet confirmed. Check the Meetup page to find any new events that might be planned during the month.
Thursday, June 1
Life Without Religion
First Thursday of every month at 7:00 pm
LProfessional therapists know that a feeling of being defective or broken forms the basis of several clinical issues. They also know that these issues do not respond to reason and logic alone. Therapists have developed methods for treating the problems caused by this sense that there is something fundamentally wrong with you.
At the same time, fundamentalist religions teach that all of us are “born in sin” and thus have a sinful nature. In addition, the only way to be of any use to the world is to “give your life to god.” This is one of many reasons that RMA has the peer support group that we call Life Without Religion or LWR. In meetings, we discuss ways that we can deal with issues caused by religious beliefs and/or by leaving religion. Members will receive the Zoom link by email a day or two before the meeting.
If you are not yet a member but feel that you would benefit from the support of those who have had a similar journey as you, contact Lois at email@example.com.
Pizza and Ping Pong Party
Saturdays at 7:00 pm as announced
The party will be at the home of James Hildebrandt in Tuscany. If you RSVP, the address will be sent to you on Friday the 2nd.
There will be ping pong and pizza and possibly other games and entertainment. The evening is a chance to relax and socialize with like-minded people. A contribution of $10 is requested for the pizza and snacks but BYOB. Enjoy!
Tuesday, June 6
Skeptics in the Pub
First Tuesday of every month at 7:00 p
There is nothing like Skeptics in the Pub for socializing with old friends and making new friends. Bottlescrew Bill’s has a great menu and a huge variety of drinks. Then, of course, Jeff will have a thought-provoking set of videos that will initiate in-depth discussions. Join us at Bottlescrew Bill’s, 140 10 Ave SW, Calgary.
Thursday, June 8
RMA Book Club – ONLINE
Second Thursday of every month at 7:00 pm
The title of the book for this month’s Book Club is Different: Gender Through the Eyes of a Primatologist, by Frans de Waal. How much can we learn about the behavior of the genders in Homo sapiens by studying other apes? Let’s find out from one of the world’s leading primatologists. Will we agree? Will we be disturbed? How will we respond? We will certainly have a fascinating discussion. Join us by clicking on https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89815989279.
Monday, June 12
Second Monday of every month at 1:00 pm
What do you want to talk about? Has something been bugging you lately and you want to get some feedback from some like-minded people. Or do you have something exciting to tell us about? Whatever it is, you can come to Coffee Chat and let us know. The discussions are wide open and always congenial. Just click on https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89549661534 to join us. Welcome.
Tuesday, June 20
Life Without Religion
Third Tuesday of every month at 7:00 pm
A recent article in the Washington Post revealed a major reason why some people raised in a fundamentalist religion feel cheated when they are adults and have escaped from the religion bubble. The article, The revolt of the Christian home-schoolers, is about a couple who were both raised in fundamentalist homes and were home schooled. They started to home school their own children but realized that the children would be better off in public schools. Eventually, they realized that their own education had been very inadequate and they felt cheated.
This is not unusual for people who have left a fundamentalist religion. They were told that public schools taught falsehoods and were evil. In some cases, they were counselled to follow career paths that led nowhere. As adults, they were missing important segments of their education and/or experiences. It is very helpful to discuss these disappointments with others who have had similar experiences which is what we do in Life Without Religion meetings. Members receive the Zoom link by email a day or two before each meeting.
If you are not yet a member of LWR and are interested in joining, or if you have any questions, contact Lois at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Monday, June 26
Movie Night - Online
Fourth Monday of every month at 7:00 pm
The movie for this month has not yet been selected. We have a few ideas but nothing has been confirmed. Suggestions are always welcome. But have we ever let you down before? The movies or documentaries have always been good as well as stimulating a riveting discussion. Keep checking the Meetup page to find out what movie has been selected and then join us by clicking on https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86961779888.
Wednesday, June 28
Fourth Wednesday of the month at 7:00 pm, usually
This month we are going to take a trip with David Spencer at the WeCanReason Webinar. David has travelled to so many exotic places that I think we could genuinely call him the “travellin’ man.” He has travelled to Peru, Easter Island, the Galapagos, Ecuadorian jungle, the Falkland Islands, and South Georgia. For this webinar, David will take us to Ecuador and Peru, the home of the ancient Incas. The title of his talk is "Incan Metallurgy and Masonry: Quito, Cuzco, Sacsayhuaman, and Machu Picchu." He will show many pictures that he took on his trip and tell us numerous things that he learned about the Incas and the area. You can join David in Ecuador and Peru by simply clicking on https://us02web.zoom.us/j/82026014707.