tt.humanist :: forum :: discussion :: introduction
Humanist Forum Lectures and Discussion Series
The Humanist Forum is a series of lectures, debates, panel discussions and workshops intended to promote informed and rational discussion in Trinidad and Tobago. It is our intention to hold these regularly, between 3 and 4 times per year.
At the open forum we invite you (the public) to listen to either the debaters, expert panellists or a lecturer and to offer your own ideas for their consideration and for discussion. We ask that you direct your questions or statements to the moderator and that you take no longer than two minutes so that we can cover as much ground as possible.
The Trinidad and Tobago Humanist Association was officially launched on Republic Day, 24 September 2005 at the NALIS Audio-Visual Room. We currently have forty active members, engaged in our open e-mail discussion loop for ideas and opinions, and a Humanist news subscription list of over one hundred.
In the first year, our small association has had published in the print media twenty statements from collective opinion and twelve statements from individual members in collaboration with other members. Most of these twenty six statements took the form of a "letter to the editor" and have been consistently letter of the day and published in all three daily news papers.
As a result we have been sought for our opinions on ethics in current affairs by the electronic media. Three TV news stations and three radio news stations invited some of our members to appear in no less than 28 appearances in news casts, panel discussions and talk shows.
Why do we do this? The TT Humanist Association is an association of free thinking individuals who wish to promote informed and rational discussion in Trinidad and Tobago. We promote secularism in governance and philosophy in education. We also interject where there is no apparent process in the formulation of public policy or any act from any individual or group that assumes to impose unsupported belief into public life.
We are not atheists debating the existence or non-existence of a higher being. Firstly, we do not have the time; secondly we do not enquire as to our members' private belief (its bad manners) and finally we do not care. The existence or non-existence of a higher being is neither here or there to humanist thinking - it does not affect the process.
It is this process that will help to explain what humanist thinking is, if that is possible, in five words. Firstly we seek solutions to our challenges through "enquiry, evidence and reason." Secondly we urge that such solutions are applied from the ground of "ethics and compassion." That is as close to humanist thinking I think we can get in a few words. If you think that you also are of a like mind you can join us by visiting our web site. There you will find, not a rule book of or a bible, but an endless library containing thousands of opinions and ideas - and more importantly, a willingness to discuss them. You will find thinking, its process and it's development, from over 75 Humanist associations around the world.
We are connected, we communicate, we are human.