Leo Igwe speaking in Dayton on July 15

Freethought Dayton will be hosting Leo Igwe to speak in Dayton on July 15.  This talk will take place in the main auditorium of the downtown Dayton Metro Library, 215 E. Third St, at 6:00 PM.

Leo Igwe is a humanist, skeptic, and human rights advocate from Nigeria. He has specialized in campaigning against and documenting the impacts of witchcraft accusations in Africa, where up to 55% of the population believes in witchcraft, often with horrifying results, as the people (usually elderly women) accused of witchcraft are beaten, driven from their villages, or worse (more info here and here).

In 2012, Mr. Igwe was appointed as a Research Fellow of the James Randi Educational Foundation, where he continues working toward the goal of responding to what he sees as the deleterious effects of superstition, advancing skepticism throughout Africa and around the world. In 2014, he was chosen as a laureate of the International Academy of Humanism.

His talk in Dayton is titled: A Debate of the Heart: Fighting for Human Rights in the ”Witch Camps” of Ghana.  This is Mr. Igwe’s description of the talk: For some time, humanists have been preoccupied with a very important debate – the debate of the mind. Humanists have articulated excellent, awakening, enlightening and groundbreaking ideas. Atheists and Agnostics have written best selling books marshalling arguments that have shaken the foundations of religious and dogmatic systems. But humanists focused so much on the debate of the mind that they have ignored another very important debate – the debate of the heart. My presentation focuses on how humanists can robustly engage in the debate of the heart by applying humanism’s best selling ideas to the fight for the basic human rights of persons- mainly old women- banished to witch camps in Ghana.

RSVPs are appreciated but not required.  To RSVP or for more information, email info@freethoughtdayton.org or join our meetup group.

More information on Leo Igwe and the Igwe Study Project can be found at Foundation Beyond Belief.

Week of Action

You’ve heard of the National Day of Prayer, and the secular community’s response, the National Day of Reason.  This year, there’s a new response we can all get behind: the Week of Action.  A time for those who choose to pray and those who choose not to pray to #choosetoACT.
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The Week of Action is the brainchild of Humanist Rabbi Adam Chalom.  Rabbi Chalom argues that, while reason is certainly a worthy value to celebrate, the secular counterpart to “Prayer” is not “Reason” – it is “Action.”  Now, Foundation Beyond Belief has taken up the banner for a National Week of Action and created this website.  Freethought Dayton already has three charitable events on the calendar during the Week of Action, and a few more possibly on the way.  We hope you can join us at one, two, or all of them.

The events so far:

Friday, April 25: Volunteer at the Foodbank
Saturday, April 26: Bleed and Feed
Sunday, April 27: Adopt-a-Highway cleanup
You can RSVP for any of these events at meetup.com/freethoughtdayton.

Even if you can’t make it to a volunteer meetup, think about what you can do on a personal level during the week of action.  Become a contributing member to FBB.  Donate your spare change when the opportunity arises.  Smile at a stranger.  If you’ve been on the fence about becoming a regular volunteer with one of Dayton’s many fine nonprofits, take the plunge (find ideas at volunteermatch.org.

Also considering joining the Week of Action on facebook and following it on twitter.

Jerry DeWitt visits Dayton

Check out a partial recording of Jerry’s talk here.

What do you think? Post your tweets with the hashtags @freethoughtd8n and@jerry_dewitt

Thanks for coming to Dayton Jerry!

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What? Jerry Dewitt speaking on the subject of his new book “Hope after Faith”

When?  Tuesday, March 5, 2013 at 7:00 PM

Where? Miami Valley Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, 8690 Yankee Street, Dayton, OH

Freethought Dayton is a local facilitator of the Recovering from Religion organization. The director of RR, Jerry DeWitt, is the first graduate of The Clergy Project and will be in Dayton to speak and meet with our membership.

Jerry DeWitt became a non-believer after more than twenty-five years of Pentecostal ministry in his home state of Louisiana. His ministry experience begin at the early age of seventeen and included evangelizing across the United States and being the assistant pastor of two United Pentecostal churches as well as one Apostolic church. During his dilemma with doubt Jerry ultimately held the senior pastorate of two very unique congregations, one charismatic dominionist and the other non-denominational fundamentalist.

Find out more on the Freethought Dayton Meetup site.

NYT Article: From Bible-Belt Pastor to Atheist Leader

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FD Book Club

Freethought Dayton hosts a monthly Book Club. Here’s how it works… Members suggest books and then we create a poll and vote via the meetup site on which book to read next.The book club event is normally hosted in a local library. Members share their ideas and opinions about the book in open discussion forum.

Want to see what we are reading? Then join us on our Meetup.com site.