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Darwin Day: 12 February

February 7th, 2008 · Posted by Hugo · 3 Comments

From the sound of it, South Africa has only very recently started teaching evolutionary theory in schools. I only recently started noticing how few people really know much about it. (Humans often assume that everyone knows what you know… agree or disagree?)

Here is an opportunity to learn more about evolution:

Greetings Freethinkers!

Tuesday 12 February is Darwin Day. Charles Darwin, one of the founding fathers of modern science, was born on 12th February 1809 – thats 199 years ago on Tuesday!

As with many intellectual, scientific, and freethought societies, Freethinking Maties will be marking the occasion with a modest celebration. We will be hosting a small video presentation about Darwin’s most enduring theory – the theory of evolution by the processes of natural selection.

Date: 12 February 2008
Place: Music Department (Konservatorium), corner of Neethling and Victoria str (use Neethling street entrance)
Time: 19.30 (with allowance!)
Cost: Nothing!

The Music Department have kindly agreed to host us for free in the Endler foyer. Please bring along any interested parties or curious friends, and spread the word! For more information on Darwin Day see www.darwinday.org.

Hope to see you there…

FREETHINKING MATIES

I will be there, I hope it is a good video…

There are churches that join in on the celebration of Darwin day — last year they celebrated “Evolution Sunday” the day before. The clip below is a news report on the “Creation Museum”, just after half-way through is a brief interview with a clergyman that is teaching Darwin in Sunday school to counter the creationists’ undermining of science.

While I seriously doubt any churches in Stellenbosch or South Africa can take a strong pro-evolution stance, there are indeed churches that do not have a problem with it. Typically, the more educated the church leadership, the better.

For those that understand Afrikaans, Stephan Joubert has a post on ekerk that gives the kind of response that could work in most situations. In this country, at this point in time, I would be really hesitant to advocate a strong pro-science stance in churches. An alternative to avoiding the question in that manner, is to emphasize the acceptance of diversity in the congregation, that everyone do not share the exact same opinions or interpretations.

Categories: Religion and Science
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3 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Ben // Feb 7, 2008 at 9:59 pm

    In this country, at this point in time, I would be really hesitant to advocate a strong pro-science stance in churches.

    They’re not ready for 19th century science yet in South Africa either, huh?

    I’ll be at the Humanist Legislative Action Day:
    http://humaniststudies.org/policy/lad_2008.html

    NY state is actually going to put a resolution forward about Darwin Day. Maybe it will pass.

  • 2 Hugo // Feb 8, 2008 at 7:00 am

    They’re not ready for 19th century science yet in South Africa either, huh?

    ;) Churches cater for diverse crowds. Diversity needs to be maintained, because without it, people don’t learn. People don’t improve. Take a strong stance on things that are controversial, then you lose those that don’t like that stance.

    In embracing and encouraging diversity, you maintain a “memetic” plasticity, an ability to learn and develop new ideas and new understandings. Diversity helps you to become like children, ready to learn new things.

    Or so my thinking goes.

  • 3 Hugo // Feb 9, 2008 at 10:24 am

    Bummer! This clashes with Shofar’s Bible School. I think I should just sign up for the correspondence course and be done with it. That gives me opportunity to pour over the material in greater depth and detail as well… which can potentially be of great benefit to me…

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