Café Philo DC: "Is Open-Mindedness Due More to Nature or Nurture?"
Moderator: Shannon Gough
Café Philo DC, now in its 19th year, is a moderated, philosophical roundtable discussion for the general public founded by Ken Feldman and animated by the question: "If politics is too important to be left to the politicians, then isn't thinking too important to be left to any authority other than your own mind?" Modeled on its Parisian prototype, the event welcomes all philosophically curious people to discuss the big questions in life. Topics often encourage the practical application of philosophical principles and, in good Socratic fashion, the discussions encourage participants to cultivate the process of imaginative inquiry as much, if not more, than to seek definitive answers to vexing questions.
Examples of past topics are: Am I sane? Does knowledge inhibit the imagination? What is humor? Is mathematics merely a human construct? Who belongs to that voice in my head? Does freedom of choice enslave us? Should atheists proselytize? Is romance a necessary illusion? What is the role of reason in human affairs? Are we making progress? Can a reader understand a novel better than its author? Are there limits to tolerance? Is the individual more important than the community? What is the basis for morality? Are truth and justice myths? What is the relationship between art and morality? Should we live in the moment? Is it immoral to live happily while injustice persists? Is violence ever justified? What is meaning? Is certainty overvalued? Is reality in the mind or in the world? Are there valid moral principles for a culturally diverse society? and Does provocative speech merit restriction?
Discussions, which usually take place on the 2nd and 4th Saturdays of the month (occasionally on Sundays, and usually just once during both November and December), are complemented by a Yahoo discussion list called Café Philo DC Dialogue that can be found at (https://beta.groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/cafephilodcdialogue/info). Please contact Ken Feldman at KenFphilo@aol.com with questions and requests to be placed on the listserv for meeting notices and background material relevant to each topic. This information may also be found on the Café Philo DC Dialogue discussion list.