Men’s Friendship Crisis, and why Atheists Should Care


At our Humanist Community at Harvard​/Humanist Hub staff meeting today, we discussed the surprising lack of gender diversity in #CNNatheists, as well as our own efforts to have well-balanced gender participation. I think we do pretty well at it (and, of our four senior/manager-level staff now, I'm the only male) but at times, there can be a lot of men at the Hub, too.I presented a article, "American men’s hidden crisis: They need more friends!", by my friend the very smart soci … [Read more...]

CNN’s Special on Atheists and Humanists


UPDATE, March 25: The CNN film was very interesting. We at the Humanist Hub and the Humanist Community at Harvard​ were extremely pleased with the entire segment on our community. Watch a great 2 minute preview of that, here,***I haven't posted yet about tonight's big CNN​ news special on atheists and Humanists, because although anchor Kyra Phillips​ and her team filmed for five days at the Humanist Hub and the Humanist Community at Harvard​, I didn't want to presume we were in it. But my … [Read more...]

Exciting News About This Blog!

Welcome to the "Godless Congregation"! I'm excited to announce that this blog will be expanding significantly, starting this week and ramping up over the coming months. For a few years now, I've felt there was a need for a blog that could provide resources, insights, commentary on, and just an inside look at what it's like to build an inspiring local community for atheists, agnostics and allies. But, we've been so involved in building our community-- the Humanist Hub-- that there just hasn't … [Read more...]

Boston Mayor’s Interfaith Task Force Includes Us


I’m delighted to announce I’ve been asked to serve on Boston Mayor Martin Walsh’s inaugural Interfaith Advisory Task Force. The group met for the first time last night at Boston’s City Hall, and I was asked to give the closing reflection at the meeting. My remarks are below.First, though, I want to say it feels good to know that Humanists, atheists, agnostics and the nonreligious finally have an official “seat at the table” here in Boston. We went through a difficult time feeling as though we … [Read more...]

So, How Exactly Should Atheists Celebrate the Holidays?

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This past Sunday at the Humanist Hub, I gave a talk-- more like led a discussion-- on "Holiday Magic (for Atheists)." It's our first time celebrating this season in an open, membership-based community of atheists, agnostics and allies who have their own space. The talk/discussion was dedicated to figuring out how we feel about this time of year, what it means for us, and what we want to do (and not do) about it.Here's a sample of what the group came up with in response to the question, "what … [Read more...]

The Language of Humanism


The Humanist Community at Harvard recently held a celebration of the first anniversary of the opening of The Humanist Hub, our 3200 square foot, open-to-the-public "Center for Humanist Life" in the heart of Harvard Square. It's been an amazing year at the Hub, and one of the reasons I'm most excited to re-launch this blog is to be able to share more of what we're doing there to help invent the concept community space for atheists, agnostics, and allies.Anyway, the anniversary event featured … [Read more...]

On Grief, Winter, and Kindling Lights


On Wednesday December 17, I had the honor of being one of two invited speakers at the annual Candle Lighting Service at the historic and very beautiful Mount Auburn Cemetery. All 600+ families who held burials at the Cemetery this past year were invited; in addition, there are families who've been attending every year for many years. Though I do regularly perform funerals for members of my community, over most of the past decade I've worked primarily with Harvard students (still do, but we are n … [Read more...]

Festivals of Life and Renewal

Then the earth comes back to life. Nature resurrects itself. That is the real story of Easter, and it’s why the Easter and Passover season is probably my favorite of the year if I had to choose. Every year I’m amazed by the way the way it happens again: no matter what is going wrong in my life, the season almost magically provides reasons to view life sunnily. That’s just how nature works. It finally provides more light, more oxygen, every year. So why wouldn’t we want to tell old stories that ca … [Read more...]

What is(n’t) a Humanist Community?

After a practice run in early March followed by a particularly busy period, it looks like I'm finally just about ready to start blogging more. And just in time to share some results from a new little talk I gave last weekend. In it, I began to explore how we might define Humanist community in the 21st century. In recent years there have been several excellent short definitions of what Humanists believe. And over decades we've seen many important forms of Humanist community emerge: Ethical … [Read more...]

Meditation 6: The Things We’ve Handed Down

I'm exhausted and wondering how the hell bloggers do it. We've had such a long day here in Los Angeles. An orientation session where we got to know fellow participants on this Spring Break Service Trip; then a long drive out to California Lutheran University where we packed hundreds of meals for the young people we'll be serving later this week at Safe Place for Youth (Cal Lutheran has become a hotbed of Humanism ever since MA native Evan Clark came out here, founded a Secular Student Alliance … [Read more...]