Looking for a community where you can ask big questions, explore what gives your life meaning and purpose, and act to make the world a better place? We invite you to join us for Humanist Haven, a gathering for anyone interested in exploring human-centered ethics. We are open to the public and welcoming to all.
Humanist Haven is currently held at The Grove 760 Chapel St. in New Haven, and we meet at 1pm on two Sundays a month.
Street parking is free in downtown New Haven on Sundays!
Want to volunteer at Humanist Haven? We are always looking for people to offer reflections, serve as greeters, and help us set up the space. Click here to let us know when you’re available.
Zen: How It Can Kill You
The State of Secular Connecticut: Communities, Activities, and Activists
Throwing Out the Bathwater but Keeping the Baby: Religion, Humanism, and Community
Our first Humanist Haven of the academic year will be held on the New Haven Green! Join us on Sunday, September 10th at 1pm. All are welcome!
SPRING 2017 SUNDAYS
Julien Musolino: How to Popularize Science
Efforts on the part of researchers to popularize science are of paramount importance in today’s world. And yet, a number of obstacles still stand in the way. In this talk, cognitive scientist Julien Musolino will discuss this important problem and propose possible solutions. RSVP on Facebook.
Julien Musolino is a Franco-American cognitive scientist, public speaker, author, and professor at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, where he holds a dual appointment in the psychology department and the Center for Cognitive Science.
Fernando Alcántar: How to Lead from Pain
Join author and activist Fernando Alcántar for a talk on identifying with the brokenness of others, accepting our own, and learning to guide our community and ourselves to a place of healing—using the lessons from the past as a launching pad for positive change. RSVP on Facebook.
Fernando Alcántar is an out gay atheist activist and author of “To the Cross and Back.” He is a former denominational leader for the Foursquare Church in Mexico, the United Methodist Church in the US, and missionary leader for Azusa Pacific University.
February 12 (Darwin Day)
Lynn Rothschild: How to Hunt for Aliens: Finding Darwin beyond Planet Earth
Darwin utterly changed our understanding of the source of the diversity of life on Earth, and with it, our origin. But is our origin story one of a multitude—or are we unique or, indeed, alone in the cosmos? With Darwin as our guide, we are now in a position to go forth and search. Join evolutionary biologist and astrobiologist Lynn Rothschild for a special talk in honor of Darwin Day. RSVP on Facebook.
Lynn Rothschild is passionate about the evolution of life on Earth or elsewhere, while at the same time pioneering the use of synthetic biology to enable space exploration. Just as travel abroad permits new insights into home, so too the search for life elsewhere allows a more mature scientific, philosophical and ethical perception of life on Earth. She wears these hats as a senior scientist NASA’s Ames Research Center as well as Adjunct Professor at Brown University, and the University of California Santa Cruz. Her research has focused on how life, particularly microbes, has evolved in the context of the physical environment, both here and potentially elsewhere. Rothschild has brought her creativity to the burgeoning field of synthetic biology, articulating a vision for the future of synthetic biology as an enabling technology for NASA’s missions, including human space exploration and astrobiology. Since 2011 she has been the faculty advisor of the award-winning Stanford-Brown iGEM team, which has pioneered the use of synthetic biology to accomplish NASA’s mission, particularly focusing on the human settlement of Mars, astrobiology and such innovative technologies as BioWires and making a biodegradable UAS (drone) and bioballoon. Her lab will be begin to move these plans into space in the form of the PowerCell synthetic biology secondary payload on a DLR satellite, EuCROPIS, scheduled to launch in July 2017. She is a fellow of the Linnean Society of London, The California Academy of Sciences and the Explorer’s Club. In 2015 she was awarded the Isaac Asimov Award from the American Humanist Association, and was the recipient of the Horace Mann Award from Brown University. More importantly, she is a Yale graduate (Saybrook, ’78).
Jillian Jordan: How to Work Together
In this Humanist Haven talk, cosponsored with the Yale Effective Altruists, Jillian Jordan of the Yale Department of Psychology, will discuss research on cooperation. What makes people willing to pay costs to benefit others? She will talk about how factors like future interaction and reputation concerns motivate cooperative behavior, as well as present evidence that cooperation is intuitive for most people, whereas deliberation leads to selfishness. RSVP on Facebook.
Jillian Jordan as a PhD candidate at Yale University working in the Human Cooperation Laboratory with David Rand, an Associate Professor of Psychology, Economics, and Management at Yale, and the director of the Applied Cooperation Team. She has published in journals and periodicals including Psychological Science and Nature.
Adam Garner: How to Fail
Learning how to fail well is important. If not only because we’re all going to do it more than we’d like, but because it’s one of the best ways that humans figure out what’s right and wrong. Join Adam Garner, expert fail-er, to talk about the importance of failure, humility, and why (for the most part) failure isn’t the end of the world. RSVP on Facebook.
Adam Garner is a Campaign Manger at DoSomething.org, where he works with 5.3 million young people to make the world suck less. Previous to that, he worked at Interfaith Youth Core where he helped build the student interfaith movement. He graduated from the University of Illinois: Urbana-Champaign with a degree in Philosophy.
Ann Neumann: How to Approach Death
Ann Neumann, author of The Good Death, will discuss the current end of life landscape and discuss ways to look at our own and other’s deaths directly. Her talk will be followed by a Death Café discussion. RSVP on Facebook.
Ann Neumann is a visiting scholar at The Center for Religion and Media at New York University and author of The Good Death: An Exploration of Dying in America (Beacon Press, 2016).
Garrard Conley: How to be Authentic
As a survivor of ‘ex-gay’ conversion therapy, Garrard Conley had to learn how to find his authentic self after years of self-loathing. Though the journey has been long and difficult, Conley has come to terms with the institutionalized religious harm he experienced as a teen and can offer some insights into the forms of bigotry that are still very much alive in our country and the ways we can continue to fight against them. RSVP on Facebook.
Garrard Conley is the author of Boy Erased: a memoir (Riverhead/Penguin 2016). He has written for TIME, VICE, CNN, Virginia Quarterly Review, etc.
Jen Bailey: How to Embrace Radical Difference
From Ferguson to Charleston, Orlando to Baltimore, Dallas to Baton Rouge, the events of the past three years have uncovered through violent acts of domestic terror the wounds at the heart of our democracy. It is clear that in the absence of a new moral and ethical vision for our nation we will continue to self-isolate—surrounding ourselves exclusively with those who think, act, believe, and look like us because it feels like the safest alternative. What if instead of retreating into isolation, we began to embrace our radical differences as a means of breaking free from harmful narratives that force us to prioritize one identity over another? RSVP on Facebook.
Rev. Jen Bailey is an ordained minister, public theologian, and emerging national leader in multi-faith movement for justice. She currently serves as the Founding Executive Director of the Faith Matters Network.
Alana Massey: How To Forgive Your Mom
Join us on Mother’s Day for a talk exploring the undue burden placed on mothers throughout history and continues in our modern media and social discourses about womanhood and its obligations. Using examples from pop culture and personal experience, Massey will consider how alternative narrative approaches to how we see and understand mothers might make us more forgiving and gentle toward our own. RSVP on Facebook.
Alana Massey is a writer covering culture, identity, vice, and virtue at outlets like Elle, The Guardian, New York Magazine, and more. She is the author of All The Lives I Want (Grand Central Publishing, 2017) and Worth Less (Grand Central Publishing, 2018.) Her interests include books, cats, champagne, and money.
Chris Stedman: How to be Bored
In the age of social media, smartphones, and streaming, there’s always a cure for boredom just at our fingertips. But have we lost touch with something valuable by being able to evade boredom so easily? Yale Humanist Community director Chris Stedman will lead a discussion exploring some of the benefits of boredom, especially in engendering creativity and compassion, and offer suggestions for how we might create more space for boredom in our lives. RSVP on Facebook.
Chris Stedman is a Fellow of Silliman College at Yale University and Executive Director of the Yale Humanist Community. Previously a Humanist chaplain at Harvard University, he is the author of Faitheist: How an Atheist Found Common Ground with the Religious. Details magazine named Chris as one of “five next-gen gurus who are disrupting religion’s status quo” and Mic called him “the millennial who’s busting every stereotype about atheists.” He has appeared on CNN, msnbc, and Fox News, has written for publications including Salon, CNN, msnbc, The Advocate, USA Today, The Huffington Post, and The Washington Post, and he probably spends too much time on Twitter.
All headshots courtesy of speakers. All other images via Wikimedia Commons.
Want more details about these events? Be sure to sign up for YHC’s electronic newsletter at http://bit.ly/YHCnews
Some of our previous Humanist Haven speakers: