Is cultural globalization detrimental to individuality?
Date: 2/14/2017 6:00:00 PM
Topic of Study: Behavorial Science
Presenter: Kristine Wilson-Slack
Synopsis: The Earth currently supports over seven billion people and it is estimated that over 13% of the United States’ current population is made of immigrants. Throughout the world, immigrant population has risen upwards of 40% in some regions over the past 50 years; travel of all forms has become easier, cheaper, and safer. Cultural globalization is inevitable as more people move, immigrate, or a dislocated due to war or natural disaster. Is it human nature to subdue the individual in favor of cultural homogenization, or does this behavior lead to the individual rising in conflict? Freemasonry may offer a perfect solution to learning how to be culturally global as well as individuals - living in harmony.
Does Freemasonry advocate Anarchy?
Date: 3/14/2017 6:00:00 PM
Topic of Study: History
Presenter: Matias Cumsille
Synopsis: When one thinks of anarchy, they think of angry citizens throwing benches at windows of innocent store owners. Why? Because it has been demonized by modern Democracy as a plague to be avoided. Anarchy a political philosophy that is rarely taught in schools. The word itself has morphed into a synonym for chaos. Yet, in its strict definition, it implies self-governance and voluntary institutions. In fact, Anarchy can be used to describe the freedom of Fraternal Organizations in which membership is based on the time old axiom: of your own free will and accord.
Is Beauty in the Mind of the Beholder?
Date: 4/11/2017 6:00:00 PM
Topic of Study: Philosophy
Presenter: Sandra McKeown
Synopsis: Beauty is one of the three Principles of Freemasonry. The old definition of beauty, in the Roman school, was, “multitude in unity.” So why is the value of Beauty so important? By delving into Aesthetics which is both the philosophy of taste and the science of the beautiful in nature and art, a clearer understanding begins to emerge. Therefore, we will explore topics such the relation of art to nature and life, the distinction of art from nature, the relation of natural to artistic beauty, and the distinction of beauty from truth and from moral goodness.
Should the Government Punish Colin Kaepernicks Anti-Patriotism?
Date: 5/9/2017 6:00:00 PM
Topic of Study: Behavorial Science
Presenter: Doyle Slack
Synopsis: Colin Kaepernick’s decision to take a knee during the National Anthem at each NFL game in 2016 has led to a backlash - calling him a disgrace to the country and one who disrespects veterans and law enforcement. In the meantime, companies like Brush & Nib in in Phoenix Arizona are told that they cannot deny service to Lesbian/Gay couples desiring to order a wedding cake, even though they believe that same sex marriage is a sin. As Freemasons, we are taught to not discriminate - but we are also taught to be tolerant of all viewpoints. We will discuss the dichotomy of these two Freedom of Speech positions and the population’s reaction to them.
What is Magic?
Date: 6/13/2017 6:00:00 PM
Topic of Study: Esotericism
Presenter: Michaela Grezak
Synopsis: Mankind has practiced Magic for thousands of years and most often it was associated with casting spells, performing rituals, and divination. In ancient times, to practice magic was an ordinary routine and it was part of their daily lives. Their Magic was their Religion, Alchemy, Astronomy, Astrology, Herbology, Zoology and the Sciences. Supernatural and Paranormal did not exist for them, because everything was normal and natural and part of the earth, the skies and the existence. As Above, So Below. In modern times, we correlate Magic with Harry Potter, Wizards, Witches, Fairy Tales, Magical Creatures, Illusions and Magicians. But, how much of it is true? What is Magic? Is it the energy that is all around us and within us? Or, is it the sciences that is beyond our comprehension? Join us, as we explore Magic within our lives and in Freemasonry.
How does Masonry approach Theology, which is the study of the Divine?
Date: 7/11/2017 6:00:00 PM
Topic of Study: Theology
Presenter: Maximo Cumsille
Synopsis: Protagoras, who is reputed to have been exiled from Athens because of his agnosticism about the existence of the gods, said that "Concerning the gods I cannot know either that they exist or that they do not exist, or what form they might have, for there is much to prevent one's knowing: the obscurity of the subject and the shortness of man's life." On the other hand, Augustine of Hippo defined, theologia, as "reasoning or discussion concerning the Deity." Masonry takes a different approach; it centers its attention on us to analyze the subject. Join us as we try to understand how we relate to understanding the Divine.
Is a lack of Nature in Humanity’s growth the primary source for many of the societal problems we experience today?
Date: 9/12/2017 6:00:00 PM
Topic of Study: Literature
Presenter: Byron Gorrell
Synopsis: One of the primary goals of Freemasonry is to aid in the evolution of Humanity. In Bill Plotkin’s “Nature and the Human Soul: Cultivating Wholeness and Community in a Fragmented World”, he postulates that an absence of Nature in peoples’ lives causes imbalances in our development which lead to the troubles we witness today. He further proffers an eight-stage framework for guiding Humanity which balances the pulls of both Nature and Society. Can Mr. Plotkin’s theorized approach really work as he describes? Can that framework provide a guide for evolving Humanity to the next stage?
What is art and does it have inherent meaning?
Date: 10/10/2017 6:00:00 PM
Topic of Study: Art
Presenter: Chris Osborn
Synopsis: Have you ever looked at a work of art and wondered, how is this art? What are the defining characteristics that determine what is art and what isn't? Does art have inherent meaning or is meaning found only in the eye of the beholder? We will consider these questions and many more by examining several different modalities of art including painting, sculpture, and music. Then we will delve into symbolism and discuss how art has influenced Freemasonry.
Is ‘natural healing’ just a placebo, or is there actual science behind this ‘movement.’
Date: 12/12/2017 6:00:00 PM
Topic of Study: Natural Science
Presenter: Mark Valkonen
Synopsis: Is there science behind the healing energy of Reiki, Crystals, and the Human Energy Field? Or is this just pseudo-science that is no different than an experimental placebo pill? The relationship between the human energy field, Reiki theory, and Crystals (or geological rocks) will be examined, and how these different types of energy can be aided or disrupted. Can we, as Freemasons, examine the different viewpoints and determine the effectiveness (or lack thereof) for ourselves?