Thank You!

Last night was a wonderful, special night for our growing Harvard Humanist community. And before I even say why, I want to say thank you to Humanist Grads Peter Blake, Jananda Hill, and Tom Gessel, and Harvard Secular Society members Julie Duncan, Will Nygard, and Zoe Kawaller, and others. You all really gave of your talents, heart, and effort and it showed.

I want to thank HSS President Amanda Shapiro who not only helped last night but in general has been doing so much fantastic work that, guys, I’d actually be a bit nervous about the fact that she has 2 papers to write this important weekend if I didn’t know that others are going to help pick up her slack on an important Saturday and Sunday while she tends to non-HSS, non-Julia Sweeney life. But more on this below.

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And finally, I want to thank Professor Richard Dawkins, for taking more than an hour out of his exhausting schedule to attend our monthly Humanist Grads social gathering at Phillips Brooks House, after both his powerful and passionate reading for a huge crowd and a book-signing for an impossibly long queue (the latter gave some students mentioned above ample time to do wonderful publicity work for Julia Sweeney). Richard, the fact that you were willing to sit and get to know us and hear our thoughts, questions and extended discussion about Humanism when we would have been all too ready to hear another lecture from you, says so much. It shows you truly care about your work and the people you affect– apparently you have more than a few unselfish genes.
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Yes, Dr. Dawkins joined several dozen of us at Phillips Brooks House for what I hope is becoming a regular tradition of Humanist Grads getting together monthly just to eat and drink a little and be social, argumentative, contemplative…just to be ourselves and actually experience that rare and mysterious bird we might call¬†“Humanist Community.” For more, join the Humanistgrads listserv:  


  1. The New Humanism » Blog Archive » The New York Times on The New Humanism

    March 30, 2007 @ 9:46 pm


    […] BREAKING STORY: Our conference, The New Humanism is now receiving fantastic coverage in the New York Times, Washington Post, and beyond! Please register for the conference today, and tell all your friends to do so as well A small quibble with the article in the Times– Greg Epstein, Humanist Chaplain of Harvard, did not actually call bestselling authors Richard Dawkins and Sam Harris “atheist fundamentalists.”¬† That part of the story was taken from the press release about our conference, (many thanks to the very talented Duncan Crary of the wonderful NY-based think tank, The Institute for Humanist Studies, for once again helping to place a Humanism-related story in the international media) in which Dawkins and Harris are referred to not as “atheist fundamentalists” but as atheist “fundamentalists,” scare quotes intending to denote that we know there is a major difference between Harris and Dawkins– whom we respect but also respectfully disagree on some issues about how to advance Humanism– and actual religious fundamentalists, who can be incalculably worse. The Humanist Chaplaincy at Harvard proudly hosted Richard Dawkins for a fruitful, intimate discussion this past October, and we were gratified by his kind response to the experience. We would be happy to host Dr. Dawkins again. […]

  2. The Heart of Humanism » Harvard Humanist Year in Review 06-07

    May 11, 2007 @ 12:07 am


    […] Dawkins has very positive things to say about the experience in his blog. And Humanist Chaplain Greg Epstein has kind words for Dawkins as well. […]

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