CFIC- Ottawa’s Secular Community Network
CFIC-Ottawa’s Secular Community Network is an intentional community working cooperatively to build a fair, inclusive and cohesive society through gaining knowledge and serving others.
Secularism Is For Everyone
• We are a community of diverse people engaged in cooperative learning and collaboration opportunities, through community outreach and being of service to others.
• We are a wide-ranging group of open-minded people who hold a variety of worldviews but together recognize our common humanity and value the learning that comes from respectful dialogue and disagreement.
• As a secular group, we warmly welcome everyone interested in working towards our common goals; regardless of sex/gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, race or religion.
• Simply put, we understand that the only way to build a fair, cohesive, and inclusive community is by ensuring equality and respect of diversity for all.
We meet on Saturday mornings Meetup
General Meeting Outline
9:00 – 9:15 am: Business planning and Community Outreach – charitable and service project discussions
9:15 – 9:45 am: Book study* – critical thinking – philosophy – presentations and other cooperative learning activities[*We are currently studying: The Uninhabitable Earth: Life After Warming by David Wallace]
Other books we’ve studied…
- Say What You Mean: A Mindful Approach to Nonviolent Communication | Oren Jay Sofer
- Six Steps to Better Thinking: How to Disagree and Get Along |Dr. Christopher DiCarlo
- Behave: The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst | Dr. Robert M. Sapolsky
9:45 – 10: 30 am: Community Conversation – a moderated weekly discussion and active learning session: Philosophy=love of wisdom, books/current events in a community fellowship environment. Feel free to participate or just listen. No pressure opportunity to just hang out with your fellow humans.
Please join us if you are interested in creating a more fair-minded society. Together we can explore ways to cultivate cooperative learning opportunities or be of service to others. You are welcome to bring children or grandchildren to meetings provided they remain engaged in non-disruptive activities.
We’re all in the same boat, using a variety of paddles—but still needing to paddle together.
“A human being is a part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feeling as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.”
~Einstein, The Einstein Papers
“We’re all building our world, right now, in real time. Let’s build it better.”
Secularism Further Clarified
“Secular” (Pertaining to the world or things not spiritual or sacred) should not be confused with “sectarian” which refers to: 1) of, relating to, or characteristic of a sect or sectarian, 2) limited in character or scope i.e. parochial. If something is secular it simply means that it doesn’t have anything to do with religion. Secularism in public life is about working to keep faith-based ideas, superstition and religious ideology out of the public sphere. A secular school system, for instance, is an educational environment where no one religious opinion is valued over any other. It doesn’t mean a rejection of religion or religious ideas. Secularism means recognizing that when one religious perspective is valued more highly than any other perspective, it can have bad consequences for society, particularly for religious minorities. Secularism is the belief that people’s rights are best protected, government is most fair and policy is best formed when religion is out of the picture. Secularists want public policy to be based purely on facts, science and reasoned argument. A person can be religious and still believe that secularism is the fairest and equal approach to government because it guarantees religious freedom for all, favouring no one religion over another – or over non-belief.