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What The Revolution In Neuroscience Will Mean For Humanism (Grand Rapids)

Date:
January 11, 2017
Time:
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

The Sweet House
254 E. Fulton
Grand Rapids, MI 49503 United States

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Organized by:
Jennifer Beahan
Phone: 616-698-2342 x801
Email: jbeahan@centerforinquiry.org

Description:

If Humanism is to emerge as a leading life-stance of the 21st century, we need to advocate for an understanding of human nature grounded in science rather than religious tradition or political ideology. Many sciences, including psychology, evolution, and anthropology have shed some light on human nature. Now neuroscience is beginning to unravel the mysterious workings of our brains.

This talk will survey the state of the art in neuroscience, and introduce the revolution now happening, partly due to the BRAIN initiative. We are now able to watch memories being formed and recalled, and to interfere in these processes. We can see decisions being made. We can start to characterize the individual differences in human brain dynamics. We are also coming to understand in which ways our brains differ from those of other apes. New technologies under development will bring us within reach of a comprehensive understanding of how networks of neurons work together to create experience, make decisions and engage in other mental activities, perhaps including religious belief, ideology and conscious experience.

What will this enterprise mean for humanism? Already the brain has become a topic of everyday conversation, and soon there will be much more solid information about brain processes available to anyone who searches. Therefore we’ll be able to refer to readily verifiable science in discussions of religious experience, ideology, and social policy.Meetings are open to the Public

After the meeting, join us at Vitale’s Restaurant, 834 Leonard NE, Grand Rapids, MI to socialize. View Map

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About Mark Reimers, PhD

Professor of Neuroscience, Michigan State University

Dr. Mark Reimers studies brain function by applying advanced statistical and computational methods to the very large data sets of brain activity measures now being generated in neuroscience. In particular he tries to understand how brain dynamics changes between different activities and states of mind. Dr. Reimers has worked at the US National Institutes of Health, the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, and at the Virginia Institute for Psychiatric and Behavioral Genetics in Richmond. He is the co-author of many publications about brain genetics, development and evolution in several leading science journals, including three articles in Nature and two in Science.