Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Weekly Meeting


Freethought Speaker Series: Dan Barker
Thursday, November 20th - 7pm
Ingraham Hall, Room 19

Have you ever thought about the purpose of humans? Or if they have one? What about how you live your life? Whether you are an atheist, theist, agnostic, or anything in between, our personal answers to these questions impact our lives on a day-to-day basis. Pastor-Turned-Atheist Dan Barker will explore these issues in his talk: How an Atheist Finds Meaning. 

Can't make it to the talk? Join us afterwards at Memorial Union in the Lakefront Room around 9pmfor drinks, food, and post talk discussion.

I hope to see you there!

- Sam Erickson
AHA President
No Meeting on 11/27/14
Enjoy the holiday, and we'll see you in December!
Adopt a Family
For the third year in a row, AHA is partnering with the Domestic Abuse and Prevention Services to help out a family for the holiday season. If you would like to donate to our fund, please click here or the button at the start of the email. Online donations can be made using PayPal, but please include a memo that your donation is for Adopt a Family. Otherwise, donations can be given to an AHA officer.
Meet The Officers:
Nicole Niebler
Our next installment of Meet The Officers has been released, featuring AHA officer, Nicole Niebler!
Click here or on the image above to read the post!
Volunteering with AHA
 
AHA is in need of volunteers! If you would like to get involved, please reply to this email or talk to an officer at the meeting!
A Call to Blog
 
AHA's blog updates with our recent events and stories worth sharing. Stories typically range from coming-out-of-the-atheist-closet stories to news on freethought, science, skepticism, or humanism.

Do you have a story for the blog? Email it to us atwiscatheists@gmail.com or just reply to this email!

Upcoming Events


Tabling at Union South

Thursday, November 20th - 12:00 to 6pm
Union South - 1st Floor
Drop by our table, or join us as a volunteer!

 

Poker Night

Friday, November 21st - 8pm
1628 Adams St, Apt 1

 

Recent Events

 

Saturday, November 8th - Board Game Night


This board game night surpassed the rest in dedication. Games were played until 5 in the morning. The union closed at 1am, but the party continued at an officer's apartment. Long live great friends and great games!
 

Friday, November 7th - Free Art Friday


Although the turnout was small, some sweet wire jewelry was made! Join us next month for Free Art Friday at Memorial Union!


Friday, October 31st - AHA Halloween Party


AHA's first party of the school year was a huge success! There were tons of awesome costumes, great conversations, and good vibes all around. Not to mention an award-winning food set-up!


Amanda with cupcakes, queso, chips, and tower of cups
AHA Event Calendar
Adopt a Family Donation

Visit Our Office!
3157 SAC
3:00-6:00 Mon-Friday


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Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Meet the Officers: Nicole Niebler

“Meet the Officers” is a biographical series that seeks to give names and personalities to the officers who run Atheists, Humanists, and Agnostics. Every two weeks, the blog will update with a post about a new officer.
Nicole serves as an Officer for AHA. She is a sophomore transfer
student majoring in dietetics. Nicole discovered AHA while searching for transfer schools with good secular groups. Nicole’s hobbies include cooking, obsessing over Taylor Swift, playing acoustic guitar, writing blog posts and poetry, cuddling with cats, yoga, and singing.

Nicole's Secular Story

I was raised Catholic, and for a while, genuinely believed that my beliefs were right. I was completely ignorant of the many other belief systems out there. My mom was a youth bible teachers, so going to and being involved with the church was always an assumed task for my younger brother and I. My dad didn't really care too much about church. He would encourage us to go, but it was more of a “mom says we’re going to church” type of attitude.

I used to sing in the church choir until I was in sixth grade and I enjoyed the community aspect, for the most part. Later on, I started to dislike nearly everyone in my youth bible classes, and that definitely turned me off from wanting to go anymore. Why go 
spend my time with people I don’t like? Oh that’s right, “God”.

Like most confused preteens, I went through phases of being dedicated to “God” and not giving a damn. After a while, I started to realize that I only became closer to “God” if I was sad, in trouble, scared or lonely, which made me really angry. I didn’t like that my “God” was making me feel unhappy just so I would talk to him; I thought he was supposed to be loving.

These contradictory measures that “He” was taking made me feel very uneasy about what I believed in, so I looked into other religions to see if their “Gods” were more benevolent. I learned a lot about other religions, particularly how similar they tend to be. I also read the bible cover to cover to see if I was missing anything by learning from priests and bible teachers. Reading the bible instead made me realize that priests and bible teachers leave out all of the malevolent parts.

While wandering through a used book store I found the book, “Coffee with Buddha” and although it wasn’t a religious text, it outlined Buddhist beliefs. I thought Buddhism was the most spectacularly peaceful belief system. I didn’t consider myself Buddhist, but that was the one of the major tipping points that pointed me to the path of becoming the Atheist I am today. That book made me realize how much I value peace and happiness.

After reading “Coffee with Buddha” (which I highly suggest you read) I realized more and more about myself. I noticed that I was a realist, a logical thinker, and an Atheist. All of these realizations developed in middle school, up until about freshman year of high school. I didn’t tell my mom or anyone in my family until sophomore year of high school in fear that they might pressure me to believe again or disown me. Instead, I confided in a couple close friends at the time, and they most definitely had an impact in solidifying my Atheistic views.

My mom and I have always been close, and I was afraid that if I told her that my beliefs weren’t what she wanted them to be, that we would lose that closeness. Luckily, she only tried to make me believe in the Catholic system of beliefs for about a year, then started to loosen her grip a bit. Like I said, I used to go through phases, so how was she supposed to know whether or not becoming an Atheist was a phase? I don’t blame her for trying to keep me involved with the same faith as her; she was trying to do what she thought was best for me out of love.

Junior year of high school was rough overall. I won’t get into details, but it was definitely a test of my beliefs, and the hard times ended up consecrating my secular beliefs. Junior year of high school is also when most Catholics get confirmed, and as one of the youth bible teachers, my mom pushed for that to happen. Her deal was this: I must go to mass every Sunday and attend confirmation classes, but if on the morning of the day of confirmation I didn’t want to get confirmed, I could stay home. Surprise surprise! I stayed home and watched Friends all day.

My hometown, Pewaukee, is very religiously Christian/Catholic, but I thought “oh well, people won’t care if I’m an Atheist”. Yeah, no. A few of my friends turned into bullies and made it clear I was not welcome at their table anymore. It was weird because never, not once, did we explicitly talk about religious beliefs, but when I said I was different than the norm, they were against me. Thankfully, I still had a couple people that accepted me at school, but I felt like such an idiot for thinking they would accept me if I had different beliefs. That was crappy.

After high school came college and I first went to UW-Eau Claire for a year and it was not crappy anymore! I joined their Secular Student Alliance, formerly known as FreeThought, and in the process met some intellectual, inspiring, down-to-earth people, one of which became my best friend, Liz. In UW-Eau Claire’s Secular Student Alliance I organized a few events and realized I loved being active in the secular community, so when I was looking to transfer schools (because of my major and being bored with what UW-Eau Claire had to offer) I made sure my transfer school had a sweet secular organization, A.K.A. AHA at UW-Madison.

Unlike in high school, I’m accepted by people with similar and differing beliefs, and 
that rocks. Also, now my mom is very supportive of my choices and beliefs. She knows it’s not a phase. She doesn’t say she’ll pray for me, she says “you’re in my thoughts”. I’m proud to be able to have a mother who accepts, and almost celebrates, my beliefs that differ from hers. I sent her a link regarding the God Graveyard from this past Halloween, and she thought it was awesome that I was passionate and involved in something I care about.

I’m so happy I became an Atheist.






Wednesday, November 12, 2014

AHA Weekly Meeting: Feminism

Attention!
Next Thursday, November 20th, we will be hosting the first talk in our Freethought Speaker Series with Dan Barker from 7-9pm in Ingraham 19. For more information, see the flyer below, or click here or the image to go to the facebook page.

Weekly Meeting


Feminism
Thursday, November 13th - 7pm
Ingraham Hall, Room 224

Feminism is a term that incites everything from fear to hope to fury. Why? Do you consider yourself a feminist? Why or why not? Is feminism needed in America? What about around the world? How does religious dogma contribute to not only the oppression of women, but the suppression of human expression as a whole

Can't make it to the meeting? Join us afterwards at Memorial Union in the Lakefront Room around 9pm for drinks, food, and more great conversation.

We hope to see you there!

 - Nicole Niebler
   Officer

 - Margaret Babe
   Outreach Chair
Next Week's Meeting

Interacting with Your Religious Family
Thursday, December 4th - 7pm
Ingraham Hall, Room 224

For many, religious deconversion is extremely difficult. Interacting with religious family members after deconversion is a problem encountered by many newly nonreligious people. How do you deal with overly religious family members? How do you respond when a family member asserts their religion in an aggressive or demeaning way? Come discuss these questions and more at  the next meeting!

We hope you can join us!
 
Meet The Officers:
Mendel Mayr
Our next installment of Meet The Officers has been released, featuring AHA officer, Mendel!
Click here or on the image above to read the post!
Volunteering with AHA
 
AHA is in need of volunteers! If you would like to get involved or hear about our volunteering opportunities, please reply to this email!
A Call to Blog
 
AHA's blog updates with our recent events and stories worth sharing. Stories can range from coming-out-of-the-atheist-closet stories to news, primarily having to do with freethought, science, skepticism, or humanism.

Do you have a story for the blog? Email it to us atwiscatheists@gmail.com or just reply to this email!

Upcoming Events


Tabling at Union South

Thursday, November 20th - 12:00 to 6pm
Union South - 1st Floor
Drop by our table, or join us as a volunteer!

 

Recent Events

 

Saturday, November 8th - Board Game Night


This board game night surpassed the rest in dedication. Games were played until 5 in the morning. The union closed at 1am, but the party continued at an officer's apartment. Long live great friends and great games!
 

Friday, November 7th - Free Art Friday


Although the turnout was small, some sweet wire jewelry was made! Join us next month for Free Art Friday at Memorial Union!


Friday, October 31st - AHA Halloween Party


AHA's first party of the school year was a huge success! There were tons of awesome costumes, great conversations, and good vibes all around. Not to mention an award-winning food set-up!


Amanda with cupcakes, queso, chips, and tower of cups
 

Friday, October 31st - God Graveyard


God Graveyard Rose again this Halloween on Bascom Hill.  With more than 250 graves, AHA's thought-provoking display made headlines again. For more information and pictures, click here or on the picture below!


The view of the graveyard from the south side of Bascom Hill
 

Saturday, October 25th - Board Game Night


Board game night was a great success, with Mafia, Mao, Resistance, Hearts, and more being played throughout the night! 
 

Wednesday, October 15th - Ask an Atheist

Tabling at Memorial Union

Each month AHA sets up an Ask and Atheist table in one of the unions and lets passersby have at us! Shout-out to our three volunteers who dropped by throughout the day!

 

Tyler Centers, AHA Service Chair

AHA Event Calendar

Visit Our Office!
3157 SAC
3:00-6:00 Mon-Friday


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Wednesday, November 5, 2014

AHA Weekly Meeting: Religion and Oppression

Weekly Meeting


Religion and Oppression
Thursday, November 6th - 7pm
Ingraham Hall, Room 224

Religion has had a prodigious impact on our society throughout all of history. Humans have also oppressed each other one way or another during this time. How does religion figure into the oppression that happens around the world today?

Can't make it to the meeting? Join us afterwards at Memorial Union in the Lakefront Room around 9pmfor drinks, food, and more great conversation.

We hope to see you there!

 - Nicole Niebler
   Officer

 - Mendel Mayr
   Officer
Next Week's Meeting

Feminism
Thursday, November 13th - 7pm
Ingraham Hall, Room 224

Feminism is a term that incites everything from fear to hope to fury. Why? Do you consider yourself a feminist? Why or why not? Is feminism needed in America? What about around the world? How does religious dogma contribute to not only the oppression of women, but the suppression of human expression as a whole? Come discuss these questions and more at next week's meeting!

We hope you can join us!
Meet The Officers:
Mendel Mayr

Our next installment of Meet The Officers has been released, featuring AHA officer, Mendel!
Click here or on the image above to read the post!
Volunteering with AHA
AHA is in need of volunteers! If you would like to get involved or hear about our volunteering opportunities, please reply to this email!
A Call to Blog
AHA's blog updates with our recent events and stories worth sharing. Stories can range from coming-out-of-the-atheist-closet stories to news, primarily having to do with freethought, science, skepticism, or humanism.

Do you have a story for the blog? Email it to us atwiscatheists@gmail.com or just reply to this email!

Upcoming Events


Free Art Friday

Friday, November 7th - 7pm
Wheelhouse Studios (Basement of Memorial Union)


Board Game Night

Saturday, November 8th - 8pm
Lakefront Room in Memorial Union

Recent Events


Friday, October 31st - AHA Halloween Party


AHA's first party of the year was a huge success! There were tons of awesome costumes, great conversations, and good vibes all around. Not to mention an award-winning food set-up!



Amanda with cupcakes, queso, chips, and tower of cups

Friday, October 31st - God Graveyard


God Graveyard Rose again this Halloween on Bascom Hill.  With more than 250 graves, AHA's thought-provoking display made headlines again. For more information and pictures, click here or on the picture below!


The view of the graveyard from the south side of Bascom Hill

Saturday, October 25th - Board Game Night


Board game night was a great success, with Mafia, Mao, Resistance, Hearts, and more being played throughout the night! 

Wednesday, October 15th - Ask an Atheist

Tabling at Memorial Union

Each month AHA sets up an Ask and Atheist table in one of the unions and lets passersby have at us! Shout-out to our three volunteers who dropped by throughout the day!


 

Tyler Centers, AHA Service Chair

AHA Event Calendar

Visit Our Office!
3157 SAC
3:00-6:00 Mon-Friday


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Like Us

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Follow Us

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Read Our Blog

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View Videos

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To unsubscribe, send a blank email to leave-aha@lists.wisc.edu.