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The Ancient of Days

Connecticut Study Center

The Masonic Philosophical Society has been growing throughout the world steadily. While we offer many different resources for our members to grow and learn online, there is simply no substitute for attending the Study Center nearest you. When you attend a Study Center of the Masonic Philosophical Society you will have the opportunity, not only to hear from a speaker, but to participate in the dialogue.

Connecticut Study Center
1080 Old Post Rd Fairfield, CT 06824
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What does it mean when we speak of self-discipline?
Date: 5/21/2017 2:30:00 PM
Topic of Study: Behavioral Science
Presenter: Lylia Gonzalezfrayle
Synopsis: When we talk about discipline, we sometimes think that discipline is what adults use to educate children. However, analyzing the word discipline, we realize that in Latin it means to instruct. Interestingly enough, the word is derived from the Greek word discipulus, meaning pupil. Therefore, discipline can be considered a systematic instruction given to a pupil. Does self-discipline allows us to correct ourselves? Perhaps self-discipline does not mean that we have to do everything ourselves, but that we should be able to differentiate between right and wrong, to be able to act with integrity, and to recognize that only if we possess a disciplined mind, we will be able to make the right decisions in life. During our meeting we will consider the above points and what part does discipline plays in Religion and ethical behavior and, of course, the association it might have with Freemasonry.

What would be the Ideal way of organizing the world?
Date: 6/11/2017 2:30:00 PM
Topic of Study: Behavioral Science
Presenter: Janet Castro
Synopsis: Animal Farm is an allegorical novella/fable written by George Orwell, first published in 1945. The plot is how animals reveal themselves to a human being because of the ill-treatment received. After the revolt, there is a state of well-being on the farm in which everyone works to feed themselves and not feed a master, they can vote what is right and what is wrong. They even laid down some commandments in which animals cannot have contact with humans or behave like them. But, as time goes on, the pigs are acquiring power, and Napoleon is the only one who commands and has a vote. It is a matter of time that pigs begin breaking all the commandments and in the end, the pigs adopt a human behavior in such a way that you cannot differentiate Human from Pig. Orwell portrays an interesting movement of good-intentions to power-aquisition as well as many important questions. How do we measure the balance of power? Why do people die for a cause? Leadership being part of the teachings of Freemasonry, what is the opinion of Freemasons on this?

Does Freemasonry Have its Own Philosophy?
Date: 3/11/2018 1:00:00 PM
Topic of Study: Philosophy
Presenter: Matias Cumsille
Synopsis: Throughout the ages, people have developed systems of philosophy for the improvement of Mankind - to seek the Truth behind reality. Freemasonry, being a system also designed for the improvement of mankind and to seek Truth, therefore must possess a specific philosophy as well. However, there is no central authority figure in Masonry to regulate its ideas, so how are we to determine its philosophy? We will explore a myriad of Masonic writers in an attempt to uncover the core of Freemasonrys philosophy.

Do Hormones Have Total Control Over Our Emotions and Behavior?
Date: 4/15/2018 1:00:00 PM
Topic of Study: Behavioral Science
Presenter: Maryonne Lloyd
Synopsis: We like to think we are in charge of our behavior when in fact we are influenced by our hormones. Can a particular hormone be blamed for an out of control response? Can we consciously control our hormones and behavior (mind over matter? People have used meditation for centuries to achieve a more balanced and happier life where hormones do not dictate their behavior. Does Freemasonry teach self-control through discipline to achieve this balance?

Is “The Ugly Duckling” a Story of an Initiatory Journey?
Date: 5/6/2018 1:00:00 PM
Topic of Study: Literature
Presenter: Janet Castro
Synopsis: The Ugly Duckling is a classic-contemporary tale written by Hans Christian Andersen in 1843.The story tells of an ugly duckling born in a barnyard. Teased by his brothers and sisters as well as by other animals he decided to leave home and run far away. After a series of dangerous adventures and experiencing a harsh winter where the poor duckling almost died frozen, spring came just for him to discover he had transformed into a beautiful swan. This old children story may have more import for adults than we may believe. Can we extract some life lessons from the Ugly Duckling? And what is an Initiation and what does it mean for Freemasons?

Why Do We Want Words to Express Feelings After Experiencing Anothers Death?
Date: 6/10/2018 1:00:00 PM
Topic of Study: Behavioral Science
Presenter: Dalia Espinosa
Synopsis: The process of grieving has long been studied, but we must be careful not to remove the human element from the experience. Death brings reflection and a mixture of feelings that many desire to express to the person passing. Simple in words, this need to express is difficult as we have yet to experience death ourselves. How, then, do we know what is the best way to present our feelings if we can in no way prepare for the moment of transition? Does Freemasonry give some light on the topic of death and the words to help us say what we feel?

Should Certain Books Be Banned?
Date: 7/15/2018 1:00:00 PM
Topic of Study: Literature
Presenter: Isaac Levy
Synopsis: America prides itself on the First Amendment, the freedom of speech. However, the American Library Association receives hundreds of complaints annually for certain books to be banned due to offensive ideas, sexually explicit content, or racial context. Many countries have books banned as well. Should certain books be banned from the public? Does this protect society or oppress society? Would Freemasonry, being an institution that fosters learning, advocate the banning of certain publications from the public? Are there certain Masonic books that are "banned" from certain people?

What Use does the Pythagorean Theorem Have in Our Daily Lives?
Date: 9/2/2018 1:00:00 PM
Topic of Study: Formal Science
Presenter: Lylia Gonzalezfrayle
Synopsis: The 47th Proposition of Euclid is a very difficult subject for people who do not have too much understanding of Mathematics. Yet, it is the understanding of the relationship of the numbers 3, 4, and 5. In a right triangle, the sum of the squares of the two sides is equal to the square of the hypotenuse. In other words the square of 3 (9), plus the square of 4 (16) is equal to the square of 5 (25), which is the hypotenuse of the right angle triangle. What are the uses of the 47th Proposition? What relationship does it have with Freemasonry?

Could We Manipulate DNA to Extend Human Lifespan?
Date: 10/7/2018 1:00:00 PM
Topic of Study: Formal Science
Presenter: Maryonne Lloyd
Synopsis: Accumulated DNA damage appears to be a limiting factor in the determination of maximum life span. As new scientific discoveries are made could we learn to manipulate DNA and extend lifespan. The Fountain of Youth tales have been recounted across the world for thousands of years and has been a human fascination and obsession for the same amount of time. If our DNA suffers damage with the passing of time, how long should we be able to live? We will explore the scientific and philosophical implications of an extended lifespan and the human quest for the Fountain of Youth. Could Masonic philosophy assist humanity in adjusting to a longer and better life?

Should We Look for Logical Fallacies?
Date: 11/11/2018 1:00:00 PM
Topic of Study: Philosophy
Presenter: Matias Cumsille
Synopsis: The world is full of a great many ideas that are constantly shared in discussions around dinner tables, on television, in news reports, by politicians and religious leaders, in books, and on social media. This unending exposure can be confusing as it is overwhelming. The Freemason is taught to decipher the good from the false so s/he can navigate the waters of this vast information. Such is the wisdom in this action that in this discussion we will investigate the common logical fallacies used and how we can avoid being duped by them.

"A human being is a part of a whole, called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings 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."
Albert Einstien
Physicist
Personal Writings

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