400 years on from the Mayflower: Secularism in Today's World.

We were pleased to be able to invite Andrew Copson, chief executive of Humanists UK and President of Humanists International, back to Plymouth for our February talk. Linking up to the Mayflower 400 commemorations being held in Plymouth this year, his topic was secularism and freedom of belief.

Andrew started off by examining the different routes four countries - France, the United States, Turkey and India - had take to secularism. Their histories have given each of them a slightly different approach to freedom of belief and hence the form of secularism they adopted.

He then moved on to examine the threats to secularism.  These are worringly many, and in Turkey and India, the situation is decaying rapidly.  This perhaps was a downbeat end to the talk, but in the Q&A session Andrew was able to take a positive view of the actions being taken by the British government to fight for freedom of belief around the world and the actions ordinary people can take contribute to the fight for worldwide secularism.

Jessica, our chair, with Andrew

Jessica, our chair, with Andrew