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About RET
Rationalists of East Tennessee is an organization created to benefit people by expanding understanding of the universe through the use of empirical and rational methods. Our purposes are as follows:

  • To foster an environment suitable to free speech and exchange of ideas.
  • To promote free inquiry into the nature of the universe and of human societies.
  • To encourage critical thinking on all aspects of human life.
  • To emphasize the importance of the scientific method.
  • To explore ethical and intellectual alternatives to supernatural beliefs.
  • To model humanistic ethics through service to the greater community.
  • To provide a fellowship for people who share these purposes.

Smoky Mountain Freethought Advance! (not "Retreat")
Good news! The Rationalists of East Tennessee is holding a Freethought event in the foothills of the Smoky Mountains, in Townsend, TN, July 3 and 4th. The cost is $120/person (children under 18 are free). Meals are a la carte at an additional fee. Lodging and Advance are at Tremont Lodge and Resort, 7726 E Lamar Alexander Parkway, Townsend, TN 37882-4039 (865) 448-3200 or (844) 448-3200 with a 10% discount if RET is mentioned as the Group. There is a stunning list of speakers including Shulem Deen as the Keynote on Saturday, plus there will be the traditional "Freethought Jeopardy" and even fireworks.

Sixty dollar ($60) one day registration is now available!

For details and mail-in registration form, click here. For more information contact Aleta Ledendecker at aledendecker@me.com.

Check out our short video promotion.

Visitors are Welcome

How Do I Join RET?
We welcome you to attend our meetings to find out more about us. Find out what we're doing next by browsing the calendar at left or by sending email to info at rationalists.org.
Once you've decided we're a group you'd like to associate with, either download our brochure and fill out the blank or print the HTML application found here.



Recent News and Events
RET Third Sunday Meeting
Please join us for the Rationalists of East Tennessee Third Sunday Meeting on June 21 in the Cafeteria annex, Goins Administration Building, Pellissippi State Community College, 10:30 am - 12:30 pm. This meeting will feature a DVD presentation from the Skeptic Society Distinguished Lecture Series. Professor Michio Kaku will give his views on "The Physics of the Future: How Science Will Shape Human Destiny and Our Daily Lives by the Year 2100". Dr. Kaku takes us on a journey into the future to reveal the revolutionary developments in medicine, computers, quantum physics, and space travel that will forever change our way of life and alter the course of civilization. For example: the Internet will be in your contact lens, you will control computers and appliances via tiny sensors that pick up your brain scans, sensors in your clothing, bathroom, and appliances will monitor your vitals, and nanobots will scan your DNA and cells for signs of danger, allowing life expectancy to increase dramatically. Also, radically new spaceships using laser propulsion may replace the expensive chemical rockets of today, and you may be able to take an elevator hundreds of miles into space by simply pushing the up button.

Posted by risler
June 19, 2015

RET Skeptic Book Club
Please join us for the Sunday, June 14 meeting of the Rationalists of East Tennessee's Skeptic Book Club, 2:00 pm at Books-A-Million, 8513 Kingston Pike, Knoxville. The book for our June meeting is “Stuff Matters: Exploring the Marvelous Materials That Shape Our Man-Made World” by Mark Miodowink. Why is glass see-through? What makes elastic stretchy? Why does any material look and behave the way it does? These are the sorts of questions that renowned materials scientist Mark Miodownik constantly asks himself. Miodownik studies objects as ordinary as an envelope and as unexpected as concrete cloth, uncovering the fascinating secrets that hold together our physical world. In Stuff Matters, Miodownik explores the materials he encounters in a typical morning, from the steel in his razor to the foam in his sneakers. Full of enthralling tales of the miracles of engineering that permeate our lives, Stuff Matters will make you see stuff in a whole new way.

Posted by risler
June 12, 2015

RET First Sunday Meeting
Please join us for the Rationalists of East Tennessee First Sunday Meeting on June 7 in the Cafeteria annex, Goins Administration Building, Pellissippi State Community College, 10:30 am - 12:30 pm. RET member Ted Lollis will present a talk titled “New Harmony and the Boatload of Knowledge" In the winter of 1825-1826, scientist William Maclure and reformer Robert Owen led a boatload of scientists and artists down the Ohio River to colonize New Harmony, Indiana. Another Scot, Frances Wright repeatedly traveled to New Harmony, and founded Nashoba, a colony for freed slaves near Memphis, Tennessee. Neither colony survived, but Maclure’s scientists and five of Owen’s adult children remained in New Harmony, and one of them joined Wright during a meteoric career in New York City. Collectively, they helped bring about vast improvements in education, in labor, in race relations, and in the role which rationalism & science have come to play in our modern society, including the foundations of the US Geological Survey and the Smithsonian Institution.

Posted by risler
June 04, 2015

Backyard Olympics
Remember, tomorrow, Monday, May 25, is the second Memorial Day Backyard Olympics at Stephan and Carol Tokay's house from 3:00 PM to Dark Thirty Limited to those 2 to 102 years old No skill required Fun loving people of all ages can compete in all events. Past events included: The Nerf Ball Put, The Javelin Straw Throw, The Cross Country Tricycle Race, Sidewalk Art, and The Watermelon Spit! Just bring your own meat for the grill, and a side dish for six people (single guys bring chips) Buns, condiments, and drinks will be provided. Tokay Olympic Medals will be awarded! Please RSVP to Steve and Carol Tokay at 691-6816. The location is 8905 Garrison Drive, Knoxville TN 37931.

Posted by risler
May 24, 2015

RET Third Sunday Meeting
Please join us for the Rationalists of East Tennessee Third Sunday Meeting on May 17 in the Cafeteria annex, Goins Administration Building, Pellissippi State Community College, 10:30 am - 12:30 pm. RET member,Dr. Charles Omarzu, will present a talk on "The Design of Experiments on Living Things" The design of experiments on living things has a wide range of applications - from education to psychology and sociology, and to bio-medical research. The core principles of these designs can be explained in a non-technical way so that they are understandable to a broad audience. This should allow interested parties to critically evaluate research findings and claims made for the value of various treatments and equipment. For this presentation, an interactive approach will be used to help the audience reason its way through testing for various threats to the validity of the experiment. An attempt will be made to provide easy and interesting examples as well as some useful background information. The goal will be to reach the "gold standard" of such designs, which is used, for example, by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) as its protocol for testing. Some information may also be presented on claims, which have yet to meet this standard.

Posted by risler
May 14, 2015

Smoky Mountain Freethought Advance (Not Retreat!)
Because the Freedom From Religion Foundation Lake Hypatia July 4 “Advance!” is not being held this year, we have good news! The Rationalists of East Tennessee is holding a substitute event in the foothills of the Smoky Mountains, in Townsend, TN, July 3 and 4th. Cost $120/person (children under 18 are free). Meals are a la carte at an additional fee. Lodging and Advance are at Tremont Lodge and Resort, 7726 E Lamar Alexander Parkway, Townsend, TN 37882-4039 (865) 448-3200 or (844) 448-3200 with a 10% discount if RET is mentioned as the Group. A block of rooms will only be held until May 29, so reserve soon! There is a stunning list of speakers already confirmed with more to come, plus there will be the traditional “Freethought Jeopardy” and even fireworks. For more information contact Aleta Ledendecker at aledendecker@me.com.

Posted by carl
May 11, 2015

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