Sunday, 18 July 2010


On Saturday I went to the BHA AGM held in Conway Hall, Red Lion Square, London. This was the first time I've attended the AGM and it was somewhat more interesting than I thought it might be. There were three forums held in the morning, but I missed these since I had other business to attend to. The photo was taken just before the meeting started. The wording above the stage reads "To Thine Own Self Be True" which is a translation from the Greek motto at the Delphic Oracle. What exactly it means is of course open to interpretation, like anything oracular.

The meeting began with a performance by the BHA choir. Somewhat controversially, but apparently at the request of Andrew Copson, they sang "Hallelujah" by Leonard Cohen. That was good. However their rendition of "Somer is icomen in" this time seemed to be a conflict betwen the choir and the pianist, but perhaps I was sitting in the wrong place.

After the reports by Robert Ashby the chairman, Andrew Copson the chief executive and the presentation of the accounts by the Treasurer, the most interesting part of the actual AGM was the election of the Trustees, and the debate that accompanied it. The problem is that you have to vote for people that you may not have met and may know nothing about except what they have written in their address.

The meeting ended with a talk about Education from A. C. Grayling, covering everything from ancient Sparta to the less successful efforts of Russell, Wittgenstein and Popper. I wondered if he is planning to set up some school himself, but no-one asked that question. Why shouldn't Humanists set up Academies if the funding can be found? Otherwise we are simply ceding the ground to the churches.

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