British Museum visit: Living with Gods

Where: British Museum  We will meet by the information desk at 11am.
When: Saturday 6 January.

Tickets: Adult tickets are £15, concessions £12, under-16s go free. Booking ahead is advised. If you would like us to book your ticket in advance, let us know at (or mention it at a meeting) and bring cash on the day. For those who can stay, we’ll meet for lunch in the main hall where you can either bring packed lunch or buy there.

January outing to British Museum to see ‘Living with gods’ exhibition

SELHuG is organising a trip to the new exhibition, ‘Living with gods: peoples, places and worlds beyond’ in the new year. This is another tie-up between Radio 4 and the British Museum like the 2010 A History of the World in 100 Objects, also led by former director Neil MacGregor.

What the publicity says:

“Beliefs in spiritual beings and worlds beyond nature are characteristic of all human societies. By looking at how people believe through everyday objects of faith, this exhibition provides a perspective on what makes believing a vital part of human behaviour.

“Seeing how people believe, rather than considering what they believe, suggests that humans might be naturally inclined to believe in transcendent worlds and beings. Stories, objects, images, prayers, meditation and rituals can provide ways for people to cope with anxieties about the world, and help form strong social bonds. This in turn helps to make our lives well-ordered and understandable.”

Gwyneth Williams, Controller of BBC Radio 4 goes further and says: “The rational and analytical, enlightenment-understood nature of humanity informs much of modern society. But, of course, as the brilliant Neil MacGregor shows in this wide-ranging and important series, we are so much more than that. Over the last decade, around the world, religious and spiritual awareness has grown and begun to pose a different understanding of what it means to be human. Neil, in this series, shows the depth, complexity and beauty of that rich heritage. As he describes it, ‘homo sapiens is also homo religiosus’.”

Have atheists and humanists lost touch with an essential part of what makes us human, or is there a different way to interpret homo religiosus? Let’s go along and find out!