Welcome to the Ethical Culture Society of Silicon Valley

The Ethical Culture Society of Silicon Valley (ECSSV) is an affiliate of the American Ethical Union.  Ethical Culture is a humanistic religious, philosophical, and educational movement inspired by the ideal that the supreme aim of life is working to create a more humane society.  Our focus is on how we live our lives. Our faith is in the capacity and responsibility of human beings to act in their personal relationships and in the larger community to help create a better world.


The Ethical Culture Society of Silicon Valley is a vibrant, caring community dedicated to cultivating ethical growth and action in its members and in the larger world.  We are a democratic fellowship for people seeking a rational, compassionate philosophy of life without regard to belief or nonbelief in a supreme being.

We discuss ethical dilemmas that arise in our lives and in the world around us; hold programs to learn about ourselves, each other, and the issues of the day; and seek to be engaged citizens of our nation and our world.  We collaborate with other organizations working for a more just and humane world.



Sunday Spotlight: Individuality vs. Cooperation

Sunday, July 16, 2017           11am to 12:30pm

Neutra House, 183 Hillview Ave., Los Altos, CA 94022

Join us one Sunday each month to hear from an inspiring, active speaker who will share information about an organization working to make our community and our world a better place.  Topics run the gamut from basic needs to social justice to the environment.  We welcome you to participate by listening and engaging in thoughtful dialogue, with a little live music mixed in.  We provide the coffee, tea, and a welcoming space for inquiring minds and open hearts to learn from one another.

This month, John Dukovic leads a colloquy from the AEU Assembly entitled “Individuality vs. Cooperation.”  Colloquy is a way of meeting that includes music, listening and speaking with intention and attention, the spoken word, and quiet moments.  The program begins at 11 a.m. and ends at 12:30 p.m.  We hope you can join us for the event, and we’d love it if you stay afterward for a beverage and light refreshments and to share your thoughts. 

It’s OK to just show up, but it always helps to know how many people to expect.  You can use our Meetup page if you have a Meetup account, or you can contact us by email or this site’s contact form .

By the way, we’d love your input on our programs!  If you have an idea for a topic or speaker for Sunday Spotlight, please let us know.  The easiest method is to use our contact form and write something like “spotlight suggestion” in the subject line.




Event dates can also be found on our calendar page



Wednesday July 19, 2017           7:30pm to 9pm

Wednesday Ethics Discussion: The Ethics of What We Eat

Peter Singer has 5 ethical principles he considers around food choices in his book, “The Ethics of What We Eat” (AKA The Way We Eat: Why Our Food Choices Matter). They are: Fairness, Transparency, Humanity, Social Responsibility and Needs.  We’ll consider those as we reflect on the ethics of what we eat.  Paula leads.  (We promise no gory videos.) 

Soup is served at 6:30pm, discussion starts at 7:30. Please RSVP for location details, as this event is held at a private home. Use our Meetup page if you have a Meetup account, or you can contact us by email or this site’s contact form .



Friday July 21, 2017           10am to noon

Friday Morning Theoretical Ethics: Free Speech and Social Media

Location: IHOP restaurant, 5403 Stevens Creek Blvd., Santa Clara CA 95051


Harvard rescinds admissions offers over Facebook posts.  An issue of free speech or moral character?

Recently, Harvard rescinded the admission offers to 10 students to attend Harvard after learning of R-rated posts on a “dark” Facebook page.  (Article from the Harvard Crimson here )  Ethical question: Should one have the right to free speech in a private social media site with the expectation of no consequences of what one posts?  If not, is it truly free speech?

Harvard Crimson says: “‘As a reminder, Harvard College reserves the right to withdraw an offer of admission under various conditions including if an admitted student engages in behavior that brings into question his or her honesty, maturity, or moral character,’ the description reads.”

What do you say?  Molly hosts, Paula leads.

Please join this group and feel free to invite others!  Bring your unique point of view and add to the discussion, which starts around 10:30.  Arrive early if you’d like to order food (highly recommended!).  It’s OK to just show up, but it always helps to know how many people to expect.  You can RSVP via our Meetup page if you have a Meetup account, or you can use our contact form .



Sunday July 23, 2017      11am to 12:30pm

Book Discussion

Location: Mitchell Park Library, 3700 Middlefield Rd., Palo Alto, CA. 94303

This recurring event happens on the 4th Sunday of every month in the Greenmeadow room of the Mitchell Park Library (upstairs).  The book this month is “Amusing Ourselves To Death” by Neil Postman.  This1985 book is still remarkably relevant in 2017.

Everyone is welcome to attend the meeting, but we ask that you read the book first and come prepared to discuss it.  You can RSVP using our Meetup page if you have a Meetup account, or you can contact us by email or this site’s contact form .



Wednesday July 26, 2017           7:30pm to 9pm

Video Night: Relationship Building

If ethics is about relationships, how do we build relationships?  Join us for this 26-minute video as the Leader of the Washington Ethical Society reviews what their Society has done.  Can we do that too?   Should we?

Soup is served at 6:30pm, video starts at 7:30.  Please RSVP for location details, as this event is held at a private home.  Use our Meetup page if you have a Meetup account, or you can contact us by email or this site’s contact form .