Everyone is welcome to attend our Sunday morning platform meetings!


From the first Sunday after Labor Day through mid-June, they are held at 11 AM. During the summer, our program is more varied, but we usually start at 10:30 AM. Our thought-provoking platform addresses cover a wide range of subjects relating to ethics in modern life.

Our speakers offer thoughts related to the philosophy of humanism or share their experiences and commitments in the struggle to foster peace, justice, economic fairness and racial and religious harmony.

The Ethical Culture Leader of Bergen County speaks on the first Sunday of each month, occasionally on the differences between Ethical Culture and other religous movements. Sometimes our meetings take the form of interviews or group discussions. Three times a year, special celebrations are held in conjunction with the children of the Sunday School. Babysitting is available for infants and toddlers too young to sample our Sunday School.

Music, small discussions, coffee and socializing are also important elements of our Sunday morning experience.

If you would like to sample our programs before visiting (or if you are too far to visit) you may also choose from a large selection of audio tapes available for a nominal fee. Call (201) 836-5187 for more information or send us an email at

The Ethical Culture Society of Bergen County welcomes people of all races, ethnic origins, religious backgrounds, and sexual orientations. The Society has a barrier-free front entrance.


Selected Platform Addresses by Guest Speakers


Visit our Leader’s Page to see talks by Dr. Joe Chuman.

The radical Martin Luther King we do not know

This platform address was delivered by Dr. Joseph Chuman, leader of the Ethical Culture Society of Bergen County, at the Society’s meetinghouse

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Getting our Wishes: Choices at the End of Life

By Richard H Bernstein, MD, FACP Delivered at the Ethical Culture Society of Bergen County, 3/28/15 Opening Words Leon Kass, a University of Chicago

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Human Rights and the Heavy Lifting of Social Justice, Sun., Dec. 7

When Jimmy Carter proclaimed in his inauguration speech that human rights would be the centerpiece of American foreign policy, few of his fellow

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Lessons from Socrates Café

by Richard Bernstein, MD As you might expect, I’ll begin with a question: What is Socrates Café? Of course, most of us know it is a discussion

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The Land of Now, Or: How Time Goes By

by Robert Gulack There once was a man who was certain that he was always right. He could prove it, he said – because, to the best of his knowledge,

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The Israel-Palestinian Conflict: Each Side’s Contrasting Narratives

Because this is a very difficult and emotional subject, I think it’s helpful for you to know something about my background. It is, at least in

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A Civilization Should Be Judged

A civilization should be judged by the way it treats its most vulnerable members. Will the world care for its children? The United Nations cares. It

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Personal Responsibility – An Optimist’s View

I want to start with two Disclaimers: What you are about to hear is not the traditional viewpoint of most speakers at this platform. I will be

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What I Learned About Women At The United Nations

By Phyllis Ehrenfeld The greatest weapon in the war against poverty is the empowerment of women and the education of girls, said United Nations

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How to Tell the Difference Between Right and Wrong

By Robert Gulack © 2005 by Robert Gulack The world we live in, David Hume tells us, is “the first rude essay of some infant deity who afterwards

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Roe vs. Wade vs. Socrates

I recently received a pamphlet from the National Organization for Woman (“NOW”). Its front page said in bold letters: Keep Abortion Legal NOW.

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When Patriotism & Ethics Clash

The Community Circle platform meeting held on Sunday, August 7, 2005, entitled When Patriotism & Ethics Clash, featured a participatory exercise

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Ethical Dilemmas of Globalization

By Dr. Sylvain Ehrenfeld International Humanist and Ethical Union Representative to the United Nations Member of the Ethical Culture Society of

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A Place at the Table: How the Nation’s First Congressional Lobbyist for Nontheists is Enjoying the Feast

by Lori Lipman Brown, Director of the Secular Coalition for America — September 21, 2008 When I was hired to be the first paid staff of the

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Two Possible Futures for Ethical Culture

By Marc A. Bernstein, Ph.D. Sunday 27 April 2008 I became interested in Ethical Culture’s future when I began to study its past. About a year ago,

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The Frontier of Truth

by Tony Hileman, Senior Leader, New York Society for Ethical Culture Any of you who have heard me speak before have likely heard me say that I

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Mitt Romney, You’re No Jack Kennedy!

Perhaps the most extraordinary news coming out of the Iowa caucuses last Thursday was the victory of Barack Obama over his Democratic rivals. It is

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Does History Have Any Meaning?

By William C. Heffernan Thank you so much for your kind introduction. And thanks to the Bergen Society for inviting me back. By my calculation,

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Can Ethical Culture Help You in a Time of Personal Crisis?

By Marc Bernstein Few in this room believe in a God who answers our prayers. Probably no one believes in an afterlife that will redress our suffering

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Free Will: The Last Great Lie

By Robert Gulack  There are three great comforting lies at the heart of the cruel and corrupt monstrosity we call “Western Civilization” –

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Minister In Chief: George W Bush

By Dr. Joseph Chuman The Evangelization of America In 1962, when organized prayer was banned from the public schools, hordes of clergymen and

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The Passionate Humanism of Paul Wellstone

As Ethical Culturists we are idealists. We look at the way the world is and imagine how is might be; indeed, how it ought to be. When we apply this

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Onward Christian Soldiers: War, Religion and Ashcroft’s Passion

I attended the 50th anniversary Congress of the International Humanist and Ethical Union this past summer, which was held near the city of Leiden in

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The United States In The Post 9/11 World: An Ethical Culture Perspective

In its emotional impact, September 11, 2000 may have been the most horrifying single day in American history. A year later the feelings of injury are

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A Marginalized Minority: The Fate of Humanists, Agnostics and Atheists in a Time of God

An article in yesterday’s Record could not escape my notice. Entitled “Graham, Nixon Deride Jews on Tape” the brief piece describes a

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