It turns out that I am an Irish citizen. Ever since I was born, I have had dual Irish and New Zealand citizenship and I didn't realize.
This subject is not easy to write about. Like most people, I like to think of myself as relatively tolerant and respectful. And you often hear that we all should be respectful of other people's religious beliefs. But I don't think I really do respect everyone's beliefs, and I'm not even sure I should.
I wrote the other day about my tension between wanting to respect the beliefs of others, whilst not agreeing with those beliefs and not condoning the actions that arise from those beliefs (although, I'm not sure I explained it so succinctly). Today I came across ReligiousTolerance.org, which has some very well thought out ideas on this.
I don't really like experiencing major life uncertainty. And I've been going through some lately, although pretty much vicariously. The uncertainty I have is only a pale shadow of the uncertainty my flatmate, Stephen, is experiencing, but I'd like to whinge anyway :)
Steve and I were driving along Tripoli Road on the way home from Pakuranga (Steve's written his account of what happened). A dark blue station wagon was parked on the side of the road (as were many other cars). Only, as we passed this one, it began to speed away. We had to swerve across the centre line to avoid hitting it.
I had a birthday recently. Nope, I'm not telling how old, but I'm going to show off my pressies.
Sorry people, I need to vent. This isn't aimed at anyone in particular (at least, nobody who reads this blog ;-).
I have never believed in any gods. The correct term for a lack of belief in gods is atheist, and I've been happy to apply that term to myself for the past two decades. In New Zealand, Australia and most of western Europe, identifying as an atheist is not particularly problematic. Religion is no longer a major force in society and most people are not religious. Religion is generally considered a private matter, and religion or lack of it is not necessarily associated with any set of political or social beliefs.