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About me

/Pete200911S.gifBorn in 1958 in Wellington, I grew up in Gisborne – the first city on the planet to see the light of the new day. Having lived in various parts of Wellington for the past 40 years, I agree it is absolutely, positively wonderful ... However, having said that, I will be moving back to Gisborne soon to support my elderly mum.
My Interests
I am involved in many aspects of community life, broadly covering these three areas: spirituality, social justice, and arts & culture, and am a member of a number of not-for-profit community organisations.
• Spirituality
Interested in exploring religious thought and expression from a non-dogmatic and human-oriented standpoint, in Wellingtonton I was a member of St. Andrew’s on The Terrace Presbyterian Church, St. Andrew’s Trust for the Study of Religion and Society (administrator & web master), Sea of Faith Network (web master), and Ephesus (web master). My spiritual home at St. Andrews on the Terrace (Presbyterian) is often referred to as ‘the thinking person’s church’ (see here for why) and Galaxies (Gay and Lesbian and Christian-ish in every sphere).

While raised a Christian, I enjoy learning about other spiritual streams and faiths. There is a common essence to nearly all faiths of love and compassion (called the Golden Rule) for all creation, and especially each other. However, the power hungry and fanatical always seem to be able to turn it around and justify evil in the name of God.
Over the last five years, I have been developing a meditation practice, and now practice daily. My home base for meditation is One Mindful Breath, a secular group in which all the centuries of metaphysical accretions have been scraped off, focusing on the dharma – the original teachings of Gotama, the Buddha. I am a member of the One Mindful Breath Care Committee and until mid-2018 had served as the community’s host and treasurer for a number of years. One Mindful Breath is supported by Aotearoa Buddhist Education Trust and just recently, in May 2018, ABET set up a company to produce educational resources, The Tuwhiri Project. I am the company’s director and Ramsey Margolis, the creative energy behind this project, is the publisher.
• Social Justice
Doing what I can to raise awareness of and give support to those struggling for justice and equality, I have a high awareness of ecological, poverty and unjust treatment in this world. I am involved in organisations that support social justice issues, and am a member of the Social Justice Committee at St. Andrews on the Terrace. I have a particular interest in the peaceful resolution of differences; the United Nations and the World Council of Churches proclaimed 2000–2010 as the 'Decade to overcome violence'.

I am a member of the United Nations Association (I served as their National Administrator for five years), Peace Movement Aotearoa, Amnesty International and Greenpeace.

• Arts & Culture
I enjoy performance art such as dance and plays, and learning about other cultures as well as celebrating my own cultural heritage. I am a member of several groups, including Galaxies for which I serve as treasurer.
When I can fit them in, my hobbies include:
– Listening to music – mainly popular, easy listening (at least easy to compute by), classical (in concert), some light opera, country & western, and a little bit of good jazz and blues
– Helping my friends become internet savvy – a labour of love.
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