I waited for a public lecture addressed by the former Prime Minister of New Zealand, David Lange, at the University of Otago. I arrived at the Saint David Lecture Theatre about ten past seven. Despite there being twenty minutes until the lecture began the theatre was already two-thirds full. At half past the hour the audience was advised to be seated or else they would have to leave the lecture theatre. A few people lingered around the doors of the theatre. Most people found somewhere. The theatre had seating capacity for 550 people so that was an impressive attendence.

The former PM is in advanced stage of illness and this is expected to be his last public engagement. Sad for a man who is only in his early sixties. Despite his obvious frailty he spoke with warmth and humanity.

I do not think that he engaged the subject. Instead he spoke on the illegalities of the current campaign in the Middle East led by the American administration.

He opined that religion was a product of culture. It could equally be a vehicle for human values or human oppression. Respect each other as you would want to be respected; understand each other as you would want to be understood; recognise the limitations and fallibilities of your worldviews as you would want to recognise the limitations of other worldviews.

It is better to live in a cosmopolitan world with a diversity of worldviews and races; a mono-culture would be dull. I came away feeling enriched.

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