Outstanding HAPI International Council Members & Their Humanism Stories

Posted by Marissa Langseth | Posted on September 27, 2017

Humanism has always been the hope of humanity and here’s to name a few of our outstanding International Council Members. Humanist Alliance of The Philippines, International has always and will always welcome people who want to make a change.

An Artist’s Humanism Story

Lucille von Hoersten HAPI Member
Lucille von Hoersten, Artist, Painter, Sculptor, based in Germany Founder of RebelBlood – The Union of Artists of Maharlika, International. Member of Amnesty International. Blood donor and with numerous record of humanitarian services. Financier Leyte Humanist Alliance and Lead Council of Leyte Humanist Alliance (Humanists / Atheists)

I am afraid to disappoint you that I have nothing religious in me; as a matter of fact, I am an Atheist, in full conviction. I was raised up trained since the age of 5 years old to look after & protect my younger siblings, as time back then family consisted of a huge number, & there was a bit scarcity of living standard so that work and time were shared responsibility.

Rooted from childhood with protector instinct, I give my all, helping ever since I started thinking, giving even my blood & life. I am a registered consistent blood donor since the year 2001, 16 years now, & have already saved 21 lives by donating my blood 21 times & helping for as long as I live. member & strengthening the force of philanthropic organizations, a human rights activist & active force of Amnesty International, a carrier of organs donor passes, & I am a registered worldwide stem cell donor to enable me to save lives of also cancer patients. Yet no, there is nothing perfect nor powerful about me, I am just another struggling soul who tirelessly aims to keep learning in life, trying to obtain a bit more wisdom every gift of time.

I was once sent a message convincing that yoga and mysticism help one achieve cosmic consciousness, for one to become like God, with supernatural powers. I wonder what made that person thinks other people would need such. Being human is a privilege, I find us the strongest creature, as even with our humble beings we bleed striving hard to live, learn, give & help. Whether I live long or die soon is at par.

I have started this life helping people, & so shall I end. I simply live & die this way: HELPING. And that is my humble contribution to this world, & there is nothing I need more.

Thank you for having me here. Kind regards.

Humanism from a Member of American Atheists

Mark Richardson HAPI Member
Mark Richardson – lifetime member of American Atheists. Retired Aeronautical Engineer, based in Seattle, Washington, USA

I’m a lifelong agnostic-atheist originally from a small village about 30 miles west of central London. I’m now a citizen of the United States residing in Seattle Washington. Atheism is absolutely one of my core principles that guides my thoughts and actions. Any acknowledgment of God, gods or any other supernatural entity in the affairs of humanity detracts from the complexities, emotional or otherwise, of what it means to be human. Once atheism is established, humanism is the logical next step in that we have to strengthen each other with words and deeds.

Although my sister and I were raised as Church of England Protestants, my parents were not strict in this regard or disciplinarians in any way. We both went through the formalities of baptism, attending Sunday School, confirmation and attending a C. Of E. School but I never took any of the religious aspects seriously. Participation in these events was mainly traditional and also kept up appearances within the village and the larger community. At school, we did not have Bible study but classes called Religions Education which was a comparative, rudimentary, introduction to the world’s major religions. Very beneficial.

The British Broadcasting Corporation was another very positive influence during my formative years. Unlike American TV, the BBC regularly broadcast programming that was stimulating and eye-opening to a young enquiring mind. Plenty of shows featuring science (Horizon, Tomorrow’s World), natural world/natural history (Johnny Morris’ Animal Magic, David Attenborough’s Life on Earth), current affairs (Panorama, Newsnight), comedic political satire/social commentary (Spitting Image, Not the Nine O’clock News), science fiction (Dr. Who, Blake’s Seven, Star Trek) and, yes, late-night TV for adults with swearing and nudity! And then there is the BBC News, still considered today to be one of the most objective and least bias news reporting organizations in the world. Many times daily, on TV and radio the BBC would make us all aware of the problems of the world: the religious tensions, atrocities, bloodshed and, often, all-out war between the nations of the Middle East and elsewhere, the terrible human tragedies of the natural disasters, the earthquakes, floods and for me the most emotive, the famines and starvation in Africa. How could God permit these things? This all reinforced my godless worldview.

I moved to the United States on 1996 to continue my career in the aircraft industry after an American company, Raytheon, purchased the business jet operations of British Aerospace. Raytheon, quite understandably, soon moved much of the design, manufacturing and final assembly to Wichita, Kansas deep in the bible belt/tornado alley of the American mid-west. It was here that I became very aware how much religion pervades all aspects of American society. Probably not as much as it does in the Philippines, but certainly much more than I was used to in the UK. Since this time I have become much more active and outspoken about my atheism to try and counter the astonishing lack of acceptance of evolution amongst the American public (as one example). There was even a freethinking/atheist group in Wichita called the Maggot Punks?.

As well as atheism, another of the core concepts that shape my worldview is environmentalism along with the related ideas of alternate energy and conservation. We do not have dominion over all the other animals and life forms on the planet, as the Biblical worldview dictates, but must exist in harmony to preserve habitats and biodiversity.

I’m honored to be representing HAPI as an officer on the International Council (Seattle, Pacific Northwest region).

A City Planner’s Humanism Journey:

“I wake up every morning determined to both change the world and have one hell of a good time. Sometimes this makes planning my day a bit difficult” by Michael Sherman, HAPI International Liaison Officer.

Michael Sherman HAPI Member
Michael Sherman- An urban / city planner with big dreams to help the Philippines. Has been looking for ways and means to connect HAPI with humanist societies in the USA and UK, based in Dade City, Florida.

 

I am a humanist, proud and happy to say that. My humanism was a long time coming…born a Catholic, participated in a cult as a child and joined another religious cult as a young adult. I was seeking but for a long time, I wasn’t sure exactly what I was seeking. And now I think I have found it. I was seeking humanism. I was seeking to help humankind on our path in this world. I am fortunate that I am able to utilize my chosen profession to further humanism ideals.

At work, I am called a liberal but really I am a humanist. My goals in life are to use the principles of urban / city planning to better my community and my world. I believe in grassroots work; working with communities and people from the ground up. I believe in tactical humanism. I know that we die only once in this world but we live every day. A long time ago I made a promise to myself that I would do what I can to make this world a better place. And yes, as Marissa said, I have a soft spot for children. This is one reason I have focused my humanist efforts on increasing food stocks and nutrition in my community. .

Today I met with representatives from the University of Florida to begin the development of another community garden. We only die once and I want to make my days on this earth serving humankind. I am HAPI to be involved in HAPI. I am humbled by the people I have met in this organization. I am thankful that I have been accepted into the organization. Thanks to my friends in the Philippines I have fallen in love with your country and I am committed to helping where I can.

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