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May 25 2013

Live, from the Palace of Parliament!

I’m at the humanist conference on “Education, Science and Human Rights” in Bucharest, sponsored by Asociatia Umanista Romana, the International Humanist and Ethical Union, and the European Humanist Federation…and you’re not. I’m not going to be live-blogging it, I’m afraid — I’m so tired right now I’m going to be using my currently limited cognitive faculties to simply pay attention. But I thought in these moments before the knowledge starts flowing I could at least let you know I’m sitting on lovely leather-bound seats beneath a gigantic chandelier in huge auditorium surrounded by marble pillars. I think my expectations for conference accommodations have now taken a giant leap upwards in opulence.

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I’m also looking at the schedule — this is the first I’ve seen it — and feeling a great relief that I think my talk will fit right in with all these other people’s. Well, unless that talk on religious education in Romania is in favor of it…then I might be in trouble.

12 comments

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  1. 1
    theignored

    Screw it…I got nothin’.

    Doesn’t stop me from posting though!

    Just don’t remind them of that song Mark Russell sang about their former leader Nicolae Ceaușescu.

  2. 2
    pvictoradrian

    Maybe the fact that I’m a 24 years old (educated) Romanian who never met a single person who was openly an atheist or recognized the harm of religion even slightly might give you an idea of our views. This Easter, every single person that I’ve met insisted to use the traditional magical “Christ is risen!” formula on me. When they saw that I smiled instead of the gibberish traditional response “It is TRUE that he has risen!”, they looked at me like something is irrevocably wrong with me.
    One of my teachers of Macroeconomics at the Academy of Economic Studies even had the nerve to talk about the “2012 Mayan Apocalypse” in terms of spiritual changes at the level of “other” dimensions (citing a lunatic magazine for magical-thinking people).
    Recently, Valeriu Zgonea, president of the Chamber of Deputies of Romania said that he feels sorry that a famous romanian recently convicted for tax evasion is going to jail, because that man “is a good man who believes in God”. This is the president of the Chamber of Deputies!
    I couldn’t know the views of your audience, but rest assured : Our country has its roots firmly planted in the Middle Ages and religion is still a must for our “meek” hearts, with schools having a major contribution.

    PS: We are currently paying 200 million euros of tax money (half of its total cost) for this
    , in a country where there are more churches than hospitals : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Romanian_People%27s_Salvation_Cathedral

  3. 3
    sleepingwytch(inactive)

    The chandelier looks incredible, very pretty =~)

    I’ve been going through anxiety attacks and dissociation in bed for the last six hours, so I’m about to goto sleep soon, hopefully. Sorry about earlier, I really struggle to be a good humanist.

    I hope the conference is going well PZ, and that you enjoy it.

  4. 4
    Reginald Selkirk

    Hey, live it up. Meanwhile, the prime minister of Japan is being haunted.
    Ghosts keeping Abe out of official residence?

  5. 5
    chigau (違う)

    …I’m sitting on lovely leather-bound seats beneath a gigantic chandelier in huge auditorium surrounded by marble pillars…

    With Wifi!

  6. 6
    StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return!

    Hey, enjoy. Have fun PZ.

  7. 7
    postman

    @ 2:
    We have that greeting during Easter as well. Must be an orthodox thing. I reply with a generic greeting myself.

  8. 8
    pakicetus

    Looks like, you’ve been having a good time, in Romania. They’re having another Humanist convention? Better, that “TAM”.

  9. 9
    pakicetus

    @ 2

    They do that in America.

    There’s been a recent “uprising” against Easter.

  10. 10
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Wow. That chandelier is gorgeous.
    It has this alien spaceship kinda look to it as well.

  11. 11
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    @2:
    Our countries share much in common when it comes to religious privilege. I am uncertain if you are new to FtB, but if you are, welcome! There are many wonderful humanists here-bloggers and commenters (many of whom are also atheists, such as myself). If you’re looking for a casual place to hang out and socialize, look to the sidebar for the Lounge, where we frequently discuss the harms of religion and anything else we choose.
    Take care :)

  12. 12
    swampfoot

    Will there be any appearances by Cristina Rad?

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