Our Organisation

The NZ Humanists are a national charity that promotes humanism, secularism, reason, and science. We work on behalf of the millions of New Zealanders who are not religious, ensuring their voices are heard in public policy and debate.

We regularly meet in Wellington, and have members throughout New Zealand.

We are affiliated internationally to the IHEU and the United Nations Association of NZ.

We are a non-profit society dedicated to Humanist thought and ideals in New Zealand.

We support ethics; giving the greatest possible freedom compatible with the rights of others; the constructive use of rational thought and scientific enquiry; democracy and human rights; personal liberty combined with social responsibility; a secular world based on observation, evaluation, and revision.

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What is Humanism?

Who better to explain some of the fundamental ideas of humanism than one of its most famous adherents

Latest News

Humanist NZ Newsletter December 2021

Kia ora: And so 2021 ends as did 2020, with the question with no easy answer- ‘When will this Covid-19 Pandemic fade into a distant memory? The pandemic effects have raised many issues to be thought about. The effects have laid bare the inequalities within society. Inequalities of housing, employment, race, immigration, travel, have exacerbated the experience of Lockdown for different members of society. We have seen too the madness of conspiracy theories surrounding Covid vaccinations aided and abetted by social media. 2021 ends with the continued unlawful incarceration of Mubarak Bala, Humanist, in Kano, Northern Nigeria. His friends continue their daily vigil counting the days and supporting his wife and child in the grief of this barbaric family separation. By New Year the days held hostage will number 582. In the words of Mubarak Bala “Doubts about my faith had always remained in my mind however. I asked too many questions and got unsatisfactory answers or was warned off with phrases like ‘there are...

Humanist NZ Newsletter November 2021

Kia ora: We are approaching DAY 550 that Mubarak Bala has been detained in prison in Kano, Northern Nigeria. Humanists International continues their advocacy for Mubarak. Humanists in Nigeria and throughout Africa continue their Vigil noting the passing of the days of Mubarak’s incarceration. We have received a thank you ‘on behalf of Mubarak Bala & all his supporters & friends in Nigeria & the rest of Africa’ for our monthly mention and tribute to Mubarak. Nigerian Humanists know that international concern has influence. Our support has been posted and it has helped morale. African humanists know that their pages are watched and news is filtered back to Mubarak’s captors alerting them that the outside world is aware of this situation. The authorities who hold Mubarak are pleased that he is silenced and no longer "brainwashing the Nigerian people with lies from the West." Mubarak’s friends think that though Mubarak has been silenced there are others who can use their voices in Mubarak’s place....

Humanist NZ Newsletter October 2021

Kia ora: Another month and it is now DAY 518 and the despair at Mubarak Bala’s detention by Kano, Nigerian Islamists, continues for African Humanists, Mubarak Bala’s Nigerian humanist colleagues, and especially for Mubarak’s wife and young son who was only six weeks old when his father was detained. When will this end? Humanists International defends humanists like Mubarak Bala at risk of persecution and violence, campaigns on Humanist issues, lobbies for Humanist values at international institutions, including the United Nations, and works to build the Humanist movement around the world. Have you considered joining as an individual member? Humanist NZ is a member organisation. A statement of the fundamental principles of modern Humanism was agreed by the founders of Humanists International at the first World Humanist Congress in 1952. They called it “The Amsterdam Declaration”. Fifty years later, in 2002, the Declaration was updated and now, seventy years later, Humanists International is again looking at...

September 2021 Newsletter

Kia ora: In ten days it will be DAY 500 that Mubarak Bala has spent in detention in Kano, Nigeria. Mubarak Bala, a chemical engineer by training, is a prominent member of the international Humanist movement and as President of the Humanist Association of Nigeria he has played a vital role in the Humanist community in Nigeria. In recognition of his efforts and contributions to promote humanist values in Nigeria, the General Assembly of Humanists International awarded Mubarak Bala with the 2021 Freedom of Thought Award during its General Assembly. Mubarak has been working to promote freedom of religion or belief in Nigeria and has been an outspoken religious critic in the conservative northern region, where open religious opposition is unusual. He has campaigned for the decriminalization of apostasy and blasphemy laws in states that implement Sharia in northern Nigeria. In addition, he has engaged in human rights education and raised awareness on the importance of freedom of thought and conscience to peace,...

August 2021 Newsletter

 Kia ora: Before the advent of modern global communication with Email and Facebook and various other social media platforms, the Internet, which allows us to search out information, we were isolated and insular in what we knew about the situations of other people and communities beyond our shores. But today, we are frighteningly aware of so much hardship and difficulties for others in various places around the world. Today is DAY 455 of Mubarak Bala’s unjust imprisonment. His court case for 14 July 2021 was postponed to 22 July 2021. But again, this date has gone with no Court Hearing and no further news except the Facebook Vigil which continues with a daily post recording this cruel passing of time. Moderate Muslims make no comment on this barbaric situation. There are water shortages in Khouzestan province, South Iran, as the Iranian regime has closed water sources forcing Iranian Arabs and Sunni minorities to leave their lands and cities. The Islamic regime are killing people of this area protesting...

July 2021 Newsletter

Kia ora: Mubarak Bala’s Humanist friends have now marked 425 days of his illegal detention. It is also 425 days of pain and anxiety for his wife, Amina, and 425 days that his son, just new-born at the time of Mubarak’s arrest, has not been able to know his father. With no means of communication with his family, these 425 days are very dark.  On Day 424 Leo Igwe, Humanists International Board member, wrote "Bala’s life is in peril, not in America or in Europe but in Africa, to be specific in Northern Nigeria. Bala’s life has been in danger not for being black in a dominantly white society, but for being an atheist in a predominantly Muslim section of the country. Bala’s life has been at risk due to institutionalized oppression and persecution of persons who are open about their atheism in Muslim communities. Bala’s case has highlighted the inability of atheists and persons who hold views that are critical of Allah or the prophet of Islam to ‘breathe’ in Muslim majority societies." Humanists...

June 2021 Newsletter

Kia ora: Humanists in Nigeria have maintained a daily Vigil of Facebook posts for the unlawful detention of their President, Mubarak Bala. Today’s Facebook post - DAY 398 (31 May) Human Beings over Human Beliefs. A year has now past and still no release to freedom for Mubarak. Humanist NZ continues our monthly Vigil of noting the passing of the months. One year of months has already passed - when will freedom be gained? Mubarak is a symbol for all humanists who fear for their lives in dogmatic theistic countries. · Monthly Meeting Monday 14 June 6.30 pm until 9.00pm (Note usual 1st Monday 7 June is the Queen’s Birthday public holiday) Talking Humanism Sara Passmore will lead us in a discussion on the basic principles of humanism. There are a number of statements that encapsulate humanism, and both Humanists International and the American Humanist Association have great summaries of what humanism is: “Humanism is a democratic and ethical life stance which affirms that human beings have the right and...

May 2021 Newsletter

Kia ora: As I begin this May Newsletter, I am very conscious that today 28 April 2021 is DAY 365 of the unlawful detention of Mubarak Bala, President of the Nigerian Humanist Society. Humanist communities around the world have been waiting in vigil as every day passes. Our Humanist NZ newsletter has reported about Mubarak’s barbaric incarceration in every issue from May 2020. The Facebook post deemed blasphemous said “There is no difference between Prophet TB Joshua (S.A.W) of Lagos and Muhammad (A.S.) of Saudi Arabia, it is better that ours in Nigeria is not terrorism.” Humanists International in collaboration with its Members and Associates will publish an open letter addressed to the Governor of Kano State seeking Mubarak’s immediate release. A 5-minute documentary will be released to recap this last year without Mubarak Bala. Humanist NZ is a member organisation with Humanists International. On the 100th day of Mubarak’s detention Wole Soyinka wrote “I write today to tell you that you are not alone,...

Humanist NZ Newsletter April 2021

Kia ora: DAY 328!!! It is distressing to yet again begin this month’s Newsletter with noting how many days Mubarak Bala, the President of the Nigerian Humanist Society has been unlawfully detained in prison in Kano, Nigeria. A fellow Nigerian Humanist is continuing his daily posting on Facebook marking Mubarak’s detention. DAY 323 marked Mubarak’s son’s first birthday. The personal suffering being inflicted on Mubarak, his wife and son by Nigerian Islamists is untenable. Nigeria and other African countries are also troubled with belief in witches. Leo Igwe, a board member of Humanist International has formed a support organisation Advocacy4AllegedWitches. It is horrifying that in Liberia a six- year old girl has been expelled from her school on suspicion of witchcraft. Advocacy4AllegedWitches is supporting this young girl and her parents to have this innocent child reinstated in school. In our own country as Easter approaches re-enactment of the Easter story occurs in religious groups. In the Philippines it...

Humanist NZ Newsletter March 2021

Kia ora: Another year of Humanism begins. In 2021 we will continue to work towards developing a training programme for non-religious pastoral support. Thank you to the people who have indicated their interest in the training. A growing area in Humanist advocacy is supporting and making known the situation of Humanists at Risk. During late December and January Humanist NZ wrote letters to the Minister of Foreign Affairs regarding Humanists in difficult and life-threatening situations. We wrote in support of Dr Ahmadreza Djalali, a Swedish-Iranian freethinker, academic and researcher in Disaster Medicine who was facing an imminent death sentence in Iran on false charges of espionage. A news report states that Dr Djalali received a reprieve from execution and was able to escape to the UK. We also wrote in support of Zara Kay, an Australian citizen detained in Tanzania. Zara is an ex-Muslim atheist, secular activist, and women's rights activist, based in London. Zara is the founder of Faithless Hijabi, an...