The Sinn Féin president on understanding religion.
Question:What did you think you would be doing professionally when you were growing up?
Gerry Adams: For a very brief period I thought about becoming a priest or a Christian brother, which maybe in those days young Catholic women would have thought of becoming nuns. But in my case thankfully it was only a passing notion.
Question: Does religion inform your worldview?
Gerry Adams: I’ve been trying to find the time to figure all of that out so I can give a considerate answer to a question like that.
I was reared as a Catholic and I’m a Catholic and I attend and get comfort from the mass and other Catholic sermons. But, increasingly, I find myself dealing more with spirituality, reading more about Buddhism, trying to read a wee bit about Islam. Certainly in terms of the Christian churches, I’m increasingly bewildered by all the mostly manmade – and I use that term incessantly – the denominational differences and how they all bicker with each other. I think that’s all totally against any sense of what Christ was about.
So without being too judgmental about it all, as I say I believe increasingly in people. I think there is a spirituality. Ireland is a very spiritual place for me, and it’s a very sspiritual place.
Before they civilized us, we used to believe in trees, and the elements, and the _______. And I still believe in a lot of those things. And I believe in nature as a great elemental force.
Recorded on: Oct 8, 2007