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Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Is Rizal Worth Emulating?

Though I've had a hard time reading the Filipino (shames me that i'm out of practice reading Filipino) post from MLQ3 "Si Rizal at ang Pilosopiya ng Pagtitiis". It was enjoyable for the simple reason that there are so few things written in Filipino worth reading. His post was all about Rizal--- the Filipino National Hero who died being shot at by Spain and martyred. MLQ3's point can be summed up in his concluding paragraph:
Sa totoo lang, ang daan tungo sa kalayaan ay naitakda sa dugo ng mga martir na namamatay dahil sa kanilang mapayapang pagkontra. Ang tagumpay ng kalayaan sa kasaysayan ng Pilipinas ay hindi nakakamit sa pamamagitan ng bala at dahas kundi sa pagtitiis, sa pagpapakita ng isang buhay na makatarungan, at sa kamatayan na marangal. Noong sinuri ng Kastilang doktor ang pulso ni Rizal bago siya barilin, nagulat ang doctor dahil panatag ang pulso nito. Sa kadalisayan ng kabutihan nagmumula ang pag-asa sa kinabukasan. (i added the emphasis)
Where the Filipino word "pagtitiis" roughly translates to "working hard for it".
There is a difference between working hard and working right. Filipinos certainly work hard, but are we working right?

The Filipino has certainly aspired for something bigger than himself. It is certainly not to say, he has succeeded. While certainly there has been only one experience by our race to succeed in a violent act to gain freedom--- World War 2, we have certainly never been a militarized people where every war fought, a botched job. Was that a mistake?

Perhaps we weren't ready then to become a nation. That people thought at the time we weren't ready for freedom. Did they really understand what freedom and self-determination meant? Do we today? Perhaps freedom is every bit as paralyzing as democracy.

Is it not the right of every human being to be free, to determine his own destiny? Is it not the right of every man to aim for heaven and it is not his right also to fail and then rise up once more should he fall?

Isn't that the promise of life and the joy of toiling for life?

For all his talents and for all his knowledge, did Rizal really grasp and construe the beast that is Freedom and Democracy? If Rizal thought freedom: the right of self-governance, the right to determining one's own destiny, was something to be earned rather than God given, from that point of view, i ask you this: is Rizal worth emulating?

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