Sunday, August 9, 2009


SWERTE understood as one's predetermined lot in life, or simply one's luck. It is the mentally behind the Filipino's lack of initiative and foresight. It explains the do nothing or do little attitude that produce an unwarranted sense of dependence on the dole out or awa of fate or God.

One of my friend tell me about this story. I just wanna share it as part of our Filipino attitude or Legacy.
Sheila lifted a finger to her lips. "Be quiet, Jester!" she said. "Don't you see? I'm reviewing for our next exam this afternoon."
It was the first periodical examination of classes. As a sophomore student, Sheila was not a new to the noise of the lobby, which student make especially during recess.
Jester laughed, his voice loud and irritating. "Exam? We will have another exam this afternoon?" Sheila glanced over at her classmate. "Yes! Didn't you hear teacher Marie announce it yesterday?
"Of course heard it. I'm not deaf," Jester said, holding his ears.
"I'm sure you reviewed your notes already."
"Reviewed my notes? No way! "I'm not worried at all." It will be very easy. It's a matter of luck." Sheila was amazed, "Luck? Do you believed that?"
"Yeah! How about you?"
She shrugged her shoulders. "I don't believed that! But I respect your ideas."
The bell rang. Recess time was over. Students rushed to their respective rooms.
Jester and Sheila had been classmate since first year high school. While their Math class was going on, Sheila couldn't concentrate on the teacher's lecture. She kept looking at Jester, thinking about what he told her about "luck". Her musings were interrupted when the class was dismissed. Her classmates jostled their way out and raced toward the school cafeteria. She immediately got up from her seat and walk directly to the cafeteria for lunch.
"Full of half serving?" the server asked Sheila, pointing to the vegetables salad in front of her.
"Please give me half of that salad, thanks." She carried her tray to the table near the wall, said a little prayer, and began to eat. Sheila was glad when Jester came and shared the table with her. She would have the opportunity to change Jester's attitude.
"Are you ready for our examination this afternoon?" Sheila asked. Jester just smiled and continued eating his lunch, but Sheila wouldn't give up. I never saw you open your notes or review and study them. I know your not like this before. You're no longer the diligent friend I once knew."
"Mind your own business, Sheila, "Jester said. "I just wanna to rest my mind now. It's a matter of luck. We have classmates who passed the subject without studying," he reasoned out.
"So you're following them? You know, Jester, it's not enough that you pass the subject. You can do more than that." She glanced at her watch; it was already 1:00 p.m., 30 minutes befoer their exams. She got up and excused herself.
In the classroom she saw Jester sitting at the back. After their exams, Jester presented his paper to Sheila. Out of 50 questions, he got 46 correct answers. "I told good fortune is with me," he saiad. Sheila remained unconvinced. For her, it still pays to be diligent. Luck is out of her mind. Every time they had an examinations or quizzes, she studied and reviewed for them. The time came when the firts rading card were released.
The names of the top 10 students were posted on the bulletin board. Jester's name, which used to be there, was nowhere to be found. Sheila saw his report card and his grades were just enough to pass the course. On the second grading examination, he failed two of his subjects.
One day morning, Jester's mother met Sheila's in the market. Aling Caring confided problem in the scholl to Sheila's mother. "My son failed two of his subjets," she started. "Why?" asked Sheila's mom. "Did you remind him to study his lessons?" I did! Aling Caring's answered. "I went to the school yesterday. I met your daughter on the way. She told me that jester believed that luck would help him in his studies," she said halfcrying. Why not talk to him? Explain to him that luck has nothing to do with getting grades or passing his subjects. He needs hard work, patience, and diligence, Sheila's mother advised.
Aling Caring followed the advice. Gradually, Jester's garde improved. He made it to the list of the top 10 students again. Not long afterward, Jester approached Sheila and said, Thank you very much for your concern. Now, I realize that luck has nothing to do with what we wanted to achieved, even with our grades. What i need is hard work, patience and diligence."
Sheila smiled, feeling vry happy. Not knowing that Jester is also the guy that she will be married..Now, they husband and wife and not just believing in "Luck"....

Wednesday, July 29, 2009


KURSUNADA is a condition of intense liking for an object or for a member of the opposite sex. Sometimes this value connotes a sadistic and lusty fancy when it refers to a condition of dislike. Another use of the term is one Filipino resents the glance of another and strikes out in anger.

My old friend Alvin had just moves to a new place (in Laguna) and at his first day. Financial constraints forced his parents to send him also to the public school at the new place where they lived. Not knowing what awaited him in this new environment, he left early. He was charmed by the view surrounding him. His sight was not particularly fixed but rather bounded from here to there. Consequently, he was unaware that he had bumped into a girl rushing past him from the corner of the library.

Words froze in his throat. The girl has already finished her lecture and had gone before his apology came out of his mouth. He was struck by her beauty, not to mention the fragrance that exuded from her long ebony hair.
Nights and nights thereafter, Alvin dreamed of this girl. He later learned that her name is Shantalie. How could he forget her rose-pink cheeks as he fumed in girlish defiance over his recklessness? How could he lay in bed without recalling thelovely face and the beautiful brown eyes that sparkled in her gaze? If only he had met her in a more pleasant situation. But Alvin determined to know Shantalie at all cost. Such was the only way sleep would return to him.

A boquet of Holland roses in hand, he traced the path he first took hoping it would lead to another bump with the girlof his dreams. Girls in school uniforms stared at him with sundry expressions, but there was no Shantalie.

Reaching the library, he had no choice but to seek solace in its silent hall, where boys and girls and teachers cast probing satred at his boquet. They seemed unable to guess where and to whom those long stemmed roses were heading.

Then something caught his eyes. From the dge of the adjacent shelf, he saw black flowing hair glistening in the flourescent light. A surge of blood rushed his body. Suddenly he felt weak. His kness seemed to have lossened and he felt as thoough someone bolted his voice box out of his throat. It took him a lot of conditioning before he ultimately moved his feet to deliver his package.

For you. He was not even sure if he had really uttered those words or if it was only his mind speaking. He did not even have time to hear what Shantalie had to say. OR time to ask who was the brawny professor sitting beside Shantalie, looking daggers at him.

Saturday, June 6, 2009



is the cultural stress on either guilt or shame. Westerners have a "guilt culture" that stresses moral standards and the cultivation of moral sensitivity. Filipinos, on the other hand, belong to a "shame culture" in which the concern is to prevent others from knowing of one's sin. Due to a fragile sense of worth, we Filipinos avoid being exposed, lest we be mapahiya (shamed or put to shame). When faced with the choice of being put to shame and committing sin, the typical Filipino chooses the "lesser evil" of committing sin.

In our values Education class, our teacher asked to interview our neighbors about their views on sin. The following day we excitedly shared what are they discoveries. My classmate "Pedro, what have you learned?" My teacher said. "Well," said Pedro, "I interviewed my Cebuan, Illongo, and ilocano neighbors and guess what i found out? The Cebuan and Illongo word for sin is sala and its ilocano equivalent is basol. These two words imply that sin is voluntary, a shortcoming, or a flaw," reported Pedro.

"That is right," agreed Juan. "Sapagkat tayo ay tao lamang (because we are only human) is our natural excuse, isn't it?" Annie (my bestfriend) complemented the idea when he added a Cebuandage, "Masayop man gani ang kabaw nga upat og tiil; ang tawo pa bay dili, (if a carabao with its four feet takes a wrong step, what more for man.)" Everybody laughed.

Miss Poblete, our kind mentor, interrupted, "This means that since nobody is perfect, we should not be hard on those who fall into sin! Faults and imperfections are natural."

Me, volunteered to share what i found out. "Our behavior as Filipinos," i said seriously, "is controlled more by the group around us than by inner conviction." I elaborated. "An example of this is a jobless husband who spends time with his peers in a drinking session. The wife calls her husband to help her in the household chores, but his barkada calls him under the saya (under her skirt). His ego is touched and he beats his wife to show his friends that he is boss at home," I lamented. "But these points do not mean we have no sense of guilt," Madam Poblete injected.

"There is an abundance of popular sayings that indicate this. Can you cite one or two?" she asked in our class. My classmate Ronald stood up and said: "Ang taong sad-an maluspad (a guilty man turns pale)." My classmate Mylene recited a famous Ilocano saying, "Ti adda babakna, adda aluadanna. (whoever has sin has something to be aware of.)"

"Actually, the so-called weak sense of guilt may be checked by the Filipino concept or gaba (Cebuan and Illongo), sumpa (tagalog), and lunod (ilocano), which means divine answer to the issue of morality," commented by our teacher.

Then the bell rang..It was a profitable day for us in our class. We learned the Filipino's views onsin and transgression.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Bahala Na


is an unproductive perspective of life. It is rendered loosely as "Come what may" or Que sera, sera ("What will be, will be"). It conjures up utter helplessness in the face of difficult situations. Notwithstanding its sense of fatalism, this common idiom is also a Filipino expression of faith in a higher Being. "Bahala na" comes from "Bathala na" , where Bathala is the Tagalog name of God. Its literal meaning, therefore, would be "Let God take a charge!"
Allan was my classmate in third-year high school. He had always been the laughingstock in our class. Almost everyday he came to class late, if he wasn't late he was cutting classes and palying cards, cara cruz, with his friends near the campus. He had never been in our class as in for whole day and had never devoted himself to studying his lessons. His mother always came to school to check wether Allan was attending in his classes or not. But, sad to say, she seldom found her child in class, or if he was there, she hardly saw himjotting down notes or listening to class discussions.
One day the teacher asked, "Who of you are feeling happy today?" All of the class raised their hands. She was amazed at her students' response. But she was even more delighted to see Allan raising his hand. The teacher said, "Ok, Allan, tell me why you're happy today."
Allan replied, "Because, I have again another day to play and....bahala na!"
The teacher sort of anticipated that answer from him. Allan was very happy all the time, never dreaming of having a good life. The teacher was worried about him, so after class she asked Allan to stay behind. "Why do you remain happy even if you don't pass any test? Aren't you worried that you may fail all your subjects this year?"
Allan politely answered, "I have always wanted to be a happy-go-lucky guy since my father leave us. I always try to pretend I'm happy, but actually I'm aching deep inside when I'm alone. Because of father's loss, I have always wanted to live in the past, with my father, and forget about the future."
The teacher hugged Allan and said, "Please don't waste time by playing and fooling around. I believe your father would not be happy seeing you this way, if he were here today."
The next day, Allan came to class early, much earlier than any of his classmates. He came to realize that living in the past and not planning for the future was not the best thing for him and he can't help his family with that.
From that day he came to class early, attending classes on the whole day, participate, and studied much harder.
It was not surprise then for everybody to see Allan receive a number of honors on our graduation day. He made it to the top because of a simple hug, because of the words of encouragement from our teacher...