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Sunday, August 29, 2004

ideas and hypotheses 

i wrote these at the back of my notebook in continuum mechanics. in layman's terms, that is greek 101: fundamentals of the greek language--the greek alphabet.

some hypotheses and philosophies


big bang, random vibrations, cyclical nature of things... (hmmm... why do i feel like i've written about this already?)

love is a decision.

the perfect human is imperfect, or he contradicts the very essence of being human.

love is a decision. supplement-complement.

everything we do creates ripples that swim through the vast sea of life, and felt on the other side of the universe.

some ideas

the prophets (?) - a novel?
the classroom - the world is a classroom
the book about life - a definitive "book" on how to live life, for our children to read, that we (earthlings?) will collectively write and will publish on the web...
it's all about attitude...
i-disown na natin si juan tamad
life in engineering terms

- - - - -

may i make one comment -- i am reading Angels & Demons, by Dan Brown at this moment. it has compelled me to pursue posting this blog. as i have said, i will tackle these ideas (and possibly many more) in the years to come. ;-)

Tuesday, February 03, 2004

On being "mabait": A quote from Benjamin Franklin 

I read this from "If I really wanted to SIMPLIFY MY LIFE I would..." from Lighthouse Books. It's a great simple little book! =)

"When you do for a man what he can and should do for himself, you do him a disservice." - Benjamin Franklin

Though I am going to expound on this topic (being "mabait") in a later post, can I say this: Teachers, you're not doing service to your students if you give them a passing grade that they do not deserve!

Saturday, January 24, 2004

On Depression: A Letter To A Friend 

Working so hard, giving 100% of your time and effort, sacrificing personal life but not getting appreciated to the point of feeling inexistent? Been there, done that! Getting a lot of backstabbing from the people you least expect to do that? Oh I've been there, and I've done that! From, even during my fragile, less-mature days while in high school and during college... to just last year, when things went one way when I was almost absolutely sure it would go another way.

Hey! Being depressed, or feeling "down na down", and very disappointed is not good for your health!

I've been there before... I myself have even considered suicide. Thank God, but somehow, I was brought up to have just a little more faith in my system that was enough to bring me here to where I am right now. But I am not yet complete when it comes to faith. There are still these things about me, things I do or think, that show that I myself have a lot to improve on. But, over the course of time, I have learned one important lesson.

To have more trust and faith in the LORD. After all, after a time of trials comes a time for joy.

To do that, we'll have to be ready for change! We've heard of the answer before: we can't change others, only ourselves.

We could change our attitude towards things and others, and that goes first. It doesn't seem easy, and it takes a lot of mental strength. [(Filipino) women are somehow better than most (Filipino) men!] So, while for you, it might be hard, for me and a lot of other people, men and even women alike, it will be much harder! It's not impossible... :-)

Also, it's always healthy to think and act positively! And it's always a good medicine for depression. It requires quite a lot of change in our systems. It's not easy! So we'll also need friends or our immediate community, who know and share the same goals, ideals, and principles as us, to support us and/or guide us!

And prayers---they are always good! You might be one of millions who offered your prayers and your big and simple sacrifices to Him through the feast of the Black Nazarene, held at Quiapo early this year. That's great! It's one step in the right direction! We can also talk to Him in the comfort of our own home, and in the comfort of our own time, like during lunch break, perhaps, or during our trip to the restroom...

So what if you are, like someone I know, "trapped" inside a job or place or environment from which you just can't grow, because there's no more space to grow (like you don't have time for other "healthier" things, and people around you most of the time are your greatest critics)? Get out of that trap! The universe is huge, there are many more places to go!

Yes, by now, you could probably predict what I'm about to say: I've been there, done that. How did I do it? Well, in simple terms, I thought that... If I'm in a situation that's really bad and yet somehow I needed to be there, could it become worse if I did something else? If I choose Option B instead of sticking to Option A, may be I wouldn't get the same things that I used to get out of Option A, but may be I would feel better and more productive if I choose Option B! I would have to change my attitude though, towards those things I needed that Option A provided. Maybe I didn't really need them at all. I mean, if my apartment rental costs me half my whole months' salary, maybe I didn't need to stay in that apartment!

What if Option B proves to be worse? There's still Option C! What if I've come to Option Z, and it still isn't what I wanted? Uh-oh, wait a minute, I know where things could have gone wrong... It's with my attitude. Why would I want to buy a fancy car, if I would have to be extremely patient with my extremely impatient boss everyday of my life, and cause myself unneeded stress which eventually makes me go on weekly drinking sprees with my "barkada" and smoke half-a-pack a day, and which would eventually kill me at a young age, and probably leave my future wife and kids behind with... well, not much; or probably, people will just say about me, "kawawa naman" ("Such a pity.")?

I could also... change my attitude towards my boss! Well, I could choose to accept the fact that my boss is like that. Maybe instead of being affected by his impatience, I could just be an example to him. I'll smile all the time while working! And maybe if he asks me to do overtime this weekend, I do have the option to tell him that I can't! Because it's not mandatory to do overtime! If he kicks me out because I refused to do weekend overtime, let it be!

Well, the things is, we have a lot of options! We always have a choice! Well, we can't control the consequences of that choice, but again, we can choose our attitude towards those consequences!

One time, when I was really feeling "challenged" in life, I went to the Blessed Sacrament at the UP Chapel to pray and to ask for comfort from God. And then this picture came into my mind: imagine Jesus having to accept that he was going to suffer and be killed, understanding that it was God's will. Though he suffered much, having to accept his purpose (the story of The Agony in the Garden), what did he turn out to be? Oh, he just rose from the dead, and is now seated at the right hand of the Father! But he's just quite the perfect example, isn't he? :-)

So... Basically, we could either choose to accept where we are, make the most out of it, and act enthusiastic and think positive all the time, or take the alternate highway with less humps and potholes. If things will go wrong, they will. But after all has been said and done, let us trust and have faith that God has a purpose for all this, and it is universally a good one.

Sunday, January 11, 2004

On being "mabait": Bo Sanchez' reply to an enduring wife 

Do you think we should call the letter-writer (the wife) in this story, just being "mabait" to his husband? My answer is NO. Thus, I see being "mabait" more closely associated with being loving, or "mapagmahal", rather than with just simply being tolerant.

This is the January 6, 2004 issue of Kerygma Soulfood Bulletin, provided by Sheperd's Voice Communications, headed by Bo Sanchez (one of my favorite writers), and based in Metro Manila, Philippines. To subscribe to the bulletin, send an e-mail to soulfood@shepherdsvoice.com.ph.

--------- forwarded message starts here ---------

KERYGMA SOULFOOD
by Bo Sanchez
January 6, 2004

SHOULD I STICK IT OUT WITH MY HUSBAND WHO’S ON DRUGS?

Hi Bo,

I just read your last bulletin where you answered a wife's question. I have one of my own. I guess I would like to say that I really need guidance. I have two spiritual advisers, very close friends of mine, who belong to two different communities. When I told them about my marital problems, they both suggested that I stick it out with my husband. But I cannot hold on to this marriage forever.

My husband is a drug user. He and I have gotten into arguments about his habit, and it would sometimes turn into violent fights. He has violent tendencies, because he also gets into spats with his siblings. He also spanks or pinches our son very hard when the latter misbehaves. He has lost his job because he always seems to think that he is above the law (he was caught accepting bribes). Now, what he does all day is play with his PS2 games and expects me to wait on him hand and foot.

He earlier confessed to me that he was put into jail because of drug possession, and that he has since mended his ways, but I keep catching marijuana in his car.

I love him. I have prayed for him over and over again, but he is very easily swayed by his friends. I do not want to give up on him, but he seems unwilling to help himself.

Please pray for me and for my family.

Frustrated


Dear Frustrated,

Leave your husband. And don’t reunite with him until he goes into some counseling or rehab for his drug abuse and violent behavior. That’s the firm condition you’ll set.

Will leaving him make him change? There are no guarantees.

But the probability that he changes is much more if you leave him than if you stay with him. Why? Because when you stay with him, the message you’re giving him is this: "It’s okay for you to take drugs—anyway, you’ll still have a wife here beside you and life goes on normally." I don’t care how intense you nag him about his destructive habit, he won’t change. Because your actions are louder than your words.

But when you leave him, the message you give him is totally different. By leaving him, you’re telling him, "You’re destroying your life. Unless you change, you’ll lose everything. Even your family."

In other words, you need to allow a crisis to happen to his life.

By taking drugs, he’s causing the crisis—but until now, you’ve prevented it from happening.

Don’t prevent it.

Sometimes, the most loving thing to do for a loved one is to allow the bad consequences of their bad decisions to happen. So that they taste the bitter experience and learn—and mend their ways.

Let him feel what it means to lose everything, including family.

Again, I cannot give you guarantees for his change. It may be possible that for awhile, he may even become worse.

In the meantime, you live your life. Focus on the Lord, and let God build you up.

Explain to the kids that you’re doing this so that the family will be saved.

Call up our counseling center at Tel. 9950303 and our counselors will pray with you.

I remain your friend,

Bo Sanchez

--------- forwarded message ends here ---------

Wednesday, January 07, 2004

destiny? (draft) 

Quote me on this... Though other previous sources are expected.

Where we are now is where we ought to be. Where we will be tomorrow is our choice to make.

The fact is, there is a tomorrow, whether we like it (that fact) or not. Whether we believe in that fact, or not. What will happen tomorrow, we will either like or not like. What will happen tomorrow, will happen tomorrow.

Thanks to "The Matrix philosophy"* by the Wachowski brothers, and to others who have contributed to the "world" of that "philosophy" like fans posting comments, and their own two cents worth on different fora (such as at www.imdb.com, and at www.matrixtheories.com), and philosophers' (such as those at www.thematrix.com, and traditional paper books) and scientists' views, and also to the book, "A Purpose-Driven Life" by Rick Warren and other fine books (I should note Paulo Coelho), I have come to realize that there is only one reality--it is that where you are in right now.

Analogies... (Outline)
Person playing/participating in a virtual game/environment.
Person logged-on on one website, which has links to webpages outside of such website.
Person working as an engineer, pondering "what if i was an artist or book writer?" (Sounds familiar!)
Heaven!

_____
* I just term it a "philosophy" and not just a movie or a trilogy of movies, because it is more than a movie--it is also a computer game, a comic book, anime, an online game, a website... it is now a sub-culture; it is a phenomenon**.
** It is not a phenomenon if you do not see it that way. And vice versa.

Wednesday, October 15, 2003

Paulo Coelho, on death 

Here is an excerpt from Paulo Coelho's "Maktub", freely downloadable from www.paulocoelho.com.br. "Maktub" is a collection of short, mostly fictional anecdotes and ... well, simply inspiring short prose from the same author of the bestselling "The Alchemist." I should say that this is not one of the best of all 170+ "anecdotes" from "Maktub". But it fits the previous series of topics in this blog.

--- excerpt starts here ---

The master says: "A great many of the primitive civilizations practiced the custom of burying their dead in a fetal position. "He is being born again, in another life, and we must place him in the same position he was in when he came into this world," they said. For those civilizations, death was only another step along the path of the universe. "Little by little, the world has lost its calm acceptance of death. But it's not important what we think, or what we do or what we believe in: each of us will die one day. "Better to do as the old Yaqui indians did: regard death as an advisor. Always ask: 'Since I'm going to die, what should I be doing now?'"

--- excerpt ends here ---

Saturday, October 11, 2003

life versus death 

death is something that happens. life is something that remains.

letter to a suicidal 

dear friend,

you have created quite a good picture of your situation, and i emphatize with you. though you may have heard this a million times already, please do not give up on life while there is still life. please hear me out.

well let me tell you this. i envy you because of the love that your mother is giving you. and i'm sure many others also. and i'm sure many others also envy you because of so many other things, like finishing a degree.

in the end, it is your choice, it is your will. i, your mom, or anyone cannot do anything about it.

but you can type! you can write! you just wrote a good story! you can write an inspiring story! and that's only one of many things you could do. you could still make a purpose out of your life. you are still alive.

and yet, though you may be dying. there are other people who are dying. there are people who were born dying, and born hungry, and born sick. you were not.

friend (i wish i knew your name), you are still alive. you died, and lived again. and at least twice. you have been given another opportunity. something awaits you. you still have a purpose, you will just have to figure that out (and perhaps maybe other people could help out). every moment that we live is an opportunity. be thankful for each moment that you have life.

but yes, it is not easy. but as long as you're not yet dead, there is still that possibility. don't you really think so?

you can still dream, right? then dream. and keep praying for those dreams. of course, there are irreversible things like age and time... and there are things that we really are not meant for. (like i wish i could meet jennifer lopez and kiss her!)

perhaps if you may only start to dream. everything could come from there.

well, that's all i could say for now. please tell your mother that what she's doing for you is the epitome of love, and that i really admire her for that.

God bless you, friend.

dead and alive 

We have come to think that we are either dead or alive. Or that we should be either dead or alive. When keepers of the law are looking for violators of the law, they want them dead or alive.

Yet, we could be dead, but still live. We could be alive, but be dying.

Jesus died many years ago, but He lives among many of us, we see Him still perform miracles, or we still see millions of people still listen to His teachings.

We recognize many heroes and saints who have died and fought in battle, that, had they not, we would not be where we are, and we honor them by celebrating their triumphs on the occassion of their beginning or end of life as we all know.

And there are those among us, who live among us, sometimes under the same roof as ours, under the same moon and stars as us, and yet they are dying. They die when they are hurt, heart-broken. They die when we shout at them in anger, sometimes when they commit mistakes even when covering up for our mistakes.

And there are those whom we may have not met, and yet they are hungry, or they are paralyzed, or they are ill; they are dying. And yet they still inhale and exhale. And yet their hearts are still beating.

And there are those who are alive, and are dying, who choose instead to be dead.

And there are those who choose to live after they die.

Life and death are not two separate, exclusive things. They could co-exist. We cannot really choose between them. But by choosing death when there is life is the end of life. But by choosing life even after death, is life as it really is.

Many of us alive are dying. Do we choose to die and end life?

And yet, though we may be dying, life is still at hand. Why end life, when it is something given to us?

Instead, let us look into living after our death. Just as heroes, and martyrs, and saints have--people who, during their lives, did something so humble and yet so great so as to be remembered and remain here on earth in our hearts and in our minds, and sometimes even in our actions--let us choose life.

the great mathematician 

Our Lord, our God, is a Mathematician. He defined our nature with constants and systems of equations, from the simple up to the most complex partial differential equations, that up to this date, we, human beings, as a whole, have not yet figured out completely. In engineering and science and research, this is what we seek to do, to define phenomena with mathematics. Up to this point, we engineers and scientists and researchers have not yet fully captured the behavior of natural material and phenomena with exact, very defining equations.

In the future--and this I dare say--we will come to that point were we will all, human beings as a whole, will have figured everything out. And there shall be pride among us. And we shall forget nothing but our purpose on this earth. And people and nations, left and right, shall claim to the success of man, the discovery of the perfect nature that God alone created. And love shall vanish. And when people realize that it is vanished, it shall be too late. The end of world shall dawn. And a new world shall arise. And the story of Genesis shall be re-written.

This shall all happen, when we forget our purpose here on earth. That we are to love our God and our Creator, and one another.

Let us not forget our purpose on earth. Let us not forget that we are created out of love, and that love we should create, that this may forever remain a prophecy.

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