Saturday, July 31, 2010

The Art of Forgiveness

"Forgiveness is the fragrance that the violet sheds on the heel that crushed it"
- Mark Twain

How would you react if you incidentally committed an ego-crushing sin to someone close to you?

Well, it could be on the extremes, the heated confrontation scenario or could be the cold treatment type ala "dead matter" handling. But both of the above would definitely lead to a snapping end of a friendship if not resolved properly.

Everyone of us is bound to committing mistakes, errors, faults and sins. From all the people we interact each day in our lives, it's undenying that mistakes do happen, incidentally or accidentally. Doing it incidentally or pre-meditated (in the sense that you know that it's wrong but you still enacted it) gets a much more higher rate of unforgiveness.

Forgiveness is somewhat pride-altering to most, some consider it as a challenge to overcome the bar of  hurt ego, unwanting to surrender or the fear of vanquishing disdain/scorn (cuz this feeling served 'em as a shield in retaliation for the severe damage inflicted in their feelings).

There are two parties involved in a quarrel or a dispute:
a. the offender
b. the victim

Normally, the victim would hate, despise (or whatever you wanna call it) the offender due to the inconvenience and wrongdoings he/she received.

And normally (again), the victim would then anticipate for an approach of reconciliation from the offender of which the victim could either do two things:
1. do not give a pardon
2. provide forgiveness

In contrast, the offender normally do not have the guts to enact an affair of reconciliation to the victim (it could be a plan in the mind only, but it's quite hard to put it into action) in an ASAP basis. And so the dispute is further delayed in resolution.

And the hardest part of it all on the side of the offender is to say the words "i'm sorry"... "please forgive me".  Hahaha! it's true as the song goes from Elton John.. "Sorry seems to be the hardest word".

Well, THE ABOVE SCENARIO is the usual and norm that is happening in the facts of life. However, i want to share to you a tenet i learned two decades back of which i'm still following whenever i'm confronted with this kinds of situations in life .. this i consider the art of forgiveness.

Given the two characters above, if i'm in the shoes of the offender, i won't wait an overnight to pass in expressing my thoughts of repentance. In short, immediately ask for forgiveness. State my case, accept my faults, declare my being sorry for what i've done and sincerely ask for compassion and forgiveness. (it's easier said than done, true! but if you make this a motivational habit, results are beneficial)

On the other hand, if i am in the shoes of the victim. (you might think this is insane) Normally i'd be the one to approach the offender, state and convey my feelings about the rudeness or inconvenience i received and aim for a closure and reconciliation of the dispute. Meaning, to mend whatever bad feelings has arisen, to maintain good relations, and in effect; offender spontaneously deliver his/her words of repentance and pleads for forgiveness.

While it's true that everyone of us has the right to decide whether to forgive or not to forgive; to break or mend a friendship; to extend virtues or totally cut the essence of bonding t'was once formed, ain't it easier and lighter if we go and dwell on the positive side? Not on resentment and despicability; not on remorse and hatred.... but on camaraderie and love.

Let me leave this famous quote to you... "to err is human, to forgive is divine"


Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Iglesia Ni Cristo (96th Anniversary)

"Consider the momentous event in architecture when the wall parted and the column became"
~Loius Kahn

27th of July is no ordinary day for any member of the Church of Christ, a.k.a. Iglesia Ni Cristo which was reestablished in the Philippine archipelago back in 1914. Today, the church worldwide is commemorating on its 96th anniversary.

It was last year (2009) when President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo declared July 27 as Iglesia Ni Cristo Day and every year thereafter signifying a special working holiday in the country in recognition to the founding of the church. This was signed into law via the Republic Act 9645.

Looking back and reminiscing on the church' humbly beginnings, the obvious was inevitable, persecution and maltreatment were so much rampant in the early days of the Church of Christ. T'was like you were being outcasted entirely must people know that you belong to this religion. Worship Services were stoned, despised, and bluntly speaking - most people would give a murderous remark as if to belong in the fold is an original sin.

However, members did not waver in their calling. Early members shrugged off the inequalities they get during that early stage. They never faltered to deliver and all the more they become steadfast in the church. Time is the greatest healer they say, and the generation of this age are now reaping the sacrifices, conviction, hope and unmatched beliefs of the pioneers of the Iglesia Ni Cristo, led by the late Bro. Felix Manalo.

Look at the church today! It's almost on its Centennial anniversary... and the glory it beheld is quite stunning and remarkable. Not only by its proliferation of magnificent & breath-taking chapels mushrooming around the isles of the Philippines but the core values it has continued to impart among the followers of the faithful.

It is indeed, unbelievable for the mundane on how this church has achieved on what it has right now. The titanic expansion of its growth, conquering the different continents of the earth is something ala- "more-than-meets-the-eye" concept. Wonders among wonders, this church keeps on inspiring lives, keeps on shedding the true light in this world of darkness and chaos.

I want to extend my deepest and heartfelt greetings to all the members of the Church of Christ in all the corners of universe. Anywhere you are, if you are reading this, keep the faith!

Glory be to God. Happy 96th Anniversary!!!


Saturday, July 24, 2010

Smile (why is there a need to wear it?)

"SMILE an everlasting smile... a smile can bring you near to me."
~ Words, by the BEEGEES

It's a matter- of- fact that SMILE has this sense of protractability-effect to the other person once you initiated it. Everyday does it happen, we just don't notice how its consequence has stirred the behavior of the other person; nor we ourselves tend to overlook the emphasis and significance it has offered.

this SMILE-sincerity driven, spontaneously drawn out by me just a few hours ago while walking back home has been imprinted in my collective thinking that's why until now, im reliving the moment thru this blog.

it was a lonesome walk going home, with the air so blinding, mixing with the summer heat of the desert, almost making the skin on my face so malleable and about to melt but there is no sweat coming out of it. The roads and the paths are almost as deserted as a lonely dark alley... but alas, someone came in view, a walking soul like me with something in his hand. And in the background were cars passing by once in every 4 minutes...

Our paths has finally came to a full view with this soul around 50+ in age with a distance between us of prolly around 15 meters, out of nothingness, i drew a smile-unfull (as if shyly about to blast it out full wide open for the fear of not being acknowledged) and he made a slow, assisting smile widely open with a nod.

it was entertaining, so perfect a stranger, though i know for sure a fellow Filipino... amazing to know that my initiation of smile led to a positive response. and so i kept on walking... about to meet another nationality... i smiled. and he smiled back. with a nod as well.

methinks that living things attract fellow living things. where there is a living thing, you get to get pulled into the habitat of the other without prior knowledge that it does exist. Well, im talking literally.

same thing with SMILEs... it's a win-win impromptu act that generates equal response (though not all  times) in most cases esp in states of barrenness in environment. it feels great, who knows making 'em smile could be a moment of joy in a spur of the moment, completely letting 'em forget the worries they carry on their shoulders. Even at least just for a moment. It does count.

- dont wear your smiles like you want to flirt
- wear it spontaneously   :-)


Friday, July 23, 2010

Christopher Nolan

"I think audiences get too comfortable and familiar in today's movies. 
They believe everything they're hearing and seeing. I like to shake that up.”
~Christopher Nolan

Everyone's ranting and raving about Inception. The box office kicker by Christopher Nolan. I still haven't watched the flick, yet i'm getting so much into it that i'm having a wishful thinking to be in Manila or somewhere where there's a moviehouse to watch to.

The goodness of it all when dissecting what's all about a motion picture is when you are in-line with the thought of the director, what i mean is, if the way you understand what the film has to convey is in parallel to what the director of the movie is trying to deliver.

Most of the time, i'm immersed to flicks that will leave a question mark at the end of credit rolls, that it would spark a conversation to your partner/s (someone whom you've watched the film with) whether you got the meaning of it, or, the essence of the film. Not to say, not only the plot, not only the story... but the mere fact that a "CLOSURE" is established in your mind after watching the film.

I reckon that there are two films of Nolan's that got me spell-bounded. Call me a no-witty boy but it's good to be honest. Lemme tell you the first film- The Prestige. I watched this with Claudine (my call center buddy) back in Mall of Asia, i enjoyed the flick, the thrill and all... but it did not come in full circle (to me) about the story. Later did i know that there are two main twists in that movie.. that is, Hugh Jackman (The Professor) is the same guy who offered help to Christian Bale (The Great Danton) in adopting his child. The 2nd twist that made me fully understand the story was learning that Christian Bale has a twin.

The second film that until now, there are remnants of unsolved curiosity in my head is the film - Memento. This film has all tangled up. It's in a reverse order. The sequence is so wittingly crafted that the climax of the film was delivered in the beginning. Yet, as the story unfolds, methinks as an audience felt the need to know how it had all started? Like how on earth did the protagonist came into having an anterograde amnesia? There are still scenes in the movie which are unintelligible to me, like when was the "black and white" sequences came to converge with the color one?

The above are just minute details on how Christopher Nolan's mind and well-crafted arts could tickle, stir, arouse both our imagination of thought and creativity. It is an understatement to say about  fascination and engrossment.

So now, i'm trying my best to avoid spoilers of the movie Inception so as to measure my level of understanding if i will get the plot and story right. It's different when you get the level of satisfaction that your mind wishes to achieve.


Friday, July 02, 2010

Do you have FAITH?

Faith may be defined briefly as an illogical belief in the occurrence of the improbable
~H.L. Mencken

I woke up one day, stricken by life's complexities and difficulties. The thought of it made me shiver, it's undenying that life in this world in general is getting worse each day. I don't have to paint in your mind the horrendous events breaking on the news. Neither the poor nor the rich could escape from this wrath. Everyone has it's burden (as you read this, i know you're going to reflect on yourself, what's troubling you at the moment) to face and handle. Reality check, they say that to live each day is a grand thing but we have to acknowledge the fact that sadness is mundane, that sailing rough is not out of the ordinary anymore.

At times, we are crushed by the many tests in our journey, sorrows almost unbearable to handle and it's as if, we can no longer move our foot forward to face what's going to happen next. Emotions deepen especially when our focus seems endless along the horizon, where muted silence is the only company in our grief and the longing for constant happiness slowly vanishes within our hopes of hope.

Above all these, we are still alive. Enduring, forever battling what life has to offer. I asked myself how come i'm still in to it?, how come i've gone this far?. It boiled down to one of the moral foundations established as early as childhood. That each day that passes by, this moral judgment is being cultivated, where conviction on it's power increases as experience flows, as the tests of life transpires in every moment - to prove something and would always light a piece of wisdom that is somehow carved in the heart. I call it FAITH, it is believing and holding-on to things yet to happen. It is the solemnity and peacefulness of the mind and heart to things unseen. Things unseen that are impossible for the human mind to decipher and grasp, yet you have the prowess to believe in it signifies that you have faith.

In all walks of life, we have our own unique culture. Unique ways on how faith got established inside of us. I know what i believe, i know what i'm holding-on to. I know the promise - it's not yet delivered, it's unseen at the moment, intangible like the wind. But i have faith in it.

How about you? Do you know what you are waiting for?