in addressing socio-political issues, the catholic church prescribes that its people use the pastoral cycle as guide to understand deeply the situation at hand and to find its meaning for oneself and for the people concerned (the society). it is believed that having processed the different available information surrounding a particular socio-political concern will have produced a more well-thought of and effective action plan.
the month-long sembreak that is given us has somehow afforded me enough time to withdraw from the political crisis besetting our country to do the third part of the cycle, the reflection part.
it is not a conscious effort though on my part. after immersing myself into the various issues which started piling up since late may this year till the middle of last month, i have experienced a very strong pull inside me forcing myself to stop following the daily goings-on in our country's political life. i guess that pull has always been there ever since, being a novice to the nuances of almost all of the political issues i am being exposed to (i am an AB Interdisciplinary Studies graduate, now taking up MA Philosophy, obviously with very minimal formal political studies). seeing how bad things are getting is a constant source of disappointment as i slowly get initiated to the adult world of politics and government. that's why after the last political briefing i was invited to give (to ateneo student leaders, 25 oct), i told myself that i am going to enjoy my break and leave this confused world of philippine politics for a while.
i should say that this withdrawal has somehow given me time to place myself on a different vantage point to look back at the past 5 or so months, to find which of the experiences has given me meaningful insights about the filipino, our society, and myself of course. this "reflections:" series will contain what i think are fruits of that stepping back.
to start off, i must admit that for the bigger part of last semester, i was practically lacking in hope. a friend priest in rome enthused that it seems that i am "more angsty" now than before. many friends whom i invited to view the posts i place here in this blog couldn't believe that i am suddenly very serious, and the mood seems too dark (i might soon change the page design of this blog again to something lighter than black, hehe). i noticed too that for the many times that i posted something about hope, about how much we need to believe that something positive for the filipino is goin to come out of this crisis, i was actually praying for hope, searching for it in myself.
i think hope is a gift. i can't fabricate hope and say that i have it. and precisely because it is a gift that i again remember to fold my knees and beg God to grant me enough of it that i will need. this i guess is the difference of my being a Jesuit who writes about present national issues against other writers. we witness the same events unfolding in our nation, but we see things differently.
for this next semester, there will still be more events to write about, many experts say that the crisis is still very far from over, but i hope that i shall write based on what i see, and that i shall see differently.