Reevaluation

It’s heartbreaking how money has torn us apart. I recently had a party with my closest friends and this event was quite difficult to put together because almost everybody was busy with spending weeks in overtime trying to earn extra or in hospital duty gaining experience for future employment. And at the party, work was such an inescapable topic of conversation, you know, the usual discussion of frustration about customers, bosses, salaries and bills. Don’t get me wrong, we had a lot of fun and enjoyed the party as much as we can. But it’s just sad that this, enjoying the company of friends, had to be so hard to make possible. I can’t even remember the last time we were almost complete in a gathering like this. All because we can’t make schedules meet due to the priority of work and money.

It is apparent that society has evolved into this money-making machine, constantly moving to keep the money coming and going. Our lives are indoctrinated with the norm that money be a priority in everything we do because we just can’t do without it. If we want to live a civilized life with proper food, shelter and enough basic necessities in order to survive, we have to have money. We could detach ourselves and live in the wilderness without money to sustain us, but if we still want to stay in touch with friends and society in general, it just seems impractical.

We have become slaves of the almighty money, growing up to believe that it is something of great value. It isn’t. Money is just a means of exchange, a way to distribute resources – a distribution that must necessarily be fair and equitable for all.

In the beginning no one owned anything. The land, its fruits, the minerals, water, everything is for everybody to share. And labor is the only thing that the people had a sense of ownership of. But because majority of our wealth is now “owned” by a few powerful individuals, we are constrained to give what we do have, our labor, just so we can have a bit of the wealth they hold hoard. Since money is concentrated in and controlled by the hands of these few, it has become a means to stratify the population and create class warfare.

Today’s society has inequality and injustice as the very foundation of its system. We, the working class and the poor who are the majority of society, spend most of our lives striving to earn money in order to survive. All our distressing effort, frequent overtimes, sickness from fatigue, loneliness from being away from families and unhappiness from the routine work – which is really not what we want to do in life but are forced to do because it pays the bills – are all for the bidding of the minority on top.

And worse is that these big shots have us believing that there’s no way around this inequality, that this is just the way life is. And if we want to prosper like them, we must sacrifice everything we have and be as ruthless as them while climbing the ladder, not minding the lives we trample on. And when we do get to the top, we’ll be as soulless as these profit-making giants.

But what can we do to break out of this unjust monetary system? I do not have the answer to how or if we can do this, yet. Right now, we are very much tied to it whether we like it or not. What we do have the power over are our own perceptions and decisions. We could try to open our minds and see that money does not have value in itself. Its worth lies in its use; it is just a means to an end. We can try to not worship money or material things so much, and instead find real value in our relationships with other people and with the earth. We can stop seeing money-making as our reason for living, and instead turn our priorities to loving and sharing – genuine happiness. We can change the system by starting with the change in ourselves.

Ano na lang ang matitira

Kung tatalikuran ang kasinungalingan
Babaklasin ang pader na tinataguan
Ibababa ang maskara ng mga lihim
Huhubarin ang damit ng pagkukunwari
Lalagasin ang paimbabaw na pagkukubli

Ano kaya ang mangyayari

Kung iaalay and hilaw na katotohanan
Ilaladlad ang tunay na kabuluhan
Ilalaan ang walang bahid na pagkatao
Hahayaang bumuhos ang taos na mga salita
Ibubunyag ang dalisay na mga kataga

Pag-ibig? Pag-ibig kaya?

When trapped outside

There are a lot of things
to think about, to write or sing about
There are rules to writing
a poem or a story
but oftentimes I get lost
among all the cacophony
Fairies and prairies sound magical together
I throw them in the air
over my head, without any care
Rhymes and times I’d like to consider
but they all come out jagged,
fractured and rough
like a broken mirror
or a torn piece of paper
A collection of words in a connection
forming a most peculiar pattern
No, there’s no intention of any
But there always emerges
an image, a sound,
a priceless piece of symphony
that the eyes delight in touching
and the ears excite in tasting

Pass it on

I have always been baffled by how society works. In my solitude I often ponder on why certain things happen and how people think or act this way or the other. Asking questions has always been a past time when my brain is not occupied and seeking to understand has been an obsession. But there are times, genuine times, that I discover actual answers to the questions that I have barely formed in my head. These tiny pieces of revelation come in different forms – a short story, a novel, an essay, a film, a picture, a song – and the feeling of fulfillment in this unearthing is very compelling, it pushes me to write about it, to share the bit of precious insight.

The people behind these inspiring lessons have done more than enough in being able to substantiate and illustrate the most difficult issues to explain. The matters that most of us fear to touch because we are unable to make sense of them, as doubt or apathy sometimes beleaguer us, are brilliantly portrayed by these people. So in my gratitude to them, to give their work due credit and to further the purpose of their creation, I pass them on to you.

One of the ingenuities I recently stumbled on is this short film about a new kind of revolution, narrated by Charles Eisenstein, author of Sacred Economics, directed by Ian MacKenzie.

“This is not crazy. This makes sense. This is how to live.”

This second film is about the shift of civilization towards a world that is not oppressive but rather fosters a sustainable way of living.

“It is really up to us to determine at what point this wake-up point will happen.”

If you’re also searching for answers and seeking to learn more about life and the world around us, or perhaps pursuing the change you’ve been longing for, these sites might be of help: Curious, very curious