few points of reflection from my Theo class with Roberto Guevara and Philo class with Jesus Principe I will keep here as archive

In the Odyssey, Homer wrote that men are so quick to blame the gods for suffering but often do not realize that they cause it themselves. This is suffering with human causation; suffering because of human error, ignorance, apathy etc. This can be understood as cause and effect but still, never be acceptable. 

But to what do we owe meaningless suffering? Suffering for no apparent reason? To what is the cause and purpose of it? 

Meaningless suffering:

What do you say to the mother who has done nothing but persevere in the face of her son’s looming death? 

What do you say to the 10-year-old kid fighting  cancer, who isn’t even old enough to understand the science of it? 

What do you say to your 20 year old househelp who has lost both her parents as a child and now lost her only foster parent, the only person she sees as family?

There are no words, thoughts nor deeds to justify any type of suffering and so you answer by silence? 

Silence is as well a stand as choosing to let it be. Many choose to be silent in their well-kept homes, in the comfort of aircon rooms and tinted cars to which they pretend the kid selling sampaguita doesn’t exist. 

I hope you don’t waste all that has been given to you only to step on, over and past others; to reach such heights that you no longer see where your feet touch ground. I hope you dream big but big enough for it to be inclusive of many. 

A great teacher once said that we do not help coming from a privileged place. We belong to no platform of greatness. We are all the same; equal. We help so that we, too, may rise alongside them and destroy these hardened oppresive social structures that suffocate the poor. 

When will you break your silence?


Carl Tragico

Last July 20, 2015, I lost a friend. He was a 6 1/2 boy who had Acute Myelogenous Leukemia. He was diagnosed at age 5 and regularly went to the hospital for chemotherapy sessions. As often as his session required, he traveled from home (near the airport) to a hospital at V. Luna, Banawe where I was able to meet him in my visits. His parents and auntie cared for him much for he was the only child in the family.

I will forever remember the day you and I spent that one afternoon together at the hospital. You had so much energy and love. You were a definite survivor in my eyes–strong willed, well-loved and a fighter. You didn’t take no for an answer and you dreamt to be a pilot one day.

I will never forget the way your parents talked about you during your wake. I will never forget their heartache in letting you go. For your mom to tell say “you can rest now, we will see each other again” and to your father who will always see you as his baby–his one and only child. I cannot begin to understand how painful it must have been for them to let you go like that. They loved you dearly and you were blessed with the most genuine love everyone deserves.

I miss you, Carl. Though I barely knew you. You have touched my life in ways I am not even sure yet. Teach me how to be brave. Teach me how to fight like you. 

Thank you for your life, Carl


I hope you don’t drown by the thoughts you have made anchors of; to plummet to where nothing is left but harsh words and love left unsaid.