Archive for society

Traditions and Doubts

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on November 24, 2014 by angiegiegie

I sometimes think that many of the traditions we have in different cultures are non-sense. They sometimes don’t provide us the logical reasoning behind these actions. In my opinion, they sometimes force us to stay down on our knees and let the cycles continue.

All throughout history, we have abolished some actions, and created new ones. But there will always be some actions deemed traditional and senseless. One of them is paying respect. We pay respect to the elders. Sure. What if they don’t respect our opinion too as we grow older? Now that’s another story.

Another example is treating the first boys in the families as princes (in the Chinese heritage). It was thought in the past that men will be the leading society as they have the guts and courage to fight for everyone. As long as mothers pay too much attention to them, they get used to this attention that they cannot become man nor fathers themselves.

These examples have been too close to my heart as I am part of a long standing tradition of the Filipino-Chinese heritage. Yet I still fight hard to understand why people still tend to go through these cycles. Is it because they choose to keep it simple, or have they lost that feeling of doubt in everything they do?

Doubting after all is what makes us reflect more, thus making us more human in one way.

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Why I Travel

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , on November 9, 2014 by angiegiegie
I took this photo while walking along the boulevard in Nice. It just captures the little beauties in life that one fails to appreciate...

I took this photo while walking along the boulevard in Nice. It just captures the little beauties in life that one fails to appreciate…

I have never felt so alive in my entire life had I not begin to travel by myself or a few people. Travelling is not really an excuse to escape the normal life. It is in travelling that I completely immerse myself to new places and be able to construct a better reflection of myself and the world. It is where my point of view on everything begins to mold itself as how a clay is being shaped to a pot or a sculpture.

It is in travelling that I realize that I cannot live in a constrained world where I have to merely obey people. In my opinion, obeying is not an entirely bad thing as long as you are conscious on what you are obeying. I adore my elders. I really do. It just sickens me that we have this world where some traditions seem to withhold ourselves from thinking, understanding, and embracing what it means to be human. They have set limits as we continue to set other forms of limitations in the present times. That includes how people perceive on developing technology and on how people manage conflicts.

So you see, travelling is where I feel more alive in the sense that I am able to sense things and appreciate the grandeur of what the world brings. It is in that moment that I feel that I have become a better human being as I see the different phases of humanity in different parts of the world. Despite these, many still succumb to the tedious life that they believe will bring them happiness. Then again, only they can survive better than the likes of me because they have jobs that can support their needs. So who am I to say that they are wrong when previous civilizations point out to us that we have to be more evolved in terms of strategy and foresight to survive? Saying this, do you think humanity is worth it when we only do things to survive, instead of finding ways to live?

It is sad to see at this point that what the world needs now are people who bring light to others yet are unappreciated.

I hope this simple image brings out some beauty in life as it is one of those moments that people tend to divert themselves from…

Dreaming yet not Listening

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on October 9, 2014 by angiegiegie

Human progress has been a misconstrued project developed by our supposed perfect ideologies. We have always tried to simplify our lives in many ways. They range from the solving the smallest problems to managing gigantic feats. Our human curiosity has enabled us to expand our horizons from the nanoscopic to the largest scale we can imagine and maybe reach in the future. As goals set by numbers and statistics convince us that we are doing great with our capabilities, I think that we are beginning to lose ourselves in our made up need for being the best. We have reached to a point that results matter and to do this, we set numerous tasks, and deadlines. We have become enlightened in another kind of light, a light that will slowly eat us alive.

One case I can think of is on how we treat ourselves in our every day routines. We have been so used to the clock work setting adapted by our needs for results that our bodies have grown to be rigid. We have things to accomplish in the end. But as each day passes, and as we submit things that we think will benefit others, we slowly lose our capacity to listen to our bodies once as some of our ancestors used to do. We have become rubber bands which stretch too much to reach feats we have never though of reaching, and as we continue to do that and ignore our limits, in no time we break and die. Our souls and bodies have eventually died by the time we do things we think are for our own benefit.

Another case is our ways of constructing our society be it physically obvious to the human eye or not. Even in the past, we dream ourselves a future where everything seems so simple and that there would be less problems to face – a utopia of the sort. Well here comes 2014 and we are now facing life challenges that may still seem difficult to digest such as climate change, more evolved epidemics, large unemployment and such. As much as many want to ignore them, they won’t run away as you grow older as how some nightmares tend to do. They slowly grow on you and engulf you when you least expect it. These so-called problems I enumerated were not done by sorcery but by us as causal effects. As Isaac Asimov have pointed out in his book, the Foundation, everything we do leads to a crisis. We may never know what kind of crisis it is but it will come. If so, we should be able to accept it as it is and resolve it. But we don’t. We still ignore them and continue to deal with issues that seem to not evolve over time. We still deal with religious clashes, with diplomatic problems, and so on. There is too much imaginary friction everywhere we go while the physical and evident problems come to play.

With these two cases that show the humanistic and the societal points of view, one can see that we have really lost ourselves when we have always thought that we are progressing. We have become blinded in a way that we continue to chase after the wrong light – a light that casts away the most basic senses, which is to listen to ourselves, and to listen to the environment, to everything. We think that we listen to each other but we don’t. We are still stubborn in a way and if we continue to do that, we will reach that point where we will never be ready to face the crises piling up on our horizon and become helpless.

Dreaming of a utopia is a good thing. Yet we should listen.

Listen in any way possible.

It’s the least that we can do to understand the real needs and problems.

Coffee and cigarettes

Posted in fiction, Uncategorized with tags , , on August 13, 2013 by angiegiegie

It’s hard to be high. A deep sigh with a mixed set of emotions filled my chest as I inhaled my last puff of smoke. Seconds later, I crushed my cigarette and looked at the pack where it’s from.

Vogue. A fancy name. Hard to believe that it sounds as posh as that magazine cover women usually purchase on their way to work. Then again, it’s the word that best expresses society today where the prim and the proper rush out to get the latest accessories and trends available in the market.  People nowadays die to grab anything that makes them suit themselves in the eyes of the ever evolving society. It disgusts me till my very guts and last breath I took from that stick that I had purchased a week ago.

What a hypocrite. I should be a disappoint to myself at this very moment. Then again, my consciousness is begging me to reconsider and deal with the realism people believe to be life, as norms set in are invincibly made for everyone abide to.

This whole thing that I just did used to be my daily routine when I first attempted to grasp what’s said to be the very core of Italian culture — by first drinking some Italian made coffee without any form of doubt, then smoking some cigarette one fancied.  You’ve always got to trust Italian brewed coffee they said. And so I did.  As for the cigarettes, it’s all in the mind. One gets to decide to stick to it, or not as chewing gums decide to fall off from the wall or tables by itself or not.

Sooner or later, I unconsciously do all of that just for the heck of it. I became numb as how normal people seem to have become. I guess there’s this switch in our brains that turns us to zombies ready for productivity as economists and politicians call it.  We can always choose to question everything, most especially what it means to be human. But by permitting ourselves to be mainstream and validate the norms of today, do we actually stop and re-evaluate every deed we’ve done be it for ourselves or for others?

Then again I asked myself, how hard was it to get high after all this commotion? I guess that I was too numb to ever feel it to begin with.

Getting Personal

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on December 11, 2012 by angiegiegie

Going personal does not mean that we have to be extra-sensitive to other people’s actions, and thoughts. It’s the way one listens to another being, and how to articulate the problems he or she may or may not fully express. We’ve been indoctrinated to a world that classifies anything fragment per fragment but in the long run, this won’t be self-sustainable nor containable. We’re first beings, rather than being subjected to power or the panopticon, as Foucault would try to remind us once in a while.

We cease to exist when we do not act as human ourselves.

  • If one’s own priorities only include materialization, where’s the sense of being?
  • If one does not listen to the other party or being, would there even be communication?
  • If happiness of oneself is done at a concrete point of view, what is the point of living up to everything?

At the moment, we are still moving further even at the slightest chance possible, to develop the world — though is the word, “development” a  be-fitting word that we rightfully use today? We live in a world where everyone has his or her own crisis to deal with be it concerning any of their basic needs including health, or be their social needs. Public policy has taught us several lessons over the past history, granted that they indeed make us learn from our irreconcilable mistakes. As well, medicine taught us that the human body would fight against the right “diseases” when given the right medication, or treatment.

Well folks, being indifferent could sometimes alleviate one’s worries, but I think what the world needs to  keep in mind when attaining “development” is to get in touch with what it means to be human — to be more personalized. We all have different needs, be it at a minute or macro level. We cannot always get what we want, but at least there might be some hope to attaining justice  and getting the right “treatment” (no matter how cold it sounds) at different levels. It’s a matter of balance, as Aristotle once said.

In the end, we may just need to stop, and reflect what it means to be human, and then, maybe and hopefully, we’d understand more the next time around, what we need to do for ourselves, and for others. It’s not easy to “be personal” but maybe it could be the next step to improving the welfare of everyone.