30 December 2003
We have seen a lot of deaths in the past few days. What with all the tragedies and disasters that plagued different countries in the world (the flood and landslide in Surigao and Southern Leyte respectively (Philippines), the chemical explosion in China, the bomb blasts in Israel and Iraq, the attempt to assassinate Pakistan's Pres. Musharaff, the earthquake in Iran). The fact that all these things happened almost at the same time really scared the hell out of me. It really made me think and ask, "Is the world coming to an end?". And, believe me, the thought gave me the creeps and shivers. But, despite all these things, the hopeful me still rose to the surface. Yes, all these things happening just before the year ends gives me a light of hope- hope that all these bad things would end as the year 2003 also ends. I hope and pray that we leave all these bad things with the year that we are about to leave behind and that the new year be a better, more meaningful, more prosperous and more peaceful year for all of us.
I really believe that these things happen for a reason (that only God knows) and are telling/teaching us a thing or two about life and death. Or maybe this is God's way of reminding us that we should never forget Him, that we should pray and talk to Him more often. Yes, maybe...
And now, even before I could recover from the shock of all the things that have been happening around the world, another tragedy happens. A very young, good-looking actor, Miko Sotto, accidentally falls from the ninth floor of the building where he lives. He is proclaimed dead on arrival at the hospital where he's brought to. So sad...
It is true that this may be considered a little thing compared to all the tragedies and disasters I have mentioned, but still when I try to think of the family and friends Miko left behind, this is tragedy beyond compare. Losing a loved-one is really something that's enough to make someone go nuts! Believe me, I've been through that. A favorite cousin died five years ago when he accidentally shot himself while playing with a gun. Why he had that gun and why it was loaded, I still can't understand. It was one of our family's lowest points. And, I'd rather not talk about it now for fear of breaking down again. In time, I might be able to really get down and talk/write about it.
Back to what happened to Miko, I was totally saddened by the sight of those who loved him cry, hug and comfort one another. It was heart-breaking to see and listen to his mother talk about him. Honestly, I never really liked Miko. I mean, I didn't hate him either, he was just one of those movie stars that I just let pass without really noticing. He's a relatively new face to me. But, his death really struck me hard. His death made me think of my own mortality. He was young and successful, he was good-looking, he had all the money to buy whatever he wanted, he had a happy relationship with his beautiful girlfriend, he was at the peak of his young life. Sure, he may have had issues and problems (who doesn't?), but he had a good life. And, all of a sudden, Death strikes and takes him away from the good life he lived.
This only proves that whatever or whoever you are, Death does not hesitate to stop and take you when He chooses to. Whether you are young or old, famous or unknown, when Death comes upon your door, there's no escape. You can not ever hide or run away from Death. Death will not be looking for you because you, yourself, will be looking for Death. Everything must come to an end because that's life's rule.
Thinking of all these and how Miko died really made me introspect and think about my own life. How have I lived my life? Should I change my lifestyle, knowing how one day everything will just end and leave me with nothing? When that day comes, would I gladly welcome it or would I be scared out of my wits? How will it happen? God, I don't know the answer to all these questions and I'm not sure I'd like to know either. Right now, all I could think of is that I will just try to live my life at the present for I will never know what tomorrow has in store for me. I may die tomorrow, that's very possible... The thing is that when my time comes, I'd want to feel that I have done my part in the world and that I'd want to feel I'd be leaving the world without remorse or regret.
24 December 2003
We don't have Christmas in Islam, but we consider Jesus Christ (pbuh) as one of our prophets. We don't celebrate the most important holiday in the Christian religion and here in the Philippines.
I decided to write about the Christmas season basically because I like the feeling that the season gives me. No, I don't celebrate it, but Christmas is one of my favorite times of the year (second to Ramadhan and my birthday... Hehehe), especially here in the Philippines. I like it when it's Christmas because everyone's just so happy and so giving. My Christian brothers and sisters are just so happy and merry that they almost always forget their problems and issues during this time. Enemies become friends (again) in Christmas. And, most especially, families are together and try to forget their differences and reconcile... yes, all because of Christmas.
Another thing is that the Christmas season always brings out the "good" in every one of my Christian brothers and sisters. They share their blessings. Now, some wouldn't normally give and share with others, but during this very special season, they are more than willing to give and share. No one is ever grouchy. The line, in "Silver Bells" that says, "In the air, there's a feeling of Christmas..." is very true. It's like anywhere you go in this country (and probably in every Christian dominated country), you can feel the Christmas air.
I believe that Christmas truly is for giving and sharing. It is a time when Christian people can, in a way, duplicate the goodness, sharing and giving that Jesus Christ showed during his lifetime. After all, our Christian brothers and sisters believe that Christ gave his life for humanity. Now, that is the greatest goodness or gift I could ever imagine. Imagine giving your life just so your people will be saved? I wonder if anyone is still capable of doing that in our times.
Christmas, to others, may mean gift-giving, Santa Claus, abundance of food, and all sorts of good things. To me, Christmas is a time for introspection and genuine giving. It is a time when people should give without expecting anything in return. It is a time when people shouldn't only think of themselves, but think of everyone around them as well. It is a time when people should see beauty in everything in this life, which is the greatest gift from God. It is the time to start looking within oneself, one's soul, one's life. And, whatever one gets and understands from Christmas is and should be carried on as one goes on through life. And then, maybe, just maybe it will feel like Christmas all year long.
I may not be in the position to say all these things because having no Christmas I might not really understand it. But, these are my thoughts about Christmas. I may not celebrate it, but I sure am happy that others do... Seeing happy faces and goodness all around me never fails to give me hope- hope that the world still has so much goodness despite everything. And, one day, it might/will feel like Christmas every single day!:)
23 December 2003
I like some quizzes in the Internet...
Here are my result and the link to my favorite quiz:
You are a goddess!
Which Ultimate Beautiful Woman are You?
brought to you by Quizilla
The World To One Dying
As these eyes travel here, there and all around,
Nothing of any interest to me do I find, none at all.
A world full of emptiness and blankness I see.
Calmly going to and fro, my heart barely feeling,
And my soul blindly searching, I trip and fall,
Like a leaf slow-ly fall-ing, I fight to see.
My blessed world, dear God, at last I find and see.
Alas, what great waste, I had to die if only to see!
20 December 2003
My bestfriend's wedding... I am on stage reading poetry. Her favorite piece 'If Love'! Yes, that is totally perfect for her wedding. I give my best performance. After all, this is a once in a lifetime event! Then, I am reading one of her own poems. God, she is a wonderful writer. What a way with words! I'm crying... crying tears of joy for my best friend.
Oh, I couldn't be happier for my best friend. She's end up with the person she loves most and who loves her so much in return. She's sure to be happy with this man, who's a good friend of mine as well. Their smiles show so much joy, peace and love. It takes me a few minutes before I could go on with my reading... I couldn't stop staring at them. Their happiness oozing out and infecting every single person in close proximity with them. They're a really beautiful couple. My best friend, in her beautiful, snowy white gown, and her groom in his antique white tuxedo... As they march down the aisle leading to where they would sit down to be watched and observed by acquaintances, friends, and relatives... I catch my bestfriend's eye and give her a happy wink, to which she answered with a little smile. Ah, that very sincere smile! This day will be unforgettable, I know it!
A few hours after, we are sitting in my best friend's room, which would serve as their conjugal room from now on. Along with our other 'kadas, we joke around and remember all the things we have been through. Oh, are these tears I feel coming again? Damn, just when everybody is flowing with genuine happiness and laughter, I have to cry! One by one, my friends begin to cry, too... And then, my best friend is crying, too! Oh, we are all so happy, yet a little bit sad at the same time. This day marks a change in all our lives. Nothing will ever be the same.
Now, don't get me wrong here... It's not that I don't want my best friend to be married or anything. It's just that now that she's married, she would have to act like all married women. There will be more responsibility. She won't have time to goof around with us anymore. We will never be able to snuggle as if we, ourselves, were lovers. There would no longer be talks until the wee hours of the night. There won't be texting until dawn, even if we were lying on the same bed, so our other 'kadas wouldn't know or find out about our secrets. There will never be moments like this... just sitting around laughing unmindful of what is happening or what the boyfriend says.
This day marks the time I will lose, in a way, my best friend. She will be moving on to a world where I am not welcome, a world that I can not understand, at least not yet! It will be as if she would become a totally new person. She would have to start looking at and approaching life in a different way, a more serious way. She wouldn't find things that we used to laugh so much about hilarious anymore. She would start seeing things that were never there before or things that we never really saw or refused to see. She would, in short, be in another universe. And, I will remain where I am until God knows when!
Call me selfish, but this is what I'm feeling right now. I'm afraid that this day will take my best friend away from me. True, I am really happy for her, but, I can't seem to get rid of this fear, this hateful feeling I have right now. Honestly, I might be wrong about it. Maybe nothing will change. Maybe everything will be the same as before (oh, I doubt it!). Yeah, maybe... I still can't stop my blasted mind from thinking about these things!
And, being stuck here doesn't help at all. I'm here in front of this freakin' monitor typing this (that I may in the future laugh about). While my bestfriend is back home getting married, I am here wishing and just completely lost in my thoughts... I was supposed to be part of the entourage. I am here feeling sadder than I have ever been.
Today is my best friend's wedding... and, I couldn't be there!!! :(
It feels great to be alive… to be just breathing and taking in everything around me or everything that life presents me with. I have been in this world twenty-three long years and I’d say that I had a pretty good life. True, I may have had encountered sad and bad experiences. But, all in all, yes, I have had a wonderful life, thank God!
Life is full of mysteries and as Milan Kundera so aptly put it, life is lived but once and we cannot experiment on choices like the way we could in science projects in order to see the best result. In life, once we have made our choice, then that’s it, there’s no turning back. How do we know that “not going for that foreign scholarship” or “selling that ring that belonged to our great-great-great grandmother” would actually result in the achievement of all our dreams or result in having bad luck follow us all our lives? That is one great mystery of life. Well, when you actually sit down and think about it, if we knew what lay before us, life would actually lose its marvel. It wouldn’t be challenging at all. It would be like some kind of special delicacy that lost its flavor.
It is actually fun to think about what the world would be like if every person knew what was before him or what his actions and choices would result in. If that were the case, would anybody in this world ever be a failure? I mean, wouldn’t it be just weird and stupid for a person to continue with an endeavor if he knew that it would result in the destruction of his life, a whole lifetime of regret and heartaches or even his death?
Don’t we often find ourselves in crossroads? We would always find ourselves torn between that road and this road. Much as we think and reflect about it, the two choices would, most of the time, weigh the same and so we decide to just go on and leave everything to the Fates! We, Filipinos, are so fond of saying “Bahala na!” at times like this. It would often seem that there are people who always make the right choices and end up very, very successful that they make us think how lowly our lives are compared to theirs. At bad times, this kind of people would even bring us to as far as question God about the lives that we have. And then, there would be some people who seem to never get bad luck out of their way and end up as failures and the biggest losers. Now, seeing this kind of people would make us happy and grateful that our lives haven’t been as bad as theirs. And again, we would remember God and thank Him.
I’m not sure if it was Ernest Hemingway who said in one of his books that people always come to God as last resort, when nothing could be done or when nobody in the world could help them. And, oh, isn’t that so true with most of us? I wonder how God, perfect as He is, takes this. Not that God is comparable to people, but if you were in such a place or position where most people only come to you when they need you and forget about you as soon as they get what they want, how would that make you feel? I, for one, would really feel insulted and take that as some kind of a slap on the face. I sure am thankful that God isn’t like me or any human being at all. That idea gives me the assurance that God is never cruel and judgmental. Because if God were, I don’t know what would become of the world and humanity!
God and life are both full of mysteries- mysteries that I would rather leave as is. I love and enjoy life as it is. I love and thank God that He is as He is. And, forever I will… :)
19 December 2003
“One broken dream is not the end of dreaming.”
This very meaningful sentence I, so long ago, learned from my mother, has always been my motto and, I say, has brought me far and wide. It's never failed to bring out my best qualities and strengthen my determination so as to make me strive for the achievement of whatever it is that I dream of. Despite any obstacle, I would always hold fast to my dream – my Personal Legend.
A book, so beautifully written, has fueled back to life that fire in my heart; a book that talks about the nature of life, nature of the world, and, of course, of man and his dream or quest in life. The book, that turned my life around and is one of my most favorite books of all time, was written by a Brazilian writer, Paulo Coelho. It is very aptly entitled “The Alchemist” for it truly brings out the alchemist in every reader.
At a time of utter confusion about what to do with my life, I stumbled upon the book. A very good friend of mine was telling me how good it was, and having nothing to do at the time or maybe I was just too bored and down-trodden to be doing anything, I said to myself, “Hey, why not read this book and see for yourself if it is any good?” I never expected the impact that little book, that I almost missed, had in me. I didn't know I was holding in my hands a precious treasure that would help me find myself again. The book showed me what my life was all about and basically taught me how to go about my life.
With every turn of a page, I saw myself as the character, Santiago. Every page made me introspect and think. I just could not help but agree and, thus, I saw things- everything, big or small, important or not- clearly. I was automatically enveloped in the book’s wisdom. It took me with Santiago to a wonderful journey, not only to great places, but within my very own heart, my very own soul.
Surprisingly, the book’s simplicity shows the complex blending of many a philosophy. This great marriage of different ideas achieves its purpose in that every reader would surely see the very things that s/he believes in and holds sacred in his/her heart. Be the reader a Muslim, a Christian, a Taoist, a Buddhist, a Shinto, an Oriental, a Westerner, rich, poor, old, young, man, woman or whatever, s/he will surely be able to relate to the young Santiago or the great alchemist.
The author’s concepts of the Soul of the World and the Language of the World show the oneness of all beings. These things are what hold us all together and are very important in all our lives. These are what keep us all alive. There is, of course, the One Hand that designs and writes everything. This shows the Glory of THE GOD – our one God. The depiction of His Greatness brought me to tears. At a time as ours, it is truly heart-warming to actually read something so firm and strong in its faith and belief in God.
The book gave me the feeling of security that whoever I am, whatever I am, I am part of the macrocosm of the universe. I am the same as other people. I am as great as others. What I like most about the book is its focus on the idea of achieving one’s Personal Legend. This Personal Legend is every creature’s or being’s ultimate goal in life or purpose of existence – one’s dream. It is man’s desire to be better than what he is; it is man’s desire to be the best.
As a Muslim, I see this as my Personal Jihad (Primary Jihad in Islam, actually, is a person’s war against the evil within, that is the person’s struggle to be good, better and the best of what s/he is). Before I encountered the book, I was in doubt whether I could actually face what was before me. As any other young person, I was feeling nervous and anxious about all the challenges that await me. I knew and felt I wanted to make it big. But, how? I had no idea. I was afraid to end up a failure. But, “The Alchemist” showed me that I would never fail so long as I believe and so long as I try. I just have to listen and talk to my heart. I just have to accept that being one with the universe, as part of the Soul of the World, I have only to do my part and all will be done and will be well in the end.
With all these new tools that “The Alchemist” has given me, I know I am ready and am bound for success. Life is about dreams- believing and doing one’s best to achieve these dreams. These dreams have been ordained to each one of us by God’s very own Hands. “When a person really desires something, the universe conspires to help the person realize his dreams.”
The book made me understand the true meaning of life. It has given me the confidence, courage and the idealism that I thought I completely lost. “The Alchemist” has given me THE reason to go on. And, as I know that God is always with me, as long as “The Alchemist” remains in my heart, I will go on and I shall make it big. Insha-Allah (God willing).
I am here... just staring at the monitor, my brain so full of ideas and many other things.
I begin to feel something indescribable. My brain... oh, my brain has just burst into a million bits! And, now, one by one, these bits from my poor brain struggle, crawl and move towards one another trying to find their place, where they could be accepted. Then, finally, they turn into one single body.
And, suddenly, I'm back just staring at the monitor not exactly knowing what to say or what to write.
I really have a problem with starting to write. It has always been my issue. I have millions and millions of ideas and thoughts, but as soon as I sit down and start to write... poof! Everything is gone before I even realize what's happening. And then, I go back at wondering, thinking. Why? I always ask myself. Why do words escape me when I need them most? Is it because I am poor at expressing myself? Is it because I am scared, too damned scared of my thoughts? Maybe it's a combination of the two or even more. God, I wish I knew...
There are times I try to write, but before I could finish what I'm writing I end up crying and never really get around to finish things. Sure, I've written some things that are, well, quite good, but nothing really as brilliant or substantial as I want it to be. Though, I've tried and tried and tried. Maybe I just expect too much of myself. Maybe I'm just too emotional to be writing. Maybe I just am not cut for writing. Or am I just suffering from a severe case of writer's block this morning? ;)
18 December 2003
Life As It Is
Great as life may be so, ‘tis but truE
As the beauteous sun shines a glittery geM,
Truly, strife abounds as with the sun’s beaM
Also comes the burning heat of all SaharA.
No man, methinks, walks the road of life, oH,
Grand it is, indeed, with bluish grief, sO
Aptly put, amiss or misery’s blow to meN
Torn away by the magic and awe of lifE.
A great many men saw greatness, blindlY.
Needing more towards happiness’ gift, but niL,
Lost were everything greatness to them gavE.
Oh, what a pity to fall on one’s brown feeT!
Love, sorrow, happiness, loss- in life- all a musT.
"Alas," hopeful me says, "What a beautiful lifE!"
This was written specially for Honey, my very good friend... a person of genuine beauty inside and out!
Auudhubillaahi minash-shayttaanir rajiim. Bismillaahir rahmaanir rahiim.
Assalaamu 'alaykum wa rahmatullaahi ta'ala wa barakatuhu.
I am really excited about this blogging thing. I actually got the idea and was inspired by my new "object of admiration," Ala Paredes. Hey, don't get me wrong here. I'm no lesbo or anything, but this girl is totally something. Her writing makes me laugh and wonder about life- my life. You see, much as she wants to project or show that life- her life isn't that special or that her life is like this or like that, the "screw you all, I have an angst-filled life" sort of thing, I can't help but feel that she actually has a close to perfect life. I mean, just look at how her family, studies and career seem to fall just in the right place at all times. Yes, it's really true that one does not really know what is happiness unless s/he feels what it is to be sad, to be hurt.
I admire this girl because she writes from the heart. I mean, she writes whatever she thinks, whatever she wants. She is not afraid to show or announce to whoever is reading what she really feels and thinks. Others may not like what she says or what she writes, who cares! It's her life. It's the freedom, the free flow of her ideas that I like, the straight-forwardness. She just writes and writes and you feel like you know her, like you're a part of her world... You feel like she's in front of you whining, shrieking with glee, crying, throwing a tantrum. And, most important of all, she does all these without so much effort. She was born with a natural talent for writing. She transforms paper (or should I say monitor?) into a picture of a sea of different creatures. She paints pictures with words without trying too hard. So what if the picture is blurry? So what if the picture is too dark or too light? Who cares?! It's her picture anyway, and if you don't want to give the picture even a glance, so be it! Who the f*ck cares?!
This is how I picture Ala's mind, how she writes. With more practice and training (for practice makes perfect), she will, one day, be a great painter of words. Oh, and she paints real pictures, too. A great writer in the making. I hope that she never tires of writing and that the day will come that she writes for a much larger audience.
Okay, I guess that is enough about Ala. Well, it's but natural that I write about her in my first entry because, as I have said, she was my inspiration in making a blog of my own. That would mean that she is, in a way, my muse. Hehe:) Oh, and let's add the fact that before I read her blog, I wouldn't have known what a frickin' blog was! Now, don't I owe her a lot?
I'm really happy about this blogging thing mainly because now I have found something where I can just pour everything out on. I could write whatever I want to write and what I may normally be afraid of writing without caring and without the fear of being judged. That's one of my fears and that causes me lots of heartaches (figurative and literal). Well, that is because it really hurts when you think of something and you want to write about it, but you can't because you are afraid that someone may read it and may just think what a frickin' distorted humanoid you are! I love writing journals, but sometimes it freaks me out to think that someone might actually read them and might just have a piece of who I really am. What if s/he doesn't like what s/he sees? I am just such a chicken when it comes to rejection. This is why I never, ever, submit my "thoughts on paper", for fear I might be judged and not be accepted.
But, reading Ala changed that for me! So,who cares if I think this?! It's me who's thinking anyway. And, who am I thinking for anyway? I know that our culture and society make us think the way we do. But, in my case, I think it's gone overboard! Why? Because, man, even my innermost thoughts, I am afraid to disclose or I am afraid to even entertain because of all the confounded ideas I have accumulated through age!
I want to be the person of my own! I want to be the captain not only of my soul, but of my thoughts, of my life, of every single thing that's mine! I want to be the person that I want to be, the person that I should be. I want to be free! And, with this blog, I begin my quest to freedom! :)