Saturday, August 29, 2009

YES YOU CAN BUILD YOUR LIFE THE WAY YOU WANT IT--MEDLEY OF PROVERBS

Proverb is a saying or phrase designed by wise men who acquired knowledge and wisdom. They have the intellectual virtue by which they judge in light of reason in the highest order. As the great author puts it, “We only find wisdom in older people, for they have had the years of experience to "see the larger picture", so to speak. They have encountered many kinds of people throughout their lives, they have been deceived before, lied to, have been pleasantly or unpleasantly surprised by things they weren't aware of, they've made mistakes, have had time to reflect upon their mistakes and the mistakes of their friends, associates, and family, and they have come to learn and understand that they knew very little when they thought they knew a lot, and so they know something about human limitations, which they didn't quite appreciate when they were younger. And so they understand something about human nature and human frailty, and they are able to give us advice on whom we ought to be careful of, whom we can trust, what to expect in the future, etc.”

Proverbs cannot be bettered, contradicted, and though it is abandoned, it cannot be falsified. It is a saying which prescribes norms, imparts a lesson or simply reflects standard norms, traditions and beliefs applicable to all.


As you venture into the journey of life, think about that you are building your own life the only one you ever had. So it is with you who will decide whether you will put up less than the best or give your best shot. “Our life today is the result of our past attitudes and choices. Our life tomorrow will be the result of our attitudes and choices we make today. Let’s build our life wisely.”

We can take the road from nothing to anything. If we sacrifice and work hard we can climb the mountain top of success, to the very top.

“Two little words that can make the difference: START NOW”. “The act of taking the first step is what separates the winners from the losers”. “Take the first step in faith. You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step and be willing to launch in faith, with no guarantees of success. This is the mark of personal greatness”.

“Know what you want to do, hold the thought firmly, and do every day what should be done, and every sunset will see you that much nearer the goal”. “When we do the best we can, we never know what miracle is wrought in our life or in the life of another”.

The lure of the distant and the difficult is deceptive. The great opportunity is where you are. Do not despise your own place and hour. Every place is under the stars. Every place is the center of the universe, and when your intentions are good, the genius in you will captivate the world.

"All who have accomplished great things have had a great aim have fixed their gaze on a goal which was high, one which sometimes seemed impossible". "Action to be effective must be directed to clearly conceived ends." “If you know what you’re aiming at, it greatly improves your odds of hitting your target.” Better still, “if you want to hit the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target”.

“When defeat comes, accept it as a signal that your plans are not sound. Rebuild those plans and set sail once more toward your coveted goal. Do not be too timid and squeamish about your actions. All life is an experiment”. “All great masters are chiefly distinguished by the power of adding a second, a third, and perhaps, a fourth step in a continuing line. Many a man has taken the first step. With every additional step you enhance immensely the value of your first”. YOU MUST HAVE CONSISTENCY!

“Take everything into consideration before making any decision. You need to look at all decisions you make from a variety of angles in order to assess their outcomes, and be sensitive to all the ramifications. Never enough time to do it once, always enough time to do it twice”. Remember the phrase: Ready, Aim, Fire. Not ready, fire, aim.”

“We may encounter many defeats but we must not be defeated”. “Failure is often merely a temporary condition. Giving up is what makes it permanent”. “Don’t give up when you still have something to give. Nothing is really over until the moment you stop trying”. “In life, you won’t fail unless you stop trying”. “Life is not a race, but a journey to be savored each step of the way”. “It is by attempting to reach the top at a single leap that so much misery is caused in the world.”

The secret of life is honesty and fair dealing. If you can fake that, you've got it made”. “Set your heart on doing good. Do it over and over again, and you will be filled with joy”. We reform others unconsciously when we walk uprightly. A life live with integrity, even if it lacks the trappings of fame and fortune, is a shining star in whose light others may follow in the years to come. "In other words, when we realize that everything we do matters, that every choice we make has consequences, we see ourselves rightly as stars linked in a constellation of community. We discover what it might mean and what it might take to act with integrity...Be something like a star--whole and radiant and linked to other stars--within the shimmering and glorious constellation of community."

As you take the road to success you can choose to go slowly but surely, or quickly but uncertainly. There are many temptations around you constantly seeking to get your attention and trying to distract and divert your focus and concentration. This is where you have to be firmed and strong with your conviction not to be drawn to temptation. Continue with what you have started and be consistently determined to stick with it no matter what it costs, and that is the only way to succeed. “Time and Patience would bring the snail to Jerusalem.”

Thursday, August 27, 2009

SOME GOLDEN WORDS FOR KEEPS

“The secret of life is for a man to be ready for his time when it comes”. “There comes a time for you to be your own man and take on the world…and you did. But somewhere along the line, you changed. You stopped being you. You let people stick a finger in your face and tell you you’re no good. And when things got hard, you started looking for something to blame…like a big shadow.

Let me tell you something you already know. The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a very mean and nasty place, and I don’t care how tough you are…it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life.

But it ain’t about how hard you hit. It’s about how hard you can get hit…and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done.

Now if you know what you’re worth, go out and get what you’re worth. But you have to be willing to take the hits, and not pointing fingers, saying you ain’t where you wanna be because of him or her or anybody! Cowards do that, and that ain’t you! You’re better than that!”

“The most useful person in the world today is the man or woman who knows how to get along with other people. Human relation is the most important science in living.”

“Some of us are not seeing the things we want in our lives move from the place of dreams to reality. We’ve even gone so far as believing that we are undeserving or otherwise disqualified from having what we want.”

“What I think that has propelled everyone to the level greater than he originally thought he could ever achieve was the ability to push himself a bit harder. To do that you must be truly motivated and passionate about what you are doing. Without pushing yourself beyond your limits you cannot grow.”

Do not be discouraged. “When the world says, ‘Give up’, Hope whispers, ‘Try it one more time.”

“Don’t be afraid to give your best to what seemingly are small jobs. Every time you conquer one it makes you that much stronger. If you do the little jobs well, the big ones will tend to take care of themselves”

“Nobody trips over mountains. It is the small pebble that causes you to stumble. Pass all the pebbles in your path and you will find you have crossed the mountain.”

“When you come to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on.”


"Oh man, do not intend harm to others
Or it will cause untold harm to you."

"Do not cause hurt to the hearts of others
Dispel the disease in your heart
Which desires to hurt.
Great benefit will come to you
And bring peace into your life."

"Do not cry for money,
It will ruin your qualities.
Cry and search for God's qualities,
The qualities that will destroy
The corpse of the karma of your birth
And make your life eternal."

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

CONTENT WITH WHO I AM


I always ponder over the things around me and the events and circumstances that cross my mind. I observed in this life it is full of extremes. There were people who were overly showered with all the graces in the world like riches, popularity and personal attraction rolled into one; and there were also those who were extremely poor in the poverty line. There were genius; and there were those extremely slow in learning or dumb. There were people who, like King Midas myth, whatever they put their hands on will always turned into wealth and prosperity; and there were also people who cannot seem to prosper an inch even how much they put in more hours working than most people put into being awake. Why God does allowed these things to happen.

We, human beings, are like plants, the ones that we see everywhere around us and in the forest. All plants are useful in their own natural ways. There are trees used for different purposes, as building materials, protection against floods, with tasty fruits, and those processed for different finished products like food, cloth, rope, paper, dyes, oil, rubber, etc. Shrubs and grasses can be used for feeding animals and medicines; ornamental plants can serve as hobbies and decorations, and many other uses.

The only difference between plants and humans is the brain and mobility where the issue of peace and order lies. When small trees or grasses are blocked or deprived from the heat of the sun by big trees, or when the branches of big trees extend to the small trees and obstructing their growth, no complaints or trouble at all can ever be expected. Trees move when wind blows, they sway and dance; in a storm they are excited, bowing, swirling, waving and tossing its branches in glorious accord and enthusiasm; when it was gone, it is silent, and seem more resigned to the way they have to live than other things do.

We humans may as well be like trees and plants that we just go on with our lives. We should not rush into anything as a rat race for pointless pursuit. For even in relationships which are meant to last and to laugh, but sadly, it can break apart. Do we not believe that man is most noble, most creative, and most happy when under the rule of no mind but his own? Life was meant to be embraced and celebrated with cooperation by living with each other and nature, not winning battles.

Our brain and mobility may be used to appreciate nature and the foibles that each of us distinctly and peculiarly possessed, and in that way, we will be at peace and the world as well. We have enough hope to make us happy, enough trials to make us strong, enough sorrow to keep us human. The happiest people don't necessarily have the best of everything; they just make the most of everything that comes along the way.

Feeling envious by comparing ourselves with others will make us feel furious and bitter for there are always greater and lesser people than ourselves. When we compare ourselves with others trouble will ensue as no one can allow he to be outfought. The enemies will make sure our negative aspects show up, and if they can’t they will try and make us fall into the critical thinking of a prideful heart and appear morally despicable. If they succeed they would be shivering with schadenfreude about us. Comparison is a losing battle since either will always come up short in some way or another and they will fight the hardest battle and never stop fighting that only the strong will survive, akin to the survival of the fittest.

Do not feel hopeless for lack of education, poor, not good looking, or due to obstacles in life because many like you did not give up and achieved success. Examples are: Thomas Alva Edison who was acclaimed as the greatest inventor but his teacher thought he was stupid; George Westinghouse, his teacher thought he was dumb but he had almost 400 patents and disprove everyone; Emile Zola, who got zero in literature but became a famous novelist; Harry Doehla a paralytic but became a millionaire by painting Christmas cards; James Barries, suffering from malaria but wrote a famous play “Twelve Pound Look;” Agatha Christie and Albert Einstein were dyslexics, a mental disorder, but they became writer and scientist, respectively; And Many others.

Life is all about positioning and timing. Like the Heron just standing not moving in the water. It only acts when it must it does not when stillness is appropriate. This is also true on human. We have to be in the right place at the right time that we can possibly take advantage of what life has to offer. When we found the right position in the flow of time, just remain patient but alert and wait for the perfect timing. As soon as opportunity presents itself, seize it without hesitation or deliberation. Don’t force a fit. If something is meant to be, it will come together naturally. When luck comes to you, it will and forces you to receive even if you refuse.

Let’s not allow ourselves to be hypnotized by the spell of becoming a big shot and drawn into the whirlpool of identity crisis like a nomad condemned wandering on strange lands and lost among the fog of ignorance on how to live their lives. It is we who can help ourselves. When I realized this, I also realized that I was on my own. This vow to be nothing initiated a specific self-defining perspective through which the rest of my life would gather momentum and focus. It had found a home inside me. I develop a sensibility of ordinariness that I am nothing and there is nothing special in me. Now I became content with who I am, without longing to be another person. This is what simplicity is about: walking my own path, doing my thing in my way —refusing to be a clone.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

A SURE FIRE CAUSE FOR EVERYONE’S FAILURE AND DOWNFALL

If only we recognize the truth and value of the unifying message brought by those who have surpassed the stages of human experiences and who have reached the level of transformation and tried to share with us their hard-earned gains of wisdom then we discover our true existence. Listen to those who walked the path before us.

LOVE your enemies. This is easier said than done because this is unnatural to us humans. Our natural reaction is that when somebody harm us, we retaliate, get revenge and let these individuals know exactly what we think of them by getting mad or angry. But the effect of anger or rage, aside from personal danger as it can lead a person to the evilest of deeds and to the worst and most tragic consequences, is that people will avoid us and eventually find ourselves abandoned by everyone. I myself am and have been experiencing this feeling of retaliation and revenge all the time that I just jump to angry outbursts at the slightest provocation, and at times I go in a rage and start cursing the person I am angry at in private.

I’m happy to say I’ve changed this attitude now. Didn’t you remember in my last blog entitled “IN THE BEGINNING I MISUNDERSTOOD”, posted on August 16, 2009? I stated there whatever you readily do as you please is the one that will destroy you, and those that you really don’t like to do but you just force yourself to do it, is usually the one that will benefit you. Thus, the contents stated in this article are rich in meaning for they have far-reaching implications for a person's welfare both in the worldly life and in the Hereafter.

Yes, realistically, everything unproductive, specifically rage or anger that you always do in a regular basis forms the structure of what is possible for you. Your emotional state emits a specific frequency of energy to the universe, and the universe returns events and experiences into your life that corresponds with your emotional frequency. When your thoughts and emotions lean constantly more towards anger you will have more of it in your life. Resultantly, you experience more problems, and setbacks. This is the law of attraction.

You ought not to get angry or show resentment against anyone even if he has done you wrong. He, who is prone to lose control of his temper, is like digging his own grave, as they say. Actually, what makes us angry is all in our mind. It’s the thought that triggers our emotion. Often times our exaggerated interpretation of the situation lead us to a worse situation. Then regret always come too late. Let’s redirect our mindset because we know that this cannot be the intended meaning of our heart in an absolute sense, since it is an impossible instruction to uphold.

Let me share my voice of experience. We get angry with someone because we thought his action or attitude is a threat or stands in the way to our progress, or we thought his actions are putting us down because we are worthless or insignificant therefore we have to react with anger to what we thought to be insults and put downs. Even if this is true, we should not precipitately vector our response to one direction into getting mad or angry. Instead, we should even show that person a kind of compassion and understanding because we may not have realized it but it was not his choice. He may seem a godsend to be an instrument to fulfill our life’s destiny.

These individuals who bring us suffering and anger are the ones who will deliver us to the level of transformation and earn the gains of wisdom. This event happens because it’s our time and season to discover our true existence. We are called to receive it and give the bearer some credit, a gesture of gratitude for doing it to us for they did not have a choice but was only tasked to do it so we would now take the road to wisdom.

Isn’t it true that sometimes we are weeping for something that which has been our delight? So many people have experienced this that what has once upon a time caused them most pain and agonizing experience was the unfolding of their destiny. This act of holding back your anger towards a person that brought you pain and suffering is hard to do but until you are ready to learn you won’t take on this challenge. When you are ready to learn, then the magic of transformation begins. Remember, life is a journey towards enlightenment where all of us have underlying connections that none goes his way alone and each one is a powerful tool for the other’s change and growth.

So next time you thought you are thrown aside or put down by somebody, instead of returning the favor by retaliating, give them a nice treatment and welcome their actions, and rest assured that you are now ready to take on the challenge as your time and season has come to learn and transform to the higher level of wisdom.

Indeed, life is full of wonders. Throughout your life experiences, I am sure you’ve always observed that it is often the antithesis; the unexpected; the bitter feeling; the unintentional act; or the unlikeliest moments that give us a solution to a difficulty, trouble or problem. Just when we believe we are at the darkest comes the greatest light.

Consider this. Who would expect or imagine that the cure for a poisonous snake bite is the poison of that snake itself; that the prevention to get that disease is the vaccination of the bacteria or virus of the disease itself? Likewise, Graham Bell was deaf but he invented the telephone. Beethoven was also deaf but he was a music genius. The Wright brothers Orville and Wilbur were bicycle mechanics but they invented the airplane. Demosthenes stammers or stutters when speaking but became the greatest orator of his time. The case of Wendell Johnson was even the weirdest because he was a stutterer when talking and oral reading but he later became the head of a speech clinic. The fabulous foursome known as the Beatles, they had no formal background in music but they were a phenomenon; and a litany of many others in like manner.

Who would not pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe when these testimonials are against logic, if not a huge discrepancy? Perhaps they are no longer for now because all told they are already right before our eyes. These people and events are phenomena that we should not just be fascinated by their awe-inspiring emergence. They left much to be desired, so, let’s dig deeper to find the weightier message.

My point is, in this life, what is opposite or contrary to the nature of things and the normal course of events is most likely the one that is the solution; and what is painful and agonizing solution to the situation is the one that usually bring us to things that are bright, and lead us to continue to do what is right

You know, it’s always hard to ascend but it’s always easy to fall down. We are aware that everyone wants to reach the top, and who wouldn’t want to? We even attempt to do it in a single leap if we can. And yet our actions ironically are the ones that help us to fall down easily. Just simply ponder on this. It is the people who surround us who will pull us up to the top. Anger and rage not only drive people away but they also take our hopes and dreams too. These people are no other than our enemies.

Love your enemies. This may incite dissonance and disharmony, even a choke up effect to many, if not spark ironicism. Maybe, but it is a rich one. It is a quantum leap to comprehending the incomprehensible. “One who has agonized enough to break through the cloud of unknowing, earns a satisfying philosophy which grows with him throughout his present life and in times to come” (From Sunrise Magazine, April/May 1989).

Can’t you see that in this life, everything has a price for everything gain? Big price big gain, small price small gain, no price no gain.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

A FATHER CAN BE THE LIGHT OR DARKNESS FOR HIS CHILDREN (EVERY TREE IS KNOWN BY ITS FRUIT)


MY TRIBUTE TO OUR BELOVED

SENATOR BENIGNO “NINOY” S. AQUINO, JR.

FOR HIS 26th DEATH ANNIVERSARY


Fathers are the biggest source of strength for their children. The innocent eyes of a child perceive father as the all-powerful, most knowledge, truly affectionate and the most important person in the family. The Aquino children are blessed with a courageous and loving father and they are very fortunate.

Senator Benigno “Ninoy” S. Aquino, Jr. was a true hero. Not only to his children but to the Filipinos too, We salute YOU SIR for what you’ve done to our Country.


Generally, children mirror their parents. That’s why there is a Pilipino aphorism to the effect that “kung ano ang puno yun din ang bunga” (whoever your parents are is who you are). This tradition traced back its roots since time immemorial and carried over up to the present, which has circulated into widespread idealism that even a man of fashion would cast aside his ego and be influenced as to constitute the truth. Frankly, I also share this belief by heart.

Children learn all kinds of things from watching parents because they are their first and best teachers. As children, the father is all they have and so, what he is doing is all they see. They learn social skills, which can be as basic as saying "please" and "thank you," or more subtle, like how to speak and act at any occasion. Children watch their father in every situation and learn from him.

From parents, children also learn values, such as the values of hard work and respecting others. Your child learns how to treat others from the way you treat him. He will learn from your actions how to treat people from all walks of life. From you, children learn to value and respect all and sundry. Your example of coping skills also gets passed on, especially if you share with your children how you deal with problems. If you tackle a big problem by breaking it up into small, manageable challenges, your children will learn not to despair when faced with a tough situation.

The love of learning, healthy habits, and active lifestyle, are among other practices children can learn from their parents' actions. The important consideration in all of these cases, however, is that a father's actions must align with his words. As a parent, you want to model what you say. It has been widely accepted that a father is the invincible hero to his son; the knight in shining armor to his daughter. A father is all powerful, all knowing, all wise and wonderful to his children. Therefore, a father should be patient and kind, loving and broad-minded, helpful and understanding so his children would also become like him when they grow up. Pertinently, a father who is the baton bearer of the family’s reputation should set a good example to his children if he wants to raise a truthful, caring, law-abiding people out of them.

The parents have to love their children deep down at the root of things and as a matter of nature because children are the general reflection in tragedy and comedy regularly referred to their parents. They extend and continue the legacy of their parents in their lives that they are likely to nurture the good reputation, at the same time defend the bad and the ugly ones as well. Children are the recipients about the views or opinions that the public bestow upon their father. Whatever their father’s status that the public hold is also the general projection the children will be labeled. In other words, the Children cannot walk away from getting their father’s horrible past thrown in their faces. It’s a life time sentence for them. They are doomed to continue the cycle of untrustworthiness that so many go by. It's really a shame, and the stigma is attached to the children who suffer the after effects by force of circumstances.

Indeed, this is sentimental and ironic for the children to live in a time where the meaning falls in splinters for no other reason but only the faded memories covered now with lines and creases done by their father somewhere long time ago that didn’t turned out right. But that is the tradition handed down to us from generation to generation by our precursor. We always hear the common expression, “like father like son”, haven’t you? Matter of factly, Children are the ones who will inherit the father’s identity or reputation he had created towards the public during his lifetime. So it's very important, if a father wants his children not to suffer the stigma of his misdeeds and disgraceful acts, he, as a father, should focus on not repeating mistakes, and focus on building his character. He must be careful in what he is doing, and that he assumes or imagines that there are really no secrets in his life.

The essential characteristics of honesty, integrity, fair dealing and the highest ethical standards of the father must be displayed and spread at all times. Conduct, both at work and outside may have a direct effect on how he and his family are perceived by the public. Conduct , which is in keeping with these standards, will positively redound to the benefit of the family’s good image and reputation, and can surely heralded as a trademark to his offspring.

Like in my case, I always show respect and give special treatment to the children of the friends and colleagues of my late father whom he had good words and praises during his lifetime. In the same manner, that if we as a father will propagate that good reputation and goodwill in relation to the public, it becomes the family’s crest and emblem-- the Coats-of-Arms and other heraldic and armorial insignia for our children to reap.

So, how do you like your children to grow up? By setting the example to be honest, responsible, principled, and standing out from the rest. To all the fathers: spend quality time with your children and bring love into your home for this is where our love for each other must start.


“Character is largely caught, and the father and the home should be the great sources of character infection” (Frank H. Cheley).

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

A UNITED EFFORT… BY ANY EQUATION THE COMBINATION OF THREE IS BEST THAN ONE OR TWO

Realistically, parents seek a good school which can provide their children the highest quality education experience possible. Some parents usually decide to enroll their children to a school patronized by the rich and well-known personalities. They conclude if these well known and rich people are sending their children to this school the same must be “good.” Admittedly, parents have different reasons in choosing the right school for their children. For me, I choose the school that can inspire and motivate my children to open their minds and store in their subconscious that education is a continuing process that whatever we embark into there is only our knowledge, experience and skill accumulated throughout our lifetime serving as our guide. They must become thinkers and know how to make right decision that is attuned with the situation and circumstances obtaining. So, education is preparation of yourself for an ever changing world in the future. When it comes to the education of my children my humble position is what I stated in my acceptance speech as President of the Parents, Teachers, and Community Association (PTCA) of the Capitol University Basic Education Department, or CUBED for short, located at Gusa, Cagayan de Oro City, Misamis Oriental, Philippines. The induction of officers was attended by the parents, teachers, students, the President of the Capitol University, and guests, on August 14, 2009, at 3:00 o’clock P.M. I have three (3) children who are studying at the CUBED, namely: VANESA, 13 years old, Second Year high school, MARS, twelve (12) years old, Grade 6, and STAR, nine (9) years old, Grade 4. The contents of my acceptance speech came wholeheartedly from my conviction and judgment which I stand on solid ground.

Full text….

Thanks for the applause which I richly deserved but rarely get. I feel like the cow, which, on a cold winter day, turned around to the person milking her, and said, thanks for the warm hand. You know it is an invigorating and satisfying experience for me to speak in front of the great icons and the pillars of the Capitol University. I would not be standing here today without the unyielding support of all the teachers and the parents. For this, I thank you and I am forever grateful that my admiration for all of you is beyond measure. My vision is to recognize the need for creating a family-friendly school environment by planning regular events to bring families and school staff together for positive interaction in a highly collaborative and inclusive manner to promote the educational goals of this school. In this way, we can build strong working relationships among parents, teachers and school, in support of our children. It is only apropos then to speak about building complete trust and cooperation where each of us resolves to pitch in and help this school develop in our children attitudes and skills and live by international standards of human rights and equity, appreciate cultural diversity, and respect the Earth and each other. It should first focus on behavioral modification on the part of our children to equip them with positive attitudes and authentic character. These values are important because without positive moral values, others may resent your actions and may not radiate positive energy in your direction. Remember that when you try to point to something that makes you happy there are three or more fingers pointing back at you. We cannot achieve what we want for our children if we do not help and support the teachers and the curriculum. Study shows, if you put strong trust and cooperation to the teachers and the school, students experience highest levels of academic success and have a greater sense of well-being. Our children are the future. Teach them right and the future will be all right!

Thank God the world is made up of infinite varieties of wonderful people who are all able to do different things. We must unite our diverse talents and expertise under a shared and common objective—to gently help our children onto their rightful path of learning and growth, a path that leads to a safe and peaceful future. These are our concerns and the university founder, the late Madame Laureana S. Rosales, our President Atty. Casimiro B. Juarez Jr., and the formidable principals, then and now, have been working towards this since the first day of their administration. It’s not about making one big leap to perfection, but tiny little changes every day, until we get where we want to go. You know its little steps that will eventually get us to the promise land. It’s kind of a “trek to the stars” keep reaching.

Peace is what life is all about. Conceivably, the United Nations has launched for the 21st Century a global movement for a culture of peace so there will be world peace, the place free from the scourge of war and violence, the place where things flow, where dreams become reality, the place where fulfillment lies. It has been revealed that a better approach to building peace is through the minds of the children starting in the basic education which our children are in such level and category. Our Children are like mirrors they reflect who we are as parents. Children start out in life looking up to their parents because parents are all they have – the parent’s example is all they see. Research has shown that throughout our children's lives, we parents really are the strongest influence on our children's behavior. Our kids are listening and learning from us. What we say and do as parents is heard and retained by our children. So let’s start showing our children the idea that despite our different faiths and beliefs we can live side by side and work together to build a society rooted in the values we treasure, that is, a culture of peace. With our differences of talents and expertise, we can learn from one another and discover new truth in raising our children in a way that they grow up with a culture of peace.

So, for the sake of our children, let’s inspire each other to do more for peace. Let us be something like a star whole and radiant and link to other stars within the shimmering and glorious constellation of community. We’ve only got one life so we may as well accomplish something that the world will be benefited more than can be conveyed and give ourselves something to remember and be truly proud of when we look back in our old age and reflect on our life. What better way to keep the fabric of society together than to plant a seed of friendship and cooperation that will never die. That said, we can be sure that those who come after will say of us that in our time we did everything that could be done. We finished the race; we give them peace of mind, we give them the true value of unity. So, let’s start by greeting each other with a smile all the time. One tidbit can kick-start us in a new direction. Then this can be bolstered by great follow through. Remember, “Life should be measured in smiles per hour, not miles per hour or dollars per hour.”

Finally, we must learn to see ourselves as one and not be so concerned with our nationality, race or religion. When it comes right down to it we are all human. Think what we could accomplish if we all worked together. We all have needs and wants but let’s not get carried away. Be mindful not to get so caught up in making a living that you forget to make a life. Remember, no matter what you’ve done for yourself and humanity, if you can’t look back on having given love and attention to your own family, what have you really accomplished? But if you’ve had wonderful family relationships, you will be able to call yourself a true success in life no matter what else you’ve achieved. Bring love into your home for this is where our love for each other must start. If you have too much, be it time, money or love, start sharing it with others that can benefit. If you think that seeing a smile or a tear on a thankful face isn’t one of the best rewards in life then you haven’t truly experienced this feeling recently.

All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood. This has to be so because We humans are social beings. We come into the world as the result of others’ actions. We survive here in dependence on others. Whether we like it or not, there is hardly a moment of our lives when we do not benefit from others’ activities. For this reason it is hardly surprising that most of our happiness arises in the context of our relationships with others. Nor is it so remarkable that our greatest joy should come when we are motivated by concern for others. So, in the spirit of brotherhood, our vision is to develop and support partnerships between parents, on the one hand, and the teachers and the school, on the other hand, each equally sharing the responsibility of providing our children with the highest quality education experience possible. We believe it is essential that all of us accept joint responsibility in the education of our children and empowering them to meet the challenges of the ever changing world in which they live. ALL OF US shall do it, ALL OF US should do it, ALL OF US will do it. WE promise that WE will do it definitely.

Thank you very much and good afternoon to all of you.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

IN THE BEGINNING I MISUNDERSTOOD

In the beginning I misunderstood but now I find the world is good. Yes, we have really misunderstood life.


All of us want to achieve something great in life, and be recognized, honored and adored for what we have reached and accomplished. That we can roller-coast along, surf the feel-good sensation on our self-made wave of success. We enjoy more autonomy, more wealth, and be looked up to due to our high stature. But from the start of our adolescence we seem like to do things that would result to the opposite of what we had wished for and had always wanted with our life. We always want to do things as we feel like it. When we feel like thinking alone, we spent so much time thinking all sorts of things as much as we wanted to even we knew that thinking doesn’t make it so but action. When we feel like sleeping, we sleep as much and as long as we like. If we want to go out to meet friends and enjoy talking non-sense together we don’t hesitate but eagerly and enthusiastically sprint away. These kinds of attitudes and outlook in life will never help anybody achieve anything and/or become successful.

But when it comes to doing the ones that will really lead us the path to success and become great, we always have to exert and force ourselves to do it. During our younger years, we knew that if we would study harder and become dedicated to everything we have to do as a student that is a sure fire to success. But we seem like adamant and reluctant to follow this thought of advice even if we knew subconsciously this to be correct. For us, it is a sacrifice and the most sorrowful act to do everything that make us succeed. But if you would have had examined your heart and conscience at the time, you could have found out and discovered that in truth you are weeping for something that which has been your delight.

We don’t want to be embarrassed, criticized and talked about by others for our mistakes but curiously enough, we do not do anything to improve our lot and know-how or skill. We knew this attitude is wrong but we don’t seem to do anything to correct this ironically bad habit. Remember, "No persons are more frequently wrong, than those who will not admit they are wrong." — Fran├žois de La Rochefoucauld.

We envy the few others because they have achieved great things in life, they have more than what we have, they are living in the lap of luxury. We curse everyone and everything because there are many poor and hungry people in our midst including us and only a few are living comfortable and easy. This is because most of the people are in a hurry to enjoy life early unconcerned of what their future might be like if they continue doing the things as they feel like it. Most of us tend to run faster when we have lost our way instead of slowing down or take time to stop and realize what we have right in front of us.

Indeed, many of us are in the gutter, and few are looking at the stars. Those who have succeeded now had been thought before as stupid, fool, and weird and ridiculed because they keep on reading, studying and adding up their knowledge and skill. They had always been thought as eccentric. But they didn’t mind because they knew that those people who were laughing at them for what they were doing belong to the mainstream or the majority, and as human nature has proven, to be on the side of the majority is often a wrong choice. This has been the reason why many are poor and only few are rich because many tend to like to do things if many are doing it. They are fond of saying, “everyone is doing it why don’t we do it too? Correspondingly, if they go to hell, we go to hell too.

Remember, "You need to find a way to live your life, that it doesn't make a mockery of your values—Bill Ayers.



Wednesday, August 12, 2009

AGRARIAN REFORM IN THE PHILIPPINES—EVER FORWARD, NOW AND FOREVER

(FIFTH AND END OF THE SERIES)


CONCLUSION

You shall not knowingly or deliberately by overt or covert acts or omissions impede compliance or implementation of a law for this is necessary and important in keeping order in a society. Study shows that respect for the law is developed by a realization that law represents accumulated wisdom, that it is in harmony with laws of nature and that it is necessary to prevent trouble. In the Philippines, something seemed to have shifted some decades ago and part of that something that seemed to shift was that, collectively, we lose a respect for the law. Maybe it was the continuing instability of our country or of too much politics, or perhaps based on reciprocity and mutual exchange, or reward for loyalty. Maybe it was something else or a combination of somethings else but whatever it was, it appears to me, as both an attorney for a good part of the above time span and an observer of legal behavior, that many people appear to have lost their respect for the law.

I love the CARPER LAW, RA 9700, known as the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program Extension with Reforms, signed by the President on August 7, 2009. When I hear legal scholars speaking about the law, I find myself moved to tears. That we have nothing but an idea separating us from chaos is quite remarkable when you consider it.

We now have many kinds of beautifully worded laws on agrarian reform that to encode all of them here would surely cause my fingers to freeze or numb. And all of them are complementing and supplementing one another and each other that it is near to impossible you will not be confused, especially for those who are not familiar with them. I focus on agrarian reform because my job deals with agrarian reform. The CARPER (Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program Extension with Reforms) which is RA 9700, will surely invite many issues because we as a society have created a climate conducive to creating the issue. This CARPER issue is a demand-side issue at present because of its amendments it introduced.

I love the CARPER law. When I read the amendments, my heart and emotion soar and waves majestically in the air because it gives us new hope that our dream of lifting our poor farmers out of extreme poverty and become self-reliant and independent in their daily needs and subsistence is not a lost cause. It stresses the absolute centrality of our poor farmers and the power of unity, as well as the gender discrimination and the importance of farmers’ organization. It sets out to change perceptions of who the poor are – not a static, monochrome set of people waiting for change – but a dynamic group of individuals with energy and initiative. It makes constant allusions to subjects close to my own understanding of what drives development -- personal empowerment, power and gender relations, families, collective action and, therefore, makes social relations a central theme.

But the CARPER law is an elusive and indeed, in many of the amendments, a fragile thing, just like any other laws. There is no “one size fits all” concept of the law. These qualities are part of its beauty. It can be molded to fit a wide variety of situations. However, that elusiveness makes some people uncomfortable since we often seek constancy. We would often like to have things “carved into stone” as it were. But it is the very nature of the law being so elusive that gives it its power to last as long as it has in this country.

The fragility of the law is due, in large part, to the fact that there actually is no law outside of that which we elect to have as law. The law is not self-fulfilling. Writing a statute into a code book, having a court interpret a law, does not make anything happen. Law only is effective to the degree that we, the individuals who make up our society, elect to have it be effective. We are totally responsible for the continuation and effectiveness of the law. If enough of us agree the law or a given aspect of the law is not reflective of who we are as a society, that law goes unenforced or in some instances, is repealed or overruled by court decision.

So the law is now and always has been a reflection of the values of the society in which it is found. But in truth there is no such thing as “society.” Society is merely the totality of the input that all of us, individually and through our institutions such as media, business and the like, create. “Society” includes as well all of those same inputs of everyone who came before us including parents, grandparents and others not related to us individually. But in the end, all of that input came from a person, not a thing called “society.” Some persons created each value that we now attribute to “society.” When enough of us adopted that same value, it seemed to become some sort of argumentum ad populum ("If many believe so, it is so."). Some of those “truths” became our law.

Thus, the law is a reflection of each of our individual values, writ onto the larger canvas that we, for convenience if not literal correctness, call society. Having a “thing” to blame it on, excuses our individual responsibility. We are the law in a very real sense. We are part of its creation and it reflects who we are.

It follows that if the law is reflective of our individual values, then we have to examine those individual values and how we thus play a part in the shaping of the “societal” values. It requires a sense of ourselves. It requires a sense of our individual power and yes, responsibility for who we are as a “society” and the laws that reflect that society.

As we collectively and individually go through the transitions that are now and will remain an integral part of the development and success of the CARPER in particular and the program of agrarian reform in general, each of us must examine what role we play in those transitions. This may make some uncomfortable since we are not generally given to accepting responsibility for our own conduct.

I believe we are in a great period of transition very much on the scale of the Industrial Revolution. But like that and other “revolutions” it is hard to see it during the time we are in it. It takes a significant period of time to even see a revolution of that or this nature in process and certainly to understand the nature of the values at play now.

The success of the CARPER Law depends on how we, the people, receive it, how we respond to it, and how we give respect to the basic precept of it. The outcome of the Law, therefore, is dependent on those cases where the critical ingredient is supplied by what is in the people's heart.

The commitments and the know-how to implement the CARPER Law are already in place in the DAR administrative agency. Surely, in the interregnum, the DAR officials will sometimes find that they are fated to accomplish some task or face some overwhelming foe. We can only speculate as of now but whatever lies ahead waiting in the sun can become a central issue for the DAR Officials, either as a goal to pursue or a fate to dodge, can drive much of a storyline.

Of course, it’s not about making one big leap to perfection but tiny little changes everyday until they get where they want to go. It’s little steps that will eventually get them to the promise land. It’s kind of a trek to the stars, keep reaching.

The task of the DAR officials isn't so simple a matter, that it isn't. The true answer is something they would find out for themselves and it is determined by how they perform their respective jobs from this day forward, that it is. Indeed, it’s some sort of Survival of the Fittest.

The blue sky is infinitely high, crystal clear...that's what the world should be, a world of infinite possibilities, laid before us, crystal clear. -Kentatsu

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

AGRARIAN REFORM IN THE PHILIPPINES—EVER FORWARD, NOW AND FOREVER

(Fourth series)


The Philippines is still primarily an agrarian country. Most citizens still live in rural areas and support themselves through agriculture and allied occupation. Our country has a wealth of agrarian laws to uplift and improve the lives of the vast number of poor farmers in our land. But despite the continues implementation of this country’s beautifully-worded comprehensive agrarian reform law (CARL) for 20 long years already, some of our poor farmers still remained landless and deriving income by hopping from one land to another getting barely enough to sustain them to face another day. It has always been a continuing challenge that they keep on wondering if there will come a time that a new dawn would ever be unfolded for them. Such circumstances tell of the elemental forces of life and death, of men and women who, like Antaeus in greek mythology, need the sustaining strength of the precious earth to stay alive—a land to be called their own. The Government is understandably concerned over the fate of these landless farmers and tillers that the CARPER law offers at least 26 reforms in order to address implementation gaps especially with the Land Acquisition and Distribution component of CARP, enough to spur a new vigor and interest in the implementation of a constitutionally mandated agrarian reform. A law means a rule promulgated by the State and implemented by state officials–a means by which we seek to achieve an end, so a good law is first of all, one that achieves its end. But, like everything in life, law comes at a cost and for law to be good, the cost must be no greater than necessary, and not excessive in relation not to the goal that the law aims to achieve, but to the benefit it actually achieves.

Agrarian Justice

Recognition of Farmer’s Legal Standing

The CARPER law tries to correct those doctrines in the cases of Samahan 53 vs. Mosquera (GR 152430, March 22, 2007) and Fortich vs Corona (289 SCRA 624) by legislating that in cases where regular courts or quasi-judicial bodies have competent jurisdiction, agrarian reform beneficiaries or identified beneficiaries and/or their associations shall have legal standing and interest to intervene concerning their individual or collective rights and/or interests under the CARP even if their group or association is not registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission, or Cooperative Development Authority, or any concerned government agency.

Referral of Agrarian Related Cases to DAR

In many areas where the farmers or tenants assert their rights, landowners file criminal cases against them like qualified theft, estafa, arson or civil cases like ejectment. Such cases are meant to harass the farmers from asserting their rights under CARP. Tenants end up jailed because of a complaint by the landowner that he/she harvested coconuts. In order to correct this injustice, the CARPER law introduced another important amendment that provides an automatic referral by the Judge or prosecutor to the DAR for cases that involves farmers. The DAR will certify whether the case is agrarian related or not. The objective is for the farmer falsely accused to avoid suffering unnecessarily court litigation which cost money and time.

No TRO Issued Against DAR when Implementing CARP

The judicial courts cannot issue injunction or restraining order against DAR and other CARP implementing agencies. This is to legislate the Supreme Court’s ruling in DAR vs Cuenca (G.R. No. 154112, September 23, 2004) that Judicial Courts should not be used to hamper the sound implementation of CARP. The implementation of CARP needs political will and the judiciary must cooperate by affirming the revolutionary power of the State to implement agrarian reform. There are two provisions in the CARPER law that talks about this namely:

Section20. “EXCEPT FOR THE SUPREME COURT, no court in the Philippines shall have jurisdiction to issue any restraining order or writ of preliminary injunction against the PARC, THE DAR, or any of its duly authorized or designated agencies in any case, dispute or controversy arising from, necessary to, or in connection with the application, implementation, enforcement, or interpretation of this Act and other pertinent laws on agrarian reform.” And,

Section 23, “IN CASES FALLING WITHIN THEIR JURISDICTION, no injunction, restraining order, prohibition or mandamus shall be issued by the [lower courts] REGIONAL TRIAL COURTS, MUNICIPAL TRIAL COURTS, MUNICIPAL CIRCUIT TRIAL COURTS, AND METROPOLITAN TRIAL COURTS against the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR), the Department of Agriculture (DA), the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and the Department of Justice in their implementation of the Program.”

DAR Decision is Immediately Executory

The DAR decision will be immediately executory notwithstanding any appeal to the Court of Appeals. The exception is the issue on just compensation which is really within the jurisdiction of the judiciary. This will speed up the execution of favorable DAR decision pending appeal. According to those I’ve heard in national television, this is another double edge provision which might also be harmful if the decision is against the farmer. This is not true because we have a law that can take care of this situation. It is PD 946, Section 18, which provides: Appeal shall not stay the decision or order except where the ejectment of a tenant-farmer, agricultural lessee or tiller, settler, or amortizing owner-cultivator is directed. This means that in agrarian cases, the decision is immediately executory. But if the decision is against a tenant-farmer, agricultural lessee or tiller, settler, or amortizing owner-cultivator, the decision cannot be immediately executed.

Additional Prohibited Acts on Circumvention of CARP Implementation

The significant addition of prohibited acts focus on the inefficiencies of the DAR offices in the implementation of the CARP like the denial of notice and/or reply to landowners, deprivation of landowners of their retention rights, the delay in the preparation of the claim folders and the payment of just compensation. DAR and CARP Implementing Agencies are also enjoined to submit report, data or document involving the implementation of the CARP and refusal or undue delay is prohibited. A catch-all provision is included, “any culpable neglect or willful violations” of the CARPER law is punishable. Also any farmer violating this act will be disqualified from being a CARP beneficiary.

The penalties have been increased to promote efficiency and deterrent to circumvention of the law. The minimum period of imprisonment is three (3) years and the maximum is 12 years while the minimum fine is 50,000 pesos and the maximum is 1 Million pesos.

Hence, the CARPER policy is to implement CARP with full rigor, with State power and any obstruction by any person whether farmer, landowner or DAR will be dealt by the law. The enforcement of these provisions poses as a great challenge because in the previous years, not a single person was prosecuted successfully for violating the CARL.

SUPPORT SERVICES

Improved Budget for Support Services

The CARPER law allocates 40% of the 150 Billion pesos or 60 Billion pesos for support services, a very important component of CARP. This is a great improvement from the CARL which only provides 25%. Studies show that ARBs who succeed were provided adequate support services by the government.

The CARPER law provides for a clear guideline on where to use the support services like credit, infrastructure, farm inputs and trainings. One improvement is the allocation of budget for the training of farmers to empower and organize them into cooperatives. DAR is mandated to be active in the education and capacity building of farmers.

More Access to Socialized Credit, Subsidies to New ARBs

Thirty percent (30%) or 18 Billion pesos is allocated for credit to ARBs. Six (6) Billion pesos will be subsidies to new ARBs for initial capitalization and 12 Billion pesos will be socialized credit to existing ARBs. Other government financial institutions are mandated to institute reforms to liberalize the access to credit by the ARBs.

Establishment of More Agrarian Reform Communities (ARCs)

The CARPER law mandates the DAR to create at least two ARCs in each legislative district. This is an improvement from the previous law which requires only one (1). The ARC strategy has been proven effective in developing successful ARBs. However not all ARBs are in ARCs because of lack of funds. Hence, the DAR is mandated to establish a complementary support service delivery to those ARBs who are not in ARCs.

Expected Harvest, Purchase Orders and Warehouse Receipts Can Be Used as Collateral

Access to credit of farmers is the ability to avail loans from finance institutions like banks which is a big problem with farmers because these financial institutions have a notion that farmers are not bankable. The CARPER law mandates financial institution to accept as collateral of a farmer who applies for a loan for production the following: purchase orders, marketing agreements or expected harvest. Some banks are accepting already the said instruments but others are hesitant. The traditional collateral accepted by banks is land, however banks shy away from CLOA or EP due to the first mortgage to LBP. Thus, the CARPER law denies the concept of farmland as collateral by providing alternative to land as collateral because the issue is how to increase access to credit of ARBs.

INTERLUDE

Give out what you would like to receive and it will be reflected back to you. If someone has done something wrong to you, give them some affection, some gift of kindness. Even if they do not change, at least, you have changed how you perceive them (abeto a. salcedo, jr.).

Continuation on my next post…..

Sunday, August 9, 2009

AGRARIAN REFORM IN THE PHILIPPINES—EVER FORWARD, NOW AND FOREVER

Third Series

For the past few years, DARAB Caraga where the author has been the Acting Regional Adjudicator, has always been in the lead in terms of delivery of accomplishment, and PARAD Glen Auza, and the entire DARAB Staffs of the five Provinces have always been an integral part of the team which earned us distinguished awards and accolades which have been bestowed on us not only once or twice but every yearly national assessment.

We are proud with our national distinction and this atmosphere has been our trademark which we have been invigoratingly keeping up to maintain. Our track record exemplifies our passion for public service, hard work, and dedication that made DARAB CARAGA Region the lamplighter in the DAR Adjudication Board (DARAB), one that is yet to be outdone and outfought.

NO WONDER we have been consistently receiving an outstanding performance award in the national arena and just recently bestowed “the most Outstanding Achievement Award- National Level” for the consecutive years of 2006 and 2007 accomplishments. As proof, this impressive and inspiring recognition had been published in the Manila Bulletin last October 06, 2008 issue.

Actual and Physical Distribution

Another amendment is that the CARPER law specifies that award of land must be actual and physical possession. This means that the FB shall be physically placed in actual possession of the awarded land. If in case there is a pending litigation over the subject land, the FB has the usufructuary rights over it. Usufruct gives a right to the usufructuary to enjoy the property of another with the obligation of preserving its form and substance. The usufructuary is entitled to all the natural, industrial and civil fruits of the property and may personally enjoy the thing in usufruct, lease it to another, or alienate his right of usufruct, even by a gratuitous title, but all the contracts he may enter into as such usufructuary shall terminate upon the expiration of the usufruct. If the FB is not in actual possession or has not been afforded usufructuary rights, he/she can demand from the DAR for an actual and physical award of the land to him/her. The amendment provides:

Section 9. “rights and responsibilities shall commence from their receipt of a duly registered emancipation patent or certificate of land ownership award and their actual physical possession of the awarded land. Such award shall be completed in not more than one hundred eighty (180) days from the date of registration of the title in the name of the Republic of the Philippines…”

Indefeasibility of EP and CLOA

The CARPER law legislates the Supreme Court decision in Estribillo vs. DAR (G.R. No. 159674, June 30, 2006) declaring titles of land awarded under any agrarian reform program are indefeasible and imprescriptible. The titles (i.e. EP and CLOA) will be afforded the same protection as Torrens title under the Torrens system. This provision provides protection to the CLOA’s or EP’s of farmers being cancelled after it has been registered already for a long time.

Section 9. “…that the emancipation patents, the certificates of land ownership award, and other titles issued under any agrarian reform program shall be indefeasible and imprescriptible after one (1) year from its registration with the office of the registry of deeds, subject to the conditions, limitations and qualifications of this act, the property registration decree, and other pertinent laws. the emancipation patents or the certificates of land ownership award being titles brought under the operation of the Torrens system, are conferred with the same indefeasibility and security afforded to all titles under the said system, as provided for by presidential decree no. 1529.”

Cancellation of CLOA or EP is under the Exclusive and Original Jurisdiction of the DAR Secretary

Another important amendment is that the cancellation of title whether registered or not, is now under the original and exclusive jurisdiction of the DAR Secretary. The decision of the DAR Secretary under the CARPER law is immediately executory even pending appeal to judicial courts.

Affordability Clause Made Mandatory

The CARPER law explicitly mandates that farmers will pay reduced amortizations established by PARC for the first 3 years. For the next years, the law put a ceiling on the annual amortization to not more than 5% to 10% of the value of the annual gross production. The Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) is mandated to reduce the interest or the principal to make repayment affordable. The amortization depends on the annual gross production determined by the DAR which will effectively make the amortization of farmer beneficiaries affordable. This is a great improvement from the CARL because the affordability clause here is made mandatory for LBP and DAR to implement.

The affordability principle arises from the nature of agrarian reform as a social justice measure and not really a market transaction or realty sale. The State comes as the equalizer trying to observe due process in correcting unjust ownership of agricultural land by paying the difference between just compensation and the affordable amortization of farmers.

The amendment provision provides:

Section 11. the payments for the first three (3) years after the award [may] shall be at reduced amounts as established by the PARC: provided, that the first five (5) annual payments may not be more than five percent (5%) of the value of the annual gross production as established by the DAR. should the scheduled annual payments after the fifth (5th) year exceed ten percent (10%) of the annual gross production and the failure to produce accordingly is not due to the beneficiary's fault, the LBP [may] shall reduce the interest rate and/or reduce the principal obligation to make the repayment affordable.

More Participation of Farmers in the CARP Implementation

The CARPER law provides a mechanism for greater farmer participation in the policy formulation and program implementation of CARP through ARB membership in the PARC. Even potential agrarian reform beneficiaries may be nominated. The most important is the requirement of ARBs’ concurrence in all the stages of the program.

Section 14.“The representatives of the agrarian reform beneficiaries to the PARC shall be chosen from the nominees of the duly accredited agrarian reform beneficiaries' organizations, or in its absence, from organizations of actual and potential agrarian reform beneficiaries as forwarded to and processed by the PARC excom.


INTERLUDE

Give out what you would like to receive and it will be reflected back to you. If someone has done something wrong to you, give them some affection, some gift of kindness. Even if they do not change, at least, you have changed how you perceive them (abeto a. salcedo, jr.).

Continuation on my next post…..

 
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