Monday, June 12, 2017

119th Philippine Independence Day: Freedom in Our Hearts

Philippine national hero -Jose Rizal as a visionary leader, once expressed his deepest sympathy against massive aggression against his countrymen by foreign invaders. In his younger years, he witnessed the abuses and suffering of his own family and carried all the emotional baggage of his youth until he became a full-grown man.

In his youthful days, Rizal was already a champion in many ways, and he has proven his capacity through outstanding leadership in his family and the community where he belongs. He was a great believer in the youth and their power to do great things, so he once uttered,  "The youth is the hope of the Fatherland," a heroic statement we always remember. Back then, Rizal was just a little boy, but with a powerful physical, mental, and emotional character; such a commendable trait in his time. 

Today, in our generation, after more than a century, how many of us have inherited those traits of a hero. Who among our youth has shown the deepest respect and concern about our nation. How many Filipinos genuinely care and will continue to fight for the freedom that we have achieved through the years. Becoming a hero is never an easy task, but to become nationalistic is a meaningful expression of what it is like to become a true Filipino.

Conflicts, violence, and wars continue to happen in our time. It is unending and keeps repeating itself and becoming much worse than ever. Filipinos continue to suffer the consequences of false beliefs and the egocentric mindset of some Filipinos who would spread terror and invade the peaceful land making it chaotic, disorganized, and ruined.

With the sad fate in Southern Mindanao, Marawi City is another victim of conflict and war between Islamic State radical Muslims and the Philippine Government troupes. People lost their peace and sense of freedom to do the things enjoyed by ordinary Filipino citizens. We have lost several brave souls who fought for the dark forces. They have sacrificed their lives for the call of duty: to protect and defend our country and its people against oppressors.

We have lost our freedom. Our countrymen, The Maranao people, are enslaved by fear and struggle to recover their lives, rebuild and stand again, and continue to live despite the odds. It is not only the Maranaos but the entire Philippine islands; the Filipino people also showed the deepest sympathy. We have mourned and expressed our emotions, and we are concerned about the welfare of our brothers and sisters who are in trouble. 

It's difficult not to care about what is happening, especially when dealing with terrorism. We might live in a city far away from the bombings, but we could be the next target. It's easy to be complacent when we feel more secure and guarded. It's easy to get numbed of the unending conflicts and wars. However, ultimately, we cry out loud for our misery when we suffer and become victims. When our country is no longer safe, we can only hope for more protection and salvation to escape various threats. We could hope for a superhero to defend us from invasion and bring back our freedom. We long for a powerful Divine intervention to fill in peace and love in all our hearts.

Our freedom, once lost, will always find its way back on track. As we remain hopeful and resilient, we will always regain what is lost and fill in what is empty until we become whole again. As Filipinos, we must fight for our freedom and to contribute to nation-building. A divided nation will once again work together for the common good, and the loss of national identity will find its meaning.

Do we still care about what is happening these days? Are the youths of today willing to sacrifice their comfort to express their fearless views and show solidarity? Are the Filipinos ready to fight again to regain freedom and establish peace in our land? We might not feel it, but the heroism of Rizal is always in our hearts. That's the greatest gift he has given us, and we must uphold the strength and power we are bestowed. We have the blood of a hero running in our veins, and we could face any obstacle in our quest for lasting peace and order. We will not accept defeat, and goodness will always reign in us. We can't be sure that history will break itself and not be bound to happen again. However, one thing is sure; whatever happens, we will always stand as one... one Philippines ... one Filipino people. 

I am A Filipinoand I am a part of our nation-building. I am a Filipino and will uphold and respect our laws and constitution. I am a Filipino and will be a freedom fighter. Freedom leads to peace, and liberty will always reign in our hearts.

© 2017 Del Cusay