Sunday, July 01, 2012

Tribute to Rizal

I've been VERY BUSY these past few weeks :'( Yes. Studies first! 
I just want to share this essay I wrote for my Rizal class. Obviously, this is our "tribute to Rizal" project. 
I don't really write that much, but I hope you like it :)

The Supermodel

            One day while wandering through the dark, prejudiced, and unfair colony of Spain, a young man dared to make a change. He challenged his leaders. He challenged his faith. He challenged his countrymen. He challenged everyone to stand up for change. This man fought without using guns. This man fought by using his brilliant thoughts. He’s a proof that a pen is mightier than a sword. He’s a legend, a hero, a true Filipino.

            Heroism in the Philippine context equalizes self-actualization of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. One’s greatest achievement in life would be reflected when he is considered to be a man of spirit, of essence, and of valor. We may admit it, or not, but there’s an eagerness deep within our hearts that strive for such valor. We would all want to be called a champion, a victor, a hero. But what does it take to be a hero? Do you need to have superpowers? Do you need to have that medal, or that trophy? Do you have to show courage, and fight in a war? Do you need a degree, or a Ph.D. to be considered as one? Most of all, do you have to die first before everyone else calls you a hero? And would you rather be called a hero, or a true Filipino?

“Where I’m from, everyone’s a hero.”

            This is such a famous line that has been circulating all over the world, thanks to social media. There’s so much hype and attention given to it especially by us, Filipinos. Well, why not? It’s created by a Filipino, for the Filipino people. Of course, all of us will feel happy, pleased, and proud. “I’m from the Philippines and I’m being called a hero! How wonderful could that be?” This and those other thoughts that are running through our minds whenever we read such line will surely enlighten our spirits, and hearts. But does it just start there? We will act as heroes just for of the typhoons that destroyed properties and lives, and because someone else needs our help? Does a hero show up if, and only if, there’s a damsel in distress? Ask yourselves now. Is that your concept of a hero?

            There’s too much darkness that surrounds us nowadays. Natural, or man-made, name it! We all have these problems that exist at present. Fires, earthquakes, typhoons, floods, all of these, and more inevitable things are sure to come. Here and there, there is corruption, discrimination, wars, maltreatment, abuses, prejudice, prostitution, racial discrimination, and many more! Naming the difficulties we all have in our country nowadays will surely be vague, and impossible. But it is still a living fact that with every battle against such problems, there are still heroes who arise. And most of them started from being a true Filipino.

            Philippines is such a beautiful country. With thousands of wonders to offer, we are very fortunate to live in such paradise. We have a rich environment that could suffice the existence of thousands of endemic plants and animals. We have beautiful beaches, mountains, volcanoes, that captured not only our hearts, but also of foreigners alike. We are the greatest gold-producing country in Southeast Asia. We have the world’s longest discontinuous coastline. We are poised on the brink of agri-business and aquaculture revolution.

We are a unique nation with four cultural heritages – Asian, European, Mexican, and American. No other nation in the world can claim to have such a varied and extensive experience with all four cultures. We are famous for warm hospitality, musical and artistic talents, romanticism, deep religiosity and faith, and bravery. And as what Gregorio and Sonia Zaide said, “We have the resiliency of the bamboo and the durability of the narra.” And thanks to our ancestors, we are the first republic in Asia.

How can we give back to our mother nation, the Philippines, who has given us so much life, beauty, and wonders? How can we give back to our heroes who risked their lives only to keep the Philippines, and our lives at peace?

We may never model high fashion in London, New York or Paris, but as Filipinos we model our country, the Philippines. Before we aim to become heroes, let us start by being supermodels first. Start within ourselves, start within our own. Consider every pathway as a catwalk. Walk the walk. Consider the sunlight to be the limelight. Take every pose as a movement towards nationalism. Let us call ourselves a supermodel.  Show the world that we are not just Filipinos by name, but we are Filipinos at heart. Let us be proud, be confident, and be happy that we are Filipinos! Because out of 7 billion people in the world, we belong to such a beautiful nation. Let our everyday speeches, smile and laughter, movement and actions be a tribute to our country. Let us not waste the sacrifices of our heroes. Let us not wait for a damsel in distress before we act as heroes. Let us be supermodels. And by being supermodels each day, we will eventually become heroes of our nation. Hello fellow supermodels! Let us all make Rizal proud.