Saturday, July 5, 2008

When I fall in Love...


As the song goes... when I fall in love, it would be forever.... I hope.

I have fallen in love too many times. Though this love that I experienced is just existing in my own reality since I loved those people secretly. I remember the first time I think I fell in love was in my grade six. I fell in love with a girl named Agnes B., long legged, long hair and very quiet. I was attracted to her because I think she has a lot to say but chose not to say it. Very deep and mysterious. Again, this feeling exist in my own reality since the school year ended and she was not able to know it.

The next thing I think I fell in love was in highschool. I had many crushes in High School from both the different color spectrum. The two people that I fell in love with was E and R. I really am confused during that time, who wouldn't be? After all I was just 13 years old when I was in second year in UP High School. Again this just happened in my mind, nobody knows about it.

Crushes and love interests come and go, all hidden in the deep recesses of my mind. I fell in love with a lot of people, from Venus, from Mars sometimes both at the same time. I fell in love with some of my friends, some of my best friends had invited them to my parlour, either by accident or by choice. Though they may have hints about what I really feel for them, this was not brought up, so I can still conclude that this is still hidden and unknown to all.

To cut the long story short, there were only a few people that I really fell deeply in love with. These people are so extra ordinary that their mere presence sends me to some far off planet making me inattentive and detached from the current prevailing reality. Let me tell their stories...

The first one was a a friend I met the first day I entered college. This person possesses one of the most angelic face that I ever seen....ever. Cute, very pleasant looking, a model material yet so innocent and gullible. I was introduced to this friend by another friend, and we clicked immediately. I was so attracted to this person that I would be there during lunch breaks and eat with them. I even went to their house and I always spends time with this friend. This person is very tactile, as shown to me every time. I received hugs, kisses and holding hands most of the time.

However, this with outside influences and vices, this friend became distant to me. I tried to reach out but I was totally ignored and at the end, we were still friend though we are not that close anymore.

The next one was also met by accident. I saw this friend in an internet cafe watching at students playing the PC. This friend studies at La Salle Bacolod and would really stand out in a crowd. Long wavy hair, alabaster skin, lean and very visually stimulating. This person caught my heart the first time we met. Though again my feelings were never revealed, I continued on watching over and caring for this friend.

A year passed and we completely lose our communication, I was in Cebu for a call center job and I dropped by Bacolod City before coming home for my mom's birthday. I called this friend around six in the evening saying that I am in town. My friend told me that it is already late at night and going out is not an option. I said okay, since I know that it is really late. I was so shocked to receive a text saying that my friend is outside the resto. I was so touched since I really did not expect that this person would come over. We spent the entire night chatting and talking and then the next day, I left.

I really loved this person, in fact I sacrificed a lot for him. This friend stayed with me in my house in Cebu for five months and this action from made me all "bubbly". I invited and took this friend wherever my team mates at work would go, our where our group activities would take us, my friend is always there. I confessed my love and I received it back as well. It was shown more in gestures and actions rather than in words. Holding Hands while sleeping, Hugging, kisses in the cheeks I really felt loved during that time. It was a very wonderful sensation. Disappointments came around when this friend went home, since again distance really acted as a hindrance, the communication between us went from cold to sour and it really hurt me....so much.

Finally, another one came in after a year of being loveless and again this meeting was also accidental. This accidental meeting was sponsored by friendster where I read this person's profile sent an email and voila, a reply. I constantly send emails and friendster messages and then one day we met and I instantly fell in love with the angel in front of me. Chinky eyes, slender frame and a very nice and sincere smile. I was hooked instantly and without hesitation I professed my love and luckily I received a very nice reply.... YES. Now we are constantly adjusting to each other's behavior and personality and as the one older than my partner, I make sure that my love is very comfortable in what ever arrangement that we discussed. I am very happy to be with my angel and I hope that this relationship, though may not last forever can at least last a life time...

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Deities of July: Light and Dark

Last time I posted the Goddess Diana as our goddess of the month. Right now I will post a Goddess and a God that celebrates their respective feasts during the month of July. This would allow us to learn the worship practices of specific culture and their sacred activities of their followers.

The Light, the Sun...

Amaterasu (Amaterasu-ōmikami, Ōhiru-menomuchi-no-kami )


The goddess Amaterasu, is probably one of the most famous goddess of the Shinto Religion. She is depicted as a goddess of the sun, contrary to the traditional belief that the sun is a masculine "planet" and therefore associated with the god.

The goddess, considered to be a direct link to the Imperial House of Japan and is one of the most important deity of the Shinto religion. Her name literally means " She who Illuminates the Heavens" celebrates her feast every July 17th and December 8th.

Said to be born from Izanagi, she is considered the Sun Goddess because of her warmth and compassion.
Amaterasu is credited with inventing the cultivation of rice and wheat, use of silkworms, and weaving with a loom.

She is famously linked Amaterasu with Dainichi Nyorai, a central manifestation of the Buddha, whose name is literally "Great Sun Buddha". Thus Amaterasu is held as an divine Emanation of Buddha Vairocana.

Her most important shrine, the Grand Shrine of Ise, is in Ise in western Honshu. The shrine is torn down and rebuilt every 20 years. In that shrine she is represented as a mirror, one of the three Japanese imperial regalia. The Ise Shrine is said to be the home of Amaterasu. This shrine, however, is not open to the public.

She is celebrated every July 17 with street processions all over the country. Festivities on December 21, the winter solstice, celebrate her coming out of the cave.


DARKNESS and the UNDERWORLD

SET also known as Seth, Sutekh or Seteh is an ancient god, who was originally the god of the desert, storms, and chaos.

An immensely powerful god, he was regarded as a chief god sharing the title "His Majesty" with Ra. Set formed part of the Ennead of Heliopolis, as a son of the earth (Geb) and sky (Nut), husband to the fertile land around the Nile (Nebt-het/Nephthys), and brother to death (Usir/Osiris), and (Aset/Isis, the wife of Osiris) and father of Anubis.

Regarded as the god of foreigners, Set is pictured out to be a red haired god which is not a natural attribute of Egyptians thus the title. He is also the lord of gazelles and donkeys which are creatures living on the desert's edge. He is also associated with sandstorms linking him to the Caanite storm deity, Baal.

One of the more famous stories about Set is his fight with Osiris and Horus, which was viewed as the fight for supremacy between the Upper and Lower Egypts each ruled by the respective gods. Scholars also said that this battle between Horus and Set is the constant war between the desert (Set) and the Nile (Horus).The demonization of Set was also viewed as unfortunate by some scholars since he is not really viewed as evil in the ancient texts.

Set was worshipped at the temples of Ombos (Nubt near Naqada) and Ombos (Nubt near Kom Ombo), at Oxyrhynchus in upper Egypt, and also in part of the Fayyum area. More specifically, Set was worshipped in the relatively large metropolitan (yet provincial) locale of Sepermeru, especially during the Rammeside Period. There, Seth was honored with an important temple called the "House of Seth, Lord of Sepermeru." One of the epithets of this town was "gateway to the desert," which fits well with Seth's role as a deity of the frontier regions of ancient Egypt. At Sepermeru, Set's temple-enclosure included a small secondary shrine called "The House of Seth, Powerful-Is-His-Mighty-Arm. His feast is celebrated 15th of July.


Pictures taken from www.Uchina.com and www.Wikipedia.org

To Workout we will Go!!!

Taking care of my body is one of the tasks I was following vigorously when I was still in college. There was a time when I worked with Winner's Gym as a backstage manager/marketing staff as a part-time job. During this part-time stint , I also grabbed the opportunity given to me by my boss- a free workout in one of Iloilo's Class A Gym.

I followed a very strict routine during this 3 years of working out.
Two hours before or after I went out of school, I would spend this two hours in the gym. I also followed a strict no rice diet eating just boiled potatoes or kamote and boiled chicken without the skin. The workout gave me a very wonderful result, I lost about 10 kilos. I also felt great and confident flaunting my body whenever we go to the beach or to parties.

After I graduate and I started working, the gym was also a place for me to unwind. Sometimes I would go to the gym and workout as a means of getting rid of the stress from work. I stopped working out when I was assigned in Bacolod since Winners doesn't have a branch in the city, I looked for gyms near our office but the nearest gym is still about 10-15 minute ride. I returned to Iloilo wanting to go to the gym after six months of being idle.

My plans of going back to the gym was placed on hold again when I worked in Cebu as a call center agent. Since this is a very stressful work, I do nothing but work, eat and sleep and I really bloated since I always sit and sleep after eating. This made me very disappointed and I started on working out at home, but to no avail since I am very tired afetr work I always eat.

When I get back to Iloilo after a year and a half I planned on working out again, however my favorite gym closed and I really dont have the time to go to a gym that is out of my way. Hence my plans were placed again on halt.

After another year, I met a very wonderful person who is very attractive inside and out. This person walked with a very good sense of style and an outstanding physique. We talked and then this person suggested for us to hit the gym again. Luckily, there was a gym very accessible to us and we enrolled last sunday. I will be working out again and hopefully I will be back into my former form with this person's help. I will update the you through the blog about the developments, whether my six packs would finally show itself and shed the layers of fat. Hehehehehe!!!

Thanks again to you, for being my inspiration and strength. Love you!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

KAPWA 2: Of Culture and Chants

Last week, KAPWA 2 was celebrated in the grounds of UP Visayas. This is a gathering of people from the Tribes- the Sulodnon of Iloilo Highlands, the Ati, T'boli, Mangyans etc. This event was also a gathering of the culture and spirituality of these culture rich Tribes.

I attended the event Friday. It was a time where traditions from all of these tribes were shared. Dances and drumbeats were enjoyed by the audience as people from the different Lumad showcased their rituals and songs. Led by the Elders of the respective Tribes, Chants echoed across the walls of the UPV Auditorium. Everybody fell silent as the songs of the spirits were sang and the rituals commenced.


There were participation from out friends from the Ananda Marga, UP Faculty and Students as well as children from the Iloilo National Highschool School of the Arts and the Dagyaw Dance Troupe where they presented excerpts of the epic Hinalawod. The Friday event was closed by a Blessing Chant and Ritual led by an elder.

Some aspects of Filipino Psychology where also discussed and topics like the view of the Indegenous people on God. This topic really amazed me as different Tribes have different views about the Bathala or the Maka-Ako (as it is called here).

We were invited last Sunday to the Pugaran ("Nest"), an art sanctuary located in Oton. Here we see the works of Boy M and his friends. These artworks are made of natural materials such as rocks, barks and roots. This is also the site of his installation art and a lot of Tree Houses and Pugad around the site. This event was supposed to be the gathering of the Rural Shamans 0r the Babaylans however they were not able to go down the mountains ewspecially because of the effect of the bagyo "Frank". So the participants of the conference was just toured around the place.

However, there has been a very wonderful turn of event as Mindong, a T'boli wisewoman and Chanter sang a very emotional chant about thanking the Spirits of the Rocks, the Trees, the Birds and Nature. I was not able to listen to the first one since I was not with her on the Treehouse. The first chant was a spontaeneous chant about the treehouses which reminds her of the old T'boli treehouses which serves as storage and a place of safety for the T'bolis. Mindong is a wisewoman and the chant teacher of Grace Nono. She talked about the Creation Myth of the T'boli and the origin of the 7 Lakes of Mindanao.

The event was very educational and spiritually strong. Personally, I realized a lot of stuff. Iam thinking, why study the culture of other civilzation when here in our country we have a very rich folklore, mythos and legends all untold. I will try my best to bring these lores to the hearts and minds of the new generation.

Sa aton Tagtuga, sa Mahal ng Diyos kag Diyosa,
sa Espiritu sang Talon, sang busay, sang suba kag sang Kabukiran
kabay nga ang amon kinaadman kag kaalam magalapta sa tanan,
sa Aminhan, Nabagatnan, Sidlangan kag Nakatungdan.

- To our Creator, our loved God and Goddess
to the Spirits of the Wild, the waterfalls, the rivers and the mountains
may our skills and knowledge spread to all
to the North, South, East and West.


Chant for the Spirits and the Blessing Ritual