ARCHIVED LETTERS 05 SEPTEMBER 2001


29 July 2001

Re: Catholic dogma cannot be questioned

This message goes out to Mr. Jordan Viray.

I think it's a sad irony that you talk of State and Church, Faith, Vatican II, Ethics, Popes, Saints, Jesuits and being a good Christian--and yet you never once mention the Bible.

Have a nice day :)


29 July 2001

It's one thing to be able to look at your culture's faults and acknowledge them, but it's quite another to be a complete turncoat like nasty. I've got one word for you nasty, SELLOUT!


28 July 2001

Re: Catholic dogma cannot be questioned

To Mr. Jordan Viray:

In our opinion, your letter reeks of fundamentalist propaganda.

It is sad that fundamentalist Catholicism has finally reached the Philippines. Think about it...what if the Fundamentalists of the United States finally gained control of the government and replaced their Constitution with the KJV Bible? What if Fundamentalist Vatican I Catholics overrun the Philippine government, installed the Cardinal as Chief Presidential Adviser and overthrew the Constitution with the Malleus Maleficarum? The mere fact that you think that Philippine Catholic Church and State should be intertwined--TIGHTLY--has we think certain flaws:

WITH ALL DUE RESPECT:
a) You want to know why very few people believe in Philippine Catholicism anymore? Refer to the letter you submitted to this site. No one could even understand what you're saying (Nicomachaean Ethics? Casuistric library?).

b) What one true Catholic faith in the Philippines? Based on your letter, if indeed the Catholic Church and State should be inseparable, you have subconsciously labeled the (already marginalized) Igorot, Taud Batu, T'boli and other ethno-aboriginal faiths (as well as Buddhists, Protestants etc.) as people who should be converted with force to your faith (no, not faith...the proper term is religion). Reason begets logic, and logic begets order--from what we understand, your logic states that being non-Catholic is both unconstitutional and unworthy in the eyes of the Powers That Be.

c) You have taken a simple, truly spiritually-inspired piece of holy writ (in case you didn't know, I'm talking about the Bible...you know, that book that's hidden under all of those piles upon piles of church dogma) and hidden it under a veil of contradictions and conspiracies (take Origen's teachings on reincarnation, St. Thomas Aquinas's do-it-yourself books on sorcery and magic, the Malleus Maleficarum, the sainthood of Emperor Justinian of Constantinople, the double papacy of Avignon and Rome, Pope Joan the First, the death of Pope John Paul the First and the Jesuits' idea of the Noosphere).

d) The slide of the Church "to irrelavancy" is not a sound premise. It isn't, we agree. But it's happening. And you better open your eyes to the truth (cuz that's what your'e looking for anyway. The truth, I mean.)

e) Have you ever questioned your faith? Or do you blindly follow dogma without question? Question your faith, my dear friend. Jesus did that in the Garden of Olives.

We could go on about how fusing your idea of Catholicism and State frightens us to no end, but unlike you, we don't want to add more parsley to our soup. Thank you for your time.


15 July 2001

Mr. BENIGNO,

Your article should be an eye-opener to the Lady President faced with the gargantuan task of cleaning-up an age-old system of government. But what I really want to see happen is for the "masang Pilipino" to understand what our culture is all about in the face of our growing economic crisis. Just as one author once said, "For a nation to modernize, some culture must be sacrificed". I'm sure an economist like president Arroyo understands the complexities of the Filipino, but the challenge for some of "us" I strongly believe lies in selling "our" ideas to the "masang Pilipino". No matter how efficient a gov't is, if the governed society sets its own rules based on some whimsical tradition or norm handed-down from a previous corrupt generation, then everything falls apart. President Arroyo is on the right track: setting the example on austerity measures; distancing herself from the judicial branch; setting priorities on economic programs. I just hope her straightforward press releases are anything but hype. Because, I know as a Filipino that we are good on hype but always lacking in execution. Mr. Benigno, I totally agree with your article. You laid the gameplan for the problems besetting the country. Sell it to the media and let every network argue the pros & cons. To hell with the critics who can't even suggest an alternative. Sell it to the churches and let every sheperd call on their flock. To hell with the hypocrites who disguise themselves as moral guardians of society. Go tell that to a starving sheep about to be slaughtered by the landlord. The gauntlet is waiting Mrs. Arroyo. Set the example! It's time to kill the bastards before they rape our daughters. SAGASAAN NA ANG DAPAT MASAGASAAN! SIMULAN MO AT TATAPUSIN NG BAYAN. WALANG KAIBIGAN, WALANG KAMAG-ANAK! NO ONE IS ABOVE THE LAW! BITAYIN SI ERAP! NAPAKASIMPLENG BAGAY! AKSIYON AGAD!


12 July 2001

Hello. I was surfing the net when I landed on your site. What can I say. The content of your site if pretty disheartening. But it is the truth. The Philippines has gone form being the asian top dog the the region's whipping dog. However the culture being at fault is only part of the problem. Haven't you ever wondered why the country has so much corruption? Well one reason is, even though our system of government is modeled after the U.S. government, the country lacks the Federal and Local government relationship.

If the Philippines had a strong central government like the U.S. has the Federal government to check on local authorities, then local officials won't be running around like they are the kings of their districts. Philippine health care would be up to par, the police would be regulated, consumer goods would be checked... How our forefathers and everyone else who came after were able to miss this fact is beyond me.

That doesn't even touch on the problem of education in the country. A problem were the root of social and economic inequality arises. Your site is quick to blame the culture and the people for the situation they're in. It is true that to solve a problem a person must first identify what the problem is. Yet you fail to note that the average Filipino already knows his of her life is screwed up. How can our people aim their sites higher if all their energy is being spent trying to survive?

Instead of targeting the common Filipino, why don't you center on the government who's put our people in this position. The officials have the knowledge to change the country since they went to schools rather to the fields to make a living.

Right now the Philippines has a bigger problem to worry about. When the Philippines lost the disputed shoals to China, China took those shoals and set up bases on them. "Bases" might not be accurate but I am positive China has a base right within Philippine territory. Everything is quiet now, but in a few decades or less, China is going to claim that region sovereign Chinese territory. It is possible that they will shoot down commercial planes that pass through that area. It would be a good idea to get people informed about this international issues than on wallowing on our people's shortcomings.


10 July 2001

The Chinese community in the Philippines has advanced certainly. But at what cost? As in other Southeast Asian nations, the Chinese minority, often about 5% of the population controls 50% of the wealth. That is material success undeniable. How has in come about in Malaysia or Indonesia which are very different from the Philippines. Let us imagine twenty people in one room, one is Chinese and the other nineteen are from the Philippines, let us imagine two bayabas. The Chinese has one, and the others split the other one. How does such a situation come about? We ask this question of the politicians and cry corruption, do we reply in kind when asking about the Chinese?


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