Family is Everything

Written and Posted by: Margie Babon   Our greatest inspiration in life is our family—parents, siblings, wife, husband, niece and nephews even our grandparents. Not only the biological family but also true More »

Flower Pattern and Mandala in Sweet Potato

Written and Posted by: Margie Babon   Few days ago I crave to eat sweet potatoes cooked in coconut milk with sugar and jackfruit meat. While chopping the sweet potatoes (Camote in More »

Understanding People

Written and Posted by: Margie Babon   When looking at people is like trying to look at a pair of slipper with hundred varieties of style and of color. All look similar More »

Forgive Others for not Being Kind

Written and Posted By: Margie Babon    To understand people of how they act and misbehave is the kindest thing we do to ourselves. I repeat, it is the kindest and most beautiful More »

Continue that Dream! Happy 2017!

Written and Posted by: Margie Babon     Life without a dream is nothing! It is the fire that keep us going. It gives life to the soul. It is the breath of More »

Small Note

Written and Posted By: Margie Babon   While going to the vet clinic to pick-up my rescued cat after his neuter, a man approached us with his small note written “Apology for More »

Smile Don’t Cost a Thing

Written and Posted By: Margie Babon “Good morning ma’am,” the lady security guard says to the staffs of women who pass by at the x-ray security machine at the entrance of a More »

“Seeking for an Answer”-Personal Experiences about Religion

Written and Posted by: Margie Babon   It is not a surprise to me if some people hate me for what I am writing about religion and cannot accept some ideas that More »

Usual Unusual

Written and Posted By: Margie Babon   It was 12th of February, Friday after office during rushed hour where traffic is so heavy and commuting is such a burden.  It is so More »

Real, True, and Pure

Written and posted by: Margie Babon   Be blessed when you are able to find real, true, honest, and pure people. They are very seldom to find and rare to come into More »

Category Archives: Meditation Room

Family is Everything

Written and Posted by: Margie Babon

 

Family 1

Our greatest inspiration in life is our family—parents, siblings, wife, husband, niece and nephews even our grandparents. Not only the biological family but also true friends who stay with us for how many years and know our secrets and dreams in life, we consider them as family. Our family is the major source of our motivations to be responsible, to progress and fulfil the goals that we want. It is the family that encourage us and help us that we can make our dreams come true.

Along with the inspiration and encouragement there is also happiness and sadness that we get from our family. There are conflicts and misunderstanding for each member has its own character and behaviour that we must accept and understand. And out of disagreements or call it family war, the attitude of each family member grows and expand to certain maturity and the level of understanding widens. Even our parents cannot change the attitude of their sons and daughters especially when kids are grown up into adult life that they make their own decisions and choose whatever they want to do being their own driver of their life. That is why it is very true that the very foundation of who we are starts from our family. There are lots of adjustments we give to each member and there must be give and take in order to maintain the harmony and the bondage of love within.

Family 2

When time comes that our dearest parents have gone and passed away, this is the greatest challenge on how the family members will stay together and hold on to that ties of being a whole family. Because it is the parents that bind the children together. Without them, it is difficult to get close to the members of the family mostly if there are conflicts and anger that last for a year and so. The fighting of children over the properties of the parents and favouritism are always the issues and roots of the conflicts. There are family members who are unforgiving and having heavy heart and they carry it until they get old and sometimes they carry it until they die.

No matter how heavy the misunderstanding of each family member, there should always be forgiveness, understanding and acceptance because there is no other thing in this universe called family.  Even if you hate your brother or sister, still you are a family and you were born out of love and to share love by helping and loving your own grandparents, parents, brother, sisters, nephews and nieces. Yes, we meet other people that we become best friends and they become family but the concern in the deepest part of our heart is still for our biological family. There are no coincidences on this planet, even your own family is meant for you and that you have task and purpose why you were with them.

Family 3

Without a family, we were not here on this physical plane. Every time we fight and hate members of the family, it affects our parents. It causes unhappiness and worry to them because the greatest dream they have is to make the family happy and whole. No material thing can ever replace the completeness of the family. True that it is hard to swallow pride and ego but asking for apology and forgiveness is far better than building a wall and never talk to them. Never carry a heavy heart for no matter what, wherever you are in this world, still you are connected through heart and soul. Not forgiving them or talking to them is keeping a heavy load of loneliness that you hide and cover it with ego.

Family 4

Family is everything and no material thing can ever replace that. Give honour  to your parents, give respect to your elders and share love and kindness to other members of the family. Support what they need and give them help without asking for anything in return and without expectations. The major reason why we live on earth, we work hard and make sacrifices is mainly for our family,  for they are the top priority. When we make our family happy, the happiness inside us is incomparable—it is true joy from heaven!

 

“Family is not an important thing, it’s everything.” –Michael J. Fox 

“You don’t choose your family. They are God’s gift to you, as you are to them.” – Desmond Tutu

 

Credits: All images in the poster courtesy of Google images

 

 

Flower Pattern and Mandala in Sweet Potato

Written and Posted by: Margie Babon

 

camote1

The flower pattern inside sweet potatoes

Few days ago I crave to eat sweet potatoes cooked in coconut milk with sugar and jackfruit meat. While chopping the sweet potatoes (Camote in Filipino) I noticed a beautiful design at the center of the white meat. It was amazing! The violet color marking is like being stamped on it. For how many years I cook and chop camote, it is my first time to a see a flower design in its core. And when I get the huge one, I find it difficult to chop in crosswise so I chopped it lengthwise and what I found is a mirror design of each other that also looks like a flower. It is mandala!

 

camote3

More flower patterns like being stamped on it using violet ink

 

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Other design appear like exploded stars

 

camote4

The mirror design like mandala

 

Mandala is a Sanskrit word meaning “circle” that symbolizing a balance visual element of unity and harmony. In Buddhism and Hindu, mandala is a geometric figure that represents the universe and a symbol of dream towards wholeness, totality and self-unity.

Like other vegetables, fruits, wood grain, and flowers that has mandala design, the flower marking in sweet potato is amazing! It is beautiful, sacred, and mysterious. Mandala and pattern in nature appears to me that

  1. Life on earth and the creation is endless
  2. Nature exist for good intention and for a specific purpose. Look at the typhoon, the circular movement of its eye even the tornado in circular motion is mandala. No nature has created for bad intention. It exists to balance certain part of earth or the universe.
  3. Intention is moving in a circular motion creating ripple effect. What we do to others come back to us. What others do to others come back to them.
  4. It let you stop your busy mind. Like the feeling of sitting on the beach or watching beautiful stars that everything you think—dreams, worries, fears, anger, etc. everything stop and your mind starts to think of beautiful intentions, your mind starts to meditate.
  5. It symbolizes hope and beauty. Life on earth is full of challenges and hardship. Nature help us to lighten that heaviness and fill it with faith, courage and inspiration for us to keep moving and go forward.

 

wooden mandala

Mandala or design in circle found in wood grain

typhoon mandala

And even in the eye of the typhoon as it moves in circular motion is mandala

 

We live in a world, in a universe dancing in a pattern towards balance, unity, and loving and healing energy. Life is moving in different cycle and in different sequence but everything falls into the same pattern interpreted in shape, color, symbol, and beauty for our own spiritual journey.

 

“Love is a canvas pattern furnished by nature, embroidered by imagination.” -Voltaire

 

“Nature uses only the longest threads to weave her patterns, so that each small piece of her fabric reveals the organization of the entire tapestry.” –Richard Feynman

 

 

Credits:

Typhoon and Wood grain images from Google Images 

 

 

Understanding People

Written and Posted by: Margie Babon

 

pondering thoughts-people-Feb 8

When looking at people is like trying to look at a pair of slipper with hundred varieties of style and of color. All look similar in its physical feature but each has its own attitude, altitude, and behavior. Some are pretty outside but difficult to deal with. Some are looking simple and plain but incomparably beautiful in the inside. Some are weak and easily get broken while some are tough as hard as rock that last a lifetime.

To understand people is to understand the constant change of life including the cause and effect of that change that molds the human mind and its psychological well-being which are the main factor in survival.    Even if you ask each honest individual to define who they are, somehow, they have difficulty to tell their real character because people are dynamic and living in a multifaceted phase of life.  Yet, the strongest character that sums up the real person inside within them is according to their strongest principle in life.  And that principle is according to what they believe. People’s thoughts, actions, habits are manifestation of that principle which then becomes the concrete foundation of people’s character and attitude.

Understanding people is such a complex subject that makes relationship complicated, challenging and fragile. The most effective tool to understand people is never care about them! Ignore what they say if it doesn’t contribute to your emotional well-being. Appreciate those who are helping you to grow and to get matured. To those who are destroying behind you, forget it, never mind, those people not worth it to keep even in your thoughts.

You don’t need to explain yourself to people and insist what you know and forcing them understand your point of view ‘coz their understanding is only up to their own level of their own comprehension.

 

“Understanding is deeper than knowledge. There are many people who know you but very few understand you.” -Anonymous

“You can only understand people if you feel them in yourself.” –John Steinbeck

 

understand-pondering thoughts-feb8

As featured in Pondering Thoughts Daily -Wisdom and Motivations

Photo source: Google images

 

Forgive Others for not Being Kind

Written and Posted By: Margie Babon

 

Forgive for not being kind

 To understand people of how they act and misbehave is the kindest thing we do to ourselves. I repeat, it is the kindest and most beautiful action you will do to yourself by not going down to their level and get reactive of the negativities they are flagging on you. Relationship always start in ourselves  and if we want to be at peace with our own self, then we must be at peace with others. I know it is difficult to practice this thought but this is proper thing we should do. Understand. Forgive. Let go.

When we try to make sound observations on how people act, speak and treat others, we will arrive in the conclusion that they act according on their own belief. If they believe that people will compete them, will take something from them—they start to act full of insecurities by throwing anger and hatred on you for no logic reason at all. If they believe that people are dishonest, they start to act full of doubts. If they see others as enemy, they they act the same full of angst, rage and bitterness. But then if a person believes in love and kindness, then in whatever circumstances, whatever hardship, challenges, difficulties of the situation, he/she will practice love and kindness no matter what. In short, people act according to what they believe ‘coz belief is the basis of action.

As what James Allen wrote in his book “As A Man Thinketh”

“…belief lies at the root of all human conduct. Every thought, every act, every habit, is the direct outcome of a certain fixed belief, and one’s conduct alters only as one’s belief are being modified.”

It is such a heroic idea to change other people’s attitude but it is not a realistic solution. The best action is to ignore them without being attached to your emotions. Let them act who they are. And never get reactive, it is not your responsibility to catch their bad behaviour and stuck it in your chest. No one truly says, “I forgive you.” It’s not in words but through action of

(1) Let the bad experience go,

(2) Let the memories dissolve,

(3) Never be attached with your emotions, never carry it for days, weeks, months or years.

(4) Understand them,

(5) Get the lesson and

(6) Move forward

and this action is what we call Forgiveness.

No emotions attached, no anger, no revenge, no hatred. This way, you choose to love yourself instead of wrapping yourself in the heaviness of stress.

We have to face the reality that not all people have the same intentions of being kind, loving and understanding. The reason we get hurt, we expect others a mirror of who we are. Not all people have good intentions and that we must forgive them. Instead of getting frustrated, just focus on what is important to you. It is such a waste of time to put your attention to them. It will just cause leak in your energy and not worthy to think about.

 

Forgiveness

 

 

 

 

 

 

“The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.”-Mahatma Gandhi

“There is no love without forgiveness, and there is no forgiveness without love.”-Bryant McGill

 

Also posted in: Pondering Thoughts by Hyperkreeytiv

Photo credits: Google images

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Pondering Thoughts banner

We are so happy to share to you our new website that focuses only in one topic of Inspiring Thoughts and Wisdom–”Pondering Thoughts” still under the main webpage of Hyperkreeytiv.

Take a fresh look of our newbie using updated WordPress template that is easy to read post.

Now you can read inspirational quotes and post in one website that truly inspire the soul.

Thank you for keep visiting Hyperkreeytiv and much thanks for reading, reflecting and sharing our post. Wishing everyone more love filled with wonderful light!

 

Continue that Dream! Happy 2017!

Written and Posted by: Margie Babon

 

 Continue that Dream_3 January2017

Life without a dream is nothing! It is the fire that keep us going. It gives life to the soul. It is the breath of our purpose and intentions.  To feel alive, we must keep on dreaming. Without any dream inside our hearts and mind we feel empty. We feel we are nothing. We feel we are only wandering without any directions at all. To make life on earth meaningful and full of excitement and adventure, we must dream! But if we dream, of course we want to make it real and that is the hardest part of it.

To make things happen, we should work hard and take that desire to the deepest part of our hearts. We should see our dreams in front of us like real. And if we see it real, it makes us smile giving us huge hope that we can do it. And that we should not give up whatever happens always there must be no excuses!  Having a dream means agreement that we owe to our higher self. Not only for our own happiness but for the happiness of people around us. There is no easy way to make dreams come true. The path is full of challenges, bitter, pain and sometimes guilt that’s why only few people achieve it. This is where the test comes on how tough we can be, on how brave we become.

“Big goals are always a summation of small goals that no one ever notices according. There is no success overnight.” -Brian Tracy

For us to be more inspired and continue the journey, we have to accomplish small things on a daily basis with consistency. Focus is the power word which is the greatest tool to do things we said we want to be done. Distractions are a lot that even our own thoughts can distract us if we won’t focus on what is important, on what is priority. We unnoticed time are wasted. Days are wasted. Months are wasted and so does year. You think of your age looking back having regrets why you didn’t start that dream when you were young.

Frustrations are unavoidable that even me get frustrated of my own dreams. It is like I accomplish nothing, it is like I don’t see any fruits yet. And when examining myself where this irritation of mine come from, I still lack of that passion, commitment, sacrifice and hard work. Which means I haven’t given my best yet. I haven’t given all that are needed. To cut that feeling of having defeated, I have to start again and recharge that excitement I had when I got that dream for the first time by finding inspirations—read books, evaluate my positive side of life, recalling the reasons why I want that dream to happen and most thinking of my family and others to make them happy. I think of the charity that I want. I think in a long-term where I want to see myself and what accomplishments I have created.

Each day as we wake up is a new beginning. We must keep going by taking actions towards the manifestation of our dreams. We must remember that life is not about attaining perfection but achieving the dream of a balance life–having food to eat, having good health, shelter to live, providing the needs of our family and loves ones, securing our future while spending time for ourselves to make us happy and most we to be involved in the service of others through our time, resources, skills, and talents.

Life on earth is a package of stress and happiness and we all know that. One cannot attain victory without hardship and pain. Goals in life and dreams in our heart are what separate us from the rest. Having that courage and obligation of not giving up to see results and continue to improve, develop and grow is life’s greatest challenge. Never give up, days will pass by anyway, so live and continue to work hard, dream, achieve and remembering the reasons why we have started.

To end this post, let me share to you a beautiful New Year’s poem written by humble human being under the name anonymous.

 

New Year’s Prayer

May God make your year a happy one!

Not by shielding you from sorrows and pain,

But by strengthening you to bear it, as it comes;

Not by making your path easy,

But by making you sturdy to travel any path;

Not by taking hardships from you,

But by taking fear from your heart;

Not by granting unbroken sunshine,

But by keeping your face bright,

Even in the shadows;

Not by making your life always pleasant,

But by showing you

When people and their causes need you most,

And by making anxious thoughts to be there to help

God’s love, peace, hope and joy to you

For the year ahead.

-Anonymous

  

Happy 2017 full of love, wonder and sunshine!

 

“Never give up. Today is hard. Tomorrow will be worse, but the day after tomorrow will be sunshine.”-Jack Ma

 

Small Note

Written and Posted By: Margie Babon

 

While going to the vet clinic to pick-up my rescued cat after his neuter, a man approached us with his small note written “Apology for my time, I’m doing this to support the education of my kid. Thank you.”

Written at the bottom of the note are:

Sign pen 20 pesos (half a dollar)
Ball pen 10 pesos (few cents of a dollar)

More than four people buy including me who believes in the intention of this man. To support hardworking people like him selling a product is far better than giving money to people who are handing you a small envelope begging for pennies. Like other third world country, Manila has a lot of beggar roaming the streets even outside the mall or other office building. And what is too bad, most beggar are obviously strong enough and young to find job and get some work. Before giving money to these beggar, think of old people that are more than sixty years old working in the market or selling in the street that are not begging but doing their best to earn. I totally disagree to those who are giving money even how small the coins are, still, the more you give the more you support them to become a beggar for their whole life. You support them to be more irresponsible and lazy not to work hard and get some sweat!

It is always better to support street vendor by buying their product. Even how young or old the street vendor still their intention is to survive, to buy food, to make them feel they have still hope to earn and to live.

You never know how much gratitude they feel every time you buy product from them.

So thank you for this man selling pen. At last for the first time I got apple logo!!

15676263_1282181838487049_5399482774295257285_o

 

 

Smile Don’t Cost a Thing

Written and Posted By: Margie Babon

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“Good morning ma’am,” the lady security guard says to the staffs of women who pass by at the x-ray security machine at the entrance of a large office building. I was standing at the last line waiting for my turn. None of them greet back. Every morning that I go to work, I keep noticing a lot of people don’t response back when the guard greets them good morning.  As I noticed, If some greet back, the lady guard feels happy, if none, it’s just okay. This is my common routine in the morning before going to work; I witness a lot of people who are snobbish and numb that doesn’t care at all.

Why not greet back and give smile to a person who happily greets you? Why is it so difficult for them to be generous in return? Why is it so hard to be kind?

If we are grateful about life, if we feel grateful towards ourselves, it’s easy for us to give gratitude to others.  The way I observe life, if we start our day feeling happy by being thankful for the brand new day that has given to us, it is easy for us to share to others that happiness within us.

Giving smile doesn’t cost a thing but it means a lot to others who appreciate it. Giving smile means giving kindness in return. It is a signal that you welcome people to appreciate them even in just very quick encounter. For those people who are so difficult to greet back or to give a warm smile, it is a reflection of how they treat themselves. It is a mirror of bitterness the way they see life. We cannot give to others what we don’t have. Being so hard, stiff, and strict doesn’t give positive effect to others and you draw people to be away from you. Being unfriendly creates distance and if you are in the workplace, people find you heavy and difficult person. Others consider this kind of behavior as honest without faking who they are. That it is the reality of who they are whether others see it as rough behavior it doesn’t matter to them. Each of us has individual attitude and characteristics on how we flag our personality to others. And we were raised in different geographical locations having different culture and it is understood that there are huge differences among us. But as we age, we tend to realize, life should not that be heavy. And it feels light if we share to others even a small portion of who we are by sharing smile.

Putting a smile in our face can make us more beautiful. It brings joy and sunshine to others esp. to those who need it. Life is tough and that is the reality but there are ways how to handle our day to day lives by not becoming so heavy towards ourselves and towards others. Giving a smile don’t cost a lot of penny but it means a lot to people for smile brings appreciation and acceptance to people around us and most towards ourselves.

Happy Monday and don’t forget to give smile and be kind starting today!

 

“A warm smile is the universal language of kindness.”-William Arthur Ward

 

“Seeking for an Answer”-Personal Experiences about Religion

Written and Posted by: Margie Babon

 

girl-with-arms-open-wide-to-the-sky

It is not a surprise to me if some people hate me for what I am writing about religion and cannot accept some ideas that I concluded. Like you, I am also seeking for an answer. I keep searching for the truth and join different group from different religion. Yet, the sad thing was, none from any religion I connected with I have found an answer. N-o-n-e…None! .I did not find what I am seeking… There are no regrets that I experience joining them for awhile mainly for the reason of observations and what I gain are all lessons and that lessons have helped me to complete the puzzle and answer my very own questions about god. That the answer I am seeking cannot be found from other people, it is not an external matter but right inside the sacred part of my heart, in the silence of my own thoughts and spirit that is where I find god, in my own nature and the nature around us,  that is where I can communicate with god.

My memory is sharp that I can remember some things happened to me starting at the age of five years old. I have a playmate from nearby neighbor who is deaf and mute that was my one and only friend until I was six years old before moving to Manila for schooling. At age five, I love staring at the sun especially sunrise. Because I am the youngest, I keep on following my mother, to be with her like every morning that she will clean the vegetable garden or make some harvest or water the plants. We usually wake up at five thirty. Before the start of a golden sunrise, we were already out of the house and already at the garden.

While staring at the sun I keep talking to god. I keep asking god why my friend Veronica cannot speak and she can’t even hear me and why me, I am normal. Why Veronica is not like me, is there something wrong in the heavens, with the angels because she cannot talk. There was a time that I told god I am mad at her because I cannot understand what she’s saying and then she bites my hand and then run away. But then even if we cannot understand each other, we are still playmates and we love playing together. Sun, stars at night and wonderful blue sky is my avenue of communicating with god. If my parents scolded me or my brother is teasing me, I run out of the house and go to our small vegetable garden which is at the right side of the house in a hilly downward slope, and then I sit beside the circular well made of large stones and stare at the blue sky, looking at the beautiful formations of clouds and keep talking to god, no matter how sunny it is and how high the sun is, you will always find me there.

As a kid, I am very imaginative. I see clouds as beautiful angels and we are playing together. And when I hear my mother or father calling me to eat, my favorite farewell dialogue to the sky, to the clouds, to god is:“God I want to become a guardian angel. I want to have wings, to fly and hold a sword of light then fight the bad spirits because they are hurting me. God, promise it to me, I am an angel.  Bye for now, need to go home, see you later.” Because I see bad spirit in my half-wake dream and they are strong that they can pinch me while I am sleeping so I keep telling God I want to become a guardian angel and fight the bad spirit.

Since I am too young for six o’clock prayer to pray the rosary with my family, I was only there sitting at the corner and observing them. My parents are very strict Roman Catholic esp. my mother. There was a time when my two older sisters (who were eleven to fifteen years old that time) went home late from school, they arrived six thirty and the penance was they kneel on the floor full of rock salt. While praying the rosary, they were crying and their knees were bleeding. My siblings keep telling me that I am lucky because I never ever experience that kind of penance. My grandparents on father side though half Chinese are healer and they are pagan though they go to Catholic Church to hear the words of god, still they have their own style of faith. My father is not that strict but encourages us to pray before we sleep. While the grandfather on my mother side is purely Spanish who is a devoted Roman Catholic and how my mother discipline her children are based on her experiences from her father.

At age six years old when we moved to Manila, my parents’ lifestyle becomes different. They become busy working and they are not so strict anymore on praying the rosary every six in the evening. We usually do it every weekend especially Sunday during family day. Yet, I still cannot understand what is the rosary for and why do we need to pray it, speaking words repetitively. At age six, I am faking myself because I am scared of my mother, I have to pray the rosary, go with them to attend mass and follow what she wants. Still, I love going out of the house and stare at the sun, blue sky, and beautiful formation of clouds and telling the same prayers that I want to become a guardian angel with wings and that I can fly.

 

Holy

When I started schooling, we pray before and after the class. Doing sign of the cross and pray. As a kid, I am happy to be with other kids and we are reciting prayer together. At age nine years old, my curiosity about religion becomes stronger when we are required to have first communion.  I asked my teacher what it for is, she said for my own salvation. And I said, “To save from what? I did not do anything.” My teacher gets tired of my never ending question so she said, “You have a lot of questions, ask the priest and he will answer all your questions.”

My sister who is five years older than me is a devoted Catholic and at young age of fourteen, she has a role at the church as lector and commentator. She was the one who accompanied me for my first communion. But I didn’t know that before having the first communion, we need to go to the confession booth and talk to the priest and tell all our sins. I told my sister, “Why should I tell it to the priest? The priest doesn’t commit sin, is he a god to forgive us? He is only human like us. No I don’t want to confess.” Though I ran away, my sister dragged me and my teacher scolded me. That time I still remember I am crying hiding underneath the pew because I don’t have any choice but to follow them. Yet, I still did not tell anything to the priest. And guess what happened? The priest went out of the confession booth and talked to my sister, he said, “Talk to your sister, it is not appropriate that she is asking questions at that age.”

When the mass was ended,  I went out of the church and found a pocket garden with angel sculpture and a small wishing well. I looked up the sky and started talking to god. I asked god, “Do I really have to do this, to go to the church? Is that you god on the cross? Is that you? But it is not you, it is not!” I am silently crying and angry that time, because even how many times I keep talking to god, I never find any answer. So I need to follow what my family wants, I need to follow the school requirements are …for me to belong, for me not to be different.

Then years have passed, I am still following what my parents want, what my family want…I am still obedient to the religion we belong to.

Then the most unforgettable experience I had when I reached eleven years old happened during grade 6. Our adviser is a devoted Roman Catholic and she imposed to us to attend Sunday mass every four o’clock in the afternoon. We have this small form of attendance sheet where we will let the priest sign the form as a proof that we attended the mass. We need to complete a certain month for us to get clearance from our teacher since we are graduating already.

My favorite color is white and most of my Sunday dress for church is white even before my teacher set a rule that we need to attend the mass. So I keep wearing white dress to attend the required mass. Like other girls, I am behave and obedient making sure I finish the mass and get the signature from the priest.   I listen to the mass and attentive. Yet there is a different behavior of me from the rest of the kids, after the communion, I am always in a deep meditation, kneeling and praying.  Eyes closed, it was like I shut off the physical world and connecting within my spirit.

The next day in school, didn’t know that my classmates have noticed it. A group of boys are mocking at me, laughing at me and calling me, “Holy, holy,holy!!”  Of course I cried and get offended. Though my adviser told this group of boys to stop mocking at me, they still keep doing it secretly. One time when we were at the school garden and I am taking out the grass, somebody threw a small stone on me, then I saw these group of boys laughing and shouting “Holy, holy,holy!!”  And I also throw a small stone on them showing my anger. What feels too bad, the leader of that boys mocking at me is running for Salutatorian. I found out that he is so mean aside that he is so arrogant and proud.

After few weeks of mocking me, I told my teacher I don’t want to go to the church anymore. I would rather be with my family, with my parents to go to church. Until now as an adult, the memories of it are still vivid. It is easy to forgive but the visuals of what happened, it is difficult to forget.

 

Rapture

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When I reached high school, being in a pilot class, I met classmates that were same belief as mine. Like them, they are questioning religion. There was even times that I don’t want to go to church anymore with my parents but the problem; I will not have any allowance, and my parents told me to stop studying if I will continue being friends with my classmates who doesn’t like Catholic. I know, I don’t have any choice but still to follow them because I don’t want to stop schooling. During my fourth year high school, something happened that affect my parents and other siblings.

My older brother who is eight years older than me told my parent by surprised that he was converted as born-again Christian. My mother was so upset and so angry. Yet my brother keeps on reasoning why it is important to convert. He even convinced my three older sisters to let them convert that leads to regrets. My older sister said that the pastor who baptized them is asking for five hundred pesos to pay the service.  My sister refused and never went back again. Though my older sister warn my brother that it is a scam, my brother still keep on attending until to the point that he wants to leave our house and never go back again. He wants to live at the service church. He even gave away all his clothes, shoes, watch, all his things to his church mate, and he keeps on saying “The world will be vanished soon. We will all die with the rapture. Rapture time is near. Join me and praise Lord Jesus.”   He sounds insane; he is starting to get crazy. We are so afraid of my brother. My parents talked to the pastor who keeps on visiting my brother at the house telling them that they will file a case against them. Aside from getting money from my brother and from my parents, they are poisoning the mind of my brother and he is going insane. My brother stopped from his studies and he was sent to the province of my mother where he will be far from the born-again group. After a year, my brother recovered and went back to being Catholic and went back to studies again.

What happened to my brother was my first-time to encounter born again Christian. I don’t want to generalize all of them because they have different group but what I noticed, how they teach and preach is “poisoning of mind.” The second encounter with born-again was when I reached college and the friendship for more than two years I had with my close friends was ruined and destroyed by this religion. And this affect me how I see people, how I get close to people by being more careful not depending too much from them even to close friends.

 

Non-believer

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I act as a leader of our group which composed of five females and several male classmates ever since first year college. Taking up architecture is a tough course especially if there is a grouping project that you need to spend overnight at the house of your classmate. Since I act most of the time as a leader, I offer our house to them. My parents and other sibs are so kind that they even prepare meal for us, for them without asking any payment. For more than two years, my four female classmates become close to my family that they even call my mother “Mama.” We treat them as a family. If one of them lack of allowance or fare going home, my mother is giving them extra money.  Then a new transferee came when we reached 3rd year college that I was elected as president of student council of our department. I get very busy and seldom spend time with my friends that I am not aware that they become close to this new transferee who is a born-again Christian. It was fast, like, the girl is only a week in our school then after, my four close friends are ignoring me and don’t even want to talk to me. This new transferee became their leader and formed their own group and leaving me alone.

It was very very bad, I do not know what is happening that my close friends have left me. I did not do anything wrong as why they are avoiding me.  I confront them at the hallway after design class asking them why they have left me casting me out.  And their reason almost shocked me. They said, “Why should we consider you as a friend? You are non-believer! Antichrist, you’re devil! Catholics are Antichrist, do you know that? Worshiping an idol, praying rosary repetitively! You are non-believer and we shouldn’t make friends with Antichrist and non-believer! You are evil!”  I felt my blood abruptly went up to my head; they mocked me in front of other students. So I replied, “What?! You were poisoned by this new one that you do not even know who she really is. So this new girl is your savior? After how many years we build the friendship, you even eat and sleep at the house, helping you in your project, lending you what I have, unselfish of what I have then now telling me I am a devil?! Is that your new god now, condemning people that we are non-believer, Antichrist! You’re so mean! All of you are so mean!”

Though I can still see them in other classes for the remaining two years, I bear that hardship to be with myself. What they have done to me changes me as a person, I become careful not to get close with other people, it was difficult for me to make new close friends.  Which until now, I still carry that lesson. I become much closer to my parents and my siblings. I become much closer to myself. And starting eight years ago, my spiritual life becomes more stronger creating my own journey, that when my mother died and without parents anymore, living independently teach me trust more of God, that my life is being guided as long as I am responsible who I am. I communicate more to God through silence, meditation, and through nature.

I live independently alone, living independently lead me to become more spiritual, to be more closer to the divine who created everything—to God that I can find within my own silence, within my meditation, within any activity of work that I put myself to. Though I keep seeking for the truth, there is still the curiosity of why there must be religion.

 

Gate Crasher

One Saturday afternoon while doing some sketches, I was at the study room facing the balcony. The balcony has staircase outside so anyone can go up to the balcony. Because I was so focused in what I am doing, I notice someone appear in front of me. The window of the study room is facing the balcony. I was so surprised and even yell. “Excuse me maam, I will just share to you the words of God,” she said.

She’s a member of Jehova’s witnesses.  Then I said, “Why here at the balcony. There is a main door downstairs that you can knock. Don’t you know what you’re doing is trespassing.” Then the old woman said, “I will just give you the booklet and it is free.” Then I said, “Okay but I am not interested. Don’t you have any other dreams in life that you are so devoted to your religion? Better go home and be with y our family than distributing that. And the old woman left.

 

Other trial and observations

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One time I was invited by a yoga teacher to attend Sunday yoga with him and his group. I am not aware that his Sunday free yoga class has short lecture on Hinduism.  I know that yoga came from Hindu and the teachings of this very ancient religion is more on conscious and spiritual path of knowing yourself more and connecting with your spirit. I enjoy the yoga class and the meditation. I have also met some that are devoted of Krishna in their uniform. What I cannot understand, they are not allowed to eat garlic and onion and other spices that will have sexual arousal. But then, it is part of biological feature of human being to have sex, to bear kids, to enjoy life.

On the other hand, I was also invited to attend a Buddhist preaching. During the sharing of the topic about unselfishness, a girl told her sadness about this Buddhist Temple  that he wants to go inside and stay for a night but the people at the temple did not allow her though she have done it before. The girl was disappointed because she needs to finish a certain level of studies about Buddhism before she can join the event that night. According to the girl, she cannot understand why there are boundaries and limitations as well as selfishness of sharing information in which makes her feel frustrated. After that sharing of stories, I found out that people around me that day are like me, also seeking for the meaning of God…on finding God.

 

Questions Answered

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For how many years I am seeking about god, the mysterious creator, and the answers on why there must be religion, etc. all these were answered along the way of self-discovery and life’s adventure.  When I was given a great opportunity to finish the book for indigenous people to claim their land, my stay in their place for more than a month and visiting them for a year have helped me to further my insights about faith, god, and religion. I have witnessed the way they live, though it is very simple, still they know how to smile, how to laugh and how to inspire me with the beautiful stories of their culture. Yes I was surprised when I saw a born-again church in their place but most of the elders I have interviewed with and talked with (on and off of the voice recorder), they are against religion. Like me, they were also condemned as non-believer, pagan, Antichrist and devil. But then, they keep on telling that “they are only human like us and by heart they know there is god.” I was touched by the explanation of Dada Selang who is the eldest of the group. She said,

“My parents, grandparents and ancestors believe in god. Born-again and Catholics are saying we are on the practice of animalism and we do not believe in god. Religion and people created different names of god but all of these things around us were created by god. Do they know the true god? We do not know how to read the bible but we believe in god. The moment the sun rises over the ocean, then you see birds happily flying around, these beautiful mountains, beautiful blue ocean, forest full of tall tress—all of these nature around us are the evidence that there is god. And at night, look at the night sky, there is full moon and beautiful stars watching us…and what more, each night that we sleep and then the next day we still have breath, we are still alive, is the greatest evidence there is a god. If we are punished with our sins, why are we still alive and yet nature still provides us food—fish are abundant, forest food can still be found. I don’t like religion and I did not allow my son, daughter and even my grandchildren to embrace that religion and be baptized. You don’t need to make your life complicated when it comes to faith. The moment you think about god, the moment you admire nature, you are praising god, you are praying. In this age of mine, I am too old and I don’t need those preaching.  I learned that what is important is your personal belief. Just live, enjoy life, but be kind, always be good to others. Because creation is out of gods’ kindness, we too must share that kindness. God wants us to be kind.”

I was astonished with the wisdom of an elder age around 65 years old who is Agta-Dumagat. And she is right; it is human nature that we believe that there is god. Though it is such mystery, it is beyond our thinking so why should we bother about it. Let it remain as mystery because we are created to live in a mystery.

With all the different group of religion I have encountered and have experienced, none of them have I found the wisdom I am looking for. Yet, it teaches me that, in order to belong to, to be called as group or to be labeled, join and be under the religion. Like any other enterprise, religion is a business and it cannot run on its own without financial sustenance.  Though they have different charities, still, on top of it, you have to believe on what they believe.  And because of the label attached to each religion, this divides people. It is a casting of same entity.

I know that we need to give respect to each other especially when it comes to religion. But respect is only being given if there is mutual respect from one another without forcing people to convert them and there is a huge respect of not changing the original belief, customs, traditions of people.

In this age of mine and for the difficulties I’ve been through with religion, I have realized that a person can live and survive without religion. And because you don’t want to “belong,” you have your own way of praying, you have your own practice of communicating with god, and you have your own way of thanking god and expressing your love to god.

Always be responsible for who you are…for god wants us to be our own authentic self pursuing our own purpose in life, to be successful, to be truly who we are. Do not be bothered by society’s norm as long as you are doing your best in order to survive. As long as you know honestly that you are maximizing your life’s greatest potentials,  and you are sharing your life, you are into generosity and kindness, giving love to others, you do not do anything wrong, not harming people or hurting people, you are kind to yourself, to other creatures, you are kind with nature,  you are doing good…you are living with greatest kindness, you are totally fine. Just enjoy life, focus on work, focus on what must be accomplished and set aside the worries about god and religion. You are here to discover who you are and share your life to others and not to carry doubts about god. Surrender those questions to the mystery for that mystery is beyond human thinking. Focus on your own life and find ways how to share it and become a blessing.

 

Credits:

Photos from Google images except the last part under the section “Questions Answered”  which was my photo during the documentation with Agta-Dumagat of Luzon.

 

Usual Unusual

Written and Posted By: Margie Babon

 

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It was 12th of February, Friday after office during rushed hour where traffic is so heavy and commuting is such a burden.  It is so difficult to catch a ride. I was standing at the side walk in front of a shopping mall with a lot of passengers also looking for a service vehicle to go home. Because there is no proper line and we are not at the terminal station, in order to catch a ride, you need to be attentive, quick and fast.  Then a service vehicle without passengers stopped in front of us and luckily I get in. I am sitting beside the driver and we are all-in-all ten passengers. The vehicle is silent, no music  yet the only sound you can hear is the communication radio. After fifteen minutes when we have reached the Stock Exchange Building, the driver speaks up in a loud voice  like he is holding a megaphone. Really that loud!

Sir, maam, I just need your attention. I want to share to you the words of God. According to the bible, but let us pray first and thank Lord Jesus,  blah blah blah..” The driver started to preach. Because his voice was so loud, I put my ear phone and started to listen to the radio on my phone and put the volume high but I can still hear the voice of this “preacher-driver.”  When we have reached a school near the stock exchange tower, I really cannot stand it anymore. No one among the passengers is having the courage to let him stop so I took the moment. I got the nerve to speak out.

Me (talking to the driver): “Excuse me; will you continue to preach until we reach Pasig Church?  (Pasig church is the last destination of the route that will take us an hour due to heavy traffic).

Driver (in a very loud voice and yelling): “Maam what is wrong, I am just sharing the words of God. You know, the first time I hear the words of God, it makes me cry. No one is teaching me the words of God.”

Me: “You don’t need to yell. First of all, we take a ride for us to go home. Understand most of your passengers came from work. We are so tired. Now, you don’t need to feed us those words of God. I respect your belief, but please also respect us. You don’t need to teach us what to do, we have our own thinking mind, we have our own belief, and we have our own dreams. You don’t need to teach us what to do.  I have only 3 hrs. of sleep, I am sleepy and tired  and I am not interested in your preaching. Look at the other passengers, no one is interested. Just focus on driving and no need to preach.”

Driver: (still keep talking to his own self, telling how poor he is and other drama of his life yet no one is listening to him. Passengers are minding their own business, holding their phone doing Facebook while earphone and headphone was on. He keeps on talking and talking..)“People are so illiterate when it comes to the words of God. Lord Jesus is the only savior and he will save you. You know before I convert to become born again, I am so lost. I don’t know where I am.. According to Romans chapter blah, blah blah..”

Me: (started to get angry) “Will you please shut up!!  You are so stressful. Stop talking about your life. Preach it in your church where people are same minded as yours and not with the passengers who are tired, hungry and want to go home. Shut up!”

Then the driver finally stopped talking and put the am radio on listening to the news.

When we finally reached Pasig Church, when I get off from his car, I said in a loud voice, “Thank God I’m out!”

Heck my feelings lighten up when I saw two teenage boys laughing while pointing out the sticker at the back of the trike  saying “Butt Man” (hahaha)

The plate number of the service utility vehicle is  UWJ577 and written at the back of the door “To God be the glory.” The travel route is SM Megamall-Robinsons-Pasig..So beware of this SUV unless you want to be preached and get stressed by his so so loud voice. Passengers travel to relax while taking a ride and not being forced to listen to life’s drama which is stressful.

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The driver who is preaching the words of God appear to me as a crazy man (for while he sis talking, he is laughing) and he was poisoned too much by the group he belongs with. I feel sad for this man; he is living under the control of other people. His mind, heart and faith are under the spell of the society who is so blinded about the words of God. For sure, this man doesn’t know how to listen to his own spirit, to connect within the divine creator seated in his authentic soul and spirit. Because he was controlled, even his faith and belief about God comes from other people, he was manipulated by the society.

This experience is so unusual to me. I’ve been working in the Ortigas area for how many years and it was my first time to encounter a driver who is preaching the passenger.  While I have seen a a lot of pastor or born-again preaching in public places even at the  market where beggars are around and even along the street, born-again preacher is very usual, very common scenario.

I do believe that we meet strangers to teach lessons and in return gaining lesson from them. Each of us is living with individual faith when it comes to the topic about God (though we belong to different religion). Do not force people to let them be like you and believe in what you preach because faith is about individualism. And when we talk about religion, we are dealing with norms of society, generic, common that doesn’t care for individual faith between you and God, it doesn’t know the word “privacy. “The driver and other preacher or pastors like him are already closed-minded like a horse on a carriage and they cannot do anything but being controlled by the horseman. For them, in order to save your soul, you have to join their group, convert and become a believer.

According to their shallow mind, if you are not a believer you are illiterate. No matter how you argue with them, you cannot win. None is illiterate when it comes to faith. We don’t need religion if you are truly connected with your own spirit because faith is a sacred conversation between you and God. Think of the indigenous people, they do not know how to read and write, they do not know how to read a bible but they know by heart that there is a god. Upon waking up, seeing the beautiful sunset, hearing the  chirping of birds, seeing the beauty of flowers, being with nature, they know by heart there is God and that is enough. You don’t need to convert people to be under your religion. Your very own existence, having your own breath is the greatest reason to believe that there is a god who created all of these and you don’t need a lot of laws, scriptures, teachings in order to live, saved and survive.

Always remember this: God wants each one of us to be successful, to be of service to others without controlling others, to find our purpose, to be truly and honestly be who we are by doing the desire of our soul, to make others happy by helping others in finding a meaningful life without manipulation but with freedom towards truthfulness that is align on their own personality , on who they are, doing what they want without poisoning their hearts and mind.

 

“When I admire the wonders of a sunset or the beauty of the moon, my soul expands in the worship of the creator.” –Mahatma Gandhi

“True religion is real living; living with all one’s soul, with all one’s goodness and righteousness.” –Albert Einstein

 

 

Author’s Note:

What if I become more kinder to the driver and give him more understanding and through that, I will help him to be out of that poison and too much wrong belief…maybe I can help him to analyze what is really the right one. But because I am so sleepy, tired, hungry and I don’t like too much noise, and the driver is nagging his passengers in a very loud voice that we are not saved, so I confront him. Though I talk in a gentle and kind words when I approach him in the beginning (honestly I even join him in opening prayer, I also pray silently) but then his thoughts are not aligned properly on what the real faith is. Sorry if I appear as disrespectful to the driver but in order to be respected, he must show that he deserves it. 

 

Real, True, and Pure

Written and posted by: Margie Babon

 

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Be blessed when you are able to find real, true, honest, and pure people. They are very seldom to find and rare to come into your life. Be thankful that you got a chance to know them, to work with them and to be with them no matter how long or short the time they have given or you have given to them.

Yesterday I cannot stop my feelings and burst out my sadness by sharing a post about a true friend I have met in 2011. I know it is too personal to share it to you so I decided to delete that post. Instead I want to share the lessons of meeting people, the gift they have given me in the form of unconditional love.

I honestly admit this that I have a dark side in me, that I tend to become self-destructive and controlling. I keep doing a research if people born on December under the sign of Capricorn share the same attitude as mine. And based on my research, Capricorn goes into their dark side and has the tendency in destroying herself/himself and hurt others. I know, other people do not believe in astrology but as I keep on understanding myself more and more, astrology and the planets has huge effect on one’s personality and that is very true of me. Ruled by the planet Saturn which is the Lord of responsibility, karma, discipline, limitations and difficult lessons, I do encounter a lot of tough lessons and hardship in life. I meet a lot of tough people, I meet a lot of hurting people, I meet a lot of people who put me down. And sometimes, if the lesson is so tough, if the lesson is hurting, I become weak, negative, controlling, manipulative and go for self-destruction to end the hardship of the situation. I do not  think of others that I will hurt them as long as I will express my emotions even to the people I do not personally know. And my heavy emotions are caused by the attitude of “seriousness.” And most of the Capricorn is like that. So if you have a friend who is a Capricorn, understand them, love them, and cheer them up if they are too serious. But despite of our dark side, we are very loyal friends, down-to-earth, practical and we have loving heart even how many times we get hurt.

All of us wants someone to understand us, listen to us, love us, and accept us as who we are. And because I meet a person who has those attributes (which is not all people are like them), I become attached. I become attached to them because I value so much the friendship, I value so much of their time, I appreciate too much their admiring character, and at the end I become attached. And this too much attachment causes disaster on me. I become possessive, selfish, jealous and insecure. My attachment leads me to destroy myself and hurt others. And I know that even how many times I will apologize, hurting words has been said and I cannot erase them anymore. I cannot put the trust and most I cannot bring back the good friendship that we build for how many years.

And as I apologize to people that I hurt,  my true friends that I have hurt in the past, I discover more how loving person they are. I discover more how compassionate they are to me, that their understanding of the situation and my attitude have slap in my face a pure heart that I am looking for in a very long time.

And as they give understanding and share the gentleness and love on their heart, they are silently teaching me that:

1.       Even how tough people are, they have the pure heart to understand you back. There is kindness behind that difficultness they have shown you. And that kindness will remind you to look back to your heart and focus on love.

2.       Attachment leads to destruction. Too much of it even leads to disaster. Never be too possessive when it comes to relationship. Never be too selfish of getting attached to them seeking their time and attention because at the end, you are hurting yourself and you don’t give space for the relationship and friendship to grow and flourish on its own.

3.       Do not take life so serious, do not treat others even friends too serious. Have time to play and have time to enjoy yourself without them, without depending on them your happiness.

4.       Always, always be kind. We meet people only once and who knows when this life will be ended. Better to have more friends than to have number of people hate you. No matter how hurting they are, no matter how difficult the lessons they are giving, instead of getting angry, having revenge or destroy yourself and others, step back and detach. Leave…Leave silently without heavy heart, without being affected too much. Think of other important things, think of other things that will have good result than focusing on the pain.

5.       If you are about to end the relationship with people, always be at peace and let them leave at peace because all the relationship that have been part of your life is all about you. It is not about them, it is not about those people who enter and exit, but it is about who you truly are and what makes you in the present moment after that encounter.

6.       Live always with unconditional love. See the person who is hurting you inside the circle of unconditional love. Anger leads to nowhere, love leads to kindness and more love.

7.       When problem arise, trust the friendship and trust the love that evolves the friendship. Be open to them, be honestly open to them. Discuss to them your problems; discuss to them your worries rather than sharing your problem with other people whom you do not know well. This is my huge lesson in life. I should never share my heart problems, my relationship problem to people I do not know personally because it leads to more problems, it will be misinterpreted and your integrity will be affected. . Instead, go back to your true friends where true love and understanding can be found.

8.       Value the relationship that comes into your life. How you value others is how you value yourself. No matter how hurting situation is, respect people as how you want to be respected. Give them dignity, give them the value that they deserve. Always remember that what we do to others is what we do to ourselves. Let this wisdom be the guiding light on how we treat others, how we treat our friends.

 

Meeting people who are real, true, compassionate and has pure loving heart is very rare and once they get into your life, enjoy the friendship they are offering to you. Just be light and never get too serious and worry about it whether they will stay or not or whether they will give attention and help or not. They only come once in a blue moon and honor that encounter. Give them love, respect, understanding of who they are and accept whatever gift of lessons they will give to you.

And to all my best friends out there that I have hurt, I sincerely apologize for everything I have done wrong. You know in your heart how much love I have given to you. Thank you for understanding my weaknesses, for understanding my dark side, for understanding my difficult and eccentric attitude. Know that wherever I am even in my next life, the friendship we had will always be in my heart. God knows how much I treasure the bond and how much regret I had when I hurt you, when I was out of my mind and hurt you. May you always find true love, real love, in the entire path that you will go into and that your life will be surrounded with more kindness and happiness. I love you all and thank you for sharing your life to me. Each of you is unique and there will be no one like you in this world. I can never find someone like you in my entire life. I salute the pure heart in all of you and I am dearly thankful that the universe has given me a chance to know you. I love you all..I love you all..

 

“There is nothing on this earth more to be prized than true friendship.” –Thomas Aquinas

“Rare is a true love, true friendship is rarer.” –Jean de La Fontaine

 

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Images courtesy of Google images

 

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