Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Truth, Finally? (Dedicated to Rotarians)

A Personal Challenge:

Is it the Truth?

(The ‘April Fool’ Joke on Human Dignity, with a Request and Serious Challenge to Rotarians and other avowed crusaders for the Truth. The statement below was first posted on this blogsite two years ago, from Subic town in Zambales, Philippines.)

ON THE FIRST DAY OF EVERY APRIL, people are wel­come to doubt anything I say to them that is supposed to be informative. But will many really do so? It de­pends on what I am saying and on my level of credibility with them. Moreover, it depends on how seriously people in this country are taking such a foreign-culture observance as “April Fool’s.” Or, quite the opposite of that condition last mentioned, it depends on how seriously they are taking such a social ideal as “The Truth,” how much they have gotten used to being distrustful of pro­nouncements given them on any which day in the calendar, both April 1 and the “our local cultural equivalent,” December 28, included.
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I do take this ideal very seriously, and most of the time I do take myself seriously on this. Most of those who know me well tend to take me seriously, too, even as I believe that people who claim never to have lied in their lives are themselves lying through their teeth while making such a claim.
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.......But the direction of my belief on this is for all of us to strive to keep on striving to uphold the Truth in all circumstances, instead of stoning the perceived “lack of worthiness” and “lack of capability” of any which one of us in earnestly seeking to pursue this – leading to the strong suggestion that we all give up on this effort altogether before we can even start.

.......Upholding the Truth, especially on matters of public consequence, has been important to me especially since the time I was among people crusading for the freedom of the press and for the right of the sovereign body politic to know whatever government would tend to hide from the people or to lie to them about. This has been a firm stand for the people’s democratic rights.
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....... I uphold the Truth on the real defects and misdeeds of the people’s oppressors because lying against them, by inventing more, would surely backfire on my own credibi­lity when the rumor I am so vocally “sure” about gets found out sooner or later to be untrue. It is for protecting the reliability of the people’s valuable “grapevine,” especially in the face of darkness imposed by official secrecies and disinformation.
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....... I choose to uphold the Truth about anything and everything, also to safeguard my own credibility and fairness and my prestige pertinent to what I would consider important enough to bother to talk about. It is for safeguarding whatever amount of willingness to trust the people still have, as cynicism and outright distrust of one another continues to mount.And, most importantly, I strive to uphold the Truth because it serves Hunan Dignity, whereas, in contrast, the concealment or distortion of the truth violates Human Dignity all around.
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.......Such dignity demands the full enjoyment of free will, something that can be enjoyed only by people who are in the position to make informed choices among all available options for individual and collective acts of self-determination in the service of their own best legitimate individual and collective self interests. How can anyone assert the basic human dignity in free and informed choice if a substantial part of such information is being withheld or distorted? We have to uphold the Truth in order to uphold the dignity of the human species, which is the very same Human Dignity we are all breathing together.
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.......There was a time in the history of our people, quite recent in my long-view reckoning, when a very young patriotic sage had only to write in his Kartilya masterpiece that “to a person of honor, one’s word is no less than an oath.” The admonition proved effective because in his time pledges and oaths were really taken seriously as solemn and sacred. Surely such admonition can hardly have any impact today when even oaths administered before microphones for amplification and recording are not taken seriously by those who hear them, including those who hear their own voices taking them!What has been happening to our country? Slowly but surely we have largely become a nation of people who have stopped trusting one another because we have apparently stopped being trustworthy.
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.......Those who would try and stop the rising tide of rampant and habitual lying are simply disregarded on partisan or personal grounds or, worse, heckled or bribed into silence. It’s not at all that we have become a nation of liars; but we really have become a nation of people who countenance lying, who have gotten used to it, who have learned to laugh off this “trivial” defect and who gradually increase the fre- quency of directly engaging in “mild forms” of it.
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.......To be sure, we still see public reminders to uphold the Truth “in everything we think, say and do.” In every public area in every town we see the question “Is it the Truth?” prominently displayed with the logo of the Rotary Club International, followed by three other questions that make sense only if the first one is answered in the affirmative. Those questions are displayed prominently in all the clubs’ concrete public posters and pieces of their literature, and recited by the members in meetings of their local Clubs.
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....... Is it the truth that Rotarians everywhere do take this question seriously and call upon others in the localities to follow their lead? I’m not quite sure. When I asked a friend for his views on a proposed open personal pledge among Rotarians for a Culture of Truth, he could not keep himself from laughing in my face, from trying to disabuse me of my supposedly na├»ve belief that all Rotarians still took the Four-Way Test seriously. He said that in their local club and in many others this Test has become just a laughing matter, no more than a decoration on the wall where they hold their weekly meetings. “We are not really expected or required to take this seriously anymore!” he said, sounding like he was even quite proud of that development.
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....... Unless the majority of local Rotary Clubs can very truthfully claim that they do take the Four-Way Test very seriously, there’s no point in even trying to establish the identity of my friend, who has recently resigned his membership anyway. Perhaps, the more product­ive thing Rotarians can do at this point is to make sure that members of their own local clubs really take this Truth advocacy very seriously, as a distinct contribution to strengthening the moral fiber and consequent unity of their respective communities and as a distinct and much more profound contribution to nation-building. They would just have to shun all tendencies to give way to “pragmatic defeatism” before they can even start. Clubs can start implementing actual programs with this focus. And before they actually do, perhaps they can consider refraining in the meantime from constructing more public posters that imply they really uphold the Four-Way Test in their own collective and individual lives.
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....... I am now personally raising a challenge and urgent request to all Rotarians in this country to seriously consider personally taking the pledge below, mainly to their respective selves and also, if they so decide, to their fellow Club members.

A Rotarian’s Commitment to the Culture of Truth
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As a Filipino citizen and as a Rotarian dedicated to a life of “Service Above Self,” I venerate the value of co­nsistently UPHOLDING THE TRUTH in my private and public life, in order to build a humane and just society.
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I therefore commit to actively help in building a CULTURE OF TRUTH in this country, in my commu­nity, career, and family, and enjoin my fellow-Rotarians to do the same by consistently personifying integrity and censuring dishonesty at all levels of our human life. This commitment I shall keep upon my honor and fulfill preferably within the official performance of my duties to the Rotary Club of which that I am an active member, or in my personal capacity, in addition to such official performance, and independent of it, if necessary.

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.......Neither I nor the Consumers and Communicators for Truthful Information (CCTI), which I had co-founded in 2003 under a slightly different name, will have to know who among the Rotarians would decide to take this oath or pledge. What is much more important is for this com­mitment to be signed not merely with pens but with actu­al consistent deeds.
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....... Just as we refuse to believe that many Rotarians are just laughing at the Four-Way Test like my friend was saying they are, we also declare with much confidence the firm belief and conviction that there actually are more Rotarians for a Culture of Truth, even if all or the majority would for any reason decide to remain anonymous.
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....... There are other organizations that are avowed crusad­ers for the Culture of Truth. For example, the scouts start their oath with the declaration that “a scout is trustwor­thy.” The scouting groups can take steps to strength­en their own internal character formation programs to make sure scouts do grow up as trustworthy citizens for this country. The same holds for organizations dedicated to exalt the memory of our heroes and other personalities who were crusaders for the Truth during their respective lifetimes. Many of these groups are giving services to the citizenry, like projects for their education, health, live­lihood, food, etc. But one service much more needed by Filipinos during this very difficult period of nation-building is effective help for all to regain the full flowering of our individual and collective sense of honor.
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.......Even though this challenge and urgent request is now being written and released on April Fool’s Day, April 1, 2009, I do hope you would take it seriously for the sake of our collective Human Dignity. Otherwise, we may continue having an April Fool’s Day atmosphere in our Philippines the whole year every year.

--ding reyes

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Thanking all SingOut2011 volunteer "Cyber-Amplifiers"

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WE thank Ms. Pamela Fernandez, whom we consider to be, by deed, a SingOut2011 volunteer "Cyber-Amplifier," like Ms. Luchi Pavia Piczon, who has been a SingOut2011 volunteer "Cyber-Amplifier-International." Surely, the SingOut "Cyber-Amplifiers" are the backbone of the Internet-assisted "second broadcast" activity of SingOut2011's "Double Broadcast System" (click here). (We also thank Ms. Paula Zayco-Aberasturi who told us about Pam's recent act of goodwill.)
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..........Actually, we have a lot more such silent volunteers of "SING OUT our Love, Peace, Joy in 2011," this global initiative from the Philippines aimed at activating many "Singing Hearts (and Lungs)" (click here) to contribute to the hastened further evolution of positive consciousness of Humanity.
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..........Each Facebook friend of the Sing Out Love,Peace,Joy FB account is automatically considered a "Cyber-Amplifier" if he/she has at least a hundred FB friends and welcomes postings on her/his wall or at least doesn't clearly doesn't reject them, considering that each such posting gets sent to all of her/his friends. The most active "Cyber-Amplifiers" post the SingOut2011SingOut2011 messages on their FB friends' walls.
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.........."Cyber-Amplifiers-International" are those who regularly forward SingOut2011 messages to destinations in at least three countries and ask them to forward further to more destinations, whether via FB, via emails, or other channels. We want everybody to put Happy Voices Together to sing to affirm (Amen!) the humanrace-wide desire for Love, Peace, Joy. We want everyone to sing along together in small groups to counteract the creeping feelings of panicked fear and of animosity and of depression among the members of the giant Human family.
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..........All of these volunteers can opt to also be active in the SingOut2011 project as "song-hunters" and/or as "compo-sharers."
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..........We now invite everyone who sees this blog posting to sing along with the Carpenters and with us this pleasant call to "sing of good things, not bad, sing of happy, not sad"! (click here) Call a few others to sing with you, and we will all be "Singing Hearts" broadcasting about the themes of "SingOut2011!"

--ding reyes, lead initiator, SingOut2011

For more information about Sing-Out 2011, please click here.
To enlist as a Facebook Friend of Sing-Out 2011, click here and press "Add as Friend."
Enlist now, and ask many of your friends to do the same! The
Sing-Out 2011 is a global initiative from the Philippines, now being propagated via the Internet in many countries around the globe. Sing Out Cheeeers!
This project is a Philippine initiative seeking to contribute to a Global Synergy
for hastened Evolution of Human Consciousness about our Real Oneness.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Kamayan Forum 21st Anniv Session March 18: Eco-Heroism for Our Survival












K
amayan Forum Topic, March 18:
Eco-Heroism for Our Survival


Collective heroism based on collective wisdom and goodwill is something our nation has been known for. But social realities in the last few centuries has apparently eroded our people's capability for knowing well and bravely confronting the dangers to our very survival, dangers to the very survival of our families, to the very survival of our home archipelago.

We need ecological wisdom, we need ecological patriotism, we need ecological heroism for the very survival of our nation, of our country.


We need day-to-day heroism of the common Filipino so the Philippines can possibly survive as a most vulnerable country in the face of the worsening conditions of climate and geo-ecology. The Filipino is worth saving, worth sacrificing more and more efforts for. The Filipino is heroic, we will not be helpless, powerless, clueless victims of the imminent destruction from the wrath of abused Nature. We will have both the strong will and strong capability to save ourselves and our home.

At the Kamayan para sa Kalikasan's 21st Anniversary forum session on Third Friday, March 18, 2011, we will focus on this topic, so that many more hundreds and thousands and millions of our people will focus on this topic in the mini-Kamayan para sa Kalikasan sessions in our family dining tables, in our community plazas and conference rooms, in our classrooms and offices, in our market stalls, farms and public transport terminals all these coming weeks, and months and years.

Kamayan para sa Kalikasan is jointly convened by CLEAR Comunicators for the Environment (CLEAR), and SanibLakas ng mga Aktibong Lingkod ng Inang Kalikasan (SALIKA) at 10:30am to 2pm, thru free lunch, on the Third Friday of every month since March 1990, fully sponsored all these years by Kamayan-EDSA (marked by white "K" in red dot on map at left), where forum sessions are regularly held.

We take this topic as seriously as we all have to... for no less than our very survival is at stake. Let's have "all hands on deck" to inform everyone else and mount a Great Bayanihan for eco-heroic actions...for our survival!

--Ding Reyes, forum organizer and formerly lead moderator

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Promote Gender Harmony for Human Conscious Oneness and Synergy!



.KAISARI (Kaisahan ng mga Sari)
(Kasaping samahan ng Pamayanang SanibLakas ng Pilipinas)

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THE ANNUAL commemoration of International Women's Day on the eighth day of March every year is both an opportunity to promote gender separativeness and conflict and an opportunity to promote the needed paradigm shift to gender harmony. But in their passion for historic redress and justice, many women's advocates have tended to promote the former, with some going to the extent of declaring the menfolk the enemy of the womenfolk.
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. ..........Lambat-Liwanag's On-Line Library for Empowering Paradigms (click here) offers in-depth articles and "think-pieces" under Paradigm 8 (click here) to help us all to realize the gross errors in thinking and attitudes of centuries dominated by the patriarchal paradigms that resulted in untold sufferings among both the female and also the male of the species separately and together as the impaired human race, and to realize, as well, that further hostility, even in the name of justice, is also actually counterproductive.
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. ..........The articles so far uploaded are listed and linked under Paradigm 8 (click here). Responses of agreement or disagreement with the articles, and contributed articles, in whole or in part, are welcome and Lambat-Liwanag Network is predisposed to upload them.
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..............Gender Sensitivity, Equality and Harmony upholds gender equality (as distinguished from 'gender identicality' which is unnatural and impossible) as a basic stepping stone to the ideal of Gender Harmony, the resolution of the gender issue that has divided the human population into hostile halves.

. ..........In commemoration of International Women's Day, and on any day, let's all say "Amen!" (solemn affirmation) to Gender Harmony! Let's all sing out loud and together (click here) our collective commitment to uphold Gender Harmony for Human Conscious Oneness and Synergy!

--Readdingz, 3-3-2011