28. Courageous, Enduring, Joyful

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“Tay, parang sinabi mo na rin na we’re powerful because we’re like God.”

“Yes, we are but not the kind of power you’re wishing.”

“So ano po yun?”

“Healing instantly the sick, raising the dead back to life, defying the laws of nature like walking over the sea and so on and so forth… Those not are the kind of powers that we have.”

“Pero si Jesus nagawa niya yun as written in the Bible and some yogis in India as written in the book, Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yoganda.”

“Alam ko, anak. Those amazing powers are just secondary to these greatest powers you should practice which will make you spiritually perfect.”

“Like what?”

“Courageous, Enduring, Joyful, Active, Humble, Honest, Harmonious, Kind, Patient, Merciful, Peaceful and Pure. Those are the twelve pillars of the spirit which constitute Unconditional Love. Your spirit is on the process of building the pillars to perfection.”

“Paki explain naman, tay.”

“Be Courageous, the first pillar. Don’t be afraid to do things which you know is a higher act.”

“Such as what kind of higher act?”

“Look at what Jesus did. He still drank wine, knowing it contains alcohol. He ate without washing his hands. The higher act there was being in camaraderie with his disciples. He had to, so he could get their buy in when he commanded them to preach the Gospel to all nations.”

“Ah, ok.”

“Another thing, when he healed the paralyzed man during Sabbath. Although he knew that Sabbath is a day of rest which was followed by the Jews as a law to be not doing even works of mercy. The higher act there was going beyond any human law even to the point of violating it when he chose to help another person in dire need. But then again, you don’t have to be like Jesus, the healer, in order to help. There are a lot of ways.”

“What about Enduring, the second pillar?”

“Tingnan mo yung traffic policemen in our streets? Do you think they use sunscreen lotion in order to be protected from skin cancer? Of course not. They rather use the money to buy food for their children. Do they get skin cancer? It depends on their spirit of endurance. When they endure the heat of the sun in order to do their job properly, without even thinking what are those ultraviolet radiation emitting from the glaring rays of the sun… I tell you, they don’t get the skin cancer. What causes cancer is your worry which is worsened by knowing too much about it and frantically believing its scientific findings.”

“Pero exposure to the sun can really cause skin cancer!”

“I know, my son. But you’re not trusting the power of your spirit. I said that the spirit is the main driving force which the mind and body follow. When your spirit believes that you can’t be harmed by anything with the collaboration of the understanding of your mind, I guarantee you, your body will just be fine. But if you expose yourself everyday at 12 noon for two hours during summertime just to test this truth but at the back of your mind, you know this is a dangerous act, then you are stupid. The traffic policeman has a noble reason why he had to be exposed. Nobility is what makes endurance so powerful that it can defy the laws of nature.”

“Hhmm… Something to think about. Anyway, let’s go to Joyful, the third pillar.”

“Observe the middle class families like us. Most of the parents are employed while their children are at school. Some own their houses and some are renting. On a monthly basis, our income are just enough to pay the bills like electric, water, telephone, internet, tuition and other monthly fees. Of course, there are the groceries and other unforeseen expenses like clothes and other material needs in the house. Some say, our expenses are way higher than what we earn. So sometimes, we borrow money in whatever way we can find. With this kind of situation being experienced by an average family in our country, do you think we can afford to buy food without chemicals and preservatives? No. That’s the last thing which comes to our minds. Do you think we would always choose fish, fruits and vegetables over pork, beef or chicken? No. Not because we’re not informed about its health benefits but simply because the latter are more affordable.”

“Hhmm… Another something to think about.”

“Sometimes, you see families eating pork barbecue, lechon, roasted chicken, drinking soft drink while dad and mom drink beer. They may be at the mall, beach, at the public park or having party in the house or attending a fiesta. Most of the parents just don’t tell their kids that their salary are all about to be spent when it’s just barely one week after the payday. There are mothers who would go as far as borrowing large amount of money just to spend it for the birthday parties of their kids, graduation celebrations or whatever special event there may be. Now, let me ask you, anak. What do you observe from these families? Are they having fun or what?”

“Oo naman. I think maligaya nama sila. Tay, I know what you’re getting at. This kind of family is all about being joyful in spite of the external forces which surround them as part of reality. Because of the bond with their close family ties, that’s what matters. What’s the use of so much discipline of the physical aspect of our lives when it may alienate us from the moments of life’s joys?”

“You see the higher truth, my son. Go on.”

“And I can compare to what’s going on with other families who are wealthy. They may have all the money. They could afford what kind of food they wanna eat. But most of them live separately, emotionally. Kids are busy with their schools. Some study abroad. Some are busy with their friends or with their computers or gadgets. The father is occupied with his business or with his mistress. Mother later finds out, bringing her misery.”

“Hahaha! You’re well aware, anak, on what’s going on in this world. The kind of family you mentioned represents the upper class where cancer is developed due to disconnection leading to emptiness then to death. Joy is lost in that family. Now the questions is, ‘What really makes us happy?’ I ask this question for a lot of times. I thought I’m here in this world for a grand spiritual mission. I sometimes have this illusion with a plan to rescue people from calamities by my so called divine preaching of conversion. I want to proclaim the message of unity to the public so all will be led to the path of oneness. Although I know what I envision is truly praiseworthy which is a higher act. But the problem I forget the basic act. So I ask myself. Have I already done it? When I do, then I can proceed to the higher act.”

“The basic act is to care first for your own family?”

“Tama, anak. I know you already knew this. All of us already knew this simple guideline. It’s in the conscience of every human being from the day of birth. Before you start to think of philanthropic deeds, you must see yourself before anything else. Are you applying daily proper hygiene? Are you living a balanced life with the way you eat, study, play, rest and sleep? Are you doing things in moderation? When you’re on the right track on the primary duties of life, then broaden a little bit your vision to the person besides you. Who are these? Your wife, your sons, your parents, your siblings and even your house helper.”

Tay, single pa po ako. Hehehe!”

“Hahaha! That’s just to illustrate my point. Going back… Tanungin mo yung sarili mo. Have you ever assisted your dad every time he’s cleaning the house? Have you asked him how was his work at the office?”

“Tay, pinapakonsyensya mo nanam ako.”

“Hindi naman…. Your mom. Have you ever lent your hand every time she cooks food for us? Or have you ever insisted for once that we wouldn’t eat if all if us are not complete at the table?

“Mukhang hindi ko pa yan nasabi, tay.

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