Learning to Like Oneself Better

Learning to Like Oneself Better

By Apolinario Villalobos


Some people are very much affected by the impression they have about others on the aspects of aesthetics and habits. The idolizing consequence drives them to mimic others even to the point of hilarity. The internet once showed an American woman who was suntanned to the max, with her awfully tanned skin, blond hair, red lips that obviously underwent operation in a cosmetologist clinic to give them a pouting look. She admitted that she would like to be someone whose face and body hug pages of showbiz and sports magazine. But she overdid her effort for she became what viewers said was a “human prune”. Some Orientals would like to look like Westerners by dyeing their natural black hair into blond, brown or white. On the other hand, some Westerners would like to look like Asian by undergoing aesthetic operation to have Chinese eyes. Others would even go to the extent of undergoing drug therapy to have a pale porcelain-like Japanese complexion.


On the habits, some people idolize musical and political icons, in the way they flip their hands as they speak, the way they carry themselves when they take strides, or the way they render songs. Even the accents of the idols did not escape the attention of their die-hard followers. Nowadays, we occasionally listen to some people who try to sing like their idol. Admirably, some can even copy the dance moves of their idols.


If these copycats have the skill to imitate others, obviously, they have inborn talents – their own, that they do not just appreciate. In some countries, aspiring singers who copy established ones are not given the chance to shine as originality is more preferred, that unfortunately, jeopardizes the voice quality of the aspirants. One time, in a popular American TV show, a raw talent showcased his impersonating skill which gave him thundering applause from the studio audience. When he was asked to sing with his own voice, the host was surprised because he sounded better than the singers that he imitated. And, there’s this woman impersonator who imitates famous singers in the way they render the theme song of a multi-awarded movie. The impersonator impressed you tube viewers with her own beautiful singing voice which has a better timbre than the famous singers that she imitates. In a rare interview, she confided that she was afraid that her natural singing voice is not good enough to entertain listeners so she made use of it in her stand up comedy acts, but with the comments from you tube viewers, she said that she might focus on another direction.


Imitating others should have a limitation…perhaps, only for fun. To be serious about being somebody just because he or she is well-known or beautiful, is not a good idea. Each one of us has traits that should be appreciated and fully utilized. Masking ourselves with the face of someone else is like being ashame of what God gave us. We cannot be proud of the honor that we reaped by being somebody else, because what we showed is not our own. Admiring fanatically that can lead us to imitating others can make us lost our own identity and self-respect. Imitating is a skill, so perhaps, what we can do to preserve our dignity is limit our pride in that ability, and not for totally being like somebody else.







Ang “Pagbabarya” o “Pagsusukli” sa Tulong na Natanggap

Ang “Pagbabarya” o “Pagsusukli”

Sa Tulong na Natanggap

ni Apolinario Villalobos


May mga taong kung tumulong sa kapwa ay nagsasabi na hindi na kailangang ibalik sa kanila ang kanilang naitulong. Nakagawian namang sa pagbalik ng tulong o pagtanaw ng utang na loob, kailangang ang katumbas ay katulad ng naitulong. Kung hindi talaga maiiwasan, ang  mga natulungan na hindi kayang magbalik ng katumbas ng tulong na natanggap nila ay nagsasabi na “babaryahan” o “susuklian” na lang nila, na ang ibig sabihin ay hihimayin ang halaga ng tulong sa mas maliit na katumbas na makakaya nilang ibalik. At kung hindi man maibalik sa tumulong ay maaaring ipasa naman sa iba. Ang huling nabanggit ay magandang paraan sa pagpapakalat ng adhikain ng pagtulong sa kapwa sa ano mang paraan.


May mga natulungan naman na sa halip na magpasalamat  ay kinukutya pa ang uri ng tulong na ibinigay sa kanila. Tulad na lang ng nangyari sa isang basketball gym na pinuntahan ng grupo namin na boluntaryong tumulong sa mga nasalanta ng baha, kung saan ay nakarinig ako ng parunggit ng isang babaeng kasama ng mga biktima. Ang sabi niya ay may amoy ang bigas na ibinigay. Sinabi ko na ang bigas ay NFA, hindi commercial rice na karaniwang mabango. Noong minsan ding kumain ako sa isang karinderya, may mag-ina na dumating, subali’t matagal silang patingin-tingin lang sa naka-display na mga ulam. Dahil inakala kong kapos sa pambayad, inalok ko sila ng mga ulam na sa tantiya ko ay kaya pa ng natira kong pera. Nang omorder ako ng monggo at piniritong galunggong para sa kanila, sabi ng nanay, “huwag na lang, iyan din ang ulam namin kagabi, nakakasawa na”, sabay alis. Ang ulam ko naman noon ay monggo lang dahil nagtitipid ako.


Ang pinakamagandang paraan ng pagtulong sa kapwa ay ang hindi pagpapakilala ng sarili. Pagsasabihan na lang ang mga natulungan na ipasa sa iba ang tulong kung magkaroon sila ng pagkakataon. Sa pamamagitan nito ay mapipilitan ang mga natulungan na talagang sa iba ipasa ang tulong dahil hindi nga nila kilala ang nagbigay. Sa isang banda, kung ang namamagi ng tulong ay kilala nang mga grupo na ang turing sa kanila ay instrumento lamang ng mga taong gustong tumulong, kailangan ang pagpapakilala para malaman ng mga nag-ambag ng mga tulong na talagang naipamamahagi ng maayos ang ibinigay nila. Pero dapat ang ipakilala ay ang grupo, hindi ang namumunong tao o mga tao.


May mga tao namang nanunumbat kung ang mga natulungan nila ay hindi tumatanaw ng utang na loob. Ito ang ugali ng mga pulitiko na ang isang paraan ng panunumbat ay ang hindi pag-asikaso sa mga pangangailangan ng mga taong hindi bomoto sa kanila sa kabila ng pamimigay nila ng pera sa mga ito sa panahon ng kanilang  pangangampanya.


Ang pinakadapat alalahanin palagi na dapat pasalamatan ng mga Romano Katoliko ayon sa kanilang paniniwala ay si Hesukristo na nagbuwis ng buhay para sa sangkatauhan. Subali’t nakakalungkot isiping may iba sa kanila na naniniwalang sa panahong ito, hindi na “uso” si Hesukristo dahil dahil meron na silang pera na magagamit pagdating ng kanilang pangangailangan.  Naharangan ng kinang ng pera ang kanilang paningin kaya hindi na nila matanaw ang isa pang mahalagang pangangailangan ng tao…ang bagay na ispiritwal.







Accepting a Loss and Moving On

Accepting a Loss and Moving On

By Apolinario Villalobos


Man by nature has the habit of keeping valuables, be they materials or loved ones.

They become investments in life that need to be taken care of and well-guarded. Earned money could provide support in times of distress and comfort upon retirement. It is for this reason that some work so hard “while the iron is hot”, as a popular adage says. For the wise, every opportunity is seized.


On the other hand, some people oftentimes become over- possessive of their friends whom they have gathered to become part of their lives, more so with their families whom they have painstakingly raised through difficulties. Friendship is not easy to develop because it involves patience in dealing with different characters. As with the family, one starts by living under one roof with a partner by virtue of marriage or simple verbal arrangement. Broods are brought forth and the parents are not even sure if all of them will grow up to be good, therefore, effort to develop them well is exerted giving rise to close bonding among the members.  


So many expectations are the offshoot of all the exerted efforts in these investments in life so that unconsciously, a strong attachment to them has become deeply rooted. It becomes not easy to part with any of them. There is always that feeling of great loss. For how can one for instance, be not upset losing in a fire or flood, a house that took many years of saving to be acquired? Or how can one not be upset by the loss of a husband in a plane crash?


At first, there is a strong resistance to the acceptance of truth. But there is a need to understand that everything in this world is not permanent. Only by understanding this fact that one can let go of the valuable, though, how painful it may be.  It may take some time before the pain of loss will go away. The affected should not be overpowered by selfishness in his effort to accept the loss. Failure to go through this stage would mean sacrificing many things – erosion of his good relationship with others due to unconscious development of hate in him and failure on his part to give attention to his other loved ones. Most importantly, the failure to accept will hold him back from moving on.