What Excesses can Breed

What Excesses can Breed

By Apolinario Villalobos


Anything that is beneficial but taken in excess can be lethal, and anything that is done with good intention, but in excess, can be vicious.


Drugs are supposed to prevent or cure diseases, but when taken in excess can result to unexpected death of a patient, that is why some of these cannot just be bought over the counter of pharmacies, as they need proper prescription from authorized medical practitioners. On the other hand, an overdose of food can cause obesity which can lead to diseases. Drinking water in excess may affect the proper functioning of the heart that is why one of the worst thing that can happen to anyone, is the unchecked water retention of the body.


Too much love can mean pampering that could result to the “spoiling” of the person being “loved”. It can also drive one to commit a crime of passion because of the fatal attraction that developed. And, worst, it can lead the weak of emotion to the verge of insanity. The same is true with kindness which can result to the abuse of the kind-hearted. Along this line, too much familiarity among friends could develop abuse, too, on the part of the ones with weak discipline, disposition, and who are naturally selfish.


It is not bad to be hardworking, but abusing the body to the point of exhaustion could mean fatigue and if left unchecked could be fatal, too. Also, in a group that is expected to work as a team, those working hard, may be abused by the indolent members who may become overly dependent. That is why, for the sake of teamwork, it is important that roles are played fairly.


As to the expression of faith, those who manifest it with utmost sincerity according to what their religion says, is admirable. However, their boisterous and arrogant attitude about their belief that only they have the right to be saved, really stink. It is revolting to see a faithful with outstretched hands and who walks on his or her knees from the door of the church to the altar, or pretend that he or she is overcome by the “spirit” while praying as shown by his or her fainting or uncontrolled shaking body…a scene that can be comical for others. All these overdose of faith is fanaticism.


Too much freedom in a nation can breed abuse on the part of inconsiderate and undisciplined constituents. And, too much discipline instilled in a person can make him too “sterile” and oblivious to the imperfect, albeit, normal actuations of others.


The Earth needs air and rain, but too much of it, results to typhoon and flood. The same is true with the cool and immaculate snow, as too much of it, results to snowstorm. The wildlife has its own way of “moderation”. And, it seems that lesser creatures are more intelligent than man in observing such discipline. I have seen film footages of different kinds of wild animals milling around drinking holes where the strong are shown chasing the weak with the obvious intention of enjoying the latter as dinner. After the overpowering animals have had their fill, they back off and leave the rest of the packs. But in the case of man, the situation is different, because for as long as there is an opportunity for the greedy to exploit, he practically sucks every drop of blood of the oppressed.


Greed and selfishness are innate in man’s character, but should be manifested in moderation to prevent exploitation of others that could result to their suffering. Unfortunately, it does not happen in politics where greedy officials are not satisfied with what they may have already stolen from the government coffer, and which could already ensure them of a comfortable retirement. They practically, want everything by all means….not only money but lifetime power!


The Beauty of Simple Life

The Beauty of Simple Life

By Apolinario Villalobos


The most beautiful people in the world are those who live the simplest life….that is my own view. For me, beauty is the essence of life and if it becomes complicated, it could no longer be considered as such. To sum it up, simplicity is beauty.


Beautiful people are just around us and I have encountered one in Buluan, Maguindanao. I contracted the guy who drove a pedicab for a couple of hour and as I found him to be trustworthy, aside from the tip, I also bought cookies for his kids and a kilo of fish for their dinner….simple gifts that I could afford. I was touched when he told me with utmost gratitude, “sir, sobra-sobra na po itong grocery” (sir, these grocery items are too much). The guy who eventually became like a brother to me, considered the cookies from the bakery and the fish from the wet market as precious groceries and which for my friend were special gifts, especially, because the Ramadan was closing. Unfortunately, for many people, only items at SM Supermart and other big outlets, that should be overflowing out of grocery bags are “GROCERIES”.


While I was on my way to Baseco Compound in Tondo, one early morning, two years ago, I stopped for a mug of coffee and a pack of Skyflakes cracker at a sidewalk carinderia for breakfast. While I was about to open the cellophane wrapper of the biscuit, a scavenging couple and their young kid of about 4 years old, stopped by and asked for a glass of drinking water from the carinderia owner. As it was not yet 7AM, I presumed that they have not taken anything yet to warm their guts up. They could have just hit the road as shown by their empty plastic garbage bag. I invited them for breakfast of coffee and Skyflakes which they declined but due to my insistence, they sat down. I opened the biscuit wrappers for them as they were hesitant to pick them up. The woman shared her Skyflakes with her husband and their kid while carefully inserting the two packs in her soiled and dirty backpack…she did it as if she was doing a ritual in handling a fragile object. The Skyflakes crackers were treated with special care as they would probably become the family’s lunch for the day. I was almost moved to tears upon hearing the kid repeatedly say, “sarap, sarap” while munching bits of biscuits with much care.


When Jesus bid his disciples goodbye, the farewell fare was unleavened bread that he broke into several pieces to be shared by everybody. Wine which could have been limited in quantity was passed around. It was a special occasion that initiated the series of events leading to the spiritual salvation of Christians for generations to come.


Today, occasions can never be considered “special” if it is not held in expensive restaurants, five-star hotels, or resorts, with the expense that should run up to almost or even more than a million pesos!


Life in this world has greatly become complicated!….an ugly reality!