Friday, October 31, 2014

“GENDER IDENTITY DIFFICULTY”



Homosexuality” is no longer an acceptable word on account of its negative connotations if not insulting implications. The truth is that updated behavioral sciences have in effect done away with the term. Much less acceptable are such phrases as “Sexual Anomaly”, “Sexual Disorder”, and the like. The phrases are insulting, to say the least. The phrase “Same Sex Attraction” is neither consoling to hear nor inspiring to talk about. And there is now the well-known “LGBT” or “LGBTS”, the meaning of each initial is neither that considerate nor respectful – although the said group abbreviation appears acceptable to those concerned as of the moment.

Hence the emergence of the above-cited phrase: Gender Identity Difficulty. Among other things: It uses “gender” and wherefore does away with the term “sexual” which to some if not many people sounds rather base or demeaning. It points out the key issue in the phenomenon which is in the realm of “identity” not of the person concerned but about his or her socio-affective constitution. It brings to fore the “difficulty” felt and at times even suffered by the individuals concerned whom a good number of men and women look upon with curiosity, if not with ridicule even. In other words, the phrase Gender Identity Difficulty emphasizes the big probability if not downright certainty that the persons concerned are not exactly happy, much less are they actually celebrating their predicament.

Question: What exactly causes the said Difficulty which in effect seems to afflict more and more individuals in the course of time? Answer: Many are the causes invoked none of which however is altogether satisfactory, much less certain although individual as well as group efforts are being exerted in favor of its attenuation if not complete neutralization.

Some of the usual causes invoked for the emergence of the Difficulty are the following – none of which is that certain: Family Bloodline, Parenting Dysfunction, Parental Deficit, Environmental Background, Contraceptive Blood Leftovers, Food Hormones, Peer Influence, Bullying/Browbeating, Sadistic Experience, and other cause which though indirectly are by and large already included in one or the other aforementioned presumed causes. This simply means that behavioral experts the world over are by and large still in the dark about the many particulars of the Difficulty.

The following observations are in order. One, those with the Difficulty did not really choose to be thus burdened. Two, they are not necessarily happy nor jubilant for having the Difficulty. Three, those already with the Difficulty are at times even ridiculed and looked down upon by other people. Four, more often than not, they have their special talents in different agenda for the good and welfare of society. Five, the truth is that it is those without the difficulty who are the authors of gross actions and misbehavior, mortal vice and flagrant evil in society.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

SAME SEX MARRIAGE



On the occasion of the recently held Synod of Bishops convoked by Pope Francis to assist him in his papal ministry in favor of the people in general and particularly in pastoral service to the Christian Faithful in the Church, the phenomenon of individuals said to belong to the “Third Sex” and the consequent emergence of the issue of “Same Sex Marriage” came to fore. There were different expectations that were expressed. There are those who say that it is time that the Church accepts and counts the said marriage among her orthodox teachings and thus make the proper and due acceptance thereof as an integral part of her Catholic doctrine and pursuant observances. So it is that the Church will march with the signs and facts of the times.

As already said in so many words, in one way or another, the said Synod had pastoral agenda – not doctrinal matters. It was meant to know and emphasize how to reach out to people, saints and sinners alike, how to make the Church more understanding of and reconciliatory, not simply with virtuous but also erring individuals. And this is not really something surprising, considering that it is love – definitely not indifference, much less hatred – that the Church is formally and categorically committed to proclaim and promote. In fact, according to Christ Himself, there are only but Two Commandments that are the synthesis of the Ten: Love God.”, “Love your neighbor.” It is certainly not “Love falsity.”, “Love lies.”, or the like.

At this juncture, it might not only be proper but also realistic to take good note of the standing truth that not even the Church – with all the authority and prerogative given by her own Founder, with all the wisdom and experience She has acquired for more than 2000 years and counting – may really and effectively change any provisions of Natural Law itself, much less any norm enacted by Divine Law. The truth is that not only the Church, but even the most powerful and wealthiest States the world over, can truly and actually change either the essence or the substantive consequences of Natural Law. The Law of Nature remains the same – notwithstanding all Church and/or Civil Legislation to the contrary. So it is that: It is the union of the man's sperm and the woman's egg that can bring about a human being. So it is too that it is the generative relationship of male and female animals that make about other animals of their own kind come to fore.

So it is that marriage is between a man and a woman, wherefrom the whole humanity came to fore from its very beginning up to the present time and the time yet to come. The Church and/or the State together may say, provide and do otherwise – but the objective reality remains. The Church and/or the State may enact a “Same Sex Marriage” doctrine and law respectively as much and as long as either of both of them want. But “Marriage” it is really not. It may be called the “Holy Union”, “Life Partnership”, “Love Unlimited”, or anything the like. But again, “Marriage” it is not in reality and in truth.

None of the above observations is made to insult the Church, to mock the State, to offend anyone. It is simply intended to tell the truth – without the least intention of belittling or insulting anyone in any way.


Monday, October 27, 2014

A MORE UNDERSTANDING, EMBRACING, COMFORTING CHURCH



The recently held Episcopal Synod – a fraternal meeting of Bishops chosen from all over the Catholic World formally summoned by the Pope in order to assist him in the exercise of his Papal Ministry – received a good amount of attention from the general public primarily because of the amiable personal traits and unique relational attributes of the good and kind Pope Francis. While the Church is founded by Christ, she is nevertheless governed by men of the cloth who are continuously in need of guidance in their task of giving ministerial service to all peoples all over the world in need and receptive thereof – not exclusively but specially those counted among her flock, irrespective of their race, color and tongue.

The said Synod was pastoral in intent and finality, fraternal in spirit and vision. It was meant for service to people – not in terms of official doctrinal pronouncements but rather in form of practical observances that are definitely not intended to censure but to embrace instead those veering away from her teachings, and possibly even leaving her fold behind. In other words, the Synod is intended to make the Church inclusive not exclusive, embracing not alienating, gathering not driving people away. In line with the vision and mission of the Holy Father himself, the Synod wants and envisions a Church that is kind not cruel, that is compassionate not ruthless. The Synod is envisioned to proclaim and affirm a Church that is wherefore more understanding, comforting, and embracing” of people in general. Why? Because the Church is well aware of two basic over-all Commandments: “Love God”, and “Love your neighbor.” - neither one or the other but both of them inseparably together.

By the way, sure, there are dear and endearing, blessed and even saintly people in the Church – but there are also sinners in the fold. These too have to be attended and cared for in the Church. Sure, there are admirable and lovable individuals in the Church - but there are also erring persons among her members. These too have both the need and the right to be attended to and served by the Church. The truth of the matter is that more than proclaiming Saints, the Church is called and/or sent for the conversion of sinners.

By the way, who compose the Church thus addressed and enjoined by the Synod to be this more “understanding, comforting and embracing” of people who could have lost their sound moral value system, who could have thus turned their back to God and instead come to worship wealth, power, vice? The Church herein thus enjoined by the Synod are the Laity (98%), the men and women Religious (1%) and the Clergy (1%). Bonded together and working together, they make a formidable people the world over, to make their Church more “understanding, comforting and embracing” of those who for one reason or another have distanced themselves from the Church on account of their irregular living – keeping in mind that the Church is established by Christ more for those who sadly lost God in their earthly pilgrimage than those who have and hold on to God on their way to the hereafter and beyond.


Friday, October 24, 2014

SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE


It is hard not to perceive and thereby understand the serious and lasting socio-ethical liabilities if not downright evils that a joint Church-and-State regime could bring about to the confusion and lamentation of the people concerned – such as the People of the Philippines. The Church obeying what the State requires and imposes and the State in submission to what the Church wants and decides – such a phenomenon would not only be detestable to think about but actually disgusting when brought to reality.

The Church may not be subservient to state just as the State may neither be submissive to the Church. Among the more evident reasons behind this elementary truth are the following: The Church is universal in relevance and coverage while the State is existent and operative but for a given nation. The officials of the Church are appointed by her competent hierarchy while key public officials in a State are elected by the people. The Church has ultimately a spiritual well as well as supernatural rationale while the State is primarily envisioned for the temporal socio-economic welfare of the people.

So it is that the Separation of Church and State is but an elementary dictate of prudence, a fundamental mandate of reasons. Having them joined is not only a big contradiction in terms but also a signal guarantee of confusion among the people concerned. However, let it be clearly and emphatically said that both the Church and the State may not be otherwise than for the common good and public welfare of the same people they are both committed to serve in line with their respective institutional and constitutional finality.

This, wherefore reads the Constitution of the Philippines: “The separation of Church and State shall be inviolable.” (Article II, Section 6). It may not be otherwise whereas such would instead simply guarantee contradiction and pursuant confusion among the people concerned.

Thus, therefore provides the Code of Canon Law: “Clerics are forbidden to assume public office whenever it means sharing in the exercise of civil power.” (Canon 285 par. 3 CIC). Neither may it be otherwise whereas clerics – deacons, priests, bishops – have other priorities.

Thus finally should the people themselves see to it that both the above-cited constitutional provision and canonical legislation are seriously and continuously observed. This is certain: Just as politicians would make lousy clerics, so is it too that clerics would make lousy politicians. All of them though should combine their effort to promote the well-being of the people with both secular and spiritual requirements, with both “here and now” as well as “hereafter and beyond” needs.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

“URBAN DECAY”


So it is that in line with the painful reality of detestable Tooth Decay” and the terrible implications of “Truth Decay”, the abominable phenomenon of “Urban Decay” has eventually come to fore – notwithstanding all presidential elocutions and declamations to the contrary such as “Kayo ang boss ko”, “Daan na matuwid”, “Kung walang corrupt, walang mahirap” and other similar eventually proven vain and empty rhetorical proclamations in the realm of insensibility, in the sphere of incompetence.

The living reality of “Urban Decay” - of Metro Manila in particular – has been and still is a well-noted and much-experienced fact that has been haunting the people concerned from children to adults, among students to teachers, employees and professionals included. The said negative and lamentable urban situation is verified by a litany of glaring “rotten and rotting” urban social realities known and noted by nationals and foreigners alike – along the perception and feeling of a writer who said that Manila was the “Gates of Hell”. The following are some of the more concrete lamentable realities that bring about gross metropolitan decay:

Pervasive poverty
Homes under bridges
Living in pushcarts, sleeping on sidewalks
Prostitution of adults and young people
Battery of taxes affecting even street foods
24/7 crimes against life and property
Manufacture and proliferation of drugs
Luxurious and street gambling unlimited
Customary smuggling
Suspect PNP officials
Dysfunctional justice system
Prisoners in and out of custody
Garbage all over
Flooding and pollution
Bomb threats
Traffic unlimited
MRT dysfunction and danger
Graft and corrupt practices as a matter of fact
Amoral partisan politics
PDAF and DAP into private pockets
Untrustworthy politicians
Social unrest

Please feel free to add others.