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Crimson Crux

Pseudo-techblog where the Corsarius gets serious. Visit blog.corsarius.net for his alter ego.

The Graveyard of Dreams

Sunday, May 22, 2005 at 6:30 PM

Dr. Jose Rizal’s letter to Father Vicente Garcia in 1891 is both applicable for his times and ours, making it prophetic in nature.

In his words, “...our talented men have died...bequeathing to us nothing more than the fame of their name...all that these men have studied, learned, and discovered will die with them and end in them, and we shall go back to recommence the study of life.” This is true even in our modern society that is purportedly conducive to the free flow of information. If all the knowledge acquired by every Filipino since the time of the Spaniards — whether layman or scientist — was passed onto the next generation and not taken to the grave, one could imagine the vast ‘savings’ we could have had in scientific progress, in terms of time and labor.

Rizal also wrote in his letter, “Here you have the individual as the only one who improves and not the race.” Sad, but true. No one is more disgusting than a Filipino who hoards knowledge and refuses to share it with others — consciously or unconsciously, it matters not. Every country needs the full potential of its citizens in order to conquer whatever quagmire, stagnation, or downward-spiral it finds itself in, and it needs its people to function as one united intellect if it is to transcend its usual and expected bounds for national growth, especially in terms of scientific advancement.

By ‘one united intellect’, I did not mean people acting inhumanly as an uncreative collective in the nature of the supposed “hive mind” of ants and bees. ‘One united intellect’ means that even though citizens may pursue different branches of learning, the diverse knowledge they possess is made available for everybody; whether or not people would actually choose not to absorb some parts of that knowledge is irrelevant. What’s important is that the information is there, open for perusal and improvement, and not tucked inside one and only one brain.

Let me end by (mis)quoting a line I first read from a computer game — “He who denies you access to information dreams himself your master.” An axiom to be followed by despots and monarchs, but to be loathed by the democratic many. A Filipino who buries with himself a lifetime’s worth of knowledge denies the nation even the most minor of advancements, and thus subconsciously wallows in the delusion that he is a master over his countrymen, while in truth he is slave to his gross imperfections.

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Blogger ia @ 5/23/2005 1:17 AM

It's information dissemination for the shallow but fundamental part of it. Another thing I can relate to. But apathy wretchedly licks it all away.

We are such masochists. How much more can we stand not progressing to where we should be?

But I remember that American voting issue on Oprah. It's a chicken-or-egg cycle said Hilary Clinton. If you want progress, go out and do something. If you want a vote, make the individual feel needed and then serviced.

I guess with the way we've been treated, we just want to take care of ourselves first until perhaps we become 'rich' by chance and lose the desire to hoard these 'riches' and then decide to give them to the needy.

But we can't say we're not doing our part. :)    

Blogger Corsarius @ 5/23/2005 3:09 PM

yes, information dissemination is the keyword. not only that, but unfettered flow of information.

"But we can't say we're not doing our part." True, but IMHO we're still not doing enough. I mean, you and me. We need to go that extra mile.

Oh yes, as if we weren't that busy, after all :)    

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