Moving on Playlist by Yours Truly

  1. Avicii – For a Better Day
  2. Bullet Dumas – Put to Waste
  3. Coldplay – Fix You
  4. Coldplay (Cover by Bullet Dumas and Clara Benin) – Till Kingdom Come
  5. UDD – Indak
  6. Ang Bandang Shirley (Cover by Bullet Dumas) – Di na Babalik
  7. Coldplay – Yellow
  8. Spongecola – Di mo na Mababawi
  9. Marion Aunor – Goodbye Kiss
  10. UDD – Tadhana

It’s not really a moving on playlist, more like, making peace playlist. I would like to call it that. These songs really helped me shape my perspective in goodbye’s. Yellow is a love song, I know, but I associated this song to a person or possibly, a situation. I think even when we close a certain door on someone — accepting that we can never open that door again — I think that we will always love that person how ever we loved them then. Yes. Despite the goodbyes, despite the sad ending. That is why Yellow is up there. It feels wrong not to put it there.

For a Better Day is a song I got from a movie called How To Be Single haha yeah I know. It was such a feel-good movie, perfect for a rainy day with a bottle of beer or maybe a mug of hot coffee (depende sa mood mo). Why do you think humans, when they know they are miserable, they want to drown in that misery, to fall deeper in the bubble of drama? I don’t know but it feels good to just be. Just like this song, Di mo na Mababawi by Spongecola is such an in-the-mood song. When you just want to be left alone with your feelings, you listen to this hehe.

“Alay sa ‘tin ng tadhana
Ang perwisyo at sumpa
Na naging mas makahulugan ang buhay
Nang tayo’y naging magkakilala”

“Perhaps I have wasted my time
By sharing my thoughts with you
And I will proudly smile
Coz I would waste another lifetime with you
If i can”

Bullet Dumas’s music saved me from drowning in that misery. His music and even the covers he sings just give peace to my soul. His composition, Put to Waste I particularly liked because of how he was able to change the emotion in that one song by changing the language of the lyrics so abruptly. And that’s it, the process of just making peace with yourself, with the situation, with the universe is a long and hard climb because sometimes you slip back to your bitter self. And that is okay cos you already know to keep moving forward, to that place where there is no room for bitterness, just gratefulness and peace that everything will be okay.

Indak by UDD, I just found this song and it is so good. It did not really fit the theme but I love it so much I need to listen to it along with the other songs haha! Indak has a push and pull feel to it — like there is uncertainty but also a surety — in other words, magulo talaga which is the opposite of making peace. But maybe you accept the fact that there will always be situations that you will be confused and that is okay because this shall pass. What’s important is to enjoy the dance while you can. There are Bullet Dumas songs to listen to after you fall anyways lol.

. . .

Another song by UDD is Tadhana and it is just beyond beautiful.

I like Marion Aunor, her voice is so sassy. Goodbye kiss is a happy song about blowing your problems away. Just so right for a stressful day.

So there you are. My Making Peace With Myself playlist. Cheers.

 

Moving on Playlist by Yours Truly

Eureka moment: I am Chihiro, Spirited Away

I am the kind of person who watches movies. Who really watches them not because I am bored, not because I got nothing to do. I really think that it is necessary for my well-being. Don’t get me wrong, I am not necessarily a movie buff. I just watch movies. I say that a lot and I claim still that I am not a movie buff *ahem* Watching movies just helps me think, helps me reflect, helps me understand myself more, helps me understand other people more. It is really fascinating. You should try watching movies, you know, really watch them.

Studio Ghibli films are just my type of movie that I know will come in handy in the future because its productions, though animated (and if films are animated, they are usually for kids), is filled with so much umm feels. Emotion. Let me skip topic and let us talk about this all-time favorite Studio Ghibli film of mine — Spirited Away.

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I hadn’t known then how strikingly familiar this film would be to me in the next few years.

A month ago, I decided to leave a place I considered a home and friends I have considered a family. It was not an easy decision to make but in order to grow, I needed to. It also has long been a toxic place for me where I felt my growth as a professional was restraint and I cannot live in a place where learning is void, I just can’t. I will hold myself responsible if I did not do well in this life God gave me. In this life, I get only one shot, and I will make the most out of it. Now, I am back in my hometown with a heavy heart and a bad case of sepanx (separation anxiety). I like what I am doing now, I feel like this is a job meant for a BS DevCom graduate but.

But I miss my people. I kept checking up on them via social media networks. I stayed connected through chats and text messages. I am in my hometown but my heart, I think I left it in Baguio. I am not present, I am not living in the moment at all because half the time my mind goes back to the friends that I left. I know they have their own lives to live and I have my own as well but.

I think it is time again, to decide to let go and let God.

I see some parallels in my life that is also in Spirited Away. Chihiro had a whole new family in the Spirit world. No matter how weird they were, it was the place that Chihiro felt she was most herself. She became friends with No-Face, she saved the Onsen from that stinky Kamisama. She became an instant heroine in the Onsen earning favor from the witch that governed the place. Even the Kamisama favored Chihiro. Chihiro spent her whole time running away from a place that loved her. Chihiro became another — Sen. She loved being Sen but there was always Haku to remind her of her true name, to remind her of her goal — to free her parents and finally come back home.

I love the whole character development (from scaredy cat Chihiro to a brave and kind Chihiro) but let me skip to the part where it was time for goodbye. I relate to that moment. That part where Chihiro was sad to go and leave Haku behind. She was afraid that she will forget Haku but then again Zeniba, the twin-witch said to her that “Once you meet someone, you never really forget them.”

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What baffled me that first time I watched Spirited Away was that last part when Haku told Chihiro to run towards the cave (which was some sort of portal to the mortal world) and no matter what, she must not look back. I felt like there was significance to that scene because it was full of close-ups etc, you really can feel the effort of the production to build up the emotion in that scene. Chihiro even stopped and almost turned back to check on Haku but she just shook her head and began running again towards the cave.

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But I understand now. To truly be able to return to the mortal world, Chihiro must erase all feelings of wanting to go back to the Spirit World. She will just have to keep on moving forward. I think that applies to me as well. No matter how hard, moving forward is a part of life. You will just have to hold on to that faith that we never truly forget a person we already met so we can have peace that even if we don’t look back (for now), the love that was shared is not make-believe, it was real. I think that is a bond that is hard to forget. Maybe the mind will, but the heart will not. In the last part, where Chihiro and her parents finally returned to their own world, you may notice that Chihiro did glance back. She glanced back when she knew it was safe to look back. It was okay because she has returned home.

My worry is that, in my travel to my own Spirit World, I may miss some great moments that are happening in my reality now. I think I should try to live in the present more. I should try being open to new friends, new work, new environment.

So that’s about it. That is my eureka moment. That I am Chihiro and I was spirited away.

 

Eureka moment: I am Chihiro, Spirited Away

Seek the blessor and not the blessing: On beauty and art, blessings, and my favorite sin

On beauty and art.

“Kuhanan mo yan ng picture, Michi. Ang ganda o! [Take a picture of this, Michi. So beautiful!]”

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So I begrudgingly took a photo of this boring scenery. I mean, yes it is beautiful with all the bougainvillea “flowers” fallen to the ground, like it is autumn. Come to think of it, I phrased that rather, beautifully. You may be thinking what a killjoy/weirdo I am to think of this scene, boring.

If I were to take this photo, I will not capture the whole thing, I will focus on the colorful and vibrant, metamorphosed leaves of the bougainvillea (Erratum: This is not bougainvillea at all, sorry! But it is the thought that counts.). I think it’s beautiful how the leaves are the main event in this plant species and not the tiny flowers.

If I were to take this photo, I will capture what is real. And the “flowers” here are lies. By capturing the photo as it is, people will think, “Oh, what a pretty scene.” but they won’t know its mysteries, they won’t know that the colorful “flowers” that lie on the ground are actually leaves. The whole, supposedly beautiful scene will then be devalued, will be simplified into an ordinary, pretty scene. Boring.

People ask me questions why do I pay attention to say, abandoned nurseries, they say I should take a photo of a flower instead. Why? because in that abandoned nursery, there is life inside. No one will know it unless I go and capture those beautifully lined seedlings inside plastic pots.

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Why pay attention to already pretty things? Why not focus on the “ugly”? I find it extremely attractive and beautiful and amazing (hehehe) when a person “notices”. When a person notices the beauty beyond and despite the flaws, and somehow to this person, the flaws magnify the beauty.

On blessings. Let’s discuss my “favorite” sin.

“Seek the blessOR and not the blessing.”

Last Sunday was a reminder for me to always have a grateful heart. Because when you become so full of praise and thanksgiving and gratefulness, you develop a heart of humility.

Let’s talk about my favorite sin. It’s not so much that I like doing this sin in fact, I hate myself for this sin. I am proud. I am too boastful. Mayabang. Kinakahiya ko ‘yon. Sometimes, I even am proud of myself for being humble (if that makes sense). Sometimes I boast that I am a Christian so HA! I am better than you, you, and you because yall don’t know nothing. It takes a lot of courage to own up to this sin. As I have earlier said, I delude myself into thinking that I am not proud, that I only boast in my God. But I was wrong, wrong, wrong.

This is why the proverb, Humility Before Honor is so close to my heart. I was unconsciously battling this favorite sin of mine as I consciously rated myself if I was humble. It does not help that God blessed me with all these talents (ayan ang yabang ko na naman!) and every time I read the bible, I am always reading “You are special, you are my daughter” — Sino ba namang hindi lalaki ang ulo kapag sinabihan ka non ni Lord?! My fault? I am handling this sin by my own. I thought I could heal myself. I thought I was being mature. Pero ang pinapairal ko lang pala ay ang kayabangan ko. I was only feeding my sin. I should have surrendered this sin to God because I cannot heal myself, only He can.

By seeking the blessor, by praising Him first, this is a way to develop a humble heart. A heart that seeks humility before honor.  A heart that does not lean to its own understanding, a heart that follows the convictions of the Holy Spirit. That is the heart that I want.

So Lord, develop in me this principle: Humility Before Honor.

Seek the blessor and not the blessing: On beauty and art, blessings, and my favorite sin

I’m alive! My start of the week from mini hell, my love for Hozier, and grace

So I am having a blogging block. That sucks because last week I was full of ideas and was really excited to write but then those ideas came with an expiration date, I guess that is why now what is left is just the excitement but those ideas went poof. nada!

writing block

Anyway let’s talk about my start of the week from mini hell. So just this Monday, I was chilling. Editing some designs here and there, writing some articles here and making powerpoint presentations there. It’s all good, I can do this, no sweat. But then I was having this Neville-like feeling like I forgot something important. Then this remembrall (a person, obviously) asked me if I have finished the video  that our boss assigned me to do (like, ages ago).

remembrall

Okay I know remembralls can’t spill what we forgot but in my world, they do haha sorry potterheads. ANYWAY that was the start of my mini hell cos apparently, the presentation was due on Wednesday morning. Luckily I already wrote a script and was even edited already, I only needed to apply the edits which took half of my Monday. I even stayed in the office over time to record the Narration part of the video (did I mention I am the VO? Ha! One man team FTW). The whole Tuesday was allotted for hardcore editing. Yes. Hardcore.

deadline is where I get my creative juices

I really looked like that while editing. I figured I should just leave the contacts and put on my geeky glasses cos Tuesday is reserved for hardcore editing, looking at the computer screen all day may further impair my already faulty eyes/eye sight. Tuesday was not enough, I just had to call it a day and wake up early on Wednesday to do some finishing touches and finally render the effing video.

Today is Wednesday, guess what I survived PRAISE THE LORD HALLELUJAH. I think Hozier helped managing my stress levels. Apart from the video editing, I was also editing some presentation so it was kinda hectic. I was listening to From Eden by Hozier. It was so beautiful. It made me purr. Literally. Wait– not literally, really Just, purr from the inside you know.

There were times when I don’t even want to be bothered from what I was doing so every person who would interact with me, I just gave curt answers so they’d go away. Yeaaaahhh. Hadn’t made the best choices. I was rude and I was pulling my hair for that because honestly, looking back, I did not recognize myself in there. Why oh why did I let loose my inner monster?  I don’t want to be trapped in this state of condemnation so I forced myself to think about God’s grace. I say “force” because it was not easy thinking about God when I felt so tainted. I forced myself to think about how God was the one who made me, how God was the one who saved me. He saved a wretched little thing like me so who am I to not forgive myself when God Himself said I am justified, that I am FREE, that I am beautiful and intricate and full of faults. To make the long story short, after a while, I forgave myself. I also prayed that I may find a way to make up to those people… You know it was really humiliating, how I acted, I could laugh!

Anyway that’s grace. And you know what, I made it.

I think I should get back to my assignment. Ciao!

I’m alive! My start of the week from mini hell, my love for Hozier, and grace

Ano daw ang interesting sa Baguio

Interesting? I find it interesting how people can be mad at the “evil capitalist who destroyed the pine trees” that is Henry Sy but still avail sm advantage cards! Bongga!

I find it interesting walking along Session Road on my way to the jeep terminal that I see foreigners and filipinos meeting for the first time IN THE MIDDLE OF THE VERY NARROW ROAD.

Foreigner: I can’t believe it’s you!
Pinoy: IKR?? *HUUUUG*
Me: erm excu- …
Pinoy: You don’t look like this *shows phone* at all!!!
Me: uhh… *i’mjustgoingtopassthroughreaaaalllyquicklybuhbye*

Session road is that narrow pramis.
Eyeball. Pshhh. Laos na yan. Charot lang!

So number three interesting thing in Baguio is that people go to their malls or shops to warm up! Totally different in Los Baños where people go to malls to get cold. I also notice that the coffee shops here are actually just disguising as Cafe (says so on their signs above their stores) but really, they’re just ordinary carenderia or fast food! Kaloka! I was looking for coffee and wifi and you don’t know how many “Cafes” I went to before I found the cafe I have been looking for.

Anyways this list could go on like how barters here are so confusing down to how theyd rather talk in English than Tagalog hahah. I won’t generalize but I have had encounters as unusual as that 🙂

Signing off now! Will be back once I scavenge on some wifi.

instagram and twitter @karisakun

Ano daw ang interesting sa Baguio

On Philippine History, HEKASI, Sibika

Uhh. I never liked the way history was taught (especially in elementary) and I am a  reader! I should be fascinated with history but it turns out I like stories but never my own story. I guess ganoon din ang karamihan sa kabataan. And we should change that.

How? Certainly not by removing Philippine History subjects in Grades 7-10.

Photo not mine.
Photo not mine.

I do not agree in removing this important subject even though it was not my favorite one. It is crucial for us youth to know about our own story. Some people say that it is okay because History is being taught in Grades 1-6 and it would be repetitive to teach the students while in their Grades 7-10 History again.

If I have seen this photo, learned about this news years ago when I was just a sixth grader, I would have rejoiced because, man, who would want to hear their teachers drone on and on and on about “Treaty in Paris,” “Batas Militar,” “Emilio Aguinaldo, first President,” “Jose Rizal, Pambansang Bayani.” That’s boring and practically a brain suicide when it comes to exams because I hate memorization especially names of people and places oh, especially dates! DATES: “When is the birthday of our National Hero?,” “When did the Spaniards sell Philippines to the Americans?” They were meaningless to me. They were just characters whom I cannot empathize with.

Where am I getting with this? I say, we need teachers who are also passionate about our story. I only have encountered three teachers who taught passionately about history. THREE. Two in High School, one in College. No one from my Elementary education. They all promoted memorization as the way of life. Mas na-appreciate ko yung teachers na binibigyan ng personalidad ang mga tauhan ng History without romanticizing/idolizing them. Learning about history should be like reading mystery-historical novels but much more interesting kasi hindi sya fiction.

We don’t want robots for a nation. Please let us not make that happen. Don’t get me wrong I have so much respect for teachers. I have so many teachers who have influenced my life, my way of thinking and they don’t even know.

That’s it for today,
Karisa-kun

On Philippine History, HEKASI, Sibika

Ministry, a prison cell?

I saw this photo on a facebook page of a christian retail store, Worship Generation.

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There is FREEDOM in the name of Jesus. I sincerely believe in that because I have genuinely felt and experienced freedom in Jesus.  What worries me though, is that some christians may not be able to experience this because of…well, a number of reasons.

But let us talk about one: Misinterpretation on commitment.

When I commit to Christ, when I said YES to His invitation in heaven knowing that this requires me to chase after Him in this race called life, I know I am doing a lifetime commitment not only to God but also to His church, my church.

The church is my family that God designed for me to be with. A ministry where I can grow so I can be the God version of me. But it is also a church that God wanted me to help build in order to further His kingdom, in order for the church to be its own God version. This is a calling I cannot refuse to answer.

One thing that bothered me so much though is the analogy of one of the youth leaders of my church on “commitment.” She likened commitment to a ministry to a “prison cell in which you can never be paroled,” a lifetime commitment, so she said. I thought that this analogy was made in an effort to send a message across that being in a ministry is not just for fun, that commitment is not just a fancy word you say flippantly in a conversation with your pastor. It is meant to be taken seriously.

But there is supposed to be freedom in Jesus, right? The truth will set you free and all that. Why should a church member feel they should be imprisoned? My heart breaks because she is just a student, practically a kid and she already feels this way, so old but not mature, so tired of responsibilities. What is happening to the moms and dads of the church? What is happening to the adult ministry? Why are they putting so much weight on this kid? On us, the Youth ministry? I feel so sorry that some of the youth is burdened to the point that they feel that being in a church is like a prison cell. That they speak so like an old person who forgot to put wisdom in their rickety luggage.

I feel so sorry that some may feel this way or you may feel this way. Remember, there is healing, there is freedom in Jesus! No one is supposed to feel like a their trapped in a church. Listen. True commitment does not feel like this. True commitment is when it is not a chore to be serving Jesus, it is not a chore to serve in a church. True commitment produces a cheerful heart, a willing servant-leader whose aim is to chase after God’s heart.

God blessed me with the wisdom and understanding in commitment. Commitment is like marriage in my country, the Philippines, there is no divorce. You have to stay in sickness or in health because you love this church very much, I love my church very much. While I grow in my church, I slowly see the flaws in my church, my eyes are opened, my expectations…they were not met. Many times, I asked myself, “Is it time to leave this church?” Because I was not growing anymore, the church cannot give me what I needed. But I realized I’ve been asking the wrong question. I should be asking God what I can do to help my church, how can I further God’s kingdom. I realized my love for the church grew deeper because of all the heartaches I have experienced, all the flaws I have seen, the broken people I have met with their own testimonies… How can someone not give compassion and grace? How can someone just…leave? I can’t. I have understood my calling. I have understood commitment.

Pray for wisdom on what true commitment really is because if you feel like you are trapped in your ministry, then there is something wrong in the leadership or in yourself. Change your mindset and try to see that you are not alone in building the church of Christ! You are NOT! I repeat you are NOT! You are free, in Jesus’s name.

God bless beautiful people of God 🙂
Stay real, be blessed,
Karisa-kun

instagram and twitter @karisakun

Ministry, a prison cell?