Moon

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Full Moon, Hongkong 16 October 2016

Dear Moon

Whenever you are full, you always catch my attention. Sometimes, you look so magnanimous and powerful. Sometimes, the clouds steal away your pristine brightness. Sometimes, you become playful and adorn yourself with shiny little stars.

Last night, you once again caught my attention. This time, not because of your fullness nor with your brightness but with your stillness.

I think, that’s what you invited me for. To be still. To keep still.

Where stillness does not mean absence of movement but not resisting the natural flow of life.

Where stillness does not mean the absence of noise but listening to that voice inside that says, ‘It’s time.’

Where stillness does not mean to ignore others but attend first to what is essential.

Where stillness means knowing that life is a cycle. Sometimes, what is seen is only a quarter of what you really are. Sometimes, you are full and strong. It does not matter. Your constant presence is what matters. I guess, we mortals are like you. Sometimes, we can give all of ourselves. But sometimes, we can only give so much. Kasi yun lang ang kaya. Kasi yun na lang ang natitira.

Many people send their love to orbit around you. They say, ‘I love you to the moon and back.’ Without you realising it, you become a channel of love.

But the truth is, you do not have your own light. Whatever light you have and you give, you simply get it from the Sun. The two of you have an incredible friendship. Since the beginning of time, you were there for each other. Reminded me of God’s constant love for me. Reminded me that whatever light I have, it is all from God.

Tonight, I pray. That I gain wisdom from your stillness. That I learn generosity from your fullness. That I remain connected to my source of light, Amen.

Goodnight, Moon. Thank you for the companionship during the long flight tonight.

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On board CX 913, 17 October 2016

Letter

 

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Dear #youknowwhoyouare ,

A couple of weeks ago, before I left, you asked that I write you a letter. I stared back at you for few seconds, uncertain about what and why are you requesting for a letter. You insisted and once again said, ‘Write me a letter.’

I have 91 items in my To-Do-List, your request is the 92nd. But because your request is one of the very few items out of 92 that I could do while in-flight, I hope that before I land I can fulfill your request.

Not sure what you want me to write about but perhaps I will share with you the film, ‘Train to Busan.’

In the film, the child (Su-an) was given the newest video game console for her birthday. The child accepted but said that her birthday wish is to go to Busan to see her mother.

Life gifts us with many pleasant (and unpleasant) surprises. But sometimes, we need to have the heart of that little girl in the movie. Be grateful for video game consoles, but do not keep your eye from what you truly want and insist in getting what you truly desire. So today I am writing you – Do not get distracted.

In the film, Su-an said that she practiced and perfected the song for her father and the reason why she was not able to finish singing the song in a school event was because she didn’t see her father amongst the audience.

Life teaches us to perfect our skills and be the best in what we do. We have that innate desire to memorise lyircs, hum its melodies until its rhythms sway and lift the souls of those who are listening. But sometimes, the absence of a person or persons in our lives cripple us and prevent us from performing our best.

So today I am writing you – If today you feel like Su-an, standing on a stage, where everyone expects you to perform your best, and you feel like you have forgotten the lyrics, no sound is coming out, and you feel scared and unsure – go and find (or remember) the reason why you are standing on that stage in the first place.

In the film, from the hundreds of people on board, only two made it to Busan.

Life allows us to meet people along the way. But only few will remain to be part of our journey til the end. It is what it is.

So today I am writing you – you are meant to continue the journey, with or without the significant people in our lives. You must reach Busan.

What is your Busan – that place, that spot, that destination where you will feel safe and fulfilled?

How badly and how soon you want to be in Busan?

Don’t stay too long standing in front of that sign post. Board the Train!

Maybe next time I watch a film, and I have a little time to spare, even without you asking, I will write you again a letter.

See you when I see you. #youknowwhoyouare

Cheers

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From the many broken places we have been, we look back and realise how it made us stronger and better. For that, we say, Cheers!

For that someone or something, who came and left, who made us believe and then doubt. For all of life’s questions and answers that we found along the way, we say, Cheers!

For the times that we have cried, and then shortly after, that one magical moment when God gives us a reason to smile again, we say, Cheers!

For all the choicest blessings we receive and for that sense of joy and happiness in our hearts, we say, Cheers!

For you, a thousand times over

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Just before dinner, I sketched this kite. I posted it on Instagram with a caption, ‘Raining all day. Perhaps, no kites were flown today.’ ‪#‎randomthoughts‬

It did sound so random. But then, it wasn’t random. For I have been thinking about kites since yesterday after watching ‘The Peanuts Movie’. You see, in that film, Charlie Brown beats himself up for not being able to fly a kite. But everytime he would resign to the fact that he could fly a kite, he would remind himself not to give up.

The kite also reminded me of one of my favourite quotes of all time. ‘For you, a thousand times over…’ Taken from one of my most favourite books, written by my second most favourite author (next to Mandino).

‘For you, a thousand times over…’

Perhaps, as we continue to live and love, we stare at and we embrace tight those who give us the reason to live, and as we wrap our arms around them, we say, ‘For you, a thousand times over…’

Perhaps, when we try hard to find some rays of sun, yet the rain just continue pouring, we find that glow inside us, remembering those who make us truly happy, those whose presence bring sunshine to our hearts, and to life itself, we shall say, ‘For you, a thousand times over…’

Perhaps, as we enter this period of Holy Week, we look at the cross, with arms wide stretched, we see that image of great love and sacrifice that says, ‘For you, a thousand times over…’

‘For you, a thousand times over…’ Because we don’t give up on someone we love, or walk away from something we like.

Lent

Yesterday during the morning mass, a couple of lines from the communion song stirred my consciousness. I told myself I will use it as my Lenten Mantra. It says, ‘slow to anger, rich in kindness…’
Last night, as I took an examination of the day that was just about to end, I was shaking my head in disgust as the events of the day played back.
At 10 am, I told someone, ‘I wanted to shake you. You know the resto ‘Shrimp o’ Bucket’? They put the shrimps inside a plastic bag, put spices and shake it. That’s what I want to do with you. Put you inside a bag and shake you so all your senses would wake up.’
At 1:30 pm, just after lunch, I called someone and the first thing I said was, ‘I will kll you.’
At 6 pm, I called someone else and said, ‘You are trekking deep into the woods/forest. Climb up the tree! Do you understand what I am saying?’
At 10 pm, on WhatsApp, I had a conversation with the person I threatened to k
ll at 1:30 pm, crossing the boundaries of trash-talking and bantering. I was throwing my wrath to my willing victim.
Whatever happened to ‘slow to anger, rich in kindness’?
I may have fallen short in few occasions, but I still feel blessed and loved for in between those wraths, there were people who have shown me kindness, gentleness, generosity and love. I feel humbled by the love received despite of. And I think that’s what Lent is all about — it is all about the love we receive from Christ and others… inspite and despite of…