Friday, February 14, 2014

CBCP Pastoral Exhortation on Philippine Culture (1999) 3/3

This section proffers the honest endeavor and consequent deliberate effort of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines to describe and qualify the perceived realities and key implications of the Philippine Culture. It does this by dealing with the following three headings as hereunder abbreviated:

Traditional Filipino Values

Filipinos work hard for the welfare of their families. Here from, they also expect much in return – such as support and understanding. These become more felt when the government fail to meet even but their basic necessities.

Filipino “familism” is what by and large shapes the Filipino notion of authority and power. Power is understood and lived in its vertical (autocratic) dimension – to the lost of its horizontal (democratic) dimension.

Power and influence are measured by one’s connection with the political and/or economic structure. Power and influence wherefore practically excludes human equality and subsidiarity.

Excesses and incompatibilities

The otherwise endearing family ties become so exclusive that the sense of common good and social welfare is sadly lost. This exclusivity more often that not, brings about abusive economic and/or political dynasties.

The drive for excellence as a personal challenge to one’s capacity in this and that human endeavor can sadly degenerate a “crab mentality.” Meaning: Everybody pulling down anybody else when someone appears succeeding.

Certain examples of contradictory pairing: Hospitality VS Inhospitable Stance. Personalism VS Prudence. Negotiation VS Principle. Compadre System VS Truth. Patron-Client Relationship VS Objectivity.

Emergent Values

There came to fore certain novel emergent value systems – with their respective merits. There is “Republican Democracy” characterized by Representational Government, Popular Elections, and Separation of Powers.

Then happened the “People Power” based on a republican form of government plus popular participation plus political assertion. The power of the people comes from a collective dissent as sovereignty is theirs.

And there is “Social Justice” that is the composite of “Commutative Justice” (one citizen to another), “Legal Justice” (citizen to the government) and “Distributive Justice” (government to the citizens) – in doing what is just.