Monday, July 31, 2006

Purpose Driven Life

Pastor Rick Warren writes: “Long before you were conceived by your parents, you were conceived in the mind of God.” Imagine a Hitler, Stalin, Mussolini, Truman, Chiang Kai-Shek, Emperor Hirohito, Noriega of Panama, Batista of Cuba, Somoza of Nicaragua, Diem of South Vietnam, Shah of Iran, Saddam Hussein, Bin Laden, Eisenhower, Nixon, Johnson, Carter, Reagan, Bush, Clinton, Tony Blair, and Marcos of the Philippines. Imagine also the leaders of other countries too created not only in the mind of God but also installed by the US government to serve the interest of the US military that serves the interest of the rich US armament corporations own by the wealthy few and the powerful in America. Since the time of Jesus, hundreds of billions people already lived and died on this earth. Among them were the Christians, the Jews, and the Muslims. They lived hating and died cutting each other’s throats in God’s name and for His glory in heaven. For my part, I find it incredible to believe that the children of the Christians, the children of the Jews, and the children of the Muslims were once all conceived in the mind of God. If I were present with the Lord when he made man, I would have said, Lord, make the Christians, make the Jews, and make the Muslims; but Lord, if you want peace on earth and goodwill to all men, please do not make man in your own image and likeness! To Pastor Rick Warren, the author of PURPOSE DRIVEN LIFE, a best seller, I should wish to congratulate you. Also, I should wish to convey to all of your faithful readers: It is good to be Born-Again. It is, however, much better to grow up! Poch Suzara

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Humanism - Behind Bar

The essay below was hand written and mailed to me by Roy G. Angana, a prisoner, among the 1,000 prisoners in Dapecol, Maximum Compound, Davao Del Norte, Philippines. I typed it for you readers in the hope that you too can help this prisoner and his group materialize their aims and ambitions. I have been sending these men magazines and articles including used books in the hope that I can help to keep their spirit free and rich. For their further studies in the search of the truth, they need more reading materials, pocket book dictionaries, ball-pens, notebooks, pads of paper and, most useful would be a donation of old typewriters. Any other contribution, I am sure, will also be highly appreciated.
I have been in correspondence with these people since 6 years ago. It is encouraging to know how men in prison can write good articles and still be involved with civility and humanity. I should wish to invite you to enter into the picture and correspond directly with Roy G. Angana. After all, even while in prison, he too is seeking the good life – one inspired by love and guided by knowledge. For the pleasure and the attention of my readers residing in some 90 countries around the world, I am publishing Roy G. Angana's piece in my Blog
www. thoughtstoprovokeyourthoughts.blogspot Poch Suzara

HUMANISM – BEHIND BARS

by: Roy G. Angana – July 2006

Humanism is not innate in our being human. As humans living in the materialistic world, we are inherently governed by our natural instinct well-defined by Darwin as the survival of the fittest by natural selection. However man’s capability to think and reason makes him to be far more superior than any other mundane life-forms. Being highly intelligent, he is capable of changing and controlling his own environment to make it suitable for habitation, hence, he can also choose and direct his own destiny. Yet, in spite of human progressive advancement and modernity, man can easily turn inhuman quarreling with each other like savage animals due to his unbridled greed for wealth and power which caused so much pain and misery to all humanity.

And through his mental faculties, man has also produced lots of ideas, sometimes insane ideas and misguided philosophies, a product of his vain attempt to explain the mysteries of the unknown with total disregard to scientifically established facts. Born-out of his ignorance and the fear of the unknown, he created a system of beliefs for the supernatural and called it a religion. Consequently, he invented the gods and the goddess of all sorts. The pre-Socratic Greek philosopher Xenophanes rightly concluded that the gods had been created by humans in their own image. With these he also promulgated religious laws and doctrines which as history itself has testified, wrought untold havoc and the trail of blood since the earliest dawn of man. Religion is a self-serving human enterprise that promotes nothing but self-preservation, dominance and moral ascendancy to other human beings. Today, the world is not only geographically divided but more so, divided by man’s religious beliefs and understanding of the supernatural that produce open or silent hatred and intolerance among the humankind. Finally after the enlightenment, a new era of self-realization emerged and the understanding of the natural world has arrived. It started when it dawned on man that he has moral obligations and capabilities to change his world for the better, thereby took the responsibility. It is self-awareness which gave birth to humanism. Humanism is basically acquired and learned that will give a better chance of survival of the human species. Man started now to question critically the wisdom, if not the folly of his previous actions and beliefs and started to seek to understand the nature of his character. Indeed, it is only through the use of rational and critical thinking man can have a fair chance to resolve the problem of his character and understand the consequences of his actions.

Thus, humanism in Dapecol is born. The common existential self-awareness that whenever or wherever we can always do something for the good of society in particular and humanity in general. A realization that against the back-drop of a fast-paced society outside in a race of a never-ending quest for selfish gain and survival, we could slowly but surely plant a seed of reciprocal altruism among us and learn to co-exist in a win-win situation thereby surviving together in this hostile environment. Of course pessimist may think that behind bars is the most unlikely place for humanism to start with, however, it is the most challenging too. And we believe that our own efforts towards humanist ideals will serve as a catalyst for inspiration to other humanist in the free world. In here is the most acid test for humanism workability because it is in behind bars where the primeval survival of the fittest instinct rules. People in the free society considered prisons as the haven of lawlessness, ruthless and hardened criminals, though I know being an insider, this is an overstatement. There are still many of us who are trying to retain any semblance of human dignity and cling to whatever left of our morality while continually hoping to be given a second chance to live a normal and a decent life again upon re-integration into society. At present, we are slowly gaining grounds in promoting humanist ethics and philosophy despite lack of resources, mobility and only minimal outside support. What is the most important is that, though we are still in prison, our thoughts are free. That constitutes a big difference. We learn to value free thought being purveyor of humanism. Fred Edwords, a famous humanist, explicitly puts it, “free thought isn’t just a set of abstract philosophical ideas or critique of religion. It is and always has been a commitment to social change and social action, having a profound and positive impact on the advancement of civilization.” Thus, we look forward to the day when our country is no longer held captive of the caprices of the few and a prisoner of poverty, ignorance, and superstitious beliefs that have enslaved us for so long, but instead to be a truly free country that adheres to truth and justice and reciprocal altruism for the sake of our children’s children.

Roy G. Angana
Dapecol, Maximum Compound
Davao Del Norte, 1801

Saturday, July 15, 2006

You Have Got a Problem, Buddy

You've Got a Problem, Buddy! I find it incredible that you ask me to believe that the earth was created in six literal days; women come from a man’s rib; a snake, a donkey, and a burning bush spoke human language; the entire world was flooded, covering the mountains to drown evil; all animal species, millions of them, rode on one boat; language variations stem from the tower of Babel; Moses had a magic wand; the Nile turned to blood; a stick turned into a snake; witches, wizards, and sorcerers really exist; food rained from the sky for 40 years; people were cured by the sight of a brass serpent; the sun stood still to help Joshua win a battle, and it went backward for King Hezekiah; men survived unaided in a fiery furnace; a detached hand floated in the air and wrote on a wall; men followed a star which directed them to a particular house; Jesus walked on water unaided; fish and bread magically multiplied to feed the hungry; water instantly turned into wine; mental illness is caused by demons; a “devil” with wings exists who causes evil; people were healed by stepping into a pool agitated by angels; disembodied voiced spoke from the sky; Jesus vanished and later materialized from thin air; people were healed by Peter’s shadow; angels broke people out of jail; a fiery lake of eternal torment awaits unbelievers under the earth ... while there is life-after-death in a city which is 1,500 miles cubed, with mansions and food, for Christians only. If you believe these stories, then you are the one with the problem, not me. These myths violate natural law, contradict science, and fail to correspond with reality or logic. If you can’t see that, then you can’t separate truth from fantasy. It doesn’t matter how many people accept delusions inflicted by “holy” men; a widely held lie is still a lie. If you are so gullible, then you are like the child who believes the older brother who says there is a monster in the hallway. But there is nothing to be afraid of; go turn on the light and look for yourself.

The Philippines

The land blessed with a democracy but not separated from a theocracy. The land of a troubled public in dire need of a healthy republic. The land of bible studies, blind faith, prayer rallies, and other miracles. The land of deadly faith-healers; but hardly a land of truth-seekers. The land where schools are about religious indoctrination, not about scientific education. The land where priests, ministers, seminarians, and pastors are venerated more than college professors are respected. The land where school teachers enjoy a higher standard of earning doing household chores in other Asian land. The land where the few filthy rich are getting richer, and the many filthy poor are getting poorer. The land of undelivered vows, broken promises, missed opportunities, empty celebration, and historical degradation. The land where progress is not about good government, but progress as promised only from the New Testament. The land where the sinners in government are far more destructive than the sinners in the Old Testament. The land where the matured thinkers are wasted, neglected and rejected; but the childish believers are always tolerated, accepted and rewarded. The land where life in general is a competition to be the criminal rather than be the victim of the criminals. The land where thoughtless values on top of worthless values pretty much describe the nature of our social values. The land where three babies are born every single minute of the day adding to 1.5 million children every year. Most of them unwanted and unloved. The land where children struggle to survive under subhuman conditions are believed to be one of the mysteries of a higher power known as God. The land where we believe that a divinity is responsible for our spiritual leaders. That if we do not listen to the pronouncement of these holy men, such as the Catholic Bishops, Bro. Mike of El Shaddai, Bro. Eli of Dating Daan, Bro. Eddie of Jesus is Lord Movement, Bro. Manalo of Iglesia Ni Cristo, etc., – the love of God up there will no longer benefit any one down here. The Philippines - the land of the angelic, the diabolic, the lethargic, the fanatic, the evangelistic, the apologetic, the fatalistic, the apathetic, the frantic, the melancholic, the sadistic, the cleric, the masochistic, the unscientific, the prophetic, not to mention the millions of Filipinos who would rather be identified as Catholic than they be considered patriotic or nationalistic. For my part, I love the Philippines, the country of my birth. I am proud to be a Filipino as I am, more than anything else, Asiatic. I have no taste to be theistic, in fact, I thank God I am atheistic! I have learned to be no longer a religious lunatic! Poch Suzara

Thursday, July 06, 2006

My Critics

My critics tell me that I am a failure. That I have been rehashing my arguments for ages, like mustard seeds falling on arid soil. Oh well, I say, what can you expect from a high-school expelled student out of a Catholic school? Anyway, here is the arid soil my critics are referring to. Please check your GOOGLE in the internet and please reflect on: Poch Suzara in BBC Poch Suzara in CNN Poch Suzara in ABS,CBN Poch Suzara in Manila Standard Today Poch Suzara in Philippine Daily Inquirer Poch Suzara in Malaya International Poch Suzara in Business World Poch Suzara in the Manila Bulletin Poch Suzara in Philippine Star Poch Suzara in Newsbreak Magazine Poch Suzara in Davao, Cebu, Bacolod Times, Poch Suzara in the Philippine Free Press Poch Suzara in Gabriela Poch Suzara in Philippine History Poch Suzara in American History Poch Suzara in the San Francisco Public Library Poch Suzara in the Los Angeles Public Library Poch Suzara in the Berlin Public Library Poch Suzara In the Swiss Public Library Poch Suzara in Newsweek, USA Poch Suzara in Time, USA Poch Suzara in New York Times Poch Suzara in Los Angeles Times Poch Suzara in International Tribune Poch Suzara in the US Senate Poch Suzara in the Vatican Poch Suzara in the Opus Dei Poch Suzara in the Catholic Church Poch Suzara in the Jesuit Order Poch Suzara in the Born-Again Christian Poch Suzara in the Intl Church of God Poch Suzara in Adamson University Poch Suzara in De La Salle University Poch Suzara in Santo Thomas University Poch Suzara in Ateneo University Poch Suzara in University of the Philippines Poch Suzara in Letran, San Beda, Miriam College Poch Suzara in Harvard University Poch Suzara in Princeton University Poch Suzara in Yale University Poch Suzara in Cornell University Poch Suzara in Stanford University Poch Suzara in Mcmaster University, Canada Poch Suzara in Tokyo University Poch Suzara in Singapore University Poch Suzara in Sidney University Poch Suzara in City College of New York Poch Suzara in the United Nations Poch Suzara in the American Atheist Association Poch Suzara in the Central Intelligence Agency Poch Suzara in the White House, USA Poch Suzara in the Pentagon, USA Poch Suzara in Iran, Bangladesh Poch Suzara In the Islamic world Poch Suzara in the Buddhist world Poch Suzara in the Hindu world Poch Suzara in the holy bible Poch Suzara in the Bill Gates Foundation Poch Suzara in the Humanist Association, USA Poch Suzara in the B Russell Peace Foundation Poch Suzara in the B Russell society, USA Poch Suzara in the B Russell Society, Philippines Poch Suzara in the Pinoy Atheist Association Poch Suzara in the Philippine Society of Rational Humanists Poch Suzara in the Moral League and Enlightenment Society Poch Suzara in the High-School Dropout Assn of the Philippines Cheers!

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Teachers

Bertrand Russell compared the work of teachers with those of philosophers. “The teacher, like the artist, the philosopher, and the man of letters, can only perform his work adequately if he feels himself to be an individual directed by an inner creative impulse, not dominated and fettered by an outside authority.” For my part, I was most unhappy with my teachers in La Salle grade school and high school. They were such that I could not admire nor respect nor to emulate them. I imagine myself today as as individual like most of my teachers were then - habitually and utterly thoughtless. No thanks. I am most happy to have accomplished getting expelled out of high school in order to acquire real education through a lifetime of self-study via reading books, books, and books. Poch Suzara

Jesus as a Failure

Many a good man is a failure from a worldly point of view, but failure is not what one should wish to emulate. Jesus sought to save the world. Is there a dispute that Jesus as a “savior” has proved to be a global failure? Is our world today safer and saner or even a more humane place than it was during the time of Jesus? On the contrary, his plan of salvation was a failure. An ideal savior is needed now as much as 2,000 years ago. Right here in the Philippines, the biggest Catholic country in Asia, millions of Filipino families are crying daily for a Savior!
In the meantime, we are told that tolerant religious people can unite peacefully with non-religious people for a change. I agree. But before that could transpire, religious people must first learn to be tolerant of each other before the non-religious people can peacefully entertain and welcome the unity. Poch Suzara

The Catholic Church

The Catholic Church is a commercial enterprise masquerading as a religion. The pope is the chairman of the board and its CEO, the curia is the board of directors, the cardinals are the regional vice-presidents, and the priests are the sales managers. The customers are the 700 million Catholics living in Catholic countries.
Each and everyday, millions of faithful Catholics contribute to their Church. Specially as Catholics are told “to lay not up for yourselves treasures upon the earth . . . A rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven . . . It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God . . . Woe unto you that are rich.” And so, the Vatican Bank had to be established. Its deposits are now in the trillions of dollars. Next to the US government, the Catholic Church is the richest organization in the world.
Both the Catholic Church and the US government mutually share a common denominator: each other’s source of tremendous wealth, power, and glory comes from exactly the same traditional evil: fear and ignorance, on the one hand; and, on the other, hate and war.
In the meantime, Bertrand Russell wrote: “What the world needs now is not only love, but the also the greater knowledge about the nature of love, in all of its complexity.” Poch Suzara








































Theocracy and Democracy

Has not the church its own network of schools and parishes? And, as an aside, via the faithful disciples of the Lord Jesus – does not church also own and control major newspapers and magazines; radio and television stations propagating daily religious matters throughout the Philippines? What about banks, corporations and other commercial enterprises owned by the Opus Dei, the Jesuits, the Christian Brothers, the Franciscan Order, Dominican Order, not to mention the wealth, power, and glory of Iglesia Ni Cristo and El shaddai organization and the Jesus is Lord Movement!
Indeed, in this country, before we can begin to enjoy the freedom from mediocrity, or the freedom from bigotry, or freedom from stupidity, we must, first and foremost, enjoy the freedom from Christianity. It is, only in this way, that we can enjoy a true democracy.
The Catholic Bishops speak daily of corruption rampant in our sick society. How come our newspaper columnists have not had the spirit to write about the daily corruption of the Bishops themselves who are keeping the Filipino spiritually poor as a people and keeping the Philippines backward morally as a nation? In the meantime, in this God-forsaken country, thanks to our Christian values and beliefs, we are told that there is no salvation outside the Church. Hell, to prove just how poor and backward we are, millions of Filipinos also admit that there is no salvation inside the government either. Indeed, there is only corruption both inside the church and inside the government. But then again, what can be expected of a theocracy and a democracy together pretending mutually to solve the nation’s troubles and problems? Poch Suzara
Moral Strength
“It may be that religion is dead, and if it is, we had better know it and set ourselves to try to discover other sources of moral strength before it is too late.” -- Pearl Buck, What America Means to Me, 1947.
Moral strength, indeed, is not only a beauty, but also a necessity. Its basic sources, however, must always be found upon the search of the veracity, and not based upon easy beliefs in sacred mendacity. Moral strength is a matter of facing the problems of the human race that’s clear down here. It has nothing to do with the troubles of divine grace that’s vague up there. Poch Suzara






Rizal’s Biographer
Leon Ma. Guerrero was a faithful Catholic more than he was a faithful biographer. It is, indeed, incredible that after studying Rizal’s life and works, Guerrero had no idea what Rizal, a genius, lived and died for? Imagine a biographer asking of his subject: “Was he innocent or guilty? If innocent, then why is he a hero? If guilty how can he be a martyr? The answer is that he was neither guilty nor innocent.”
Rizal believed in the power of education to shape character and in the power of character to shape history. Innocent as a hero or guilty as a martyr had nothing to do with what Rizal precisely stood in his fight to liberate the minds of men and the hearts of women of his country.

Blind Faith

There is no such thing as the power of the God. There is only the power of the church. If we were unable to distinguish this simple truth, it is clearly due to another power. It is called: - blind faith. In the meantime, to the mediocre, mediocrity is the highest form of felicity. Never mind poverty or human misery or social insanity. After all, in faith, what we must always protect and defend in the Philippines is Christianity. Poch Suzara

College-educated Fools

College-educated friends and associates regularly email me pornographic materials, on the one hand; and, on the other, email me reading materials on the evils of family planning and birth control practice in this country. These are the same college-educated individuals who believe that even if our population were growing at the rate of 1.5 million babies a year, it poses no problem on our society because there is always God who will provide. Most of these children, however, are unloved and unwanted and abandoned by their parents. In fact, millions of these children - the future citizens of the Republic of the Philippines, are struggling to survive under subhuman conditions in the streets of our major cities. Poch Suzara

A Genuine Atheist

I have the highest respect for the genuine atheists. They are aware just how terrestrially fruitless have been the belief in the existence of God. These are atheists, however, who are gutless, if not just as thoughtless as those exactly like the millions of believers who have been indoctrinated to be utterly mindless. For my part, as an atheist, I have no desire to support financially or morally those who carry on spreading the Word of God. I do not care to contribute one way or the other for the expenses of the oldest, largest, and among the richest of industry in all history – the priesthood industry. Poch Suzara

The Most Sellable Item

The most sellable item in the world is a lie. Try, however, selling the truth; it is the most difficult, if not the most impossible, - task. There are no buyers. The ridiculous part about this whole pathetic state of affairs, however, is that the truth does not even exist; it has not yet been found. The search of the truth goes on forever in the light of eternity!
In the meantime, we are the victims. Our attitudes and beliefs have been formed by lies and deception otherwise more known as "education." Poch Suzara

Church and State Separation Mockery

The separation of Church and State does not exist in the Philippines. All the officials of the State, first and foremost, are faithful members of the Church. All the officials of the Church, however, have citizen’s allegiance to the Vatican State; moreover, they do not give a hoot about the Philippines. After all, the church teaches “love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any one love the world, the love of God is not with him.” In the Philippines, democracy is not a reality. It is not even a necessity. It is a mockery as inspired by a theocracy under the wealth, power, and glory of Christianity. Poch Suzara

Justice to Criminals

How can we make the death penalty law effective in deterring criminals? It is very easy. Legislate a better law to the effect that would-be parents should only propagate babies that they can love and want and need, and not replenish the Philippines with unwanted, neglected and abandoned children.This would be not only the most sensible step in bringing not criminals to justice, but precisely bringing justice to criminals. What better justice could there be available for would-be criminals other than to prevent their existence via the feasibility and the sensibility of family planning and birth control measures? Poch Suzara

A Nation of Prayers

We have been taught in our schools, colleges, and universities to believe that what we do for Christ in this life will be rewarded in the next life to come in heaven.
I ask: what life to come? After we are dead, and our body begins rotting, with what rotting eyes shall we see? With what rotting ears shall we hear? With what rotting nose shall we smell? With what rotting skin shall we feel? With what rotting palate shall we taste? And indeed with what rotting brains shall we be able to believe anything as rotten as death itself?
We Filipinos are poor as a people and the Philippines is backward as a nation? Why are we still deeply entrenched with silly religion that encourages human stupidity? In this 21st century, we have yet to touch the surface of the power of science that encourages human intelligence as much as human benevolence. Poch Suzara

Science

If your theories or ideas were science based, you will continue to make not only more discoveries, but will also continue to make more observations which is precisely what science is all about. In the meantime, asking questions and observing reality is a never-ending task. Science, however, is honest enough to admit that it only understands 1 per cent of what it observes in reality. Poch Suzara

John Milton, the Poet

He was disinherited by his father “because he kept not the Catholic religion” and he was caught reading the Bible. “
As for me, however, after reading the bible a great many years, I walked out of the Catholic Church. Bible contents certainly inspired in me to embrace the beauty of Atheism. God as depicted in the Bible is not the supernatural character worth loving. The devil too as depicted in the Bible as a supernatural character is not worth fearing.
I refuse to be intimidated by anything supernatural. Indeed, if supernatural beings exist, they can do what they want with me; but never, will they ever win my love and respect for either of them. Not in this life, or even in the next world to come, if any. Poch Suzara

Mary Magdalene

The church says Mary Magdalene was a prostitute. What was Jesus then doing with a prostitute during his crucifixion? According to the bible, she was also the first person Jesus appeared to right after his resurrection!
Let’s face it: if Mary Magdalene turned out to be the wife of Jesus, then the Vatican is in trouble with sacred lies. On the other hand, if Mary Magdalene was a prostitute, the Vatican is still in trouble with more sacred lies. Imagine Jesus – the Son of divinity, the paragon of purity, the epitome of respectability, the prince of tranquility, the savior of humanity - sexually involved with Mary Magdalene – a patuti, if not a tuti- frutie!
For my part, as an rational humanist, I ask: - what has Jesus, Mary, Joseph, Mary Magdalene, Peter, Paul, James, Judas and all the rest of the apostles of Christ – all belonging to Jewish families born in Israel during the 1st century have anything of human value to do with Filipino families born in the Philippines in the 21st century? Poch Suzara

Pure Baloney

God allowed Satan in the shape of a talking serpent to deceive Eve. Adam, however, was depicted as a coward too thoughtless to stand up for Eve. I said it before, I say it again: To believe this bible story as something true and holy is pure baloney. It degrades humanity.

For my part, if I were Adam, I should have been more responsible for Eve. I would have told both God and Satan to take a hike or to stick to their own kind of woman! Why bother with my one and only love?

Is it possible that we are all sick in this country because we love, worship, and adore a sick God who is always friendly and tolerant, - of a sick devil? It is time to dump Christianity as it is all based upon a silly mythology. Consider Christianity in history. She has had 2,000 years of opportunity to straighten out the mess in this world. Now it is getting more alarmingly translucent, if not glaringly transparent that Christianity has never been the solution simply because she has always been the problem to begin with. Not only in matters of spiritual poverty; but look at the hate and wars that have been declared in God’s name and for his glory ever since man evolved on this planet.

Let us, instead, as a human family, love one another. There is no such thing as divinity. It is time to pay more attention to the plight of humanity. There is absolutely nothing more precious globally. Poch Suzara

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Die for an Idea

It is heroic to die for an idea; it is, however, tragic to die for an idea that is false. What is even more terrible, however, is to die while intoxicated with the belief that brazen religious lies are among the most sacred of revealed truths. Poch Suzara

Masonry

Masonry was never a political party or a religious organization. It has always been a humanitarian and civic association. In fact, speaking as a Mason, Rizal once said: “Humanity cannot be redeemed while reason is not free, while faith would want to impose itself on facts, while whims are laws, and while there are nations to subjugate others. For humanity to be able to attain that lofty destiny toward which God guides it, it is necessary that within its fold there should be no dissensions nor tyranny… and no groans and curses be heard in its march … Masonry believes in God who guides mankind in its progress.”
No, I am not a Mason, though I was invited to be one. But as I openly declared myself an atheist, the invitation was withdrawn. Quite a few of my lawyer-friends are Masons. Be that as it may, I think, however, that the Catholic friars were rather stuck in the quagmire of mediocrity. They had nightmares of getting Rizal to retract from his errors against Masonry. Poch Suzara

Nothing

Nothing can be more degrading than to see millions of poor Filipinos have nothing going for them in this life except God – another nothing! My dear reader, have you ever heard of Filipinos who became rich for believing that God is bad? And yet millions of Filipinos are poor for believing that God is good.
But then again, it is just as degrading to see millions of rich Americans have nothing going for them in this life except money – another nothing.
My dear reader, have you ever heard of rich Americans who, in this life, before they died, converted their cash into traveler’s checks to take along with them in the next life? Poch Suzara

Beliefs

People believe this or believe that. People will even kill other people for not believing this or for not believing that. I think, however, it is time to take a good look at our harmful beliefs responsible for so much hate and killings in our world. Indeed, time has elapse. If we wish to save our world, we must learn to entertain more realistic and intelligent non-beliefs than have faith in our fantastic and stupid beliefs.Poch Suzara

Philippine Media

The Philippine media could mold public opinion to admire science rather than religion; to prepare for peace rather than to work for war; to love philosophy rather than theology. Indeed, the media could very well promote all that is creative for our society, and so diminish the impulses and desires that center round Filipinos getting more selfish, greedy, stupid, and insane. And yet, Filipino editors and columnists of newspapers and magazines; teachers and professors of schools, colleges and universities; producers and directors of the movie and television industry - all share a common interests together in this country: - they all try their utmost best to keep all of their readers and students and audiences as thoughtless as ever so as not to displease the Catholic Bishops enjoying theological and political control of the Philippines. And to think that these are the same Bishops who are the experts with the Revealed Truth that have yet to be revealed.
In the meantime, thanks to power of our media, we remain rudderless as a nation as we continue to be leaderless as a people. Poch Suzara

My Own Retraction

I am told by my Catholic friends that I too will eventually retract from my errors against God and from my errors against Christianity. I say, over my dead body. I’d rather die first. Indeed, in this life, I would rather enjoy the madness in my search of the truth than feel saved, secured, and mindless having faith in sacred lies.
In the meantime, my dear reader, never mind your free will. It is a piece of spiritual garbage as compared to the precious free will that God has gifted the devil. Poch Suzara

My Atheistic Religion

If I had to choose a religion, I should worship the sun. It is the universal giver of life. The sun is also much bigger and greater and older than the planet earth. One million planets the size of earth can fit inside the sun. What could be more worthy of worship! I should love and worship and adore the sun. She has never threatened me with eternal punishment if I did not believe in her life-giving grandiosity, not to menton her existence as the greatest of glory. Poch Suzara

Obedience

Obedience is not a virtue but a tool to enslave those who have been indoctrinated to have faith in their free will. Consider virtues. They consist in obedience to God's will and nobody knows anything about God's commands except the priests. In the Philippines, obedience saves the vast majority of Filipinos from the trouble of having to think together as a people and from the problem of having to work together as a nation. Indeed, in this country, our sick attitude towards each other can be summarized with these words: “Sila sila, kame kame, tayo tayo, – bahala ka na sa dios mo.” Poch Suzara

Rizal’s Biographer

Leon Ma. Guerrero was a faithful Catholic more than he was a faithful biographer. It is, indeed, incredible that after studying Rizal’s life and works, Guerrero had no idea what Rizal, a genius, lived and died for? Imagine a biographer asking of his subject: “Was he innocent or guilty? If innocent, then why is he a hero? If guilty how can he be a martyr? The answer is that he was neither guilty nor innocent.”
Rizal believed in the power of education to shape character and in the power of character to shape history. Innocent as a hero or guilty as a martyr had nothing to do with what Rizal precisely stood for in his struggle to liberate the minds of men and the hearts of women of his country.
In the violent opposition of mediocrity against greatness, what Albert Einstein said of Bertrand Russell, Einstein could have said exactly the same thing to our Jose Rizal: “Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocrities. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence.”
It must have been a sin for Guerrero to write truthfully about Rizal’s real motives in his struggles against theocracy. Thus, because of Catholic writers like Guerrero, most Filipinos believe Rizal retracted and died repentant. Indeed, in this predominantly Catholic country, Filipino historians, school teachers, college professors, and newspaper columnists have all tried their best to avoid discovering Rizal’s real nature as a rare man. Only the esoteric few know the real Jose Rizal who, at the expense of his own precious life, had the spiritual courage put more philosophical beauty in the Philippines where the Catholic Church, for centuries, has only put theological horrors. Poch Suzara

My Opinion

I would rather have an opinion on the question rather than on the answer. And opinion should always be tentative, never definite or dogmatic. It is always subject to change or emendation. If you point out errors in my opinion, I would just be happy to change my mind, and make the necessary corrections, especially if your own opinion made more sense than mine. In the meantime, please remember that no one has the right to an opinion on anything. You are entitled to such rights only after you have thoroughly studied every aspect and explored every facet indeed only after you are converstant with all sides of the issue in question. Poch Suzara

Moral Strength

“It may be that religion is dead, and if it is, we had better know it and set ourselves to try to discover other sources of moral strength before it is too late.” -- Pearl Buck, What America Means to Me, 1947.
Moral strength, indeed, is not only a beauty, but also a necessity. Its basic sources, however, must always be found upon the search of the veracity, and not based upon easy beliefs in sacred mendacity. Moral strength is a matter of facing the problems of the human race that’s clear down here. It has nothing to do with the troubles of divine grace that’s vague up there. Poch Suzara