The Philippines: Travel Blog Entry #2
I have been in Metro Manila for 4 days now, and I am already starting to forget about “responsibilities” at home. There is a lot to be said for early preparation. Today was a special day. Two important things happened today: 1) Jan Celebrated his reunion with his classmates. He has been planning it for a long time now and it finally happened. It was a blast. Everyone was so kind and genuine. There are a lot of good, kindhearted people in the world.
I have seen people actively helping themselves the entire time I have been here. It is a shame that some people will use the recent typhoon and the countries catholic roots too in some way condemn the people that have died as if they were being judged by the “real” god, whoever that may be. The God I believe in would not do that to the very people that he loves. I will get theological (religious philosophy) for a second. Skip to the next paragraph if you don’t want to read it.
I understand the religious argument for almost everything, particularly that of conservative Christianity, apologetics, eschatology, etc. I graduated from Bible college before I began working on my BA. I graduated Salutatorian from BC. I have also been ordained (Not licensed). At one point in my life, all I did was read the Bible and pray for hours a day and watch religious programming and listen to religious music. This was years before I went to Bible college. For the first half of my entire Christian experience, my only friends were in my church. I am not saying this to brag, condemn, or anything negative. Let me be clear. I am just setting the context for my next couple of statements: Religion has a place in the world, and that place is to give people hope.
Also, anyone who uses religion or God to condemn anyone for not believing “the right way” has missed it. It is sad when you see more unconditional love at a bar than the local church. People have asked me how do I reconcile faith in God while being a gay man in a relationship with another gay man. It is really quite simple: I had to unlearn years of opinions, fears, bad teachings, and conversion therapy. I learned the trick and that is to love myself just as I am. It took me years but here I am: Happy and prosperous with the love of my life sitting in the Philippines, relaxing on my generous host’s bed as I type this out on my MacBook Pro. My point is simply this: Love yourself and love those around you. Love here is an action word. In the KJV (King James Version) they use the best word for love and that is Charity (Love in Action). Now to my second important piece of news.
2 ) I decided to get another tattoo. But this time right here in the Philippines. The appointment has already been set. I am looking forward to it and I can’t wait to post pictures of it on FB.
Much love and peace to all of you.