A Photograph

Blanca the dog

Days are getting shorter really fast. When I arrived from Pangasinan last weekend, I could still take some decently lighted photos around 5:30 in the afternoon. Now, it’s completely dark by 6:00.

About a few days ago, I was walking at UP around that time. I started my way along Victoria M. Ela Ave., stopping briefly to listen to some church music at the Diocesan Shrine of St. Therese of the Child Jesus. I’m not a Catholic. I just find church songs amazing. I then crossed the bridge over an arm of the Molawin river and turned right at Pili Drive. The plan was to reach Freedom Park through this route.

At Freedom Park, at the mouth of Manuel L. Roxas Street, there were no lights. Only shadows. There were some lights at the other end of the street. It was those lights that hit a big mass in the middle of the street creating a shadow that was impossible to ignore. When I saw it, I walked a little slower, trying to figure out what it was. Was it a big branch of a tree that fell? Was it a person? It was neither. As I approached the shadow, I saw that it was, in fact, a dog. Lying down, not moving, aside from its occasional breaths. My first immediate thought was to ask for help. But who? Of course, Cats of UPLB, who also feed the dogs here, and who probably know the dog. They replied. Turns out, the dog, whose name was Blanca (a boy), was missing during their feeding time that day. Volunteers from outside the campus went to UPLB, beating the 10 pm curfew, to feed Blanca. Good thing he ate and drank water, they said. They returned the following day to bring Blanca to San Pablo, where he is currently confined. If you’re interested in sending donations for his treatment, which is currently running beyond Php 6k, reply to this email and I’ll send you their donation lines. Alternatively, you may also check the Facebook page of Cats of UPLB for the donation lines and updates on Blanca’s health.

A Thought

Freedom requires self-reliance.

When you choose freedom over a middle man or a centralized power, you trade convenience with liberty. Being free is not easy, because when you don’t answer to anyone, you take full responsibility for your actions.

A Quote

When we read someone else thinks for us: we merely repeat his mental process. … Accordingly in reading we are for the most part absolved of the work of thinking. … It stems from this that whoever reads very much and almost the whole day, but in between recovers by thoughtless pastime, gradually loses the ability to think on his own – as someone who always rides forgets in the end how to walk. But such is the case of many scholars: they have read themselves stupid. For constant reading immediately taken up again in every free moment is even more mentally paralysing than constant manual labour, since in the latter we can still muse about our own thoughts. But just as a coiled spring finally loses its elasticity through the sustained pressure of a foreign body, so too the mind through the constant force of other people’s thoughts.

— Arthur Schopenhauer

A Question

What can you do to not lose your ability to think on your own?


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