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Kamayan para sa Kalikasan

  223rd

monthly

session

 

 J O U R N A L

    THE WEBSITE VERSION  

    POST YOUR COMMENTS OR QUESTIONS AT THE BOTTOM

79th Issue

September
2008

 
     


 FORUM OVERVIEW (click here)    MAIN NEWS SECTION (right below)   OTHER SECTIONS (click here)

Reviving our strong sense of The Commons, flowing from our conscious sense of oneness, is key to effectively defending and conserving our Patrimony, that is, the collective heritage and legacy of our generation. We need to join in conscious and active stakeholdership in our patrimony.

 FORUM ECHOES           
Methane plant
in
M’talban harmful,
not just ‘useless’

THE METHANE power plant to be constructed in the town of Montalban in Rizal province has been judged to be harmful to the global environment, and not merely another useless “white elephant” by speakers and participants of   Kamayan para sa Kalikasan environmental forum on  August 15.

(full story below)

 FORUM FOCUS         

Our birthright, inheritance and legacy

 Call: Defend our Patrimony!

THE RICH NATURAL RESOURCES, as utilized and cared for well by our ancestors for thousands of years have been passed on as heritage endowment have come to the hands of the present generations. This heirloom described as our "living quarters" because these "quarters" are themselves living, constitute an invaluable part of our collective patrimony, the birthright of our small and big communities from the scope of the barangay to the national scope. And we are collectively duty-bound to pass this on to the next generations as our legacy, our way of manifesting our concern for them.

(full story below)

 

OTHER SECTIONS:

EDITORIALS: 


BOXED FEATURE:

Protecting Our Community and National Patrimony

Our Sense of The Commons, Our Common Sense

TAHANLAHI: Home of Our Race 

OTHER ITEM:                      3 Visayas nominated to host WED 2010

FOOTER QUOTE:

     “You ask if we own the land, and mock us: ‘Where is your title?’ When we ask you for the meaning of your words, you answer with taunting arrogance: ‘Where are the documents to prove that you own the land?’ Title. Documents. Proof. Such arrogance to speak of owning the land,when you shall be owned by it. How can you own that which will outlive you? Only the race owns the land because only the race lives forever."

          -– APO MACLI-ING DULAG, Kalinga chieftain

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HUNDREDS of Pateros townfolks, including toddlers and octagenarians, held a torch-lit procession last Sunday for the revival of the Pateros River, known as Ilog ni Sta. Marta.
[KFJ FOTO by Ding Reyes]


  EDITORIALS       

 Protecting Our Community
and National Patrimony

INHERITANCE is what parents leave to their children when they die. We call this family inheritance. Patrimony, on the other hand, refers to collective inheritance, in a scale beyond family, and thus, what every generation is expected to leave to the next. And this is primarily the assets and resources that nature has provided. Man-made treasures (artifacts and works of art) of a culture also become patrimony, but the natural resources constitute the major stock of patrimony.

Patrimony is not just the material assets handed over. Patrimony takes its meaning and value from the act of care for the inheritors; the act of providing for what they will need. Patrimony is greatly invested with provident concern for the beneficiaries. Patrimony also implies inclusiveness. The patrimonial grant is intended for everyone: it is a birthright, a claim by virtue of simply being born into the community.

Unfortunately, for us Filipinos, we do not have this collective sense of patrimony. We read that our ancestors, the tribal and indigenous peoples had it. But colonization and the leadership and politics it engendered supplanted this consciousness. We have also lost the sense of the “commons” and of responsibility for the common good. Again, the loss is not just about the material assets, but more tragically, loss of our sense of community in the here and now, and in continuity with the past and future generations. We may may claim strong family ties, but our communitarian values have been severely undermined by the colonial experience and the brand of social organizing and governance that followed, and prevails to this day.

How else explain the current condition of our environment? A recent report from a EU study observes that the Philippines had managed, in the period 2000 to 2005, to reduce its forest cover to 24% of total land area….among the smallest in Southeast Asia, second only to Singapore.

The remaining forest cover is one of the smallest among all tropical countries, and even well below the dry Mediterranean countries like Greece and Italy. It is said to be at the level of Saharan countries. Our forest to population ratio is only 0.1 hectare of forest per head, one of the worst in the world. That society and government allowed this depradation to happen, indicates a fatal blindness of the heart, the cause of which is the very same that has earned this country to be ranked as among the most corrupt.

Before we can talk about protecting our patrimony, we must first work on identifying with nature, our Mother Earth, as wanting to nurture all her children. Then we must retrieve the sense of the “commons” by leaving much of nature open to all, including the creatures that are imperiled of extinction, because some people continue to destroy their habitat.

Then we must convince ourselves, and our irresponsible leaders, of the urgency of protecting the environment given the mounting climate disasters. Only then can we recover a sense of the value of patrimony, and authentically feel the need to protect it.

We need to protect community patrimony, related to environment in specific localities. We need to protect national patrimony relative to the integrity of our national territory. But how, when we do not even seem to have the sense of nation? When we fail to see that lumads, Muslim and Christian Filipinos ought to share one and the same patrimony, and be, not several, but…. one nation?   (A.C.)

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Second Editorial
 Our Sense of The Commons, Our Common Sense

COMMON SENSE dictates to all of us by this time in Hu¬man History that we abhor slavery. This was not the situation as recently as just a few centuries ago. Earlier, especially in far-flung colonies of even the most “bene¬volent” of monarchies, the royalty and aristocracy owning slaves was common sense. The Human has progressed indeed in its quest to validate the word sapiens in the name of the species.

But long after the monarchial clans lost their crowns, something has remained that eludes sapiens logic. It is the Regalian Doctrine of private landownership. That remain- ing vestige of primitive human arrangements propped up by only by weaponry and brainwashing, has persisted to this day.

Having enjoyed its spoils for decades and even centuries, landowning clans use all the tools available to them to assert stubbornly that they have the “right” to own parcels of Nature because they had bought these. Trace the paper trail of receipts and it gets back to simple grabbing of lands previously held in common by actual residents and tillers. Unless anyone can show a receipt from the Creator, they’ve all been buying stolen property!

Lack of common sense comes from not upholding or even knowing the sense of The Commons.  (D.R.)


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  FORUM FOCUS         

Our birthright, inheritance and legacy 

Call: Defend Our Patrimony

THE RICH NATURAL RESOURCES, as utilized and cared for well by our ancestors for thousands of years have been passed on as heritage endowment have come to the hands of the present generations. This heirloom described as our "living quarters" because these "quarters" are themselves living, constitute an invaluable part of our collective patrimony, the birthright of our small and big communities from the scope of the barangay to the national scope. And we are collectively duty-bound to pass this on to the next generations as our legacy, our way of manifesting our concern for them.

But various factors are blocking us in the performance of this responsibility. Large sections of our population are even now being deprived their rightful share in partaking of this patrimony, due to such factors as insatiable greed of the elite, on the one hand, and passive even if grudging acquiescence of the majority, on the other. Due to this and to its expected worsening, the birthright of hundreds of millions of Filipinos yet unborn, has now been placed in serious jeopardy.

As the joint convenors of Kamayan para sa Kalikasan, CLEAR and SALIKA, participating in the ongoing "Ikalawang Pistahang Kamalaysayan," decided that this Third Friday's session, the 223rd session of the monthly forum, will discuss "Defense of Community and National Patrimony," with focus on our COMMONS, on our natural resources.

To compose our panel of resource persons, we have invited Dr. Ernesto R. Gonzales, president-elect of the National Economic Protectionism Association (NEPA) to give the community-rootedness of the needed active environmentalism; Jose Eduardo D. Velasquez, vice chair of Kaisahan sa Kamalayan sa Kasaysayan (Kamalaysayan); and a leader or representative of the Defend Patrimony alliance.

Kamayan para sa Kalikasan is held on the Third Friday of every month, jointly convened by the Clear Communicators for the Environment (CLEAR) and Sanib-lakas ng Inang Kalikasan (SALIKA), and fully sponsored by Kamayan Restaurant since March 1990.


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  FORUM ECHOES           

Echoes From August Forum  

Methane plant in Montalban
harmful, not just ‘useless’

THE METHANE power plant to be constructed in the town of Montalban in Rizal province has been judged to be harmful to the global environment, and not merely another useless “white elephant” by speakers and participants of Kamayan para sa Kalikasan environmental forum on August 15.

The most important consideration in this judgment is the admitted incapability of the Montalban Methane Power Corporation 9mmpc) to recover, for turning into electric power, even just half the amount of methane expected to be collected from the cities and lone municipality in the national capital region. This means the bulk of methane to be produced in the landfill of this energy-generating facility would be a net contributor of large amounts of methane gas to the greenhouse gases directly causing the global climate change.

Methane is said to have 23 times more warming potential than carbon. Instead of the garbage being segragated at source for the methane producers to be composted immediately, this will be collected and allowed to spoil the atmosphere even more.

Speakers at the forum were Dr. Helen N. Mendoza, chair of the Philippine Network on Climate Change (PNCC); Sonia Mendoza, chair of Mother Earth Foundation, and Rei Panaligan, national coordinator of the Ecological Waste  Coalition (EcoWaste).

MMPC executive vice president Danilo Cantiller was invited to the forum but declined, citing other priorities. The invitation was for him to come or send a qualified representative. He decided to do neither.


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  OTHER ITEMS           

Three Visayan cities nominated
to host WED-Philippines in 2010

THREE cities or urban centers in the Visayas have been nominated to host the World Environment Day commemoration in the Philippines in June 2010, according to WED-Phils Secretary-General Ed Aurelio C. Reyes

The three are Bacolod City, Negros Occidental; Iloilo City in Panay island; and Catarman City in Northern Samar. The WED-Phils. network’s Annual Assembly in Batangas City next June will finally choose among the nominees which one will be the national site to host the WED commemoration in the Philippines in June 2010.

The WED-Philippines secretariat will formally inform shortly the local governments and the civil society organizations involved of their respective cities' having been nominated and basics and specifics of what, in the minimum, would be entailed in being a national site.  WED-Philippines has been hosted in Quezon City (2001 and 2002), Puerto Princesa City (2003 and 2008), Cagayan de Oro City (2004), Baguio City (2005), Tagbilaran City (2006), and Davao City (2007).


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   BOXED FEATURE          

TAHANLAHl

HOME OF OUR RACE

Mahal naming mga anak at apo ay tinuturuan—

Mahalin ang isa’t isa at ang Inang Kalikasan

Na noon ay nagbigay-buhay, ngayo’y yumayakap sa himlay

Ng mga Ninunong nagbalik na sa Lupa, umuwi na sa Kanya.

Ang Inang Kalikasan ang bumubuhay ngayon sa amin

Hanggang sa kami man ay umuwi na rin, matapos iluwal

Ang bagong mga Anak na aming maiiwan, kanyang aarugain.

Walang-patid ang agos ng Dulambuhay ng Lahi,

Sa di-mabilang na pagsikat, paglubog ng sa langit ay naghahari,

 

We love our children and grandchildren, and teach them—

To love one another and Mother Nature

Who once gave life to our ancestor, and now embraces

Those who have gone home to the Earth, to Her.

It is Mother Nature who now nurtures us with Life

Until that time when we completely return home to Her,

But only after we bring forth a new generation

To leave behind under her care.

Endlessly flows the Lifestory of our race,

In countless risings and settings of the King of the sky.

-- Atid Sadiwa

(One stanza out of 12, as carried in the original and in translation, in the book The White
 Man’s Burden: From Call of Duty to Sense of Shame
by Ed Aurelio C. Reyes, 1996)


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Kasaysayan at ang Ating Yamang Panlahat

Pagbabagu-bago -- sa Kahapon, Ngayon at Bukas -- ng ating pagtuklas, pag-aruga at pagtamasa sa panahong tayo’y malaya, at pagkatapos ay pagkawala at pagkasira nang pagharian tayo ng mga gahamang dayuhan at kabalat, at ngayo’y pagbawi at pagtatanggol sa ating sama-samang yaman, sa ating patrimonya, na ating minamana sa naunang mga salinlahi at ipinamamana naman sa mga kasunod pa. Ito talaga ang Kasaysayan! (Sa kasaysayan ay istoryang ito, di ang pagsasaulo ng mga pangalan at petsa, ang mahalaga!)

Panahon nang kilalanin natin ang katotohanan na ang mga pamayanan sa ating Sangkapuluang Katagalugan, at ang anumang pagkabansang nabuo na ng mga pamayanang ito, ay may pinanghahawakang kayamanan na nauukol sa pagtatamasa ng bawat isang tao sa mga pamayanan at sa pagkabansang ito, yamang karapatan batay sa pagkakasilang, yamang nauukol sa lahat at di lamang sa iilan, yamang sa iyo at sa kabuuan. Oo, kapatid, mayaman ka! Hindi nga lamang halata! Kilalanin ang mga yamang ito (nasa website namin ang mga paliwanag):


Sa kasalukuyang Pistahang Kamalaysayan, iniaalay ng Kaisahan sa Kamalayan sa Kasaysayan ang Mensaheng ito upang tumulong sa pagpapaaktibo ng lahat o karamihan man lamang ng mga may-taya sa pangangalaga ng ating sama-samang kayamanan bilang mga pamayanan at bilang bansa.


<http://kamalaysayan.8m.net>

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All are invited. to the  Kamayan para sa Kalikasan Environmental Forum held regularly, since March 1990, on the 3rd Friday every month, 10:30am-2pm at the Kamayan Restaurant along EDSA, Mandaluyong City. It is convened jointly by the Clear Communicators for the Environment (CLEAR) and SanibLakas ng mga Aktibong Lingkod ng Inang Kalikasan (SALIKA), fully sponsored by Kamayan.  

 
   

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