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THERELEVANCEANDVALIDITYOFRIZALSCONCEPTS
By:Romero,RomanaandSantos.
(RizalandtheDevelopmentofNationalConsciousness)
Rizals mission and his concepts of nationalism became the rallying
force of the revolutionary leaders who took over the leadership of the
country when Rizals life tragically ended. The later leaders of the
Filipinos made him their inspiration for independence. Let us now
consider the validity of Rizals ideas in the contemporary Philippine
setting.
RizalandtheRevolutionaryLeaders
Rizalsversatilityandgeniusencouragedanarrayofclearguideposts
hard work, courage, vigilance, patience and perseverance. But the
patience of the people long abused was waning. In his absence from
manila at a period of unrest, his radical contemporaries organized
Katipunan. These revolutionary leaders needed his support but they
failedtogetit.Rizalrefusedtosanctiontherevolutionaryplanbecause
heknewthesporadicviolenceanduprisingwouldonlybringdeathad
failure, destruction and frustration. Bonifacio, Jacinto, Aguinaldo and
other revolutionists failed to see the realistic wisdom of Rizal. They
wanted immediate action and prompt delivery from their sufferings at
anycost.Theywereallwillingtodiefortheircountryifneedbe.They
wereidealisticradicalsandtheylookeduptoRizalastheirmainsource
ofinspirationandguidance.

    

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AndresBonifacio

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ClassicallynichedastheGreatPlebeian.Hehadbeenamongthe
first members of La Liga Filipina. Bonifacio esteemed Rizal and his
ideals.HespearheadedtherevivaloftheLigaafteritscollapsein1892

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upon Rizals exile in Dapitan and he was most active in recruiting its

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upon Rizals exile in Dapitan and he was most active in recruiting its
members.Inashortwhile,theLigawasagainindeaththroes.Thistime,
itsmemberssplitintoCuerpodeCompromisariosfortheintellectualand
sophisticatedones,andtheKKKfortheplebeians,headedbyBonifacio.
His nationalistic fervor prompted him to selfstudy and he read
thenovelsofRizal,threevolumesofLaSolidaridadandotherpolitically
inspiredbooks.HischoiceofliteraturewassimilartothatofRizal,forhe
also read The French Revolution, The Wandering Jew, The Ruins of
Palmyra, Les Misarbles, The Bible and accounts of lives of America
Presidents,treatisesoninternationallawandPenalandCivilCodes.
He translated Rizals poem Mi Ultimo Adios entitled as
Pahimakas. Rizals concepts circulated among the members of the
Katipunan. His portrait was displayed at the Katipunan headquarters.
The Katipunan letterhead listed Rizal as its honorary President. In
organization, the Katipunan leaned heavily on the Liga. There were
provisions for a hierarchy of councils, corresponding to national,
provincial and municipal levels of government. Unknown to Rizal, the
Katipunanwasinspiredbyhisveryspiritandideas.
Bonifacio and his adviser, Emilio Jacinto, prepared a separate
drafts to serve as the founding and sustaining documents of the
Katipunan.BonifaciowroteGagawin ng mga Anak ng Bayan (Duties of
the Sons of the People) and Jacinto was responsible for the Kartilla ng
Katipunan(KatipunanPrimer).
EmilioJacinto
OfalltheFilipinoheroeswhocameafterRizal,EmilioJacintoalonehas
beendescribedastheRizalinesoulwhoseintelligenceandenthusiasm
directedtheKatipunan.Bonifaciosawinhimthesoulofthatsociety.
HismoralandliterarymodelwasRizal.HescrutinizedtheNoliandFili,
RizalsarticlesinLaSolidaridad,andtheannotationofMorgasSucesos
delasIslasFilipinas.Hetriedtowalkinthefootstepsofhismodel.And
inhisadulationofRizal,Jacintovolunteeredtorescuetheherofromhis
cabinonboardtheCastillaastheRevolutionspreadoutin1896.
The Rizaline soul kept on writing . He prepared a commercial code,
Samahan ng Bayan sa Pangangalakal, (Commercial Association of the
People).HeputaglossaryofnobletractscalledLiwanagatDilim(Light
andDarkness),whichservedasRevolutionarycode.Heedited,andlater
putoutsinglehandedly,theKatipunannewspaperKalayaan.
EmilioAguinaldo
After the execution of Bonifacio, Aguinaldo assumed leadership of the
Katipunan. Cognizant of his limited education, Aguinaldo did not
hesitate to sound out the opinions of his contemporaries like Trinidad
PardodeTavera,FelipeBuencamino,CayetanoArellano,PedroPaterno
andAntonioLuna.Hehadtheinsightandwisdomthatthesemencould
lendtothegovernmentthatwasthrustintohishandsatTejeros,while
hebattledtheSpaniards.
HeinitiatedtheprojecttoconsultRizalinDapitanabouttheimpending
revolution. Rizal recommended the promotion of Antonio Luna in the
ranks, against the unanimous dissent of the Revolutionary Cabinet

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ranks, against the unanimous dissent of the Revolutionary Cabinet


headedbyApolinarioMabini.
ApolinarioMabini
Adiehardnationalistandphilosopher,Mabiniwasalsotheintellectual
andmoralleaderoftherevolution.Tohim,Rizalwasthemosteloquent
exampleofthetriumphofdutyoverpersonalconvenienceofideaover
physicalforce,ofvirtueoveregoism.
Mabini was among the Filipino intellectuals who worked for the
assimilation of the Philippines as a regular province of Spain. He
remained a pacifist during the first phase of Revolution (18961897).
However,theeventsatBiyaknaBatoandtheirconsequenceschanged
hismindandjoinedtheRevolution.
Like Rizal, he did not believe the Americans and warned his
compatriots. His major literary works are El Verdadero Decalogo,
Programa Constitucional de la Republica Filipina and Ordenanzas de la
Revoluciondefinedhissocial,moralandpoliticalideas.
RIZALANDTHELATERFILIPINOLEADERS
The Rizaline concept had achieved several goals that Rizal had
engendered: among them are the recognition of and respect for the
fundamental rights of his people, sovereign independence and the
adoptionofaunitedFilipinonation.
HowwellhavewefaredinbuildingthatnationenvisionedbyRizal?To
answerthisquestionareviewofthedevelopmentsintheemergenceof
thatnationinthe20thcenturyisathand.
A.PhilippineNationalismDuringtheAmericanPeriod
Since armed resistance against the Americans proved futile, the
Filipinos capitulated. The Americans offered a reasonable policy
rooted in the recognition of individual freedom and equal
opportunitiesandmutualcooperationintheirsubtlecolonialism.
Thiscooperationhadforgedanenduringpoliticalandeducational
partnership.
B.     Nationalistic Movements and Leaders During the Commonwealth
Era
The formal promise of independence inspired and further united the
Filipinos.TheadministrationoftheCommonwealthwasledbyManuel
Luis Quezon, Sergio Osmena, Claro M. Recto, Manuel Roxas, Juan
Sumulong,JoseP.Laurelandseveralothernationalists.LedbyClaroM.
Recto,theconstitutionalconventiondraftedthe1935Constitution.
C.JapaneseOccupation:ACrucialTestofNationalism
Inthefaceofinsurmountablethreatstonationalsurvival,JoseP.laurel
ablymanagedtosustainthespiritofunity,emphasizetheimportanceof
racial pride and identity and keep aflame the torch of freedom in the
hearts of his people, without antagonizing the Japanese authorities or
needlesslyprovokingmaltreatmentofhispeople.

needlesslyprovokingmaltreatmentofhispeople.
D.RecognitionofPhilippineIndependence
FilipinoleadershadrestoredtheirfreedomafterWorldWarIIandled
theFilipinosaftertheestablishmentofThirdRepublicofthePhilippines
(RoxastoPresentAdministration).

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