April 01, 2009

A Simple Life

In this day and age, a constant struggle wages between western culture and our own Filipino upbringing. The lure of the "instant" life seems to be replacing the patient, resilient life of our ancestors. Today, people rarely brew coffee from their own beans, they just purchase instant coffee. Buying fastfood is common rather than having our own baon (packed lunch). Credit card machines line up our stores promoting a lifestyle of debt. "Buy now, pay later" instead of "save up, buy later".

Is the "instant" really good for us? Fastfood consumption has led to the rise in the incidence of obesity and heart disease. To keep up with the demand, food supplies now use genetically modified organisms (GMO) and pesticides in their supply chain. (These agents are the main suspects behind more cancers and other debilitating diseases. )The "credit card" mindset has brought about a generation of people enslaved by financial institutions. Recently, it has led to the collapse of the world economy.

How should we live? The simple life. The life our ancestors lived. Like them, we should eat fresh food produced locally. We should make our purchases from the wet market instead of the grocery. We should cook our traditional dishes which ensured the health of our race for generations. Our tinola and sinigang ensure vegetable nutrient intake as one consumes the broth. Eating our dishes, one can avoid obesity because we consume the vegetables and broth together with the meat. Financially, we should save before making a purchase.

The problem is that we have become self centered. We think we can violate the basic priciples that govern ecology and economy and get away with it. Why do we follow a mindset that is killing this generation? Our future lies in building a new civilization based on the tried and true principles of our heritage.