the Spanish occupations

The untold history Rizal’s reflections during the Spanish occupation had led him to predict and reveal the potential conditions that will come into existence in the Philippines after a century. Which in fact happened in the country. No one knows what was in his mind during that time but one can easily assume that he wrote a narrative description of the past events that accounts the unenlightened state of the Filipino people. These circumstances directly imply that the country is the ultimate victim of a disease diffused by Spain.

This was the other side of the story that was not presented to numerous spectators of European discoveries. In line with this analysis, let me refer to the elementary teachings about the goal of European colonizers in establishing settlements in the country, the 3 G’s – God, Gold, Glory. To be able to apply this in a consistent manner, the Spaniards tried to implement rules and policies to its colony to sustain its glory which was the source of the reduced number of Philippine inhabitants. In this case, this was a successful move made by Spaniards to maintain its supremacy.

Furthermore, they continued to saturate them with their foreign beliefs. This then was the beginning of their “God goal”, they infused to the natives the Christian faith which exposed them to their so called “higher faith” which communicates that they are better and more intelligent than the natives. With this newly introduced faith, natives were attracted to a different lifestyle and culture. A culture filled with repeated prayers, songs, images of white-skinned saints and any other religious rites taught and performed by friars.

Constantly practicing this, the natives became ashamed of what they originally have, their indigenous knowledge and activities were then condemned. Most of the Filipino people took them three centuries to realize that their culture and practices had undergone evolution. However, this does not suggests that Filipino people lack intellectual acuity to be fully aware of their impoverished condition. Because they are also humans conditioned to learn from their physical environment and with this they have the capacity to discover things that are happening around them.

They found out that they can not anymore tolerate the new culture they are engaged to because it brought tension and stress to them. This was then a message to the Spaniards that they can no longer fool the natives whom they thought, in their first encounter with them, as ignorant and uneducated. Maybe what drove the Spaniards to describe the nature of the natives is their inferior feelings towards them. Their rich resources and environment wherein they easily adapted and their capacity to create implements and tools out of it.

Of course there are several reasons why any colonizer would feel inferior to the Filipino people, not to mention Rizal who embodied the country through his achievements. Having realized all their misfortunes during the Spanish period, the Filipino people failed to use their culture as a form of resistance. This was the most brilliant and successful idea so far carried by the colonizers because they penetrated through the core of their civilization which eventually dismantled their diversed cultures. Which is also the reason that caused them to be indolent and moribund.

They are so fond of peace that kept harmonious relations with the colonizers which also brought them to the extent of adhering to the established customs and doctrines. Rizal mentioned that improvement and growth of the country can be hindered due to the continuous brutalization of the Filipinos. The Filipino people during the Spanish colonization were divided in terms of ways how to overthrow the colonizers, as mentioned in class, the revolution from above and the revolution from below sets the division.

Brutalization can either set a revolution in light of freedom or stagnation which causes primitiveness to remain among the people. As long as the Spaniards maintain their superiority to the natives, they are depriving them of its ability for self-determination which then their progress remains to be under control. Rizal wanted change by using reason and not through military engagement that is the reason he wrote several essays including this one to make the people be aware of its present condition.

The Spaniards coerced the natives to indulge to the benefits of the newly found faith, however, we can not assumed that every move done by the Spaniards brought undesirable qualities to the native culture. Because in any particular situation, their contributions somehow caused the people to unite with other groups of the island. But going back to the three goals – God, gold and glory, we can argue that God was taken advantaged by the friars to exploit the natural resources of the country.

Taking for example the practice of giving tithes and offerings, ten percent is only asked for the tithes and offering is an act of contributing unconditionally to the church as an extension the Lord’s kingdom. And as long as Christianity is concerned, giving by coercion can not bring salvation to a certain person. The previous observations about the Spanish domination exposed the issue of monopolizing the knowledge and intelligence of the Filipino people.

No one knows the exact reasons for such activity since they were pampered by the natives in such a way that the colonizers presumed that they are the superior race who have the power to dominate the lower ones. Even though colonizing the Philippines is not the real plan since it seems like a serendipitous one, they declared to the whole world that the new soil is another comparative value of which they are not for a reason that the treatment given to them by the original inhabitants of the island entails their superiority.

This does not suggests that the blame is on the early natives who made contact with the dying visitors, instead it proposes the idea that the Europeans were only depending on their hypothesis about the unknown world found on the other side of the planet. It doesn’t mean that the first people to develop navigational technologies and to set out to exotic places are those who can manipulate the entire world. With Rizal’s observations concerning the establishment of the Spanish colony and its creation of intitutions in the country.

He laid the future conditions of the Philippines in great and careful detail. It is very astounding to find that he has a great mind in comprehending the conditions in the next hundred years! However, to avoid misinterpreting his abilities again, he is not a prophet who speaks predictions, he is just a mere writer interpreting and examining the general state of the country with the hope of bringing it to its own independent state.