Philippine Indolence

eThe Indolence of the Filipino / Sobre La Indolencia de los Filipinos Jose P. Rizal (1890) KASPIL1 A56 GROUP MEMBERS: Chen, Harwin Maynard Cheng, Ryan Allen Gan, Angeline Go, Ailea Kamille Li, Jill Andrelene Pujol, Michael Andrew Rustia, Maria Dominique THE INDOLENCE OF THE FILIPINO Sobre La Indolencia de los Filipinos By Jose P. Rizal (1890) I. BACKGROUND OF THE LITERARY WORK A. Location of author during composition Rizal wrote the first two installments when he was in Brussels and the last three installments in Madrid, Spain.

B. Date of writing and publication The five installments of La Indolencia were published in Madrid, Spain in La Solidaridad on July 15, July 31, August 15, August 31 and lastly, on September 15, all in the year 1890. La Solidaridad was eventually published by the Philippines Education Co. in Manila, Philippines on 1913, seventeen years after Rizal’s death. C. Context of the literary work Rizal wrote La Indolencia de los Filipinos under the pen name of Dr. Sancianco as a response to the accusation of Filipino indolence.

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He pointed out how the word indolence is greatly misrepresented in the sense of little love for work and lack of energy. D. Audience addressed by the literary work The La Solidaridad was a continuation of Rizal’s campaign of education and it was addressed to his countrymen, the Filipinos, to awaken them to their own faults and at the same time arouse the Spaniards to the defects in the system of the Spain that led to the shortcomings of the Filipinos. II. CONTENTS OF THE LITERARY WORK A. Arguments on Indolence 1.

Contrary to the belief of many, indolence is “not the cause of backwardness and trouble, but actually the effect of backwardness and trouble. ” 2. Indolence is compared to a patient’s illness. While the patient (native) attributes it to the poor cure or system, the physician (colonizer) attributes it to the patient’s poor constitution. The chronic malady of indolence is not a hereditary one. B. Causes of Indolent Culture 1 The Indolence of the Filipino / Sobre La Indolencia de los Filipinos Jose P. Rizal (1890) 1. The Hot Climate KASPIL1 A56 a.

The hot climate in the tropical country of the Philippines makes the individual quiet and restful, which makes the Spanish, both in the Philippines and in Spain, lazier than the French and the Germans who have cooler climates and are therefore more active at labor. b. The natives are forced to serve the colonizer who is made languid by the climate. However, a white man can adapt to any climate if he wills it, and the factors inhibiting this adaptation are liquor abuse and attempts to live as if they were in Europe when, in fact, they are in tropical Asia. c.

One hour of work under hot weather is equivalent to one day of work in cold weather. Europeans themselves avoid working under the sun which thins their blood into inaction. 2. Indolence is a natural tendency of man. a. Man is created not merely to produce but to seek happiness for himself and his kind, so he is entitled to some form of rest. b. Man can naturally hate work, but what makes the indolence in the Philippines a bad type is the fact that it is magnified. 3. Filipinos became indolent when the Spanish colonizers seized their economy in the name of Christianity. . Before the Spaniards arrived, the Filipinos were described as very active and enterprising and they did a lot of trade with neighboring countries. They farmed their own land for subsistence and were very industrious. This only changed when the Spanish colonizers came and made them lose their dignity as workers and businessmen. b. Filipinos, so fond of routine, forget their own past and submitted to the new routines introduced by the Spanish. 4. Man works for an object. Remove the object and you reduce him to inaction. a.

The most active man in the world will fold his arms from the instant he understands that it is madness to bestir himself, that this work will be the cause of his own trouble. C. What fostered and sustained Indolence 1. Constantly lessening encouragement that labor has met with in the Philippines. a. All communications with the Borneans, the Siamese, the Cambodians, and the Japanese were cut off by the government, thus consumption of Philippine products also ceased. b. The piratical attacks of the Malays of the south caused the coastwise trade to die out. . Trade in the interior of the islands almost entirely disappeared, due to restrictions, passports, and other administrative requirements. 2 The Indolence of the Filipino / Sobre La Indolencia de los Filipinos Jose P. Rizal (1890) KASPIL1 A56 d. Farmers were not allowed to go to their farms without the permission of the governor or of his agents and officers due to the ruler’s influence of childish fear and saw everywhere signs of conspiracies and uprisings. e. The low return the natives gets from his work has the effect of discouraging him. f.

The great difficulty that every enterprise encountered with the administration contributed not a little to kill off all commercial and industrial movement. 2. The lordly airs and the desire of the dominated to be the equal of the dominators, at least in their manners, had naturally produce aversion to activity and fear or hatred of work. a. Examples of the dominators in surrounding themselves with servants and despising manual or corporal labor as a thing unbecoming the nobility and chivalrous pride of the heroes of so many centuries. 3. The rich man on earth is liable to all kinds of trouble and will not go to heaven. . When appointed as cabeza de barangay, he is to be deported if an uprising occurs. b. He will be forced banker of the military chief of the town. c. All the officers of justice may have a lynx eye on his actions. d. A whole complicated story may be concocted against him. 4. Introduction of gambling also fostered indolence. a. Besides from Sabong and tari, words such as sugal, kumpisal, taya, paris-paris, kapote and so on, all prove the foreign origin of gambling in the Philippines. 5. The countries which believe most in miracles are the laziest, just, as spoiled children ar the most ill-mannered. . The native has perforce to be indolent for if any money might remain to him from the trials, imposts and exactions, he would have to give it to the curate for bulls, scapularies, candles, novenaries, etc. b. The doctrines of his religion teach him to irrigate his fields in the dry season, not by means of canals but with masses and prayers. c. During an epizootic, the natives are taught to preserve his stock by means of holy water, exorcisms and benedictions that cost five dollars an animal and to drive away the locusts by a procession with the image of St. Augustine, etc. D.

The causes of Indolence 1. Degrading  the natives. a. The natives of the land had the lack f confidence on the labor that they had done to whether they will reap the rewards of it. Everyone I uncertain of his or her own fate, 3 The Indolence of the Filipino / Sobre La Indolencia de los Filipinos Jose P. Rizal (1890) KASPIL1 A56 therefore they would rather close themselves in their houses in fear of the uncertain or they would go about their few days in enjoyment or in the most disagreeable manner possible. b. The government did nothing to encourage the trade of the products made by the natives.

Other colonizers have made their products known by trading foreign products with their own. With the exception of tobacco, nothing is known to be from the Philippines. The different products that the Philippines produce such as coffee, sugar, hemp, fine clothes, etc. are not known to be from the Philippines. c. The people have been getting poorer, and had to be content with the imitations of the German who produce imitations of the works of our very own silversmiths. d. The best tracks of land have been gotten by religious corporations and this is one the reasons why many towns do not progress, despite the efforts given by its inhabitants.

The religious people knew how to select the most profitable, best tracks of land, the friars deceive people into making them believe that these lands prosper because they are the ones cultivating it, but these lands of the friars are inferior compared to the lands like Taal, Balayan, and Lipa, which are cultivated solely by the natives. e. The Filipino who strive to do best at his work is only to labeled still inferior even though he excels more than his western counter part solely because he is proven to be a native. 2. The defective training of the church to the natives of the country a.

Even though the friars in the country has done us good by building schools and universities for us, this good deed is neutralized because they have mislead us to believing that we should not ambition more than we already are. b. The different teachers in this schools proclaims to the natives that knowing or learning Castilian is evil and that the native should not separate himself from his carabao, in other words they wants us to stay in line and follow the status quo of natives being manual laborers. c. Many ancient writers have praised the Filipinos in their traits. Some of these writers were Chirino, Morga, and Colin.

They took pleasure in describing Filipinos in the brightest of light, stating all of their good qualities. Come now their contemporary, Gaspar de San Augustin, which describes the Filipino to be lazy, brainless, immoral, indolent, ill clothed, and etc. d. The Filipinos have been convinced that they must lay aside their dignity in order to get happiness. He must conform to the church and follow what is asked of him by it. 4 The Indolence of the Filipino / Sobre La Indolencia de los Filipinos Jose P. Rizal (1890) KASPIL1 A56 e. The schools that the friars have built up can be described, as are tyrannical and sterile learning centers.

They impose blind subordination of the youth to the much older of age. They brainwash them so that they may not aspire or ambition to be something more than the status quo has not set. The inferiority of the natives is constantly reminded of them. This deadens the energy, paralyzes any tendencies of any up rising or advancements of the natives. This renders the people powerless of the colonizers and leaves a mark on their minds that they are really inferior compared to them. f. Insinuating inferiority in the natives starts at a very early age, where the minds are still easily molded.

Their wills hypnotized as if they act mechanically and without understanding of an object. This is all because of the teachings of the schools. Making them accept beliefs that they have no further knowledge about. This represses any protests that might come from the exploitation done by the friars. 3. The lack of national sentiments for the country. a. The natives being convinced that they are really inferior to their colonizers and have been a product of the brutalization that have been called as education at that time, deadens the sense of nationality in him.

He is taught to praise the colonizer and respect their belief. b. The colonizers were able to do this by converting the natives into their own belief, which is Catholicism. They did not bring anything that might make the lives of the people there more productive or efficient, instead they brought stamped papers, crucifixes, bulls, and prayer books. The result was they became bookish, devout, and prayerful. c. The absence of nationality in the people also brought about another evil that is they were not able to tell whether harm was being done to them.

The colonizers have cut off the Philippines from connecting with other countries and thus making it weak and vulnerable. E. Conclusion 1. The colonizers have suggested that in order to combat the indolence in the people, they proposed on increasing the taxes and increase the needs of the people. By doing this, resulted only to negative outcomes. The criminals have increased and poverty increased. This is because the natives have enough needs already to drag himself out, as the article describes it, out of his wretched existence. 2.

A simple wish that no obstacles may be put on his way, that instruction and knowledge may not be withheld from him in the fear that he might become intelligent, or ask for the rights that makes himself worthy as a person. The government cannot stop his people from being enlightened. The Filipino people desire a policy that is straight to the point and is highly civilized and separate from any malice. 5 The Indolence of the Filipino / Sobre La Indolencia de los Filipinos Jose P. Rizal (1890) III. APPLICATIONS OF WORK TO THE PRESENT A. Contextualizing the messages to modern times

KASPIL1 A56 Despite being written in the period of Spanish occupation, the article still provides several lessons to Filipinos that are applicable to the present. Altering the examples to coincide with present issues can allow the lessons to be retold in modern context. 1. Aversion of Filipinos to work is still seen in many jobless and homeless refusing to seek out jobs and turning to alcohol to drown their troubles away. 2. Gambling is still very rampant and shows how many Filipinos, both rich and poor, turn to luck for financial prosperity.

Sabong or cockfighting still exists, but has extended to various forms of gambling in casinos, mahjong, horse-race betting, basketball game betting, poker and even electronic gambling. In the recent lottery with a prize money of 700 million pesos, several Filipinos purchased cards and entries in the hopes of becoming instant millionaires without having to work. 3. The dominated poor still attempt to be like the dominating rich, believing that they can get rich without working, while the rich imitate foreigners (particularly Westerners) in attitude, appearance, language and customs. . Enterprising Filipinos, especially inventors, are hesitant to work and are easily discouraged to innovate by foreign investors who buy their inventions at low costs and give them little or no credit for the inventions (Examples: fluorescent bulb, incubator, fish oil fuel). B. La Indolencia del Estado The indolence in the Philippine government provides several cases and applications: 1. Corruption is a clear sign of the indolence of the nation’s leaders whom Rizal described as “incapable men placed in positions. They can be likened to the friars of Rizal’s time who would preach against laziness but who themselves do not have to work, and simply thrive on the taxes collected from Filipinos citizens. 2. Several public services are not only inefficient but ineffective because government employees are paid so low that they see no motivation to work (in the same way that the natives in La Indolencia saw no motivation to work because of the taxes they had to pay). 3. Government projects take several months and years to complete because of persistent delays, procrastination and corruption, all of which point to the indolence of the politician.

C. Education of the masses and poor 6 The Indolence of the Filipino / Sobre La Indolencia de los Filipinos Jose P. Rizal (1890) KASPIL1 A56 1. La Indolencia, if summarized and simplified into a picture book, poster or music video, can be used to educate the masses on the root of their poverty which cannot be blamed solely on the government, but also on their own lack of initiative. 2. La Indolencia can become the basis of a nationwide campaign to provide the masses with better livelihood, education and work so that they are not trained to be idle. 3.

The apathy of the government mentioned in La Indolencia can be reduced if jobs and other forms of livelihood are provided by the government and Filipino entrepreneurs to prevent Filipinos from growing lazy. 4. Filipinos from the provinces should also be taught simple business principles that can help them expand their own local industries instead of moving to Manila only to add to the squatters and homeless families living on the streets. D. La Indolencia de los Estudiantes La Indolencia can be translated into cases that refer to students and educators. 1.

Freeloaders and lazy students are trained to depend on others for their requirements either because everything is provided to them at home or they have little confidence in their capacity to work, as mentioned in La Indolencia. 2. Plagiarism and copying from the Internet are forms of laziness that are very rampant among students due to their overdependence on the Internet and mediocre outlook towards schoolwork. 3. Some educators purposely leave students in the dark because they “are not entitled to know” or are “only students,” thus making them get low grades, low scores at board exams and eventually undesirable jobs. . Education is still the determinant of a person’s right to employment. The masses, for example, are forced to undertake the type of work that brings only few opportunities since they cannot afford the “minimum” premium education required by decent industries for employment. E. Publicizing the message of La Indolencia A number of reflections or reactions can be expressed by newspaper editors, columnists and writers in order to remind Filipinos of the existence of indolence in native Filipino culture and how they can best counteract these unjust practices. REFERENCES: 7

The Indolence of the Filipino / Sobre La Indolencia de los Filipinos Jose P. Rizal (1890) n. a. (2011). Rizal’s journey. Retrieved on March 13, KASPIL1 A56 2011 from http://joseriz. angelfire. com/journeys. html Quezon, M. L. (2007). The long view: Sobre la indolencia de los espanoles. Retrieved on March 13, 2011 from the Philippine Daily Inquirer: http://opinion. inquirer. net/opinion/columns/view_article. php? article_id=105867. Rizal, J. P. (1890). Sobre la indolencia de los Filipinos (C. Derbyshire, Trans. ). Retrieved on March 8, 2011 from Fullbooks: http://www. fullbooks. com/The-Indolence-of-theFilipino. html 8

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