Reah's Blog | Education, Language, Technology

The Freemason Filipinos

By on Nov 26, 2011 in Philippines | 6 comments

I learned about Freemasonry and Knights Templar from reading Dan Brown’s books. So, when I saw a show running in the History Channel about the Holy Grail, I sat and watched it. The show’s conclusion led me to re-dig more information about the Freemasons and find out who were the famous people known to be Freemasons. The Wikipedia’s list of Freemasons surprised me as I recognize the Filipino names listed there. It amazed me how these Filipinos shaped the Philippines history. I might had overlooked the fact of their membership of this mysterious organization before but it’s harder for me to ignore it this time. So, let’s take a look at those notable Filipinos who were members of Freemasonry, a fraternal organization, and let’s wonder what had they taken from their membership and brought to the Filipinos. José Abad Santos, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the Philippines. Gregorio Aglipay, Supreme Bishop of the Philippine Independent Church. José P. Laurel, President of the Japanese-Sponsored Republic of the Philippines during World War II, from 1943 to 1945. Camilo Osías, President of the Senate of the Philippines. Rafael Palma, Filipino politician, writer, and educator. Fourth President of the University of the Philippines. Reynato Puno, Chief Justice of the Philippines. Manuel L. Quezon, First president of the Commonwealth of the Philippines under U.S. occupation rule in the early period of the 20th century. Jose Rizal, Polymath and National Hero of the Philippines. Manuel Roxas, was the first president of the independent Republic of the Philippines. Lope K. Santos, Tagalog language writer from the...

3 Ways to Send Money to the Philippines

By on May 28, 2011 in Philippines | 48 comments

I’ve been sending money to the Philippines from US since May of 2010; Either through my Wells Fargo account or Xoom money transfer. But before I came to the US, I was the one receiving money and I get it through a US debit card. Wells Fargo Global Remittance Service Most of my remittances are received using this service. I pay $5 when the money is directly deposited to a BPI account connected to my Wells Fargo Account, and I pay $7 when the remittance is received as cash. What I did was asked my parents to create a BPI account and send the account information to me. Once I hard this information I went to the Wells Fargo branch nearby and requested to connect the BPI account of my parents to my account in their bank. The verification process took a week but after it is verified, I was able to send money through the remittance service. I need to deposit my first remittance in person though but after that I was able to remit online. Xoom Global Money Transfer This is my back-up if the person I’m sending money didn’t have access to a BPI branch. The fee is more though but still less when using Western Union. You just need to sign up an account in Xoom and attach your credit or debit card information. Their fees are $5.99 or $9.99+ if you use a credit card instead of your bank account directly. Debit Card from the one Sending My husband had stayed in the Philippines several times when we were still not married. Before he flew back to the US, he would leave to me one of his US debit cards (the Capital One Money Market Card). He said it is the cheapest way to send money, where the bank only charges for the international withdrawal fee and Capital One has the lowest fee he found, around $3. If you plan to do this with your family or partner, you have to trust them not to withdraw more than what you tell them to, or else, you have to pay the overdraft fee. Disable overdraft protection if you don’t want to deal with this...

Why Most Filipinos Aren’t Fat?

By on May 28, 2011 in Philippines | 2 comments

Alert: This post may be found racist. My American friend who had been to the Philippines  have asked me this question. He wondered why most Filipinos are not fat at all compare to people in US. What do you think he thought the reason was? Poverty in the Philippines. His answer was not a surprise to me at all but I feel somehow upset that this is his first thought. The Philippines is seen as a poor country abroad that there will be foreigners who will easily look down on Filipinos in general. But I immediately replied to my friend, “No, I don’t think it’s because they are poor that they can neither eat nutritious food nor eat three times a day”. But poverty is surely a factor. So here are what I told my American friend: A lot of Filipinos commute – Most Filipinos don’t have cars to go to wherever they want. If they want to go somewhere they have to walk and cross the streets, worse they climb up and down the foot bridges which are very common in Metro Manila. Unlike in US, a lot of people use their cars to go to work unless they live in the most populous cities.  The only walk they will get often during their day is when they walk from their parking lot to the store or to the office.  Lucky if they have to walk a lot while working and able to jog once or twice a week. Most filipinos didn’t spend their childhood and teenage years as couch potatoes – Although a lot of Filipino kids now are playing games in front of computers most of their day, they have the freedom to run or walk around the neighborhood.  The houses are so close to each other that if they want to meet a friend they just walk to their friend’s house. If not, older kids and teens can choose  to commute to their friend’s house. What I notice here is that older kids and teens need a ride from their parents or from an adult if they want to visit a friend’s house to hang out. To let kids run wherever they want seems irresponsible parenthood but I haven’t heard any news that they lost their children. There might be some occurrences but not common. Fast food is expensive – In US, buying fast food is the most convenient to do if you are a working mom. I feel grossed now eating hamburgers which are huge. I sometimes like to order the kid’s meal instead. However, in the Philippines a lot of small take-home food stalls are available for working moms. The foods you buy in these stalls are considered real food and to buy fast food everyday for the family will be considered close to luxury. Genes or Fast Metabolism – It is interesting how most of my Filipino friends eat a lot but don’t gain a lot of weight. You will wonder where the food they are eating is going. Filipino Support System – Seeing that most people around you aren’t fat is enabling you to pay close attention to your diet. When you get fat, you stand out. Close friends will acceptably joke on you, “Hey you are getting fat!”, from which you will feel indirectly encouraged to lose weight. In US, I would feel normal to be overweight and abnormal being skinny.u But do you know the ironic part of most Filipinos aren’t fat? Filipinos may be mostly skinny people but their diet has a lot of pork which can cause heart...

Tagalog Quotes mula sa ating mga Bayani

By on May 3, 2011 in Philippines | 18 comments

Ito ay koleksyon ng mga siniping ideya mula sa ating mga bayani. “Ang pagsusumikap at pagpipilit na kumita ng ikakabuhay ay nagpapahayag ng tunay na pagmamahal sa sarili, sa asawa, anak, kapatid, at kababayan.” – Andres Bonifacio (Kartilya ng Katipunan) “Ang unang kabanalan ay ang pagsunod sa matuwid, anuman ang mangyari.” – Jose Rizal (Ang Liham ni Dr. Jose Rizal sa mga Kadalagahan sa Malolos, Bulakan) “Kapag totoong nakalat na sa buong kapuluan ang wikang inglés ay siyang gagawing wicang-bayan.” – Apolinario Mabini (Panukala sa Pagkakana nang Repúblika nangPilipinas) “Ang babae ay huwag mong ituturing na isang bagay na libangan lamang kundi isang katulong at karamay sa mga kahirapan nitong kabuhayan; gamitin mo nang buong pagpipitagan ang kanyang kahinaan at alalahanin ang inang pinagbuhata’t nag-iwi sa iyong kasanggulan.” – Emilio Jacinto (Kartilya ng Katipunan) “Di kailangan, kapatid ko, ang magbukas ka’t bumasa ng pilosopiya, o nang teolohiya at iba pang karunungan, upang maranasan mo ang kadakilaan nang Dios.” – Marcelo H. del Pilar (Ang Kadakilaan ng Diyos) “Linangin mo ang mga sadyang katangiang kaloob sa iyo ng Diyos, sa paggawa at pag-aaral ayon sa iyong kakayahan, na di lumalayo sa landas ng kagalingan at katarungan…” – Apolinario Mabini (Ang Tunay na Sampung Utos)...

Paano ba yumaman?

By on Apr 26, 2011 in Philippines | 43 comments

Isa lamang ito sa mga tanong ng maraming Pilipino. Paano nga ba yumaman? Kung tutuusin ang madaling sagot dito ay mag-ipon ng pera. Pero isa ito sa napakahirap gawin, hindi ba? Mas madali kasing gumastos kaysa mag-ipon dahil maraming bagay ang nakakaengganyo pagkagastusan. Pero kung talagang nais maging mayaman dapat ang maging mantra natin sa araw-araw ay “mag-ipon para yumaman”. Ito yata mantra ng asawa ko eh. Tuwing gagastos ako tatanungin ako kung may ipon daw ba muna ako o kailangan ko ang bibilhin ko bago ako gumastos ng malaki laki. Hindi naman ako makahindi sa kanya kasi tama naman siya. Sa kakapanood ko ng Suze Orman shows kasama ng asawa ko, narealize ko na talagang kailangan: Mag-ipon ng pera Matuto mag-budget ng pera. Bumili ng mga gamit na kinakailangan lamang. Maging maayos at matipid sa gamit. At patuloy na isipin ang bukas. Maglaan ng emergency savings bago magwaldas ng pera. Pero narealize ko din na may ibang paraan para maging mayaman, dapat ay isa ka sa mga taong ito: Maging talentado at patuloy na pagbutihin ang kakayanan upang umusbong ang karera. Mag-tayo ng negosyo. Anak ng mayaman para maraming taong makikilala (hindi lamang ang iyong magulang at pamilya) na maaring magbigay sa’yo ng magagandang opurtonidad na kumita ng pera. Kung hindi anak mayaman, kailangan matutong maghanap ng mga bagong kakilala upang lalong dumami ang oportunidad sa trabaho o negosyo. Tumaya sa lotto. Maging tagapagmana. Sa mga anim na nabanggit ko, apat dito ay nakasalalay pa rin sa kakayanan mo at sa patuloy na pagsasagawa nang apat na una kong nabanggit tulad ng pag-iipon ng pera. [This post is a personal web...

It Took Months Before I’ve Got my SSS ID

By on Jan 14, 2009 in Philippines | 6 comments

After 9 long months, I finally got my SSS ID. What the. It is supposed to be released after a month I applied for it right? I waited a month or two, but because of the long period of waiting, I already forgot about my SSS ID application until the postman arrived last Monday, January 12, and gave me the new ID. I applied for the SSS ID on April 29, 2008. Well, I’m not sure about the date since I already lost my claim stub. But I’m certain it was last week of April. Oh well… at least I got it now and I now have another valid ID.