Sunday, September 10, 2006

A Community of Dreamers

Note: This post was written on a Sunday. The connection bogged down and so it was actually posted only today. Nevertheless, I travelled back in time to make sure that the day reflects that actual date this was written. Thanks

I was talking to someone I look up to at church this morning and she was telling me about a blind spot that I might have ignored in writing in this blog. She said that maybe because I do not write about the good things in the Academy that I offend people for the bias that appears in this website. I guess I really failed at that for these good things are precisely the reason why I remain hopeful and stay here. I honestly think that there are more good things in PMA than the bad things that I keep on writing about only that human nature tends to dwell much on the negative rather than highlight the positive. Already being aware of that, I decided to write about the good things, stories that people should know about despite of the complains I have. The world is not perfect even inside the country's premier military school.

If I was to describe PMA in the simplest way I would have to say that it is a community of dreamers. I say this because I honestly think that everyone who comes here is in search for a dream. Unlike any other schools, entering PMA is not as simple and this complexity is enhanced further when trying to stay inside it. When one decides to become a cadet, he or she does not just choose a new school but also departs from the life that he or she has lived for the past at least 17 years of his or her life. It is a choice that will change ones life forever all in pursuit of the elusive dream. For some, it is their only hope out of poverty, others want to become soldiers and so many other reason but all in all each of us here took the road for something that we believe is worth all the hardships we are to experience. Despite of my several complaints about so many things, the loneliness, the frustrations and all others that people may percieve as negative, I, too, am in pursuit of my dream.

A few weeks ago, I had the privilege of having some chit chat with the Superintendent, General Maligalig. It was a conversation brought about by a visitor from the United States who happens to be my squadmate's scholarship benefactor back when he was still studying at a civilian school. I really look up to the Superintendent and I saw the event as an opportunity to capture some insight from a man I truly admire. We talked about cadet training then and now, about the changes and at one time he even asked me of the effects of various policies that has been implemented recently. Walking back to barracks after that, I was mesmerized by the things that I learned and realized how so much is invested to see to it that I come out of this Academy better than I first laid my eyes on it. I guess my description is not just true to the cadets for even the highest ranking general in this part of the world is still a dreamer in his own right. I mean he dreams of good people leading this country forward, he dreams of the Academy being the best leadership school in the country and many others. In a larger context our dreams: me and the other cadets and the many other men and women here, all are dreaming for a better place, a better situation and in general terms a better country. If one was to just analyze everything, this is, in fact, a community of dreamers for a better country. Whether people will agree with me or not, that is why PMA stands out against other academic institutions in this country.

The Philippine Military Academy is in fact a place where people realize the value of one person in making a difference. They are imbued with the highest sense of honor, invested with so much of the country's money believing that in their hands lies the answer to our country's perrenial problems. Just like any other instititions, it is never perfect, the road to anything significant is never on flat ground but always on those with holes and unforgiving terrain. Those who triumph over these things do not only become victorious for themselves but also become a source of pride and hope for others afraid to tread the same road. They believe that there is not an obtacle hard enough that a dreamer's heart can not hurdle. Inside the academy is that light of hope, although not pure white (and everyone tries their best to make it as white as possible) but strong enough to show to the world that something can be done to whatever hardship, its just a matter of determination, hardwork and of course faith. I believe that is the reason why I am still here and I honestly believe that others will see that light and be touched by that flicker of hope that will make the big difference.

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