White Apparels, Positive Thinking and Vegetables
Days before the scheduled field trip, I was bulldozed by so much stress-sloped situations that it would only take one more shot for my system to shut down. Aside from that, I had colds and mild fever flanked by the erratic weather. I felt like I had to drop all my classes to give myself a B-R-E-A-K.
6:30 am September 2 — I was scurrying to the Faculty Center parking lot to meet with my several classmates, random people from the other classes and my professor in Art Studies 2: all happened to be inside the two air-conditioned vans all ready to go.
When the trip began, I was either feeling reluctant or dejected that my Sunday— a day supposedly for me to rest coz I had Saturday classes— would be for a biaje, one thing that usually tires me.
Then after a couple of hours or so, we were in the serene place of Tagaytay: inside the van, I could feel the place’s peace. Then we parked in front of a white building which had an orange signboard that read Brahma Kumaris.
We were allowed in after being briefed about the place; feeling all sapped after an early morning trip, we hung out in the living room seeing women in uniform white apparels passing by and no, they weren’t ghosts. They almost seemed like nuns (without the head gear). Moving on, the ambience of the place was rather undisturbed: the sky was not overcast meaning no sign of a heavy rain for the sunlight shined on the lush plants in the garden outside. I knew then that I was to enjoy the whole day. All of a sudden, we were assembled for the day’s breakfast. Pancit, bananas, brewed coffee/Milo— hmmm. After we filled our stomachs, my classmates and I walked around the place while taking pictures.
Then again, Ma’am Rina gathered all of us in the 3rd floor to finally define and execute the trip’s intentions. Brahma Kumaris who by the way emanated from the overseas is a center sprawled across many regions in the Philippines. They are organized like how nuns are, yet concentrating in the power of meditation.
For the next activity, we all had this game, wherein each of us was to utilize this single white piece of cloth and think of a creative object, animal or whatever that would symbolize us and our wish for the rest of us. In my turn, I masqueraded as a Vegetable. I said that even veggies are all icky to my taste, they’re still considered healthy or rather healthier that fried food. I remarked my wish for everybody, that from all that has happened before the day particularly hectic things, we would turn out to be “all-fresh” after the day. I know it’s not that profound but I surely made a point, right?
Then came next the activities where all of our imaginative juices were put into use. We each had a lump of toy clay which we were to shape it according to our liked considering that we were to describe our respective selves using the finished product. Again, STRESS was still in my mind. And I employed that sheer thought and transformed my black clay into a ‘black hole’. I explained that though I become so pressured in what was going on around me, I still think that I’m the star. You see I was this happy-go-lucky type o’ guy and I always try to be optimistic as possible— I joke around most of the time.
We also had an activity when we were to draw our respective partners without glancing on the sheet of paper we were sketching on. To that effect, we all were amateurs in drawing: no one was better than the other, there was equity.
1 pm— we lunched vegetarian dishes: chopseuy, pancit this breaded, uh, mushrooms. The latter tasted like real meat. Aha, such exotic taste of a ‘mushroom meat’. After an hour, we headed back to the workshop. We were asked to focus on the painting on the wall… a painting of a single dot that glows to the extremes. Yes, that dot was our mind. Enter soporific bed music.
The mind is different from the brain. The latter is in our anatomy while the former is “the faculty of the soul […] It is that tiny invisible dot in the middle of our foreheads”. The mind is where all our energy are stacked and perhaps more powerful than mere physical strength.
Now, Positive Thinking really dug in me. One of the Sisters said that if everything’s unwell around us, then why should we be too? “Peace starts in one’s self.” In cases when I would feel very down in the dumps, the only thing that could save me is the way I would think. If I would contemplate that every thing will be okay, it will be okay. It is perhaps why those people are living so peacefully— as if they were just like little infants, all immaculate.
When we left for the trip, I knew then that I should start from the bottom again; only that I shall face every thing ahead with Positive Thinking as my daily multivitamins.
PS This encounter was nostalgic of our annual high school recollections. (We journeyed on to a bar that offered a clear view of the Taal landscape.)