The land of the Philippines is composed of more than 7000 islands. These mountainous islands are divided into three: Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. As an archipelago, Philippines is surrounded by deep seas such as Bashi Channel, Celebes Sea, Philippine Deep and South China Sea. Philippines was blessed to be bountiful in terms of natural resources and minerals especially gold. Because of its beauty and richness, motives from Spain to colonize the land begun.
It was on the 15th century when Spain started to colonize the Philippines with its aim may be summarized in a formula known as “3 Gs”- Gospel, Gold, and Glory or “3 Ms”- Missionaries, Merchant, and Military. Conversion of natives to Christianity and making known of “supernatural” benefits of true faith appeared to be the very motive of the said colonization. However, more than to pervade the gospel, the desire for gold, wealth, glory and power were Spain’s hidden mission in invading the land. Philippines was under Spain’s colony for exactly 333 years which is from 15th century to 18th. For a long period, a lot of changes and anomalies took place the country due to its manipulation.
During the colonization then, Filipinos were governed with rules and manipulations. They were the victims of slavery, maltreatment, discrimination, militarization and injustice. Force labor was enforced against Filipinos. Moreover, human rights were denied and Filipinos really suffered the loss of freedom.
Filipino government was headed by the Governor-General, the considered representative of Spain and of the king himself. He has all the power for implementing rules and declaring peace and war. Towns, streets, offices and all was named after the Spanish language as they govern the whole country.
Students then were taught to speak in Spanish and not their native language. Young girls, especially in the elite class, were sent to school not to become skilled citizens but to be pious and humble ladies because women then were only meant to be a mother of their child and a wife to their husbands. Their only function to the community is to serve their family and managing them well. Women then, too, especially those who are laborer were sent to serve the households of the landlord to be as debt settlements while men continued their backbreaking farm activities. On the other hand, marriage then was usually arranged.
Unlike the colonization period, people these days practice democratic life. They are modern, independent, progressive, open-minded and free. Free, in the sense that they express what is inside of them. Filipinos now are brave enough to voice out and stand for what they believe is right even if it is against the authority. However, some Filipinos were still victims of slavery, mistreatment and injustices.
Philippines now is headed by the President and his staffs. They are the in-charge for the progress of the country. Though citizens are updated in most of the occurrence in politics by means of media, anomalies and corruption still happens. Maybe, politics is always accompanied by these two words.
As young as 5 years old, kids are said to be sent in school. But, unfortunately, not all youth were lucky enough to have a chance to study in big schools, or even in a normal school. Students now are taught to study different subjects and their national language as well as the English language, for universal matters.
Women nowadays are empowered. They play big roles in the society. In fact, many women now are the heads of different organizations, offices and departments, and even in politics, women do stand out. Unlike before, women are for the households only, now, they are their husband’s companion in bringing their family into a better life. To be certain, women in present time do work and practice their profession.
Marriage now is too sacred to be arranged. But then again, some tribes still apply fixed marriage as part of their tradition.
C. Moral Insights
As said above, Philippines is a rich land of natural resources and due to its treasure within, other countries would do anything to get a hold of these. And now that we regained our freedom, we are accountable for the protection of the country’s wealth and constantly we’ll prove that we deserve this democracy.
In conclusion, Spanish colonization brought a history of sufferings for us Filipinos but somehow they have also left some positive influences in us such as Christianity. However, I agree that we are more progressive after we were freed from being prisoned from their colony. Just like a flower, it will never bloom lovely until it is placed outside and let it see the sun.