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Remembering Jose Rizal and why he still matters to Filipinos today

In the tapestry of Philippine history, one figure stands out as a beacon of inspiration—Dr. Jose Rizal, known to be a polyglot, writer, poet, doctor, scientist, painter, ethnologist but most of all, a Filipino patriot.

As Filipinos navigate the currents of the modern age, Rizal’s name still rings true, influencing whole generations with his acts of heroism and enduring legacy. Here are some reasons why, as our national hero, he still matters to modern day Filipinos.  

FWD Life Philippines

Historical context

Picture yourself in the late 19th century, a time when the Philippines was under Spanish colonization. Born on June 19, 1861, in Calamba, Laguna, Jose Rizal became a symbol of resistance against oppression. His writings, including "Noli Me Tangere" and "El Filibusterismo," ignited a spark that fueled the desire for freedom among Filipinos.

Monument of Dr. Jose Rizal

Heroic acts

  1. Igniting intellectual revolution

Rizal believed in the power of knowledge to break the chains of colonialism. As we reflect on his legacy, let’s consider how his call for an intellectual revolution still resonates in today's world, where education remains a key to empowerment.

  1. Instrumental in conceptualizing our national identity

Rizal envisioned a unified Filipino identity, a concept that still holds relevance today. His writings inspired a sense of national consciousness and encouraged us to celebrate our unique cultural heritage while embracing the ties that bind us together.

  1. Calling for peaceful reform

Rizal's commitment to peaceful reform speaks to our own pursuit of change in a world fraught with challenges. As we confront societal issues, consider the power of diplomacy and non-violence in effecting lasting transformations.

Legacy in modern times

  1. Emphasis on education

As we pursue education in today's information-driven world, let’s remember Rizal's emphasis on enlightenment. Our commitment to learning becomes a tribute to his legacy, a continuation of his belief in the transformative power of knowledge.

  1. Cultural pride and unity

In a society marked by diversity, let Rizal's call for a united Filipino identity become a personal mission. Let’s reflect on our role in fostering cultural pride and unity, appreciating the richness that diversity brings to the Filipino experience.

  1. Advocacy for social justice

Rizal's fight against injustice is also our own battle. In a world still grappling with inequality, let’s make his advocacy inspire us to champion the rights and dignity of every individual in our community.

Honoring his legacy

As we stand on the shoulders of history, Jose Rizal's legacy is not just a distant tale but a guiding force for our collective journey. Commemorating Rizal is not merely an acknowledgment of a historical figure but an affirmation of the ideals that shape our aspirations for a better, more unified, and just Philippines. Let us embrace the lessons of his life, for in doing so, we carve a path towards progress, equality, and a future where Rizal's ideals continue to shine brightly in the hearts of every Filipino.

Family in Rizal Park