Posts

Listening To Angels

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Saturday Stories November 17, 2018

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One of the most inspiring stories I've ever known is about the Russian scientist Dr. George Rodonaia. I first knew him in Are We Listening To Angels? The Next Step In Understanding Angels In Our Lives by Robert J. Grant when I read it about three years ago. Rodonaia was assassinated by the KGB in 1976 – and on the third day, he rose from the dead. He literally woke up in the morgue as the embalmers were about to cut him open.

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Then, last year, I met him again in "Life After Life," a spiritually uplifting documentary about near-death experiences featuring Dr. Raymond Moody. I saw it on YouTube while looking for something else, and it happened at a crucial time in my life – when I was beginning to learn that there are no coincidences in the universe. I felt so happy when I read about Rodonaia's experiences while he was dead. It's not easy to explain why I know, with absolute certainty, he was not making it up. No one can fake…

Why I Am Not Scared To Die

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Saturday Stories November 10, 2018

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I want to die like Luke Skywalker. I would be at the top of a mountain, gazing out into my beloved ocean, a witness to the most spectacular sunset in the world. My clothes would fall on the ground as my physical body disappears and becomes at One with The Force – if that is not too much to ask. 
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I know that some people think of death as "morbid." Their logic is: whatever you talk about, you call it to yourself. I get that. So they don't talk about death – but they complain about life all the time. I am not afraid of death, though I'd like stay for a bit  I'm happy and I live a meaningful life, so I'd rather stay longer. But if it is my time to die, then I'm ready – even if it comes at this very instant. I find it amazing that some people think in extremes – either you completely ignore the subject of death, or you mentioned it because you are suicidal.

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A friend and I were talking about posterity a couple of wee…

In The Arms of The Angels

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Saturday Stories  November 3, 2018

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I want to share a story I never told anyone before. It happened on July 2007 in Avenida, or Rizal Avenue, in Manila. It was around nine in the evening. I was walking from the Santa Cruz district to Tayuman, on the way to the funeral of one of my closest and most loyal friends. Then in the corner of Mayhaligue, four men tried to mug me. They just walked up from behind and surrounded me. One had a knife just below my right rib. They took me in front of a locked establishment where it was dark, and pinned me to the accordion gate.

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I have kept it a secret all these years. Why? Because it is totally unbelievable. If it hadn't happen to me, I may not have believed it myself. First, I felt so calm, my mind was so quiet, that emotions seemed irrelevant. And second, and even more inexplicable, is that they just went away. Yes, they just suddenly walked away. I did not do nor say anything. They also said nothing and did nothing, not even to reach int…

Time Keeps Flowing Like A River

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Saturday Stories October 27, 2018

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In J.R.R. Tolkien's The Fellowship of The Ring, my favorite passage is in the chapter "The Shadows of The Past," where Gandalf tells Frodo: "All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us." I'm sure Frodo is not the first who felt the pressure of so many people depending on him and the sense that time is running out. I know how it feels to have so much to do and it seems there is not enough time to do them all. That sucks. It's strange because I've been so busy at work lately while my personal life is a continuous series of marvelous events. So many good things are happening and I think my life outside the office has left behind the one inside. Which is funny because those are the very things I never share with the public. All in all, I'm just happy and grateful that things have turned out they way they did.

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I have learned the hard way that when I allow myself to get overwhelmed by a lo…

Was Jesus The Son of God?

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Saturday Stories October 20, 2018

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A 911 call came from a Chicago suburb about a man with a gun. Police Sergeant Richard Scanlon saw a man in a heated argument with a woman on her doorway – and Scanlon got shot. The suspect, identified as James Dixon, was arrested for attempted murder. Dixon had a prior criminal conviction. A .22-caliber pistol was found in the bushes, and it had been fired – with Dixon's fingerprints. He confessed. The case was closed.

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But it was not the end of the story. The journalist Lee Stobel discovered what really happened. The case was re-opened – and Dixon was proven Innocent and set free. So why did he confess to a crime he didn't commit? In legal parlance, it's called a plea bargaining agreement: admitting to the charge to get a lighter sentence instead of going to trial. An airtight case was overturned by Stobel, the award-winning legal reporter known for his precision and attention to details. The following year, in the fall of 1979, the …

Why We Need A Sense of History

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Saturday Stories  October 13, 2018

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Cicero once said: "To be ignorant of what occurred before you were born is to remain always a child. For what is the worth of human life, unless it is woven into the life of our ancestors by the records of history?" History is one my favorite subjects even when I still in school. The more I learn about the past, the more I understand the present – and the more I appreciate myself as a part of the whole. One of the reasons I take pride in being a Filipino in this lifetime is because I have known the richness of my own cultural heritage.

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This is why I can appreciate other people's cultures even more deeply, yet without any envy and without losing my own sense of identity and self-worth. What I love most about "Johnny Tremain," the classic by Pulitzer Prize winner Esther Forbes set in Boston before the American Revolution of 1775, is that it gave generations of children a sense of history. It made the past accessible, and it …

How One Life Touches The Other

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Saturday Stories October 6, 2018

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Marcus Aurelius once said: "Accept the things to which fate binds you, and love the people with whom fate brings you together, but do so with all your heart." Fate is a curious thing. Sometimes, when it seems to be the end of everything, it turns out to be the beginning of something else – something new, something even better. In my life, I'm amazed how things would always work out for the best, and I'm grateful for the Higher Power that guides us all.

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I thought a lot about fate when I was reading "Far From The Madding Crowd," the 1874 classic by Thomas Hardy. It is the story of four complete strangers, and how their lives changed when they meet each other. My favorite character is Gabriel Oak, a young shepherd in the countryside. I once stayed on a friend's farm in the province, and since I'm the kind of person who thrives on silence and solitude, I would have loved his life. But one day, by a strange twist of…