glimpses

september 28 is teacher’s day in saint jude catholic school (sjcs), where i spent my 18 years in the professional teaching arena.

this day is always  declared a free day because prior to this is the colorful celebration of the said event. two days from now, this filipino-chinese community will again pay honor to the unsung heroes.
why am i writing about this school jubilation when in fact i am already connected with a different  institution? well, i cannot just forget what my very first school has done in honing me as a mentor. to add, it’s teacher’s month celebration  this  september which will culminate on october 5 which is declared as the world teacher’s day.
when i first learned that teacher’s day in sjcs is september 28, i had to ask why this date since in my high school days, we had it in december. so, i was  a little confused on the real date when the teachers should really  be remembered. anyway, i will share with you a “possible”  explanation.
9/28 is confucius day in chinese. he was basically a humanist and one of the greatest teachers in chinese history. for those who do not still know this guy, take a look at these two photos:
cartoonized confucius
cartoonized confucius
confucius statue
confucius statue
this  extract from bio.true story synopsis might even shed light to it:
Confucius is a  philosopher, teacher and political figure. He was born August 27, 551 B.C. in Tuo, China. He founded Confucianism, a humanistic school of thought that emphasizes the moral principles of benevolence, propriety and ritual. He died on November 21, 479 B.C. in Oufu, China. Today,  he is widely considered one of the most influential thinkers in Chinese history.
Philosophy and Teachings
During the sixth century B.C., competing Chinese states undermined the authority of the Chou Empire, which had held supreme rule for over 500 years. Traditional Chinese principles began to deteriorate, resulting in a period of moral decline. Confucius recognized an opportunity—and an obligation—to reinforce the societal values of compassion and tradition. His social philosophy was based primarily on the principle of “ren” or “loving others” while exercising self-discipline. He believed that ren could be put into action using the Golden Rule, “What you do not wish for yourself, do not do to others.” (Lunyu 12.2, 6.30).
Confucius’ political beliefs were likewise based on the concept of self-discipline. He believed that a leader needed to exercise self-discipline in order to remain humble and treat his followers with compassion. In doing so, he would lead by positive example. According to Confucius, leaders could motivate their subjects to follow the law by teaching them virtue and the unifying force of ritual propriety.
His philosophy of education focused on the “Six Arts”: archery, calligraphy, computation, music, chariot-driving and ritual. To Confucius, the main objective of being an educator was to teach people to live with integrity. Through his teachings, he strove to resurrect the traditional values of benevolence, propriety and ritual in Chinese society.
rereading confucius’  philosophy of education, i can now claim that it is one of the things i have lived by as a teacher. it has served as my guide for the past years as i continue my journey as an educator.
what might surprise you is the fact that i was suffering from  a little ethnophobia toward the yellow race before God decided to place me among these people. clearly, i had no choice but to open up and learn to like them starting  with their chinky eyes. for 18 years, i mingled with them and finally appreciated their unique characteristics and rich culture. for 18 years, i was a part of the teacher’s day celebration at sjcs that made me value my chosen vocation.
you bet. september 27 has been looked forward to not only by the teachers in sjcs but the students as well. for me, this date will  mark the third year of my final bow on stage of this institution. finally, i had to say goodbye in responding to the overwhelming show of gratitude from the kins of  bruce lee, jackie chan and jet li.
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