Saturday, November 30, 2013

WHY US LORD?: A Reflection On The Typhoon Yolanda Calamity.

With the recent Yolanda typhoon calamity, one question stands out - "Why?" Why do we have to suffer like this? Why the death of my beloved ones? Why us Lord? Why…? Why…? Why…?

I will not attempt to know how these victims of calamity formulated their questions because I was not there when the typhoon strike nor try to answer their question because I’m not God. I would rather see the process of communication between a God and His people.

Pope Francis encouraged us to ask why to God. He simply explains how this question would draw God’s attention to his children. He likened the situation to a child asking his parents about almost anything with a “why”. The pope said "the child does not wait for an answer from his father or mother." rather the child will add-up more and will never stops asking and asking. This is one way of seeking attention from his/her parents – and with our brothers and sisters who were affected by the recent typhoon, an attention from God. But, are these people only wants attention from God? Or are they looking for answers?

For me, they asked the question “why” mainly because they want answers from God and in doing so they want God to focus on them when they ask. If we are going to think about it plainly and in human nature, it’s unfair. Can they really find answers immediately? Or can they really have the answers? They lost their loved ones in an instant and in a most implausible manner I should say but they never find answers as to why things happened, or perhaps an explanation.  This will draw more questions and even more daring questions to God.

We can find a lot of other words/phrases that can be attached to this simple yet vague question word “Why” for us to be able to create a very valid inquiry about us and to the situation we are into. The mere fact that a question is formulated it exhibits or portrays a person whose eagerness to know something is astounding. After all, we ask question because there are things we don’t know – this makes a question valid.  However, what if you can’t find answers to your questions or what if there are no answers? Would you still ask?

A Person asks because he wants to know something and that something somehow gives explanation in which may be beneficial or non-beneficial to him. This is expressed in a communicative way to a person or to a certain situation where the one asking can extract information. "A certain situation" because sometimes you ask questions to yourself since the one whom you want to ask the question with is no around. Sometimes you want to get an answer from a phenomenon, scenario, circumstances. In the case of the victims, they know whom to address the question but can they really hear the answer from that person, from God? This leads me to think that their questions are not only addressed to God but to the very person who ask the question itself. They ask the question for themselves as well.

They are inquiring something to the things ambivalent to them. And by way of trying to throw these questions to themselves, I believe they are capable of answering and discovering what seems to be unclear to them. They can never find that answer overnight for sure. It would even go down to the very core of their being and their relationship to God.  Moreover, not all the time you can always find the answers. That is why you keep on asking and asking until you ran out of questions and even get tired of it.  However, after you ran out of questions, this is where God comes in. When life turns out to be so unfair of the things you may want to know - there you will find the wisdom of the things you ought not to know. When situation grabs you with the knowledge which leads you to liberation - there you will find the freedom of innocence. When circumstances exhaust you of everything you can have - there you will see the richness of nothingness.

I am not saying that we have to stop asking, because if we do, it is also like depriving us of who we really are. This is what differentiates us from any other creatures. This only show, however, how limited we are and yet can be limitless at the same time. After all, we have a limitless God. We may not be able to know all the answers to our questions but God is clearly communicating to us. I am convinced that they will wake up one day bearing all the answers in their hearts.