Work, Halo-Halo, Mystics and My 4th One!

I’ve been working like a dog!

During the past week or so, APO did four shows, three of them in Manila, one out there in Tiwi, Albay. I also did a keynote talk in Baguio for the big PMAP (Professional Marketting Association of the Phil.) meeting. I have also been working every night preparing my power point presentations for the ten talks I will be doing before I leave next month for Europe. I can’t believe how busy I am thes days! As a result, I have not been getting enough sleep and that’s a bummer. The only way my body can feel good without sleep is if I go to the gym.

Oh, and before Europe, I will be going on a 4 day trip to Jogjakarta, Indonesia to attend to my duties as board member of the Ramon Magsaysay Awards Foundation. We will be meeting with awardees from all over Asia in a seminar to discuss the elusive topic of Peace! That should be enlightening. And yes, I will have 1 day of touring the temples of Burubudur! During my last tour with the RMAF, we went to Cambodia and I fell in love with Angkor Wat. Jogjakarta is something to look forward to. I love exotic places.

Here’s a secret I picked up from my short trip to Albay. The best halo-halo anywhere in the Philippines can be found there. It’s prepared in a canteen inside the Unocal Compound (Phil. Geothermal complex). It’s such a well-guarded secret that no one is ever allowed inside the kitchen. I brought home 10 frozen ones back to Manila. Sarap! I can’t really tell exactly what makes it delicious but it is!. Word has it that the chef of a prestigious French restaurant tried to copy it but without success.


The other day, a friend of mine sent me a bunch of quotes from one of my favorite mystics, Anthony De Mello, SJ who has a wonderful way of blending eastern and western spirituality. It still behooves me why the Vatican issued a caveat against his writings. In my view, he is a true spokesperson of the Great Borderless One. Read below some of his works:


A woman in great distress over the death of her son

came to the Master for comfort.

He listened to her patiently

while she poured out her tale of woe.

Then he said softly,

“I can not wipe away your tears, my dear.

I can only teach you how to make them holy.”

Intoxication (Celebration)

“What would spirituality give me?”

said an alcoholic to the Master.

“Non-alcoholic intoxication,” was the answer.


“Every word, every image used for God

is a distortion more than a description.”

“Then how does one speak of God?”

“Through Silence.”

“Why, then, do you speak in words?”

At that the Master laughed uproariously.

He said, “When I speak,

you mustn’t listen to the words, my dear.

Listen to the Silence.”



Charity is never so lovely as when one has lost consciousness that one is practicing charity.

“You mean I helped you? I was enjoying myself. I was just doing my dance.

It helped you, that’s wonderful. Congratulations to you. No credit to me.” —


Sometimes there would be a rush of noisy visitors

and the Silence of the monastery would be shattered.

This would upset the disciples;

not the Master, who seemed just as content

with the noise as with the Silence.

To his protesting disciples he said one day,

“Silence is not the absence of sound,

but the absence of self.”

If you can get a copy, read his book Awareness. It will change you.


Very slowly but rather surely, progress on my fourth book is proceeding. But to keep at it, I must get back to doing my sits more regularly. I have been remiss lately.I must do meditations daily as I used to so that I can access my subject matter more easily. This means I must resist the lure of mindless TV, too much reading, and must not give in to distractions that pull me away from listening and observing the journaling that my spirit constantly engages in whether I pay attention to it or not. Once I’m in touch with the silence within, I can easily get the goodies– pretty much like Jack of the beanstalk story who steals the golden eggs while the giant sleeps!

As I promised during the launching of Humming In My Universe, my first book, I would like to write twenty books in my lifetime. That’s a lot of sitting!

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15 years ago

dear jim:

just a slight correction. PMAP stands for Personnel Management Association of the Phils. 🙂