Ashes to Ashes, Dust to Dust - A supernova remnant about 20,000 light years from Earth. (4844234574)and to dust thou shalt return. No need for people to hasten death (link). And those who feel like “killing and killing”, judicially or extrajudicially, do not see that it is not a solution to the problems of society that cause terrible crimes.

But Filipinos usually love quick “solutions”. There are the kind that rage when their cars don’t work and say they will leave them at the roadside and burn them. Or those who say “papatayin kita” in rage to people they know. Not that they would necessarily do what they say. But doesn’t it show lack of patience and perseverance? (link)

Does one contribute to the life of a nation by punishing its children from 9 years old onwards (link) – instead of helping them grow into responsible adults? Does killing people in poor areas make them better communities? At least with plants in a garden, leaves that die can turn into compost fertilizer for the plants that remain alive.

People who turn to dust become fertilizer for their respective communities by what they have done while alive, in contributing whatever they have to offer. Even those who have made mistakes can help others avoid them – drug rehab and alcohol programs prove this. Only politics dedicated to life makes this better path possible for all.

Even if all returns to dust, a society does not need to become a desert. It can be a flourishing garden that grows.

Irineo B. R. Salazar

Germany, Ash Wednesday 2017