Regardless of the challenge, Filipinos always manage to pull through as a result of their innate character and enduring patience steeled through centuries of subjugation, complemented with the belief of a higher being who they can count on during the most difficult period.
The trait is both an asset and a liability for Filipinos.
It is an advantage during a crisis like in the aftermath of a typhoon or during the current pandemic. Those not familiar with the extreme patience of Filipinos are amazed at how victims of devastations take their situation lightly and can even afford to smile through their sufferings.
It becomes a liability, however, in moving forward since the belief of divine intervention and reliance on fate playing a big part in the cycle of life often result to Filipinos holding back in giving their best effort.
In catching a crook in government, for instance, those who witness irregularities or those who have the power to stop it merely shrug and say, “Leave it to God’s will” that often emboldens the culprits; thus, resulting to the pervasion of the culture of corruption.
Still, the net effect is positive since resilience, which is the word that encapsulates the Filipino trait, is a potent weapon in the battle against the plague.
Filipinos, for instance, were able to rise from being the doormat of the region in terms of economic activity to a stellar performer recently.
Had there been no pandemic, the momentum will have pushed the economy to grow in a level which is among the strongest in the world.
Again, the patience of Filipinos was put to the test as the government imposed a community quarantine that lasted for more than a week, putting residents of Metro Manila and most of Luzon restricted to their homes.
The danger eased but still the threat remained because of the global dimension of the infections.
The situation started to ease mainly as a result of Filipinos submitting to the protocols, which other countries are finding hard to enforce.
A bigger demand was put forward on their forbearance as Filipinos already enduring months of being cooped up were asked to forego Christmas celebrations, which was hitherto unheard of.
It is the ultimate test for family-oriented beings who labored in practicing what is common among other Christian nations, which is celebrating Yule within their immediate family.
Christmas Eve and the day itself are feast days for Filipinos, inviting to the dining table relatives and friends who are willing to partake of the climax of many fiesta events for a year.
Those are past, for now.
Filipinos, however, know that a bigger merrymaking can only be possible if the whole family hurdles the health obstacle.
The Philippines was among the most devastated nation in World War II, yet its citizens rose from the ashes and even achieved the reputation of being the friendliest and most optimistic people on earth.
Filipino cheerfulness is a gift that infects other citizens of the world in projecting a ray of sunshine on an otherwise dreary environment.