On one of my Bohol jaunt-slash-work assignment, I took the habit of taking a stroll on the famous Panglao Beach in Bohol and one sunny Sunday morning, I came across a family whose only boy enjoyed the white sands, the sea and the sun. I asked politely if I can take a photo, they agreed so I have the rarest opportunity to take on my most daring first time family-outing photoshoot. What I have captured was a happy family whose innocence is a hallmark of proverbial life in the countryside, sheer happiness at whatever it is being freely given. In this case, the sea and the sun. I could never have made a careful thought of it until a good friend who is also a famous travel blogger who became a business partner, Daniel Karlo de Leon pointed out one night as I showed him this photo stacked in my Ipad. I captured innocence at sea, of a child whose dreams are forever glared in his eyes and his fervent prayers, gleaned through his young face.
The opportunity I took while taking this photo has immensely taught me that innocence is one virtue we usually discard when we grow up to where we are. In our attempts to earn a good education, acting the educated persons that we are, we shun innocence. Perhaps too, because of our efforts to safeguard our own personal interests and that of our loved ones that we started to question the motives of others, shunning in the process our own humble beginnings and innocence. Too commonly also, because of our stature in society that we forget to value innocence because we could have wished otherwise and if the winds blew on the other direction, we complain, we witchhunt and we lambast people, society until it crumbles.
Innocence is the greatest virtue only reserved for the young and children in us. Perhaps, as one life is lived fully well and freely when one is a child that when he grew up in society, his freedom is also seemingly shortened or worse, impeded. For some efforts to conform, we choose to let go of our own self-freedom over what we think is great even if it means discarding our own innocent gaze of the world. We fail at society because we truly is not innocent, worse, we despised. We easily discard innocence in the name of trust but sadly, we trust not heartily. We trust based on what we see and hear, or perhaps feel but we never even trust those that we do not feel but have made us indirectly a beneficiary. So true with our national identity that we started to question integrity of institutions while forgetful of how our questioning is reverberating back towards us. Like an echo, our questioning and bullying perspective of what society should be in swift accordance to our own design is coming back to us. Ergo, it is wise to choose innocence and value it a lifetime than piously appear as if one is Zeus who rules the world but never the heart of men.