Three Humans, Two Continents, One Realization

DSC00361-01The full moon appears suddenly when life was dull and melancholic, maybe even toxic. Its crescent phase decides to bless moments and they become unexpectedly blissful. These occurrences blow me away. Appearing in all the right places and times. They are endless, scribbled like doodles on my notebook. How will I read them?

The more I experience in life, the more I begin to see signs. The moon is full when I’m filled to the brim, a friend calls just as I’m thinking about them, I get a gig just when I’m worrying how I’ll make ends meet.

I’ve found myself becoming superstitious after years of being a skeptic of anything I couldn’t prove. But what is the point, even if it isn’t scientifically true, of taking the magic out of life? I’m returning to the way I used to think as a child. -Nirrimi of Fire and Joy

Our experiences want to be listened to. They have reasons underneath them that we will only able to understand after they surface into reality, may the experience be good or bad. There is no line that separates the two. Well maybe we can see the line, but our eyes deceive us anyway. The shift or widening of perspective ultimately changes things, everything if you allow it to. A rock becomes a pillow, silence and isolation become opportunities for introspection, death of a dream gives spaces for the flourishing of unexpected, new realities. Perspective is a powerful occurrence, a movement that will never cease, just like waves constantly marrying the shore. It transforms into a landscape of what many imagine as a “better place to live in.” It becomes an energy that reciprocates and spreads.

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Going to Sinulog Festival Makes You Feel All Kinds of Emotions | Cebu, Philippines

What makes Sinulog Festival so unforgettable?

sinulog festival_art of movement_lovey marquez (30)

When participating in the Sinulog festivities, the mood unleashes something in you to make you want to splash the colors you’ve gathered and smother it all over someone’s face, someone you don’t even know. However, there is no feeling of being dirty, just confidently sexy in the scarcity of fabrics worn (or not worn) emphasized by the colors wiped in your skin. The more colorful, the sexier. Intimacy is mighty present, sometimes it becomes overwhelming and dangerous. Getting lost and being found, torn slippers or clothes and bare feet while walking, getting drunk in the light and bright of day, dancing like you’re born to be doing this your entire life – these are wholeheartedly “in”.

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What I Learned about Habits and Happiness after Meeting Burmese Novices in Mandalay Hill | Mandalay, Myanmar

Burmese novices Mandalay Hill Burma - Art of Movement - Lovey Marquez 1(2)

After classes in Phaung Daw Oo Monastic Education High School, Sai Kham and Max walk more than a thousand steps up the Mandalay Hill to watch the sunset. Aside from observing the setting sun and the steady horizon and the roving clouds, they also wait for foreigners and happily mingle with them to practice their English. One fateful day, Reina and I had a spontaneous and enlightening encounter with these two Burmese novices.

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Blessing by Apo Whang-od: The Pains and Pleasures of Kalinga Traditional Tattoo | Kalinga, Philippines

DSC00123I will be a hypocrite if I say I wasn’t scared. The surroundings were lyrical with the constant manual tapping of wood on wood, wood on thorn, thorn on skin. I was nervous. I was the last one among the group to get inked. It was my turn, it was painful. I waited. It was my turn again, it was even more painful, way more painful in the master’s wrinkled yet strong hands. The Kinilat (lightning) design just got permanent on the right side of my hip. It started pouring a few minutes after the tattoo was finished. I was protective of the open wound. I was scared it might get infected. We had no options but to head back so we braced ourselves for the rain and ran as fast as we could. We packed our bags and left our home for two days. I felt the sting and the sore, the aftershock of having just been tattooed by Apo Whang-od and Grace. Yet there is pleasure, there is pride in bearing this kind of pain.

We finally trekked down the steep trail of Buscalan village and headed home.

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