You don’t go to a negotiating table with your sight just on what you want to happen – all for your own consumption and dogged whim, principle or interest, discounting and disregarding the other side’s points of view and welfare just to maximize what you can exploit and get (selfishly for yourself) out of the concession/settlement talk.
That is a word of advice for both parties involved in any negotiation to iron out an intricately difficult problem. But to the National Democratic Front (NDF) and communist insurgents (CPP/NPA) in the country, here’s my two cents worth for you, vis-a-vis the existing peace talk offer of the Marcos Jr. government:
You are being given another chance at life, a life of peaceful and normal existence in an open world – free from both dangers of being killed and killing your fellow man, and from every dissipation, depravity, misery and barbarity that goes with living in the underworld. Come to your senses, and come out in the open. Drop your whacky, senseless, hopeless thinking of overthrowing the government for it is neither good nor possible.
Take the “peace talk” overture of the BBM administration as grace coming from God Almighty. That’s the way to view it. Yes, there is a God, and He’s the great Creator God – the God of justice, equality, mercy, compassion, vindication, blessing and progress, and other long yearned dreams/wishes of mankind for himself and society, together with the imperative ideals and virtues of life that are no different from your touted beliefs and advocacies, nothing alienated from what you’ve been fighting and dying for in the service of your country and countrymen.
But live for life, not death.
Ponder this: You are actually on the same page with the government as far as goals, desires and aspirations for our people and nation are concerned. There is nothing to rebel about, nothing indeed despite the flaws or imperfections of systems and the frailties and lowness of the nation’s leaders (and the military). Have pity on the victims, both on your own ranks and those on the opposite, not to mention the countless, innocent so-called “collateral damage.” Despicable. Loathsome. Demoniac.
What is good about rebellion? Nothing. The Bible is against it under whatever circumstance because rebellion, in any form, size and shape, is plain, simple and pure selfishness and mindlessness – as opposed and in contrast to any rebel’s professed love for others and trumpeted legitimacy of their cause. 1 Samuel 15:23, Proverbs 17:11. There is always a better way, and it is always the right way. “There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” – Proverbs 16:25.
The greatest men and women of history were people of love, courage, wisdom and martyrdom who were unarmed and selfless, and who believed in nonviolent struggle to achieve their goals and dreams for others.
Jose Rizal, Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther-King, J. Hudson Taylor, David Livingstone, St. Augustine, Polycarp, Mother Teresa, Abraham Lincoln, Nelson Mandela, Ninoy Aquino, etc. were all great revolutionaries in history that shun violence as their means of helping the destitute and needy, and effecting changes and transformation in their own countries and beyond (politically and otherwise, but not for “logo”), and who impacted even the whole world with their stories of gallantry, sacrifice, benevolence and heroism.
They shaped the course of life and history for all – without taking arms.
The twelve and original disciples of Jesus Christ died a martyr’s death, including later Paul the Apostle, except for John the Beloved who was made to die a natural death to write the Book of Revelations.
Lucifer rebelled in Heaven against God. Hence, he was cast from Heaven down to the bottomless pit and now he continues to be in rebellion, deceiving and recruiting people to hell and to a miserable, horrible existence on earth. Isaiah 14:12-15.
“A creature revolting against a creator is revolting against the source of his own powers – including even his power to revolt. It is like the scent of a flower trying to destroy the flower.” C.S. Lewis
Lay down your arms and embrace life again in the real world. There is every reason to be a hero, but not to be a rebel. The government has its arms wide open (anew) to receive you back. Thus, go out and fight your battles in a peaceful, sane, sensible and realizable way.
By the way, you don’t get into a peace talk with the government by setting preconditions even before the negotiations commence. Otherwise, it is not negotiation, but manipulation or dictation, if not deception. It smacks of sincerity and seriousness on your part. Do and behave right.
Finally, Max Ehrmann wrote the famous Desiderata in 1927, yet its contents remain true and relevant anywhere in the world until now. Ehrmann echoed what should echo in the heart and soul of every person on the planet. Take a glance at this final lines:
“Whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should. Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be. And whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul. With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.”
Surrender to God, and to the government.