Award-winning writer likens Gen. del Pilar story to romance, links past to present

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Veteran writer Jun Cruz Reyes delivers his speech about Gen. Gregorio del Pilar.
Every historical event is a humanity struggle, more than just a piece of recorded information in ancient documents.
In a lecture headed by award-winning writer and University of the Philippines professor Jun Cruz Reyes, he likened Gregorio del Pilar’s story and history in itself to a love story and a love song.
The talk was held at Dambanang Marcelo H. del Pilar in Bulakan, Bulacan on Saturday, November 14, in commemoration of del Pilar’s 140th birthday celebration with the theme “Hen. Gregorio H. del PIlar: Huwaran ng Kabataan, Gabay ng Nagkakaisang Bayan.”
At the beginning of his speech, he said that, “Little histories independent of each other makes little or no sense. But when weaved together into a tapestry, it becomes a tale which makes perfect sense.” He noted that when some studies history, the student must take note of the things he can never see, just like love.
So as to “humanize” a national hero, Reyes narrated the life of General Gregorio del Pilar not as bold general, but as a lover. He said that Gregorio del Pilar had a lover named Dolores.
“When del Pilar died, his clothes were stripped off. The only thing left was that handkerchief with an embroided letter ‘D’ in it, which covers his chest. It signifies that del Pilar died while loving a woman.” After that, he joked about the story being similar to television soap operas.
Later, he discussed about kundimans or love songs native in the Philippines which were written by Katipuneros and revolutionaries themselves. He said that even though they love the country and are willing to fight for it, they also have their loved ones whom they care about. Those sweet love songs were written with a background full of bloodshed and despair.
“Every generation has its own question mark. Every generation has lovers. But what differentiates a generation from another generation is the way they give meaning to things. To them, the meaning of love is to fight for their loved ones and for their country. They do not wish for financial gain, but for the people to live in peace,” he concluded with a challenge to the youth to find the question mark and the meaning of love in this generation.

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