Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The Extreme Middle

It's already the second week of the impeachment trial of the Philippine's Chief Justice. And like before, opinions are getting polarized. And even Christians are finding themselves not only between whom to side with (prosecution versus defense), but also between involvement and apathy.

It almost feels like a sports event. And oh yes, my Twitter friend AmicusCuriae is acting just like a typical sports fanatic (though she denies being one):

To which, another Twitter user asked me frankly whom I am siding with.

A question which made me sympathize with Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile.

Who am I siding with?

Being in the middle has always been regarded with prejudice. And we can't blame them: a lot of seemingly Christian notions have branded 'the middle spot' as the hotseat of mediocrity or complacency. Or in Biblical illustrations - the lukewarm paradox of the Laodiceans (Revelations 3:14-21).

But does that apply to all middle stuff?

Back when I was part of the Senior Scouts movement in our high school, we were taught that there are always three important leadership positions in a squad. As we know, there's always the front-end leader, who goes ahead in line and is in charge of directions, watching out danger before them, and generally directs group movement. Then there's also the rear-end leader. This one looks out for those who are lagging behind, makes sure nobody gets left behind, and guards against sudden danger from the back.

And there's the oft-taken for granted person in the middle. This guy is in charge of reminding the front leader to slow down or stop when the others at the rear at getting left behind. He also is in charge of encouraging the ones behind him to pick up the pace when they are unnecessarily slowing down the group.

Being in the middle is a very difficult choice. You need to stay neutral. You need to make quick judgments. You need to be frank, to be bold to say what needs to be said - even if it risks a disagreement.

Here are some controversial stuff that I believe in:

I believe that tobacco plants are good, because God created them. But when turned into cigarettes, it becomes a harmful product. However, this doesn't change the fact that it is a plant with potential benefits, only if we choose to make other researches.

I believe that marijuana plants are good, because God created them. But because people abuse/misuse it, it has become a symbol of drug addiction – and validly so. Yet, it doesn't change the fact that if properly regulated, it might lead us to other products that are less harmful, less addictive and more economically profitable (there are already a lot of researches on this end, if you care to google them up).

I believe that sex is good, because God designed us with it. But because we tend to misunderstand, misuse and also abuse it, we end up with psychological, social and relational issues. Yet, if we go back to the so-called 'obsolete/archaic/medieval view' of sex, and accept the function and purpose God had intended for it — then it is one of His most pleasurable gifts (pun intended) to us!

So, going back to the original topic (prosecution versus defense of CJ Corona): who am I siding with?

Neither. I choose to stand in the middle: where only truth and justice matters.

I choose not to be swayed by media, by partisan politics, by religious calls, or by biased opinions.

Though the middle ground may be shaky, I will try my best to stand on it. Or should my own will and reason fail, I will kneel.

So help me, God. 


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