Why are there no rich Filipinos?
First of all, we must understand our culture. We give and give and give and give. Our culture’s motto is, “It is better to give than to receive” and to be honest, in a smaller point of view, there may be nothing wrong with that, but in a larger scale, it actually affects a lot.
It all stems from our religion. Almost 80 percent of the Filipinos are Christians and Catholics, and we believe in the Bible as the teachings and words of God. God gives, God provides, whatever His people need (mind you, not what they want but what they need) is given to them freely by God stating that if you give, you will receive in tens and hundreds of folds when you get to heaven. An example can be found in Mark 10:21 which says “And Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, “You lack one thing: go, sell all that you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.”
Now, we’ll compare that teaching to how the Chinese people think (in our country – and don’t deny it, they are the richest. If they have Chinese blood, then they are capable of being rich) The Chinese have a proverb that we are all familiar of, it’s the phrase, “Give a man a fish and you have fed him for today. Teach a man how to fish and you have fed him for a lifetime.” Now, you might ask how these two teachings are correlated, this is why, they both have something to do with “GIVING”.
The Filipino Culture says that, we must give so that in heaven we shall receive while the Chinese Culture is that, I earned everything I have for myself/family. And don’t bother telling me that they don’t TEACH us “how to fish” when they actually have authored books on how they became successful, they have authored books on how we too can become successful, we even have shows on how to become a successful entrepreneur (not run by the Chinese). Okay, the point is, we give too much. In our culture, there is no such thing as “giving too much” but to tell you honestly, we DO give too much.
So, how do we teach them “how to fish”? Simple, we make sure that there will be no OUT OF SCHOOL YOUTH. Every Filipino Child has a right to receive proper Education. The Department of Education and the Commission on Higher Education (or maybe not the latter) can be tasked by the Government to monitor and make sure that ALL children will graduate and will learn life skills. I do believe that they are doing that now, but we must do MORE because we also have a “teaching” from our National Hero that says, “the youth is the hope of our nation” which is probably why when we become parents, our dreams become our kids.
Instead of giving money to the poor or not and doubting where do they spend all their money, we must raise this concern to our government so that they can help them make a living. I didn’t say that we will alert the government so that shoo them out, no, we must alert the government that “their” people/constituents/voters, “our neighbors” need help. We have given enough to our neighbors, and have helped them enough in form of our taxes, now we have to make sure that the help that we gave will be received by that person. We are still following the teaching, give than receive, it’s just made into a larger scale because it involves a 3rd party which we call the Government. Now, what’s left in our taxes, we use for household expenses first, then for other matters then savings (the last two are important because the Filipino have a lot of “other matters” in forms of anything that has to do with leisure but we must always have a fixed savings so that we’ll have something when desperate times come)
I heard a person earning 40 thousand a month saying that he just survives with that money which made me laugh out loud because here I am with not even half of his salary just surviving as well. Maybe if we lessen our cost of living, we might actually save more.