For these past few months, I’ve taken a break from writing in English and started writing only in Filipino. Here are my reasons.
1. I don’t want to end up like the Philippine National Hero, Dr. Jose Rizal.
He became very fluent in Spanish and in other foreign languages but when he tried to write his third novel in Tagalog, he disappointingly realized he can’t. It’s ironic this is the same person who said “A person who does not know how to love his or her own language is similar to a smelly fish”.
By the way, that last quotation sounds so much better in Filipino: “Ang taong hindi marunong magmahal sa sariling wika ay mas masahol pa sa mabahong isda.”
2. I want to contribute to Filipino Literature.
Lots of Filipino writers already write in English while very few write in Filipino, at least before the advent of blogs. It’s a good thing that more and more Filipino forumers and bloggers are writing in Filipino and I definitely would like to be one of them.
3. I want to write from the heart.
My heart speaks in Filipino and if I write in Filipino, no message is lost in translation. I don’t need to worry about wrong spelling and wrong grammar. I don’t need to look for English equivalents of words I already know in Filipino. It may already be cliche but when I write in Filipino, I can concentrate on the message instead of the medium.
4. I want to be a Filipino writing for the Filipinos.
With the current decline of the Filipino’s English Proficiency, I see more and more Filipinos reading and writing in Filipino instead of English. Filipino is a language that evolves with us and is very much capable of expressing the Filipino soul, more than any other language.
At first it was difficult writing in Filipino considering since gradeschool, I’ve been trained to write in English. After a few articles though, I became more and more comfortable until it came to a point where I feel more comfortable writing in Filipino than in English. I can’t believe it myself.
As is always the case, it just needs getting used to.