I am paying attention to your fb posts. I am taking notes of your smart questions. I appreciate the seriousness of your quest to have some good answers to wrestle with.
How can a young second-generation Fil Am who has never been to the homeland decolonize and re-indigenize? ...Whose connection with Filipino culture is tenuous and fraught with questions and the answers can only be glimpsed in fragments and very incoherent most times. . . How to appreciate or claim a culture vicariously? How to ask permission to appropriate? Can we create our own culture with what is borrowed from the bits and pieces of the homeland culture that we are able to access?
These are the same questions I had when I started this journey. The research methodology of pakapakapa (literally groping your way around for the answer) is quite ingenius (and indigenous!), you see. We are natural researchers in that we know how to ask questions, we know who to ask, we know where to look, where to show up, who to listen to, who not to bother with. We trust our instincts - our pakikiramdam - and we are intuitively guided from all directions by our dreams, signposts, metaphors, stories, and yes, tsismis. We know how to lean into or keen into something when our synesthesia kicks in. This fusion of the senses is a quality of Pakikipamdam - a very sophisticated sensing instrument that is honed by a participatory sense of self and a practice of radical presence.
So this is what I see you doing, Lauren. You are asking the right questions. You are showing up. You are building community. You are creating culture along with other kapwa on the same path.
What does this Land ask of us? those of us who are settlers? And how is this Land connected to the homeland across the Pacific Ocean? How do we stay connected? How does our life here impact the lives over there?
The Earth is alive and it is dreaming us. What are we to make of this dream...assuming we even know and feel that we are being dreamed?