PRAY: Majestic Simala

Mar 30, 2013

simala church

This is the second part of my a la Elizabeth Gilbert adventure of “Eat, Pray, Love” (replacing Love with Realize).

Pray. A long overdue trip to the Simala is just the thing my soul needs. I would always imagine that my soul is anorexic as I don’t feed it much often with prayers and other spiritual needs. Therefore, as part of my sabbatical and soul searching journey, a visit to Simala is in order.

simala church

The Monastery of the Holy Eucharist is nestled in the highlands of Simala, Sibonga, Cebu. It is popularly known as “Birhen ng Simala” or Simala–referring to the place where the church stands. Travel time from the center of Cebu City to Sibonga takes about two hours.

When I visited the Church in 2007 or 2008, some parts of it were still under renovation. Visiting it again gave me a refreshing feeling. After a rough and frustrating 2012, my mind and soul yearns for peace and divine enlightenment. Let’s just say, I left the House of God with Mama Mary’s blessing, carrying a lighter load.

I won’t bore you with the details of my spiritual journey. Suffice it to say that my soul was fully charged and I feel much stronger spiritually and emotionally. The fog that clouded my mind was lifted and I can now see clearly what I want to do with my life.

simala church

I feel like the merchant’s son (one of the characters in Paulo Coelho’s book, The Alchemist) seeking the Secret of Happiness from the wisest of man. Let me quote an excerpt from the book: “the secret of happiness is to see all the marvels of the world, and never to forget the drops of oil on the spoon.”

When I read Paulo Coelho’s The Alchemist, I’ve been asking myself thought-provoking questions; like the reason for my existence or what do I really want to do with my life. And I’ve been a fan of Paulo Coelho since then. Until I have to sell some of my collection in exchange for Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight Saga (I know, I know.. I made a very bad decision. Hey, I’m just a victim of the commercialized glittering vampire).

Anyhow, in my hurry to see all the beauty of the world, I forgot the drops of oil on the spoon. I learned my lesson now. I refilled my spoon with oil and I’m off to see the wonders of the world once again. This time I’m wiser, more patient, and armed with a positive attitude in life.

The Girl with Red Maleta

Red Maleta

The Red Maleta story was born out of an idea to travel to new places, learn different cultures and understand the world better. Of course, bringing my red maleta along with me.

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