December 24, 2007

that other kind of doctor

i have friends studying and/or practicing medicine, including one whose reaction to a careless slur on Pinoy docs got published. i just read a newspaper article about a 75-year-old doc who's still in active volunteer service. And i am reading this magazine which includes the following articles:

  • Doctors who go beyond the call of duty
  • Trials and triumphs of Pinoy volunteer docs
  • What is the role of Filipino doctors in nation building
And how do all these make me feel?




i feel...angry. At myself and my field of work. What have my blog posts and computer simulations ever done, huh? How has my skill in solving physics problems saved a frigging life? i have never felt so irrelevant.




"So," asked one of my best friends, currently in the country for vacation, "How's the blog [and the Dawkins article]? There were so many who commented right?"

That surprised me. i had no idea she was reading and no idea that she cared [no offense

Come high school reunion and another friend asked me the same thing. So did my brother [
!]. And some churchmate friends. There are also previous students and bloggers across the globe. And who knows who else?

Lesson: People might not be posting comments but they are reading. i have a responsibility to them; the same responsibility/privilege that i have to
those who let me know that they are vehemently disagreeing with me yet are giving me countless opportunities to speak.


i just watched the rest of "Walk The Line" this afternoon. Johnny Cash was just recovering from drugs and was reading fan mail --- mostly from prisoners. His songs touched on their bondage and their hope of freedom; he himself was a walking testament of the new free life in Christ. God gave him his talent, and even used his sinful past, to reach out and speak powerfully and effectively to a particular group of people.

And so it is with me. i may not be fighting a disease but i am fighting nonetheless. i may not be curing a body but i am curing nonetheless.

From my own experience i can say that without God, every person is dying inside...perhaps in the body, perhaps in the mind, but most definitely, in the soul.

The literary great and
one of my personal heroes, C.S. Lewis, had this to say:

If all the world were Christian, it might not matter if all the world were uneducated. But, as it is, a cultural life will exist outside the Church whether it exists inside or not.

To be ignorant and simple now --- not to be able to meet the enemies on their own ground --- would be to throw down our weapons, and to betray our uneducated brethren who have, under God, no defence but us against the intellectual attacks of the heathen.

Good philosophy must exist, if for no other reason, because bad philosophy needs to be answered.

The cool intellect must work not only against cool intellect on the other side, but against the muddy heathen mysticisms which deny intellect altogether.

Most of all, perhaps, we need intimate knowledge of the past. Not that the past has any magic about it, but because we cannot study the future, and yet need something to set against the present, to remind us that the basic assumptions have been quite different in different periods and that much which seems certain to the uneducated is merely temporary fashion. A man who has lived in many places is not likely to be deceived by the local errors of his native village: the scholar has lived in many times and is therefore in some degree immune from the great cataract of nonsense that pours from the press and the microphone of his own age.

--- from "Learning in War-Time", taken from "The Business of Heaven: Daily Readings from C.S. Lewis"

Amen to that. :

i confessed to a couple of friends in medicine that the main --- only? --- reason i didn't want to be a [medical] doctor was that i did not want my failures to be the cause of someone becoming more sick or even dying. That responsibility is just too much. But, i continued, eventually i realized that it is better to try and fail than to never have tried at all. ^_^

Sounds like [Shakespeare], said one of them.

Yeah, that would be my writer side.

And i'm going to be a doctor too, that other kind of doctor. That would be my physics side. :

So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.

Do not cause anyone to stumble, whether Jews, Greeks or the church of God — even as I try to please everybody in every way. For I am not seeking my own good but the good of many, so that they may be saved. Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ. --- 1 Corinthians 10:31-11:1

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