Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Are you an aspiring journalist? Take this advice from Ka Doroy Valencia, Dean of Philippine journalism

This article is dedicated to the father and pillar of Philippine journalism: Teodoro or "Ka Doroy" Valencia (center). His column Over a Cup of Coffee shaped the thinking of his readers, and influenced the decisions of leaders in his time.
Dr Abe V Rotor

 Teodoro or "Ka Doroy" Valencia (center) father of Philippine journalism. Ka Doroy influenced me in becoming a journalist and a painter. My columns, particularly the current and only continuing one in Bannawag Magazine, basically follow the basic guidelines set by Ka Doroy. As an artist, Ka Doroy commisioned me to paint on-site favorite scenes of his boyhood along Tanauan River in 1972. 

Like "Ka Doroy" an aspiring journalist must -
1.         Be inquisitive
2.      Be constant in his purpose
3.      Be fair and balanced
4.      Be genuinely interested in people
5.      Seek the truth
6.      Be resourceful
7.      Have guts
8.      Master his grammar
9.      Know his medium
10.    Read, read and read.

Above all, he must be God-fearing, compassionate, and true to his country and fellowmen. And uphold journalism as a profession and institution.

Excerpt from a lecture by Dr Abe V Rotor, journalism professor at the UST Faculty of Arts and Letters

Teodoro F. Valencia (May 7, 1913 - May 4, 1987)
"Teodoro F. Valencia, better known as "Ka Doroy," was widely regarded as the Dean of Filipino Journalists. His many civic undertakings made him a legend, particularly his knack for raising funds to help the underprivileged and the less fortunate. Known as the "Builder of Rizal Park," Valencia was largely responsible for developing Rizal Park into one of the best parks in Asia.

Ka Doroy was born in Tanauan, Batangas where he finished his elementary and high school education. He earned his degree in Journalism from the University of Sto. Tomas in 1935 and took up Law at the Philippine Law School where he graduated in 1941.

Pursuant to Republic Act 6836 renaming Agrifina Circle to Teodoro F. Valencia Circle and in grateful recognition of his life-long service to the Filipino people, the National Parks Development Committee under the Department of Tourism, dedicates this circle as a living memorial to Teodoro F. Valencia on this 7th day of May 1990. City of Manila" (Internet)

Friday, December 25, 2015

Wheels of Faith

Mural and Poem by Dr Abe V Rotor

                         Wheels of Rainbow in acrylic, showing details (5ft x 8 ft) AVR, June 6, 2012

They come through prism splitting the light of heaven,
     In joyful, glorious colors of seven,
Each color the color of life in joy and sorrow,
     Today and the promise of tomorrow,

Wheels of fate to wheels of destiny in man’s hand,
     They all come down to the faithful in band,
Through time and space on the road of man’s lifetime,
     Whether this or another or over the clime.

Old as they may or new, while others are yet to be born,
     Their origin is the same – goodness sworn;
Passport to the way beyond this life each one must earn    
     Above the material, blind faith and yearn. 

They come down in gears spinning, large and small
     Moving constantly bouncing like a ball,
The essence of competition, the essence of oneness,
     How one plays in compassion and goodness.

Claim for heaven alone by the book and tongue is falsehood,
     Veering from the chain peace and unity should;
Poor orphan of humanity, the very core of faith,
     Forlorn, and man returns to his own fate.

But where is heaven, what is the afterlife, ask the people,
     As they look at the sky and the totem pole,
And losing faith they break away from the holy bond,
     Alas! walk down the road of a vagabond. 

They pray for heaven to come down, out from the blue,
     The long Promise to billions waiting to be true,
Where the discs as one on some fertile ground must grow
     Into one Eden arched by the rainbow. ~

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Vitamins that add zest to sex life

Dr Abe V Rotor 

 What we eat greatly affect our energy and behavior, thus people who eat proper food with the needed vitamins and minerals are more active, and they generally lead happier lives. They have lesser problems with health and sex. A healthy body has the energy and positive disposition to a zestful sex life.

 Let us examine what these vitamins are and what specific roles they play in enhancing a healthy love life.
 Vegetables and fruits - key to a happy love life

Vitamin A. This vitamin helps in the production of sex hormones, and fights inflammation and infection of tissues. Acute deficiency may lead to atrophy of the testes and ovaries. Soft skin and healthy look may be attributed to a good supply of Vitamin A which comes from carrot, broccoli and other crucifers, yellow fruits and green leafy vegetables.

Vitamin B Family. This vitamin complex may be derived from unpolished rice, whole grains, nuts and seeds. Milk principally gives riboflavin, a type of Vitamin B2. Its deficiency may lead to the development of arthritis.

Niacin or Vitamin B3, on the other hand, is derived from asparagus, mungo sprouts, lean meat and fish. This vitamin improves memory, and together with Vitamin A and minerals, gives the flush and glow in the person. Its deficiency may result in skin eruptions and pellagra.

There is pyridoxine, which is vital to the functioning of our brain and nerves. Pyridoxine deficiency is manifested by a general feeling of weakness, neuritis, insomnia, irritability, and anemia. These lead to loss of sex appetite and failure of experiencing sex orgasm.
Most of the Vitamin B rich foods contain pyridoxine and pantothenic acid.

Pantothenic acid is classified as Vitamin B. It is needed in the production of body energy. Choline, which is allied to Vitamin B, enhances sexual arousal and performance. Choline is an ingredient of lecithin, a rejuvenator. Lecithin also contains inositol. Inositol, pantothenic acid, and para-amino benzoic acid (PABA) constitute what is termed as “youth vitamin." Sources of this vitamin other than those mentioned are eggs, crucifers like cabbage, liver, legumes, whole grain nuts and seeds like sesame.
These also provide another Vitamin B member, biotin, the lack of which could lead to depression, indigestion, slow healing of wounds, frequent colds and infections, shortness of breath. 

Most nutritious vegetable - malunggay (Moringa oleifera) 

Mango, avocado, citrus, tomato, guava, and strawberry are among the rich sources of Vitamin C. Doctors recommend a daily intake of 1000 milligrams although some people go as high as 2000 milligrams when exposed to toxins, infection and chronic illness. Taking Vitamin C is a practical way of preventing colds, and some people take it with two cloves (not heads) of raw garlic once they start feeling cold symptoms.

Vitamin D. Although there is no known direct effect on sex, the lack of this vitamin which is actually a hormone complex known as sterols, adversely affects calcium-phosphorus balance and metabolism. Bone deformity in children and osteoporosis are the chief manifestations of its deficiency.
 Regular outdoor exercise and sunlight exposure, and taking in of calcium-phosphorus rich foods protect us from deficiency disorders. Calcium supplement, mainly in milk, becomes a necessary part of the diet of older people. Aside from slowing down the aging process,

Adobong kangkong with chili

Vitamin E adds zest to sex life. It prevents the oxidation of fatty acids which are important in the production of sex hormones. It is found in most of the vitamin-rich foods, but some people may still need Vitamin E supplement often marked tocopherols [Greek: to bring childbirth) (Jensen).
Another vitamin is Vitamin F, which is needed by the thyroid, adrenal and prostate glands. It promotes calcium absorption, buffers cholesterol, helps keep our hair and skin look healthy. Most of the vitamin-rich foods provide us with adequate Vitamin F.

Pokpoklo (Codium edule) green seaweed is rich in iodine and vitamin B12 

It is important to keep always in mind that good health is the key to sexual vitality. Although it is highly recommended that we eat a lot of vegetables and fruits, particularly those specifically mentioned, it does not mean that the more we take them the more we are benefited by their nutrients and herbal values.

First, it is wise to think of certain herbs of their specific significance and the kind of illness we may be treating. There are herbs that are actually dilute forms of natural drugs, and not foods and dietary supplements.

Second is that anything taken in excess is bad. It is but proper to take these herbs with moderation, and better still, with proper consultation.

And third, avoid smoking. Smoking reduces life span to as much as 20 per cent, not considering the predisposition to smoking-related illnesses, principally lung cancer and heart attack, which may cut short a good life even before reaching middle age. Drugs, nicotine, caffeine, alcohol and menthol are known to deaden the nerves in the long run. Medical reports point to them as culprits to many kinds of potency problems both in men and women.

Another form of Vitamin B is folic acid, another form of the B vitamin folate which helps eliminate homocysteine from the blood, an amino acid linked to arterial disease and heart attack. It is also essential in embryonic development and early growth. That is why folic acid is added to milk and foods as protection against birth and childhood defects.

People who eat a lot of dark leafy vegetables, carrots, beans, asparagus, and whole grain, need not worry about folic acid deficiency.

Vitamin B6, which is derived from ginger and certain vegetables, brings relief to the so-called carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS, which is a painful and irritating condition developed by long hours at the keyboard. Carpal tunnel syndrome is characterized by swollen tendons that move the fingers. Other than this remedy, proper posture and work habits must be followed. Ginger as anti-inflammatory properties, aside from its value in toning the cardiovascular system and r educing platelet aggregation, thus helping in protecting heart attacks and strokes.

The most complex of all vitamins is Vitamin B12 or cobalamine. It is important in the synthesis of nucleic acid and myelin, the covering of nerves. Vitamin B12 was discovered in papait, derived from the chyme of ruminant animals. The chyme is heated and pasteurized (heated below boiling for a few minutes and filtered). It is then mixed with kilawen (medium rare goat’s meat or beef). This preparation is effective against tuberculosis and anemia. 

Vegetarians are at risk for its deficiency, especially among children, which may result in pernicious anemia characterized by symptoms of weakness, apathy, light headedness, shortness of breath, numbness of extremities, and loss of balance. Among older people acute Vitamin B12 deficiency may lead to loss of memory and disorientation.


Top, Spirulina, a blue-green alga as seen under the microscope, made into tablets; lower photos: Chlorella seen at high magnification, and Chlorella tablets.  Both are food supplements rich in vitamins and minerals. (Wikipedia)
Other food sources of this vitamin are fish and poultry, seaweeds like gamet (Porphyra), arusip (Caulerpa), and gulaman (Gracillaria). Chlorella, a green alga and Spirulina, a blue-green alga, contain high Vitamin B12. Lack of Vitamin B12 is manifested by fatigue, irritability, paleness, muscle jerking, and mild mental problems, all of which can greatly adverse sexual life.

Vitamin C (ascorbic acid). Prolonged lack of this vitamin may lead to scurvy. Poor sex life is attributed to its deficiency. Its role is in the absorption of iron. Iron aids in oxygenation of the blood. A well-oxygenated blood is efficient in carrying oxygen, hormones and nutrients to the organs and tissues of the body. How do we know if we lack this vitamin?  It is manifested by the bleeding of gums.  

It is important to consider that we have to maximize the vitamins present in the food we eat. We must remember that heat destroys vitamins and other nutrients, for which reason, vegetables must not be overcooked.

It is also well to know that alcohol, nicotine, drugs and coffee prevent the absorption of nutrients, principally vitamins and minerals. This may develop into a kind of malnutrition that may be taken for granted. Thus, people who abuse themselves with these substances suffer poor health and generally lead sedentary lives.

It is also good to remember that even if we get the proper kind and amount of food, we must complement it with regular exercise and good rest, a positive disposition notwithstanding.

And lastly, both physical and mental well-being are important to healthy sex. Many experts say that the greatest aphrodisiac is the human mind.

"All mankind love a lover.” - Ralph Waldo Emerson, Essays

Reference: Philippine Herbs to Increase Sexual Vitality by Del Rosario RM, Ontengco-Castro D and AV Rotor , 2000; acknowledgement: Wikipedia for Photos.

Friday, December 11, 2015

A Boy and a Frog

Dr Abe V Rotor

   Green pond frog, UPLB Laguna 

A boy was caught by surprise when a frog leaped and landed at his feet. He could have either trampled on the helpless creature or he himself jumped into the water.

As I was by chance a witness to the incident I asked the boy why he was so afraid.

"It’s a harmless little fellow," I said. "Maybe he just wanted to play with you."

"Do you remember the story, The Princess and Frog Prince?" I continued. "The frog was a disguised prince. The spell was broken by the kindness of a princess. And they lived happily ever after."

He was silent. On recovering from fright, he hesitantly asked. “Di ba ang palaka, nakakahawa ng sipon.” (Isn't the frog the cause of colds?)

I was dumbfounded. Then I remembered the advertisement about a liquid decongestant showing a frog tenaciously clinging like phlegm.

Poor boy - another case of miseducation of advertisement. Poor frog - now in the list of endangered species.

But long after I had written this anecdote I pondered  what has a fairy tale to do with correct education on one hand, and conservation of a species on the other. I felt sorry for the innocent victim - and myself a mentor. ~

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Poems for co-teachers departed

"Why, memory lingers, it comes afresh long after,
in moments not ony in remembering the dead, 
but the deeds they left behind .  Oh, human nature!
you preserve the beautiful things in a person's life."   

In Memory of the late Dr Thea Garcia (1950-1999) and Dr Lourdes P Tuazon (1958-1999), colleagues in the teaching profession at St Paul University QC

Dr Abe V Rotor

It is on this mural Thea saw the face of the Father. Can you see it?
Saul falls from his horse on Damascus Road and was blinded. He heard a voice, "Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?" It was Saul's conversion into one of the greatest apostles, St Paul of Tarsus. (Mural by AVR, 8ft x 8ft, former Museum of St Paul University, Quezon City). 

(She saw the face of the Father.)

She stood there, her gaze for an hour
glued to a mural, and soaring yonder,
Beyond Damascus and a fallen soldier.
saw a face, the face of the Father.

She saw it, surely it was He -
In subject and theme, she found Him -
The face others did not see,
As soulful as a churchyard hymn.

None of us saw it, had Thea not seen,
Behind the clouds a silvery scene ...
A face complete, Trinity divine,
The face most holy and kind.

Keener the senses are at the end,
Deeper the kinship at the bend;
Everyone a friend after the fall,

Goodbye, she bids, goodbye to all. ~

A Job among us

Eternity it seemed through the years,
Until the clock stopped.
Dark clouds hid the tears;
ad bowed, uncapped.

To many patients, grown and young,
Her short life she gave,
Her healing hands unsung -
Count not at her grave.

In job's shadow she found peace;
Victory is not only for the fit.
The spirit soars, the pain to ease...
Onlu Heaven is the limit.

Make haste while the essence
Of Job is fresh memory trove.
Lulu lived with urgent sense;
In suffering, sweeter is love. ~

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

LIVING WITH NATURE wins Philippine Blogging Award for Nature and Environment 2015

Living with Nature avrotor.blogspot.com 
wins Best Web Log (Blog) for Nature and Environment

"... We, the bloggers in Nature and Environment, are all winners in the great quest of saving our Mother Earth.  We are pioneers in today's revolution - environmental revolution - the greatest movement ever that involves every citizen of the world to carry out all means of taking care of our only home - Planet Earth. Congratulations to other blogs as well for their support to this great cause; and to the organizers of this awards night." 
 - Abe V Rotor, quoted in an interview with Inquirer.net

Blogs hailed as agents of change, relevance, hope
(See story below)
Dr Abe V Rotor expresses gratitude to the judges, organizers and audience after receiving the award of Best Blog for Nature and Environment 2015 during the Philippine Blogging Awards night at the SMX Aura, Taguig last November 22, 2015. With him is program's dynamic master of ceremonies, Mr Cris Urbano.  
Blogs hailed as agents of change, 
relevance, hope
By: Yuji Vincent Gonzales
@YGonzalesINQ  INQUIRER.net

Whoever said that blogging is only for the young?

For 75-year-old Abe Rotor, age is not a hindrance to make the most out of the digital media. In fact, at his age, Rotor is currently maintaining three blogs, and has a total of about 5,000 posts since he started blogging in 2008. “I tell you, I enjoy blogging even in the middle of the night, or wake up early in the morning to finish a lesson or two,” he said.

Rotor, who won the best nature and environment blog in the Bloggys 2015 Awards for anvotor.blogspot.com, told INQUIRER.net that blogs should be used as instruments of compassion, interconnectedness and universality.

“The blog is one avenue you can express many things—you can express your creativity, your thoughts, your feelings, and things we think that the computer may lack like love and compassion. That’s not true. Use the blog and put your feelings there,” Rotor said in an interview during the Philippine Blog Awards Night at SM Aura in Taguig City on Saturday.

“Have compassion with people. Have your advocacy, just don’t be moralistic. Blog is the modern way of publishing. And you are always right when you blog on the condition that you are truthful and you do your research,” he added.

Rotor, award-winning author of “The Living With Nature” handbook and a former professor at the University of Santo Tomas, said bloggers should be guided by “universal values” and channel their emotions in telling their stories.

“You’ll see that the blog creates universality. So you have to be guided by universal values if you want to maintain your blog and appreciate it. You must not only address your blog to Filipinos, to your friends, but to the whole world,” said Rotor, who also served as scientist at the Department of Science and Technology, director of the National Food Authority, and Senate consultant on food and agriculture.

“You know how to blog, you know how to use social media, but don’t make it as a robot. Make it alive. Make your blog speak—speak of truth, speak of happiness, speak of sorrow. But in the end, it will have to show some kind of hope, a new determination, a new life. Don’t stop your story by being tragic at the end,” he added.


For e-commerce advocate and Bloggys 2015 judge Janette Toral, blogs are relevant in this day and age because they share additional insights and knowledge that “usually goes beyond what the traditional media would cover.”

“I think blogs are relevant the moment they add value to their readers. The moment readers get entertained, the more readers get informed and get additional insight, and at the same time they were also able to change the lives of their readers in one way or the other, whether in perspective or in the way they do things, I think that’s when a blog becomes relevant,” Toral told INQUIRER.net.

“It has to establish a niche and go beyond just publishing a brand story. It’s about how they put themselves in the story, their insight, and how they exert effort to become relevant to their readers. Their story should not be about them but how their story will help their readers make a better decision,” she added.

Torral said bloggers should see their interest or hobby as an opportunity to foster goodwill and to promote “ideas that will make our country better.”

“Sometimes bloggers are afraid to do certain things because they saw others doing it already and they don’t want to be accused of copying. At the end of the day we all have our different audience… A blog needs to establish a certain relationship to their readers and the people who believe in them,” she added.

Meanwhile, investigative journalist Raissa Robles, who won the award for best blog in the society and politics category for raissarobles.com, said blogs can be agents of change in the “crossroads” that is the 2016 elections, as she sought the support of her fellow bloggers for a special project.

“We have to choose wisely and we have to choose well. Freedom is very much alive in this country,” Robles said in a short speech after accepting her award.

‘Alive, well, and world-class’

Highlighting the “talent, passion, and impact” of the entries, INQUIRER.net editor in chief and judge John Nery shared how the panel had a difficulty in picking the winners because many blogs have world-class quality.

“The Philippine blogging scene is alive and well,” Nery said in his closing remarks.

“Precisely because of the quality, I think it’s important to stress that each of the finalist should be considered as a winner, too,” he added.

Bloggys, a nationwide blogging event, recognized the “most relevant and engaging” blogs owned and written by Filipinos. Bloggers and readers started nominating entries in September.

Aside from Rotor and Robles, this year’s Bloggys winners include googleygoeys.com for arts and entertainment, projectvanity.com for beauty and fashion, tycoon.ph for business and finance, asksonnie.info for corporate and brand, teachwithjoy.com for family and relationships, michaelsshadesofblue.blogspot.com for fiction and literature, pepper.ph for food and dining, pinoyfitness.com for health and fitness, wheninmanila.com for lifestyle and hobbies, thedailypedia.com for news and events, sawrites.blogspot.com for personal diary, two2travel.com for photo blog, pinoymountaineer.com for sports and recreation, backtogaming.com for technology and Internet, and biyaherongbarat.com for travel and places.

Pepper.ph was also awarded as the best designed blog and the overall Bloggys champion. TVJ

11:25 PM November 21st, 2015- See more at: http://technology.inquirer.net/45393/blogs-hailed-as-agents-of-change-relevance-hope#sthash.OGGaKwzq.dpuf