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Why Study Rizal?


First and foremost, because it is mandated by law.


Secondly, because of the lessons contained within the course itself.


The teaching of Jose Rizals life, works, and writings is mandated by Republic Act 1425,
otherwise known as the Rizal Law. Senator Jose P. Laurel, the person who sponsored the said
law, said that since Rizal was the founder of Philippine nationalism and has contributed much to
the current standing of this nation, it is only right that the youth as well as all the people in the
country know about and learn to imbibe the great ideals for which he died. The Rizal Law,
enacted in 1956, seeks to accomplish the following goals:
To rededicate the lives of youth to the ideals of freedom and nationalism, for
which our heroes lived and died
To pay tribute to our national hero for devoting his life and works in shaping the
Filipino character
To gain an inspiring source of patriotism through the study of Rizals life, works,
and writings.
Aside from those mentioned above, there are other reasons for teaching the Rizal course in
Philippine schools:
To recognize the importance of Rizals ideals and teachings in relation to present
conditions and situations in the society.
To encourage the application of such ideals in current social and personal
problems and issues.
To develop an appreciation and deeper understanding of all that Rizal fought and
died for.

To foster the development of the Filipino youth in all aspects of citizenship.

It caters to the Filipinos not to hero-worship but to remember a hero who chose death for the
sake of his convictions and of his country. To pay tribute to an exemplary Filipino who even in
his lifetime was already revered by his compatriots with the likes of Andres Bonifacio and Gen.
Emilio Aguinaldo, by world-renowned personalities like Dr. Rudolf Virchow and Ferdinand
Blumentritt. Most of all, this law indirectly guides us to live according to Rizals examples by
knowing him and by reading him.
Rizals works are wounds made by verbal weapons. A course on Rizal design to familiarize the
student with Rizal's role in the development of the Philippines' progress in political, social,
economic and educational aspects. It includes the hero's youth and parentage, his schooling
here and abroad, his travels and their implications to Philippine progress.

There is a great, vital need to study the works and life of Rizal. He is our greatest national hero,
others described him as "the first greatest filipino." He was a genuis and the Pride of the
Malayan race. He was a poet, doctor, architect, businessman, educator, economist, historian,
inventor, musician, psychologist, sculptor, sociologist, opthalmic surgeon, physicist and many
more. He was a traveller and mastered 22 languages and has published many of his works with
the highly nationalistic and revolutionary tendencies with the hope of securing political and
social reforms in the Philippines during the Spanish era.
Noli Me Tangere is one of his books published in Berlin in 1877 which exposed the arrogance
and despotism by the Spanish clergy and EL FILIBUSTERISMO as a sequel and more tragic
than the NOLI was published on September 1891 in Ghent.He was fearless and stirred the
political arena which resulted to his imprisonement. He was a political exile and even then it did
not stop him from writing and teaching. Before his execution in Dec 30, 1896, he wrote an
untitled poem which now known "ULTIMO ADIOS", a masterpiece.
Rizal and His Works has been included in the curriculum by the Department of Education
because his life and works inspire Filipinos, to be proud of their motherland and native-tongue,
to prove that Filipinos are capable to be equal if not excel even to those who treat us as slave.
His brilliance,determination, patience and perseverance are just few of his virtues whom , us,
Filipinos admired and undyingly refered to whenever we are in the lowest low.
The Importance of Studying Rizal
The academic subject on the life, works, and writings of Jose Rizal was not mandated by law for
nothing. Far from being impractical, the course interestingly offers many benefits that some
contemporary academicians declare that the subject, especially when taught properly, is more
beneficial than many subjects in various curricula.
The following are just some of the significance of the academic subject:
1. The subject provides insights on how to deal with current problems
There is a dictum, He who controls the past controls the future. Our view of history forms the
manner we perceive the present, and therefore influences the kind of solutions we provide for
existing problems. Jose Rizal course, as a history subject, is full of historical information from
which one could base his decisions in life. In various ways, the subject, for instance, teaches
that being educated is a vital ingredient for a person or country to be really free and successful.
2. It helps us understand better ourselves as Filipinos
The past helps us understand who we are. We comprehensively define ourselves not only in
terms of where we are going, but also where we come from. Our heredity, past behaviors, and
old habits as a nation are all significant clues and determinants to our present situation.
Interestingly, the life of a very important national historical figure like Jose Rizal contributes
much to shedding light on our collective experience and identity as Filipino. The good grasp of
the past offered by this subject would help us in dealing wisely with the present.
3. It teaches nationalism and patriotism
Nationalism involves the desire to attain freedom and political independence, especially by a
country under foreign power, while patriotism denotes proud devotion and loyalty to ones

nation. Jose Rizals life, works, and writingsespecially his novelsessentially, if not perfectly,
radiate these traits. For one thing, the subject helps us to understand our country better.
4. It provides various essential life lessons
We can learn much from the way Rizal faced various challenges in life. As a controversial figure
in his time, he encountered serious dilemmas and predicaments but responded decently and
high-mindedly. Through the crucial decisions he made in his life, we can sense his priorities and
convictions which manifest how noble, selfless, and great the national hero was. For example,
his many resolutions exemplified the aphorism that in this life there are things more important
than personal feeling and happiness.
5. It helps in developing logical and critical thinking
Critical Thinking refers to discerning, evaluative, and analytical thinking. A Philosophy major,
Jose Rizal unsurprisingly demonstrated his critical thinking skills in his argumentative essays,
satires, novels, speeches, and written debates. In deciding what to believe or do, Rizal also
proved his being a reasonably reflective thinker, never succumbing to the irrational whims and
baseless opinions of anyone. In fact, he indiscriminately evaluated and criticized even the
doctrines of the dominant religion of his time. A course on Rizals life, works, and writings
therefore is also a lesson in critical thinking.

6. Rizal can serve as a worthwhile model and inspiration to every Filipino

If one is looking for someone to imitate, then Rizal is a very viable choice. The heros
philosophies, life principles, convictions, thoughts, ideals, aspirations, and dreams are a good
influence to anyone. Throughout his life, he valued nationalism and patriotism, respect for
parents, love for siblings, and loyalty to friends, and maintained a sense of chivalry. As a man of
education, he highly regarded academic excellence, logical and critical thinking, philosophical
and scientific inquiry, linguistic study, and cultural research. As a person, he manifested
versatility and flexibility while sustaining a strong sense of moral uprightness.
7. The subject is a rich source of entertaining narratives
People love fictions and are even willing to spend for books or movie tickets just to be
entertained by made-up tales. But only a few perhaps know that Rizals life is full of fascinating
non-fictional accounts.
For instance, it is rarely known that (1) Rizal was involved in a love triangle with Antonio Luna
as also part of the romantic equation; (2) Rizal was a model in some of Juan Lunas paintings;
(3) Rizals common-law wife Josephine Bracken was remarried to a man from Cebu and had
tutored former President Sergio Osmea; (4) Leonor Rivera (Maria Clara), Rizals true love,
had a son who married the sister of the former President of the United Nations General
Assembly Carlos P. Romulo; (5) the Filipina beauty queen Gemma Cruz Araneta is a
descendant of Rizals sister, Maria; (6) the sportscaster Chino Trinidad is a descendant of
Rizals first love (Segunda Katigbak); and (7) the original manuscripts of Rizals novel (Noli and
Fili) were once stolen for ransom, but Alejandro Roces had retrieved them without paying even
a single centavo.