reluctant renegades

Bhakti Issa Urra
2 min readAug 14


Inspired by the resistance storytelling of Arundhati Roy, we cannot help but draw parallels between our countries.

Prime Minister Modi and India’s violently divisive history and politics raise the ghost of Marcos — the father and dictator — who birthed and raised our current baby boy heir and president.

Roy’s rage and frustration is apparent in her passionate love of people and country — vilely manipulated by decades of corruption and greed.

mantra, prayer, plea — graphics by

In all her heart rending stories her writing includes meditations on language — public as well as private — and the role of fiction and alternative imaginations in current disturbing times.

The Philippines has always been plagued by leaders obsessed in their divine command. Whether pretended, promoted, or publicized in political, religious or other arenas — these folks prey on our beliefs and biases to gain power and prestige.

Long before we were ever colonized, Filipinos are a superstitious lot. The origin may be bound in local traditions of animism and mystical belief. Once practically applied in an agricultural economy and lifestyle — even in an urbanized modern world they are still quite deeply ingrained.

Even today too few dare to question, reimagine or contradict what we believe is divine or omnipotent. besides a natural aversion to not making a scene or rocking the boat — there is a conservative resistance to change of any kind.

Better the devil we know than the demon we don’t — who knows the root cause anymore? What will it take for people to rise up and mutiny? Move from resistance to rebellion? Are our cushy lives worth yet another revolution?

For all the effort and price the Filipino people and the Philippine nation paid to oust Marcos the dictator — what has it all amounted to when we let them back in power? Who is to gain in this devil’s bargain?

Originally published at



Bhakti Issa Urra

canvassing consciousness, constantly curious — ever challenged & changed