To the Young Women of Malolos
The issues discussed in the famous letter of Rizal entitled, “To the Young Women of Malolos,” are the inequality between men and women, slavery done by the Spaniards because of ignorance, fraud religious beliefs brought by the friars, the role of mothers in the family, tyranny of some because of the cowardice and negligence on the part of others, unreligious acts of the friars towards the Filipinos, education not given to other Filipinos by the Spaniards, and lastly, the abuse of the Spaniards because of the hospitality of the Filipinos.
In this letter, Rizal addresses all kinds of women – mothers, wives, the unmarried, and expresses everything that he wishes them to keep in mind. Jose Rizal was greatly impressed by the fighting spirit that the young women of Malolos had shown.
His letter is his own way of recognition for them as brave Filipinas who are no longer blinded by the fraud religious beliefs brought by the friars. In his letter, he expresses great joy and satisfaction over the battle they had fought.
Rizal also emphasizes in the letter his desire for women to be offered the same opportunities as those received by men in terms of education. Education is indeed important not just for men but as well as for women and everyone has the right to education. Under his letter he also mentioned about our own freedom as individual human beings that we must have our own judgment of what is right and wrong. Rizal stipulates a number of important points in this portion of his letter to the young women of Malolos.
The central idea here, however, is that whatever a mother shows to her children is what the children will become also. As the saying goes, a fruit would grow the same as of its tree. In his letter, Rizal enumerates the qualities Filipino mothers have to possess: Be a noble wife, rear her children in the service of the state – here Rizal gives reference to the women of Sparta who embody this quality, set standards of behavior for men around her.
Women are fragile and can be easily influenced because of ignorance and lacked of knowledge of her rights. The friars took advantage of the kindness and meekness of this youth and brag about it with its fellow Spaniards. If only the Filipinas were like the women of Spartan who have power over their men, maybe no one would dare to touched or harassed a woman.
Jose Rizal also points out to unmarried women that they should not be easily taken by appearances and looks, because these can be very deceiving. Instead, they hould take heed of men’s firmness of character and lofty ideas, which is indeed very true especially today; wherein most women were easily deceive by good looks of men not even knowing their true identity and their true self.
I’m a little bit disappointed and discourage though, because some would easily judge a book by its cover, without even knowing its contents yet and as for me, it doesn’t really matter if a guy is really good looking, what matters for me is his attitude and values as well as his weird principles in life I guess, and most especially the different kind of feeling that I would feel whenever we are with each other.
To sum it all, Rizal wanted to make his people open their eyes and to avoid ignorance of freedom. Ignorance is the cause of slavery during their time and this is what we must not let to happen again. He did not want its people to live without a religious belief but he just wants them apprehend not to be deceived by the exploitations done by the friars under their robes. The teachings made must be put into action not just in words.