2020 has truly been one for the books. And with the advent of the holiday season, for some of us, it’s a challenge reconciling what should have been a season of joy and celebration with feelings of grief and mourning for those we have lost this year, or the struggles of simply coping with new realities and the uncertainty of what lies ahead.
I won’t pretend to offer any sort of wisdom in this blog. But maybe a way of coping with the present can be found in the pages of past.
Which led me to this little project that I’m humbly sharing with you today.
“Payapang Daigdig (A Peaceful World)”, composed by Philippine National Artist for Music Felipe P de Leon, and lyrics by Brigidor C Batungbakal & Eduardo P de Leon, didn’t start off as a de facto Christmas hymn when, as the story went, it was written one evening in 1946 when Felipe de Leon looked out the window and saw his beloved Manila in ruins in the aftermath of World War II. The bittersweet melody, together with the haunting lyrics by Batungbakal and de Leon have made “Payapang Daigdig” a traditional Christmas favorite amongst Filipinos with the poetry of the lyrics evoking imageries from that moment in time together with a message of hope and peace.
It’s an echoing reminder that whatever it is you’re going through, “this too shall pass.”
How apt a message for our current reality.For all those dealing with a tremendous loss, nothing can be said to take away the pain. But maybe knowing you are not alone in what you’re going through can provide some solace. And given time, “this too shall pass.”
For my non-Filipino readers, it is with great pride and humility that I’m able to share with you the beauty of music from the Philippines. And though nothing can match the poetry of the original words, I’ve attempted an English adaption of the lyrics in the video.
Wishing everyone a blessed holiday season.
Here’s Payapang Daigdig (A Peaceful World) DSYMusic instrumental version Featuring Chrysss Estipona.