Amortal

MANILA, Philippines—A great idea Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago has. Her Senate Bill 2797 extends the retirement age of government workers from 65 to 70 years. She cogently argued, “Many people want to keep working for a variety of reasons other than economic survival, including enjoyment of the office camaraderie or the sense of purpose that work brings.” In turn, the government would “benefit from the expertise of our public officials for a bit longer.”

Longer life spans. I agree with her. In fact, she could have gone further by including our military personnel and those in the private sector. (The retirement of justices and judges is fixed by the Constitution at 70 and can be changed only by constitutional amendment, not by statute. Hence, it cannot be included.)

The present retirement ages were set 122 years ago when life expectancy was only 37 years. Since then, life spans have lengthened. On the average, we now live 30 years longer than our grandparents, and 20 years longer than our parents did. Scientific data show that our life expectancy continues to increase, by two to five years per decade. So I dare say that today’s 70-year-olds are just the equivalents of yesteryears’ 50-year-olds.

To prolong life, it is now possible to grow new tissues from our own adult stem cells, and implant them into our body without danger of rejection. The use of adult stem cells has muted the ethical and religious objection on earlier researches using embryonic stem cells. As a result, the cure for diabetes, Alzheimer’s, dementia, certain types of cancer and other heretofore-incurable diseases can be expected shortly.

Recently, Time magazine reported that a new compound called resveratrol, found in red grapes and other fruits, has been shown to lengthen life by restricting the body’s caloric absorption. Also, a new enzyme called telomerase immortalizes human cells by lengthening the telomeres—the DNA units at the end of chromosomes that determine the aging of our tissues.

Ageless and evergreen. In this new age of agelessness, the secret in adding life to our years is to stay involved, to continue to do what gives us fulfillment and pleasure, to construct a life full of attractions that we forget our calendar age and remember only to chase ever-new aspirations. View retirement as a mere change of tires for a new journey. In this way, we become—no, not immortal—but “amortal,” a word coined by Time magazine.

Amortal is the term I used to toast new Foreign Secretary Albert F. del Rosario and new Ambassador to Japan Manuel M. Lopez during a cocktail reception I hosted in our Makati home. At past the passé retirement age of 65, they are still as sprightly—mentally and physically—as the 45-year-olds in the boardrooms, executive suites, tennis courts and golf courses of the last generation.

No wonder then that upon arriving at his post in Tokyo, Manolo Lopez—that’s his familiar and amortal name—immediately and seamlessly coped with the massive earthquake and tsunami that hit northern Japan. Using his gung-ho leadership, he personally supervised the relief and rehabilitation program for our overseas workers affected by this disaster. Undauntedly, he journeyed to the disaster site personally with little regard for the possible effects of radiation on his own health.

Many were surprised to watch on television and to read in the newspapers that Secretary Del Rosario climbed 20 stories in Singapore when the electric current conked out during the visit of President Aquino, whom he accompanied in that island state.

However, those who really know him were not surprised. After all, at past the chronological age of 70, he plays golf regularly by walking the six-kilometer fairways, without the use of a golf cart. Before that, he and his equally athletic and statuesque wife, Gretchen, were tennis champions at the Manila Polo Club. Moreover, he energetically sat—prior to his DFA stint—in the boards of over 40 large corporations.

Toasts for the amortals. Joining me in hailing Del Rosario and Lopez were other amortals, like former President Fidel V. Ramos, taipans John Gokongwei Jr., Oscar M. Lopez, George S. K. Ty and Washington Sycip, who, though nominally retired, continue to provide dynamism and direction to their conglomerates.

Livening the toasts were PLDT Group chair Manuel Pangilinan, San Miguel Corp. president Ramon Ang, Bangko Sentral Governor Amando Tetangco, Banco de Oro boss Tessie Sy Coson, Metrobank chair Antonio Abacan, BPI president Gigi Montinola, PLDT president Napoleon Nazareno, SSS chair Juan Santos, Citybank boss Sanjiv Vohra and Sugar king Pedro Roxas.

Among the young CEOs were Jollibee’s Tony Tan Caktiong, Petron’s Eric Recto, Inquirer’s Sandy Prieto Romualdez, Star’s Kevin Belmonte, Cebu Pacific’s Lance Gokongwei, Fedex’s Bert Lina, Toyota’s Alfred Ty, FEU’s Lydia Echauz, ATI’s Yosi Tanco, Accra’s Ave Cruz, South China Resources’ Ed Reyes and MAP president Jun Palafox.

Among the 45 ambassadors present were Abdulla Ahmed Al-Mutawaa (Qatar and dean of the Diplomatic Corps), Liu Jianchao (China), Stephen Lillie (UK), Nikolay Kudashev (Russia), Jorge Domecq (Spain), Thierry Borja de Mazota (France), Abdullah Al Hassan (Saudi Arabia), Lee Hye-min (Korea), Alcides Prates (Brazil) and Robert Gerald Brinks (the Netherlands). Also present was the dean of the Consular Corps, Hugh Wilson (Australia).

Due to space limits, I regret I cannot name all the diplomats, business leaders and friends who graced the cocktails.

* * *

9 Comments

Filed under Columns

9 responses to “Amortal

  1. It’s awesome to go to see this web page and reading the views of all friends about
    this paragraph, while I am also eager of getting familiarity.

  2. None of these charitable societies follow a religious
    curriculum but they definitely are very popular
    with the student body. The problem can be further expanded by collecting data from entire.

    If the establishment is co-educational, then there are separate arrangements for lodging.

  3. Amazing! This blog looks just like my old one! It’s on a totally different topic but
    it has pretty much the same layout and design. Wonderful choice of
    colors!

  4. I’ve been browsing online more than 3 hours today, yet I never found any
    interesting article like yours. It is pretty worth
    enough for me. In my view, if all website owners and bloggers made good content as you did,
    the net will be much more useful than ever before.|
    I couldn’t refrain from commenting. Well written!|
    I’ll immediately grasp your rss as I can not find your email subscription hyperlink or newsletter service.
    Do you’ve any? Kindly allow me realize in order that I may subscribe.
    Thanks.|
    It is appropriate time to make some plans for the future and it’s time to be happy.
    I’ve read this post and if I could I desire to suggest you some interesting
    things or suggestions. Perhaps you could write next articles referring to this article.
    I wish to read more things about it!|
    It’s the best time to make some plans for the longer
    term and it’s time to be happy. I have learn this publish and if
    I may I desire to suggest you few attention-grabbing issues or suggestions.
    Perhaps you can write next articles referring to this article.
    I wish to read more things approximately
    it!|
    I have been browsing on-line greater than 3 hours these days, yet I
    by no means found any interesting article like yours. It is beautiful value enough for me.
    In my view, if all site owners and bloggers made good
    content material as you probably did, the net shall be a lot more useful than ever before.|
    Ahaa, its pleasant dialogue concerning this article here at this web site, I
    have read all that, so at this time me also commenting here.|
    I am sure this paragraph has touched all the internet
    viewers, its really really fastidious post on building up new webpage.|
    Wow, this piece of writing is fastidious, my sister is analyzing such things, therefore I am going to tell her.|
    bookmarked!!, I love your website!|
    Way cool! Some extremely valid points! I appreciate you penning this write-up and also the rest
    of the website is very good.|
    Hi, I do think this is an excellent website.
    I stumbledupon it 😉 I may return once again since i have
    bookmarked it. Money and freedom is the best way to change, may you be rich and
    continue to guide others.|
    Woah! I’m really enjoying the template/theme of this website.

    It’s simple, yet effective. A lot of times it’s very difficult to get that “perfect balance” between superb usability and appearance.

    I must say that you’ve done a excellent job with
    this. Additionally, the blog loads extremely quick for me
    on Opera. Superb Blog!|
    These are actually fantastic ideas in on the topic of blogging.
    You have touched some pleasant points here. Any way keep up wrinting.|
    Everyone loves what you guys are usually up too. Such clever work and reporting!
    Keep up the very good works guys I’ve included
    you guys to my personal blogroll.|
    Howdy! Someone in my Facebook group shared this site with us so
    I came to give it a look. I’m definitely enjoying the information. I’m bookmarking and will be tweeting this to my followers!
    Fantastic blog and outstanding design and style.|
    I enjoy what you guys tend to be up too. This type of
    clever work and coverage! Keep up the terrific
    works guys I’ve included you guys to my personal blogroll.|
    Howdy would you mind sharing which blog
    platform you’re using? I’m planning to start my own blog soon but
    I’m having a hard time selecting between BlogEngine/Wordpress/B2evolution and Drupal.
    The reason I ask is because your design and style seems different then most
    blogs and I’m looking for something unique.

    P.S Apologies for getting off-topic but I had to ask!|
    Howdy would you mind letting me know which webhost you’re utilizing?
    I’ve loaded your blog in 3 completely different web browsers and I must
    say this blog loads a lot quicker then most.

    Can you recommend a good web hosting provider at a fair price?
    Many thanks, I appreciate it!|
    I like it when people come together and share views. Great blog, continue the good
    work!|
    Thank you for the good writeup. It in fact was a amusement account it.
    Look advanced to far added agreeable from you! However,
    how could we communicate?|
    Hi there just wanted to give you a quick heads up.
    The text in your post seem to be running off the screen in Chrome.

    I’m not sure if this is a formatting issue or something to do with internet browser compatibility but I figured I’d post to let you know.
    The layout look great though! Hope you get the problem fixed soon. Kudos|
    This is a topic that is near to my heart… Thank you! Exactly where are your contact
    details though?|
    It’s very straightforward to find out any matter on web
    as compared to books, as I found this paragraph at this site.|
    Does your blog have a contact page? I’m having a tough
    time locating it but, I’d like to send you an e-mail. I’ve
    got some creative ideas for your blog you might be interested in hearing.
    Either way, great blog and I look forward to seeing it
    improve over time.|
    Hey there! I’ve been reading your web site for
    a while now and finally got the bravery to go ahead and give you a shout out from
    New Caney Texas! Just wanted to tell you keep up the
    excellent job!|
    Greetings from Ohio! I’m bored to tears at work so I decided to check out your website on my iphone during lunch break.
    I really like the information you present here and can’t wait
    to take a look when I get home. I’m amazed at how quick your blog loaded on my phone ..
    I’m not even using WIFI, just 3G .. Anyways, good
    site!|
    Its like you read my thoughts! You appear to grasp so much approximately this, such as
    you wrote the guide in it or something. I feel that you simply
    can do with a few p.c. to power the message house a little bit,
    however instead of that, that is excellent blog. An excellent read.
    I’ll definitely be back.|
    I visited multiple web pages however the audio
    quality for audio songs current at this web
    site is really fabulous.|
    Hi there, i read your blog occasionally and i own a similar
    one and i was just wondering if you get a lot of spam comments?
    If so how do you protect against it, any plugin or anything you
    can suggest? I get so much lately it’s driving me crazy so
    any help is very much appreciated.|
    Greetings! Very helpful advice in this particular article!
    It is the little changes which will make the biggest
    changes. Thanks a lot for sharing!|
    I absolutely love your site.. Very nice colors & theme.
    Did you create this website yourself? Please reply back as I’m planning to create my own personal blog and would love to
    learn where you got this from or just what the theme is called.
    Appreciate it!|
    Hello there! This article could not be written any better!
    Looking at this post reminds me of my previous roommate!
    He always kept talking about this. I am going to forward
    this post to him. Pretty sure he will have a good read.
    Many thanks for sharing!|
    Incredible! This blog looks exactly like my old one! It’s on a entirely different
    topic but it has pretty much the same page layout and
    design. Superb choice of colors!|
    There is certainly a great deal to find out about this topic.
    I love all the points you made.|
    You have made some good points there. I checked on the net to learn more about the
    issue and found most individuals will go along with your views on this site.|
    What’s up, I read your new stuff regularly. Your writing style is awesome,
    keep it up!|
    I simply could not depart your site prior to suggesting that I extremely enjoyed the standard info an individual supply for your
    guests? Is gonna be back incessantly in order to check out
    new posts|
    I wanted to thank you for this good read!! I
    absolutely loved every little bit of it.
    I’ve got you book-marked to check out new things you post…|
    What’s up, just wanted to say, I enjoyed this post. It was funny.
    Keep on posting!|
    I leave a response each time I appreciate a article on a
    website or I have something to contribute to the conversation. Usually it’s triggered by the fire communicated in the article I read.
    And after this post Amortal | The Personal Website of
    Retired Chief Justice Panganiban. I was moved enough to drop a comment :
    -) I do have a couple of questions for you if it’s okay.
    Is it just me or do a few of the comments look like they are left by brain dead visitors?

    😛 And, if you are posting on other online social sites, I would like to keep up
    with everything new you have to post. Would you
    list all of all your shared sites like your linkedin profile, Facebook page or twitter feed?|
    Hi there, I enjoy reading through your post. I wanted to write a little comment to support you.|
    I always spent my half an hour to read this web site’s articles or
    reviews daily along with a cup of coffee.|
    I every time emailed this blog post page to all my
    contacts, for the reason that if like to read it afterward my contacts will too.|
    My programmer is trying to persuade me to move to .net from PHP.
    I have always disliked the idea because of the expenses.
    But he’s tryiong none the less. I’ve been using WordPress on numerous websites for about a year and am anxious
    about switching to another platform. I have heard very good
    things about blogengine.net. Is there a way I can import all my wordpress
    posts into it? Any help would be greatly appreciated!|
    Hello! I could have sworn I’ve been to this website before but after looking at a
    few of the posts I realized it’s new to me. Anyhow, I’m certainly delighted
    I discovered it and I’ll be book-marking it and checking back frequently!|
    Wonderful work! This is the kind of info that
    are supposed to be shared across the internet. Shame on the
    seek engines for not positioning this put up higher!
    Come on over and seek advice from my site .

    Thanks =)|
    Heya i’m for the first time here. I found this board and I find It really useful & it helped me out a lot.
    I hope to give something back and aid others like you aided me.|
    Hello there, There’s no doubt that your web site might be having internet browser compatibility problems.
    When I take a look at your web site in Safari, it looks fine however, if opening
    in I.E., it has some overlapping issues. I simply wanted to provide you with a quick heads up!
    Apart from that, great blog!|
    Somebody essentially assist to make severely posts I
    might state. That is the very first time
    I frequented your web page and so far? I amazed with the analysis you made to create this particular publish extraordinary.
    Great job!|
    Heya i’m for the first time here. I found this board and I
    in finding It really helpful & it helped me out much.
    I am hoping to provide something back and aid others such as you helped
    me.|
    Hello! I simply wish to offer you a huge thumbs up for the great
    information you’ve got here on this post. I’ll be coming back to your blog
    for more soon.|
    I always used to study piece of writing in news papers but now as I
    am a user of internet thus from now I am using net for content, thanks to
    web.|
    Your mode of describing all in this paragraph is truly good, every one can without difficulty understand it,
    Thanks a lot.|
    Hello there, I discovered your website by the use of Google whilst looking for a comparable
    subject, your site came up, it looks great. I’ve bookmarked it in my google bookmarks.

    Hello there, simply was alert to your blog thru Google, and found that it’s truly
    informative. I’m going to watch out for brussels.
    I will appreciate when you proceed this in future.
    Lots of other folks can be benefited from your writing.
    Cheers!|
    I am curious to find out what blog system
    you have been utilizing? I’m having some small security
    problems with my latest website and I would like to find something more safe.
    Do you have any solutions?|
    I am really impressed with your writing skills and also with the layout on your weblog.
    Is this a paid theme or did you customize it yourself? Either way keep
    up the nice quality writing, it is rare to see a nice blog like this one nowadays.|
    I am extremely impressed along with your writing talents as well as
    with the format to your weblog. Is this a paid theme or did you customize it your self?
    Anyway keep up the excellent high quality writing, it’s uncommon to look a nice
    blog like this one today..|
    Hello, Neat post. There is an issue together with your site
    in web explorer, would check this? IE nonetheless is the
    market chief and a large component to other people will miss your
    great writing because of this problem.|
    I am not sure where you’re getting your info, but good topic.
    I needs to spend some time learning more or understanding more.
    Thanks for fantastic information I was looking for this information for my mission.|
    Hello, i think that i saw you visited my weblog thus i came to
    “return the favor”.I am attempting to find things to enhance my website!I
    suppose its ok to use {some of|a f\

  5. I love what you guys tend to be up too. This type of
    clever work and exposure! Keep up the good works guys I’ve incorporated
    you guys to blogroll.

  6. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on Charlotte roofing contractor.
    Regards

  7. Hurrah! At last I got a blog from where I be able to truly obtain useful data regarding my study and knowledge.

  8. That is a very good tip especially to those new to the blogosphere.
    Simple but very precise info… Thank you for sharing this one.
    A must read post!

  9. Thank you for the auspicious writeup. It if truth
    be told used to be a enjoyment account it. Look complex to more brought agreeable from you!

    By the way, how can we keep up a correspondence?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s