The Cambridge Dictionary defines sacred this way, “considered to be holy and deserving respect, especially because of a connection with a god”. Other definitions online state is as, “connected with God (or the gods) or dedicated to a religious purpose and so deserving veneration”. Now however it is defined sacred is something that cannot just simply be trifled with without inviting grave repercussions and consequences.

One religious forum in the internet elicited a post that stated, “Objects are sacred because they are
perceived to resonate with Holy significance that places them outside the realm of creativity, art, and selfexploration.” So when something considered sacred – a ritual, a song, a religion, or an object given a revered significance –is used in a highly irregular manner that may be deemed a
form of disrespect by those who venerate it then the one who committed such transgression may have to be disciplined in order to teach a lesson.

This is precisely the issue that must be addressed in the controversy surrounding a so called drag queen by the name of Amadeus Fernando Pagente aka Pura Luka Vega who clothed himself to look like Jesus Christ and paraded to the tune of “Ama Namin” or the Lord’s Prayer as a way of
allegedly doing an art performance. Even in a permissive society such as ours the acts of Pagente are way too extreme and have earned the ire of those devoted to the catholic religion.

In fact even those of other religious persuasions may have been downright disgusted with the way
Pura Luka has shown discourtesy with those held sacred in this society. What he has done has
offended not only religious feelings but has violated even the sense of decency expected from someone brought up in a deeply religious country.

That Pura Luka Vega claims to be a drag queen and was only doing a performance which he believes is an art form is of no moment, because using the “Lord’s Prayer” as background music while masquerading as Christ inside a so called drag den will already be deemed as sacrilegious and
blasphemous by anyone even those not so inclined to be religious. There are things held sacred in this society and country that are deemed especially sacrosanct and not to be interfered with, the Lord’s Prayer being one of them.

In fact there are a lot of things that may be considered sacred and taboo which are not even
related to religion. Here are some thoughts on the matter of something being deemed sacred and taboo as posited by one John Perry ( h t t p s : / / www.philosophytalk.org/blog/ nothing-sacred-anymore) entitled, “Is Nothing Sacred”, “Holding something sacred is often associated with religion
and God. Some things are held to be sacred because of their relation to God’s wishes and commands.

I think our question is in part about contemporary mores. It’s also about what sort of convincing
rationale there might be for something being sacred, in our more or less secular age. For example, we might agree that human life is sacred. For some people this is explained by God’s wishes, but others might think there’s just something about human life itself. A commandment of God might be
one explanation, but not the only one. And being sacred is connected with taboos. If something is sacred, there are certain things you simply don’t do to it or with it — such things are taboo.

Something taboo is not simply wrong on-balance, it’s just out of the question. Not to be considered. Off-limits. For example, everyone agrees, more or less, in the abstract about freedom of expression. But burning a Koran — even the most civil libertarian of Muslims might think that’s just beyond
the pale. Or consider the artwork involving a crucifix in urine. Whatever idea is being expressed, we’re inclined to say, find some other way of expressing it.

Given that, I’d say a lot of things are still sacred, some of which aren’t tied to any particular religion. I think Necrophilia is taboo pretty much everywhere; there is something sacred about human life and death. Pedophilia is taboo; so there’s also something sacred about children. We don’t think
of these things as unwise life choices, but as simply out of bounds. Other things ought to be sacred, and there should be taboos about them. The earth should be held sacred, and despoiling it a serious taboo.”

In the case of Pura Luka Vega his alleged “artistic acts” may have constituted transgressions not only in the religious realm but also under criminal law. That is why he has been apprehended and to be charged in court for allegedly violating Article 201 of the Revised Penal Code as well as the cybercrime prevention act of 2012. Indeed disrespecting the sacred carries unintended and sometimes severe consequences. Let us hope Pura Luka Vega will not attempt another disrespectful act that might offend this time the religious feelings of our muslim brothers. They might not be as
forgiving as our Christian fellows.


Amianan Balita Ngayon