Bagong Lipunan: The song, the vision, and the nightmare
The online news portal of TV5
Bagong Lipunan, the march that greeted visitors to InterAksyon.com on September 11 - and that you should be hearing right now (Turn on the volume!) - was the anthem of Ferdinand E. Marcos' vision for a "New Republic". It was also, InterAksyon.com's way of heralding a month-long commemoration of the 40th anniversary of Marcos' declaration of Martial Law on September 21, 1972.
Why did we play it? To spur discussion, between the old and the young, between those who will never forget Martial Law, and those who do not know what it was all about. Our special coverage of Martial Law, 40 Years Later, will all have the objective of encouraging Filipinos not only to look back, but to consider the present, and to help explain to the Filipino youth in particular what military rule did to, and meant for, the Philippines.
But September 11's playing of Bagong Lipunan also drew a lot of feedback, with young people specifically asking: What's the song all about? What are the lyrics? How does it go?
Marcos intended it to be a patriotic song, and Bagong Lipunan had an impressive provenance: lyrics by Levi Celerio, music by National Artist for Music Felipe Padilla de Leon.
The aspiration that underlay the stirring march was to rally the people towards change.
How Martial Law - and Marcos' program for a "New Society" - all played out, however, is another story. A tragic, painful story we will never forget and are still trying to tell.
Check out the microsite on Martial Law, 40 Years After. Our coverage and reflections will grow by the day. All are invited and welcome to take part in the discussion.
In the meantime, here are the lyrics to Bagong Lipunan.
May bagong silang,
May bago nang buhay,
Bagong bansa, Bagong galaw,
Sa Bagong Lipunan.
Magbabago ang lahat, Tungo sa pag-unlad,
at ating itanghal, Bagong lipunan!
Ang gabi nagmaliw ng ganap,
at lumipas na ang magdamag.
Madaling araw ay nagdiriwang,
may umagang namasdan
Ngumiti na ang pag-asa
sa umagang anong ganda.
(Repeat opening stanza)