NMT Chapter 62: Pursuit in the Lake (See other Noli Me Tangere Chapter Summaries)
Elias planned to hide Ibarra in Mandaluyong first, before transferring him elsewhere. Ibarra invited Elias to live as brothers outside the Philippines, but Elias declined the offer.
Elias said that his country may need him. So Ibarra decided not to leave the Philippines, because he wanted to join the revolution.
They noticed a commotion in the house of the Capitan Heneral (modern-day Malacañan Palace). Apparently, people were aware that they had escaped.
Elias was against the idea of revolution, because he felt the Philippines was not yet ready.
They eventually reached Laguna lake. Unfortunately, they were spotted by guardia civiles who were riding a banca. They gave chase, and although Elias and Ibarra were faster, they got blocked by another banca bearing guardia civiles.
Elias headed for Talim island.
Elias jumps out of their canoe and distracts the guardia civiles. The soldiers chase Elias for a long time, because Elias would dive down, and then surface, then dive again.
The soldiers open fire. They see some blood, and they assume they had killed whom they thought was Ibarra. They spread the word that Ibarra was dead.
1. Although Elias was loveless and unhappy, he still chose to sacrifice and stay in the Philippines. He felt that he will never find happiness outside his country.
2. One month had passed when Elias and Ibarra last spoke by that same lake. At that time, Ibarra was siding with the guardia civil and the friars.
3. In this chapter, we see the start of the transformation of Ibarra into Simoun, the filibuster (El Filibusterismo), a person embittered by hardship, and a person capable of violence.
Questions and Answers
1. What, according to Elias, is the greatest misfortune of mortals?
The greatest misfortune is for a citizen to hate his or her own country.
2. What did Elias guess about Ibarra, which hurt Ibarra?
Elias told Ibarra that Ibarra loved the Philippines because he had so many benefits. Elias predicted that once Ibarra experiences hardship or suffering, Ibarra would betray his own country.
3. Why did Elias say during his and Ibarra’s first conversation at the lake that becoming a criminal or dying because of a promise that cannot be broken was completely in Ibarra’s hands?
Elias had promised that he would join a bloody revolution under the leadership of Capitan Pablo. No one could delay that revolution except for Elias’ request that they first wait until after he gets a chance to speak with Ibarra.
He thought that Ibarra would be able to help the oppressed people through peaceful means.
4. Why didn’t the revolution proceed?
Capitan Pable died.
5. Elias did not want to leave the Philippines with Ibarra. What did Ibarra plan to do?
Ibarra wanted to lead a country-wide revolution.
6. Why did Elias oppose the idea of a revolution?
Elias felt that those who were defenseless and unaware of the situation would suffer.
Elias said that Filipinos were interested in equality, not independence.
Elias sensed that the Filipinos would not take action.
7. Why did Elias say that there was no conflict between his desire to speak with Ibarra regarding solving things through peaceful means, and his being against Ibarra’s desire for revolution?
Before, the love of country moved Elias to approach Ibarra for help. Now, it is still the love of country which moved Elias to protect his country which was unprepared to launch a revolution.
8. What was the effect of Ibarra when Elias told him not to start a revolution?
There was no effect. Ibarra was deadset on starting a revolution, with or without the help of elias.
9. Elias said that the innocent will suffer if there’s a revolution. What did Ibarra answer?
Ibarra said that would be much better, because it will push the innocent to fight. There is no room for sitting on the fence or staying neutral. The people will be forced to choose sides and fight.
10. What’s the proof of Elias’ courage and heroism?
When Elias stood in their canoe and took off his shirt, the bullet of the guardia civil tore his shirt. Still, Elias found the time to shake the hand of Ibarra (who was hiding on the floor of the canoe) and say that he will meet Ibarra at the grave of Ibarra’s ancestors on Noche Buena, before diving out of the canoe and into the lake.
(Do you want to know how other Pinoys are succeeding online? Read this.)
Manny M. Viloria