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Preliminary Reflections of the Nature of Law

Group 1
Abella, Frederick M.
Alvarez, Atreja Rei B.
Batugal, Julius
Federico, Fiona Criscelle
Fernandez, Therese Marie


Law as a set of rules is one of the misconceptions about Laws. For
instance, if there arises a legal dispute, the judge finds the right rule and applies
it mechanically. This is how the formalist views it. Another is sometimes when
law students have become more familiar with the laws and when they see that
one has violated one aspect of the laws, they immediately look for the
corresponding penalty of such violation. In these scenarios, there is a failure to
consider the human or social factors why people violate the law or its impact on
the victim. One automatically derives at a conclusion that a person has violated
the law and hence, he must be punished.
Another misconception is that law as a set of rules merely caters to
efficiency like that of a quick disposal of cases from the Court dockets. It is
viewed as something that is limited only to daily transactions. Indeed that one of
the purposes of speedily resolving cases and disputes is to dispose cases from
the Court dockets but this is only on the superficial phase. The deeper reason of
the quick disposal is that parties or litigants do not have to suffer for so long
before a dispute is decided or that other pending cases may be attended to as
well. Hence, the cases must be resolved for the parties per se and not just to
simply dispose them just for the sake of it.
One aspect of law is that the rules provided for based on the laws are only
an aspect of the process, that they are merely transactions. However, as one
author said, they only see one-tenth of the whole picture of what a law is. They
only see the tip of an iceberg. They have not seen the reasons that support these
rules or laws, its purpose, the law makers, the law breakers, or the culture where
the law is promulgated.
An act of obedience to the laws is universal in nature or common
and present to all types of law. The difference lies only with the
degree of disobedience. Say for instance natural law is inviolable
since it cannot be violated. An example of it would be the law of
gravity; it is inviolable. The law of man on the other hand may be
violated since it is anchored on freedom. The people may choose to
violate it or not.
The principle of generality sees laws as generally rather than
particularly framed. Say for instance a red light suggests that all
vehicles must stop or that a speed limit suggests that all drivers
must adhere to this law. It means that the law is the law regardless
of particular attendant circumstances. It also suggests some sense
of advancement wherein one may think in advance of the sanctions

or consequences if one violates this particular law. Hence, it is for

everyone or it is applied or understood generally.
Promulgation according to St. Thomas Aquinas on his Treatise on
Law is essential. He explained that before one may actually obey
the law, the law must be promulgated, declared, or made known to
the subjects of it. It is not something that peop0le already know.
Also, he further mentioned that law is derived from legere or to
read because fundamentally, the laws are written.
Whenever the legal issue presents itself, it must be decided by
applying the accepted principles of law. The law has its own rules
and it is binding and subject to respect and faithful compliance.
Hence, the personal discretion of a judge is set aside and he must
apply the known principles of law.

A brief background of the relationship between the law and religion

In sum, this history shows two salient features: First, with minor exceptions, the
history of church-state relationships was characterized by persecution,
oppression, hatred, bloodshed, and war, all in the name of the God of Love and
of the Prince of Peace. Second, likewise with minor exceptions, this history
witnessed the unscrupulous use of religion by secular powers to promote secular
purposes and policies, and the willing acceptance of that role by the vanguards
of religion in exchange for the favors and mundane benefits conferred by
ambitious princes and emperors in exchange for religion's invaluable service.
This was the context in which the unique experiment of the principle of religious
freedom and separation of church and state saw its birth in American
constitutional democracy and in human history. (Estrada vs. Escritor)

The Law according to Justice Leonen

Valino vs. Adriano
G.R. No. 182894 April 22, 2014
Ponente: J. Mendoza
Petitioner: Fe Floro Valino
Respondents: Rosario D. Adriano, Florante D. Adriano, Ruben D. Adriano, Maria
Teresa Adriano Ongoco, Victoria Adriano Bayona, and Leah Antonette D. Adriano
Facts: Atty. Adriano Adriano married Rosario on November 15, 1955 and had five
children during the marriage. They were eventually separated-in-fact. Atty.
Adriano courted Fe Floro Valino, one of his clients, years later and both had
decided to live together as husband and wife. Atty. Adriano died in 1992. Valino
then took it upon herself to shoulder the funeral and burial expenses for Atty.
Adriano and the latter was subsequently buried in Manila Memorial Park. Rosario,
who was in the United States at the time, asked that the internment be delayed
but was not heeded. She then argued that the remains of Atty. Adriano be
exhumed and transferred to the family plot at the Holy Cross Memorial Cemetery
in Novaliches, Quezon City. Valino countered that Atty. Adrianos last wish was
that his remains be interred in the Valino family mausoleum at the Manila
Memorial Park.
Issue: Is Rosario Adriano entitled to the remains of Atty. Adriano?
Ruling: Yes. Article 305 of the Civil Code, in relation to what is now Article 199 of
the Family Code, specifies the persons who have the right and duty to make
funeral arrangements for the deceased. Thus:
Art. 305. The duty and the right to make arrangements for the funeral of
a relative shall be in accordance with the order established for support,
under Article 294. In case of descendants of the same degree, or of
brothers and sisters, the oldest shall be preferred. In case of ascendants,
the paternal shall have a better right.
Art. 199. Whenever two or more persons are obliged to give support, the
liability shall devolve upon the following persons in the order herein
(1) The spouse;
(2) The descendants in the nearest degree;
(3) The ascendants in the nearest degree; and
(4) The brothers and sisters. (294a)
From the aforecited provisions, it is undeniable that the law simply confines the
right and duty to make funeral arrangements to the members of the family to the
exclusion of ones common law partner. As applied to this case, it is clear that
the law gives the right and duty to make funeral arrangements to Rosario, she
being the surviving legal wife of Atty. Adriano. The fact that she was living

separately from her husband and was in the United States when he died has no
controlling significance.

Dissenting Opinion (J. Leonen):

This case is not about whether a common-law wife has more rights over the
corpse of the husband than the latter's estranged legal spouse. This case is
about which between them knows his wishes.
In the present case, petitioner Fe has not asserted that she be considered a
"spouse" under Article 305 in relation to Article 199 with the right and the duty to
make funeral arrangements for Atty. Adriano. What she asserts is that she was
Atty. Adrianos constant companion for a long time who was constantly by his
side, showing him the love and devotion as a wife would have, who took care of
him in his final moments and gave him a proper burial. As such, there is a
presumption that she would be in the best position to relay his final wishes.
The law reaches into much of our lives while we live. It constitutes and
frames most of our actions. But at the same time, the law also grants
us the autonomy or the space to define who we are. Upon our death, the
law does not cease to respect our earned autonomy. Rather, it gives space for us
to speak through the agency of she who may have sat at our bedside as we
suffered through a lingering illness.
I am of the view that it is that love and caring which should be rewarded with the
honor of putting us in that place where we mark our physical presence for the
last time and where we will be eternally remembered.
Given the circumstances, the remains of Atty. Adriano should remain in the Floro
family mausoleum at the Manila Memorial Park.

Justice, is a concept whose content several times has been subject to a
philosophical as well as legal treatment. There is no universal definition of the
termFurther to this, one can say that justice excludes randomness. The concept
of justice is based on numerous fields, and many differing viewpoints and
perspectives including the concepts of moral correctness based on law, equity,
ethics, rationality, religion, and fairness.
Rawls Theory of Justice
Rawls theory of justice revolves around the adaptation of two fundamental
principles of justice which would, in turn, guarantee a just and morally
acceptable society. The very foundation of the theory of Justice by John Rawls is
the concept of fairness which is based on the classical concepts of justice by
prominent philosophers The first principle guarantees the right of each person to
have the most extensive basic liberty compatible with the liberty of others. The
second principle states that social and economic positions are to be a) to
everyones advantage and b) open to all.

The First Principle of Justice: Liberty Principle

The Second Principle of Justice: Equality Principle

Thomas Aquinas Concept of Justice

St. Thomas in the Summa Theologiae understands the virtue of justice to be
founded upon the notion of jus or right because, according to the classical
definition of the virtue, it is by justice that one renders to another his due by a
perpetual constant will. Justice directs man in his relations to others according to
some kind of equality or rightness. Relation of rightness is what is meant by jus.
It is a right that is due to other men, and it is this object which specifies the
virtue. As such, it is logically prior to the virtue itself which perfects a man so as
to render this object swiftly, easily and gladly. Hence Thomas treats the question
of jus before he does that of justice.
Justice, according to him, has two aspects, namely:
Ethical Virtue Inherent to human Being as part of the society
Juristic Norm It is a habit whereby man renders to each other his rights by a
constant or perpetual will.

Social Justice in the case of Calalang vs. Williams

Justice Laurel
The National Traffic Commission resolved that animal-drawn vehicles be
prohibited from passing along some major streets such a Rizal Ave. in Manila for
a period of one year from the date of the opening of the Colgante Bridge to
traffic. The Secretary of Public Works approved the resolution on August 10,1940.
The Mayor of Manila and the Acting Chief of Police of Manila have enforced the
rules and regulation. As a consequence, all animal-drawn vehicles are not
allowed to pass and pick up passengers in the places above mentioned to the
detriment not only of their owners but of the riding public as well.
Does the rule infringe upon the constitutional precept regarding the promotion of
social justice? What is Social Justice?
No. The regulation aims to promote safe transit and avoid obstructions on
national roads in the interest and convenience of the public. Persons and
property may be subject to all kinds of restraints and burdens in order to secure
the general comfort, health, and prosperity of the State. To this fundamental
aims of the government, the rights of the individual are subordinated.
Social justice is neither communism, nor despotism, nor atomism, nor anarchy,
but the humanization of laws and the equalization of social and economic forces
by the State so that justice in its rational and objectively secular conception may
at least be approximated. Social justice means the promotion of the welfare of all
the people, the adoption by the Government of measures calculated to insure
economic stability of all the competent elements of society, through the
maintenance of a proper economic and social equilibrium in the interrelations of
the members of the community, constitutionally, through the adoption of
measures legally justifiable, or extra-constitutionally, through the exercise of
powers underlying the existence of all governments on the time-honored
principles of Salus Populi est Suprema Lex.

An Enemy of the People by Henrik Ibsen

The protagonist is Dr. Thomas Stockmann. He has recently become popular in his
small, unnamed coastal town in Norway for working with Peter Stockmann, who
happens to be his brother and the town's mayor, to develop and build public
baths, which are crucial to the town's economy. Dr. Stockmann discovers that the
baths are dangerously contaminated, and sends a detailed report and proposed
solution to Peter. At first, the town supports him, but Peter turns it against him
and he is declared an enemy of the people.
Notable lines from the play:
PETER STOCKMANN. Taking one thing with another, there is an excellent spirit
of toleration in the town--an admirable municipal spirit. And it all springs from
the fact of our having a great common interest to unite us--an interest that is in
an equally high degree the concern of every right-minded citizen
PETER STOCKMANN. You have an ingrained tendency to take your own way, at
all events; and, that is almost equally inadmissible in a well ordered community,
The individual ought undoubtedly to acquiesce in subordinating himself to the
community--or, to speak more accurately, to the authorities who have the care of
the community's welfare.
DR. STOCKMANN. You may depend upon it--I shall name them! That is precisely
the great discovery I made yesterday. The most dangerous enemy of truth and
freedom amongst us is the compact majority--yes, the damned compact Liberal
majority--that is it! Now you know!
ASLAKSEN. As Chairman, I call upon the speaker to withdraw the ill-considered
expressions he has just used.
DR. STOCKMANN. Never, Mr. Aslaksen! It is the majority in our community that
denies me my freedom and seeks to prevent my speaking the truth.

HOVSTAD. The majority always has right on its side.

BILLING. And truth too, by God!
DR. STOCKMANN. The majority never has right on its side. Never, I say! That is
one of these social lies against which an independent, intelligent man must wage
war. Who is it that constitute the majority of the population in a country? Is it the
clever folk, or the stupid? I don't imagine you will dispute the fact that at present
the stupid people are in an absolutely overwhelming majority all the world over.
But, good Lord!--you can never pretend that it is right that the stupid folk should
govern the clever ones I (Uproar and cries.) Oh, yes--you can shout me down, I
know! But you cannot answer me. The majority has might on its side--

unfortunately; but right it has not. I am in the right--I and a few other scattered
individuals. The minority is always in the right.

The play shows an interesting case of how the view of the majority being right
could be untrue. It also shows the danger such mentality could have by showing
how democracy can be manipulated to ones advantage through preying on the
masses ignorance or passionate sentiments and as a result silencing the
minority who may be in the right.
A careful balance should then be maintained. One would have to reflect if the
views of the majority are correct, and if not, find a way to change their views
without being swallowed by the fear of the majoritys wrath and without feeling
disdain for said majority.

Aquino, R.C. (2006). A Philosophy of Law: An Introduction to Legal Philosophy.
Central Book Supply, Inc.
Tabucanon, G.M.P. (2011). Legal Philosophy For Filipinos: A Case Study Apporach.
Rex Printing Company, Inc.
An Enemy of the People by Henrik Ibsen
Callalang vs. Williams 70 Phil. 726 (1940)
Estrada vs. Escritor
Valino vs. Adriano G.R. No. 182894 (April 22, 2014)