Today, our very own boxing hero Manny Pacquiao, will once again take on the dreams and ambitions of our nation – a nation where millions of people wallow in utter poverty, a nation so divided, a nation beleaguered by corruption.
When the "Pacman" faces Ricky Hatton at the MGM Grand Casino in Las Vegas today, he's not just fighting for himself as a boxer, but for the Filipino people and the country as a whole.
As BBC News describes it: If Hatton loses, many thousands will sigh. If Pacquiao loses, a nation's heart will break.
Millions of us Filipinos see in Pacquiao something to aspire to, because we see in him our hopes and dreams.
In his early years, Pacquiao toiled in the streets to earn a living and to survive. This is why people can relate with the boxing superstar.
As our "Pambansang Kamao" climbs the ring today, we will see once more the Army (the Philippine Army and the New Peoples Army) lay down their arms and call for a truce, even the Muslim insurgents in Mindanao . Crime will almost cease in the towns and cities across the country.
Every human activity practically grinds to a halt as thousands gather around their television sets and movie houses to witness their hero carry their hopes and dreams. This phenomenon does not only occur in the Philippines . Filipinos all around the world always gather in anticipation of a big Pacquiao fight.
A victory by Pacquiao in today's match would catapult him to the international boxing Hall of Fame. One of only two fighters who have won the championship title in six weight divisions.
As promoter Bob Arum said, "Pacquiao is a symbol of his people".
President Arroyo calls Pacquiao "truly one of our nation's heroes who can unite us even in times of divisiveness".
"The Filipino people are the real source of my strength. My utmost intention is to unite the Filipino people through my efforts in boxing," Pacquiao proudly declared once.
Recently named one of the world's 100 most influential people by Time magazine (officially outpolling US President Barack Obama), Pacquiao could become president of our country.
After the Pacquiao fight, however, can we stay united as a nation? Will the "great unifying force" personified by the "Pacman" dwell among us?