I wanted to learn exactly why Dr. Rizal had stated this. I did a search of his writings and found this essay: "The Indolence of the Filipino." Taken in the context for which it was written as well as the time period -- the late 1800s, Rizal was talking about "inactivity resulting from a dislike of work," not relaxing. A pioneer for better education in the Philippines, Dr. Rizal was not afraid to confront people and institutions he believed were holding his fellow citizens back. I think his beliefs hold true even until today where many warmer countries have poor economies, not because people are lazy, but because they are not educated. Education is the key to the proper development of economies in all third world nations, particularly those in warm climates.
As the website states,
"The essay itself originally appeared in the Filipino forthrightly (sic) review, La Solidaridad, of Madrid, in five installments, running from July 15 to September 15, 1890. It was a continuation of Rizal's campaign of education in which he sought by blunt truths to awaken his countrymen to their own faults at the same time that he was arousing the Spaniards to the defects in Spain's colonial system that caused and continued such shortcomings."
Here is the section of the original essay that refers to your quote. (The web address for the site is located below if you would like to read the entire essay.)
Here is an excerpt from "The Indolence of the Filipino"...
We shall proceed otherwise. Before proposing a remedy we shall examine the causes, and even though strictly speaking a predisposition is not a cause, let us, however, study at its true value this predisposition due to nature.
The predisposition exists? Why shouldn't it?
A hot, climate requires of the individual quiet and rest, just as cold incites to labor and action. For this reason the Spaniard is more indolent than the Frenchman; the Frenchman more so than the German. The Europeans themselves who reproach the residents of the colonies so much (and I am not now speaking of the Spaniards but of the Germans and English themselves), how do they live in tropical countries? Surrounded by a numerous train of servants, never going afoot but riding in a carriage, needing servants not only to take off their shoes for them but even to fan them! And yet they live and eat better, they work for themselves to get rich, with the hope of a future, free and respected, while the poor colonist, the indolent colonist, is badly nourished, has no hope, toils for others, and works under force and compulsion! Perhaps the reply to this will be that white men are not made to stand the severity of the climate. A mistake! A man can live in any climate, if he will only adapt himself to its requirements and conditions. What kills the European in hot countries is the abuse of liquors, the attempt to live according to the nature of his own country under another sky and another sun. We inhabitants of hot countries live well in northern Europe whenever we take the precautions the people there do. Europeans can also stand
the torrid zone, if only they would get rid of their prejudices. (2)
The fact is that in tropical countries violent work is not a good thing as it is in cold countries, there it is death, destruction, annihilation. Nature knows this and like a just mother has therefore made the earth more fertile, more productive, as a compensation. An hour's work under that burning sun, in the midst of pernicious influences springing from nature in activity, is equal to a day's work in a temperate climate; it is, then, just that the earth yield a hundred fold! Moreover, do we not see the active European, who has gained strength during the winter, who feels the fresh blood of spring boil in his veins, do we not see him abandon his labors during the few days of his variable summer, close his office--where the work is not violent and amounts for many to talking and gesticulating in the shade and beside a lunch-stand,--flee to watering places, sit
in the cafés or stroll about? What wonder then that the inhabitant of tropical countries, worm out and with his blood thinned by the continuous and excessive heat, is reduced to inaction? Who is the indolent one in the Manila offices? Is it the poor clerk who comes in at eight in the morning and leaves at, one in the afternoon with only his parasol, who copies and writes and works for himself and for his chief, or is it the chief, who comes in a carriage at ten o'clock, leaves before twelve, reads his newspaper while smoking and with is feet cocked up on a chair or a table, or gossiping about all his friends? Which is indolent, the native coadjutor, poorly paid and badly treated, who has to visit all the indigent sick living in the country, or the friar curate who gets fabulously rich, goes about in a carriage, eats and drinks well, and does not put himself to any trouble without collecting excessive fees? 
Without speaking further of the Europeans, in what violent labor does the Chinaman engage in tropical countries, the industrious Chinaman, who flees from his own country driven by hunger and want, and whose whole ambition is to amass a small fortune? With the exception of some porters, an occupation that the natives also follow, he nearly always engages in trade, in commerce; so rarely does he take up agriculture that we do not know of a single case. The Chinaman who in other colonies cultivates the soil does so only for a certain number of years and then retires. 
No. I think the climate can influence energy levels, in that working in extreme temperatures is tiring, but the idea that you "need" to relax or to work in some countries more than in others is ludicrous.
Jose Rizal lived in the mid to late 1800s. So during his lifetime, it was probably quite accurate. In hot climates, conservation of energy is important. A siesta during the hottest part of the day is common sense. In cold climates staying physically active helps to keep you warm. In the modern era of heating and air conditioning, his notion is, perhaps, less accurate. But maybe more for visitors in the warm countries. I think of the Caribbean countries where, for the locals, air-conditioning is still the exception and where a slow deliberate pace with lots of rest is still the best way to get through the day.
I have found that in warm countries (which usually means hot and muggy) it can be impossible to work outside with any degree of sustained effort, or with mental acuity, when it gets so darn hot!
That's why in many of these countries people work late at night, especially if there's a relieving breeze or a drop in temperature that is significant enough to make a difference.
In colder climates, people work more outside in the daylight hours, though sometimes the countries can get too cold to work in also, unless there is a room with heat provided for workers to at least take breaks in. And adequate clothing, etc.
Still, I'm an eight-hour a day person for a job myself (with short breaks and a longer lunch), and only if necessary, so I guess I don't really agree with Dr. Rizal. As usual, I wish I had context.
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