Pinagtongulan, Lipa City, Batangas: Historical Data Part II - Batangas History, Culture and Folklore Pinagtongulan, Lipa City, Batangas: Historical Data Part II - Batangas History, Culture and Folklore

Pinagtongulan, Lipa City, Batangas: Historical Data Part II

Historical and Cultural Life of the Barrio of Pinagtongulan

Part II

Go to Part I

[p. 22]
Historical Data
On the ninth day, the praying ceremony is also done at noon before lunch. Food or lunch is also served during the day if the family can afford. All those who come to the ninth day praying ceremony eat their lunch before they go home. The praying is again repeated on the 30th day if the deceased is a female and for the male, it is on the 40th day. At the end of one year after the date of death comes the “babaang luksa” or “laglag luksa.” This means that this is the day when mourning clothes will begin to be worn anytime the members of the surviving family likes to do so. Another practice in connection with deaths is that the surviving members of the family are to take a bath only on the fourth day after the date of death.

E. Visits, Festivals, and Etc.:

It has been the custom of the barrio people to drop in the neighbor’s house once in a while during the week. This visit usually takes place on Sundays or during holidays when they are free from daily routine work. At least once a year, especially on Christmas season or during barrio fiesta, the members of the family who are residing in other places come to visit their folks. During the Holy Week, distant but close relatives come to their folks for a wholesome visit.

During All Saints’ Day, the people visit the cemetery and pray there before the tomb of their departed loved ones. They bring with them wreaths and candles are lighted all through the night. During the night of All Saints’ Day, the cemetery is in festive mood. There seems to be competition among the different makes and shapes of wreaths.

Other visits are also done or made to someone who is critically sick, especially if the sick one is a close relative. Those making the visits bring with them some present in the form of food and fruits for the sick.

[p. 23]

Festivals and celebrations in this barrio take the form of [a] barrio fiesta. Another celebrated occasion observed in this is the end of May every year. The month of May is recognized as a gay and happy month when flowers are in abundance and in bloom. Thirty-one families are given one day each as “Hermana” which means that the assigned family for the day is to gather flowers and decorate the altar in the barrio chapel. During the day, the celebration starts with the ladies making or tying petals of flowers into small bundles with a pointed short stick. These tied petals are them put together on banana stalks in beautiful designs and shapes, which are usually done by good designers. Food is also served during the day off the “Hermana.” The last day of May is always assigned to the so called “Hermana Mayor” or, if she happens to be a lady, she is called “Capitana.” it is usually a grand day for all the young men and women. If the Capitana can afford, there is [a] string band to furnish the music. At times now, the loud speaker and amplifier are used for the whole day. The day’s activity is terminated by the religious procession at night. Ladies and gentlemen are in their best May dresses. Sometimes, after the procession, a literary musical program is held, and lasts until about midnight.

Another important event is the barrio fiesta celebrated always every second day of January. Almost every house is set for this gala affair. Homes are decorated with beautiful curtains. Streets are decorated with paper flags and buntings. Bands of musicians are hired for the music. Pigs, cows, chickens are butchered. There are games and other exhibition activities. Sometimes, there is the “Huego de Anillo” participated in by men riding on fine and fast horses. The

[p. 24]

young folks organize themselves into a club and always try their best to hold an annual fiesta dance. Sometimes, when funds permit, a stage show or zarzuela is held on the night of the fiesta or on the eve of the fiesta. Masses are celebrated in the local barrio church. The happy day is concluded with a procession participated in by everybody who is Catholic and pious.

Christmas is another event happily celebrated in this place. The people butchered their pigs, cows, and chickens when they are being visited by their faraway folks. Children go to their ninongs and ninangs to extend their Christmas greetings. During this season, members of the family, especially those in far places, are once more in reunion and happily extend to each other the best wishes for a Happy Christmas and a prosperous New Year. Children are almost every day in their fine clothes. Season lasts until the Three Kings Day. Children are usually very happy during this season, for they are being given gifts in money or in kind.

II. Myths, Legends, Beliefs, Superstitions and Interpretations

Origin of the World

[A] Long time ago, there was no heaven and earth. One Sunday, God created the world. At first, the earth was without form. The water and the land were of the same level. Darkness was upon the face of the deep. God the Son found out that the earth was not a good place to live in. He told His Father that there was darkness everywhere. The water and the land were at the same level. It was not a safe place wherein to stay. Lastly, they decided to complete the world. They created the sky. On the following day, that was Monday, the land and water

[p. 25]

were separated. Some lands were made higher. For further protection for those who would live on the earth, mountains and hills were also created. Between the mountains and hills, small and large river beds were formed. Thus came the rivers and the lakes. The vast space occupied by the water as it was separated from the earth became large bodies of water. We call them now the oceans and the seas. At first, the earth was bare. On Tuesday, They created the trees and all other kinds of plants. Various kinds of animals were also created. On Wednesday, They created the sun, the moon, and the stars to provide light for all They had created. Thursday came and some more animals were created. Birds were created, and also the fish that lived in the deep sea.

When They had created the world, They wanted that someone must be living on earth. A man superior to all animals. So, Friday came and Adam was the first man created. After giving him life, he was allowed to live on the earth. For some time, Adam was lonely. They made him sleep and took one of his ribs. Out [of] Adam’s left ribs, They created [the] first woman on earth. They gave her life. When Adam awoke from his sleep, he found his companion. He was to have Eve by his side.

Other stories tell that the world was originally a mass of earth cast by God out to the vast open space. When this mass of earth hit the hard surface, it broke and other pieces were thrown out far. These small pieces of earth grew bigger and bigger in the midst of bodies of water. They are now what we call islands. The big piece of earth that was left became the big mass of land and they are now the big mass of land called [the] continent.

[p. 26]

Origin of the Earthquake

One day, a woman gave birth to a handsome baby boy. He was named Bernardo Carpio. As he grew older, he entered different schools. He was able to acquire a little education. During his boyhood days, he showed signs of being strong. As years went by, his body was developing. His body was in good physical shape. He had developed great muscular strength that no one in his place would dare match him in any kind of physical combat. In almost all of his fights, he became the victor. He later enlisted in the army. He showed great physical power by conquering and subduing every human being on his way. He was then finally considered as the strongest man on earth.

But Bernardo was not contented with his victories. He went on an adventure. He went far and wide looking for anyone who would dare match his strength. Instantly, he saw an angel. The angel went into a cave. He bravely followed the angel. As he was about to enter the cave, he was caught by two great moving stones. Caught between the two big moving stones, he could not get away. With all his physical power and muscular strength, he tried his best to move the stones. As he was wrestling with the two great stones, the earth quaked. He gave one hard blow to the stones and it fell to pieces as the earth shook. Every time he moved his body, there was an earthquake that we on earth fear most.

Rubber Shoes (Superstition)

Many persons believe that using rubber shoes will bring disease and fever, or may affect the sight. It is due to what they say that the feet perspire when kept in the rubber shoes for a long time. Such undue perspiration is always associated with chills which are accompanied by

[p. 27]

fever in its first stage and will surely grow and become [a] serious kind of sickness. Of course, there is no truth in the belief. It is just another misconception.

The First Man and Woman
(Adopted from Kalaw’s Five Perspectives of Our Ancient Morality)

At the beginning, there was but sky and water. The water was irritated by a blue bird called “Tigmamanukin,” [it] rose so high it menaced the sky with its angry waves. Bathala, the creator, cast giant rocks into the water and these later became the mass of wide lands. In one of these Tigmamanukin, the bird, paused to rest.

The union of the land [and] sea produced the bamboo, a segment of which came to rest at the feet of Tigmamanukin. The bird, full of curiosity, pecked at the cane and broke the bamboo. Great was his surprise to see the first man emerge from the internode, and from another the first woman, all in fairness. To all these, he said, “Ba!” from which came the word “babae,” meaning woman. The woman admired the man’s vigor and beauty, exclaimed, “La!” from which came the word “lalake.” The two were amazed at the beauty of creation and together they said, “Ha!” From this came the word “Bathala,” meaning god, creator of all [that] was formed.

Now, seeing that the woman refused to unite herself with the man, alleging that they were brothers, Bathala caused the union by causing a strong earthquake. Only in this manner was the first woman united to the first man. From that time on, the earth was populated.

(How to Plant)

The old folks believe that when you are planting bananas of some fruit trees, you ought not to look up. Looking up will mean to make the plant grow very high before it bears fruits. So, one is to sit down and the plant will bear fruits although it is not very high.

[p. 28]


Many, many years ago, the people said that this place was a very thick forest. There were tales and stories known about this forest.

During those early days, there were two caves by the lower part of the present Bulalakaw Falls. One of the caves was by the eastern part and the other on the western part of the spring. From these caves, the people said that [a] big fire was seen coming out every night. The fire was, at times, as big as a jar. The fire could be seen by midnight or during the early part [of the] month of May.

Those brave ones who at times watched for the fire called it “Bulalakaw,” meaning a bright light or star. The fire at times would rise up and fly to the west going to the mountain of Makulot. Since then, every time the fire came out, the people would exclaim, “There is the Bulalakaw out again!” As the time went on, the spring became bigger and bigger. It grew into a big waterfalls. At present, it is called the Bulalakaw Falls. The falls are at present a nice one, and it is often visited by those who are outing. It is a good picnic site. The people of this place are washing their clothes in this spring. Others are getting their drinking water from this spring also.


It was the belief of the old folks that if a family of white chickens was found in the forest, it means hidden treasure.

[p. 29]

As told by the forefathers of this place, the people say that Pinagtongulan was once a thick woodland. By one end of the forest was a very small house. There lived in this house and old couple believed to be the descendants of the present people of this place. The couple was in a very simple way of living. In their small kaingin, they planted and produced food the whole year through.

One day, the housewife became ill. During that time, there were yet no doctors. The husband then went out into the forest to look and search for medicinal plants or herbs. While in the forest, the old man heard [a] noise and would want to catch the chickens. As he was following as to where the noise came from, he forgot about all the herbs and medicinal plants. He grew very tired. As he was already behind the chickens, just a few meters away, the chickens suddenly disappeared. He lost sight of the white chickens, so he turned around and around in a confused state. He could not see the chickens anymore.

As he was about to make the last turn, a big door suddenly swung open accompanied by a creaking sound. Pale and afraid, he looked inside. He was attracted by the bright light inside and there he saw something which he could not believe. At the height of his joy, he exclaimed, “Alas, tapayan ng guinto!” meaning a jar of gold. He took the gold home and became very rich.

[p. 30]


Many stories of our country say that the names of places are taken from what had happened in a certain place be it [a] town or barrio.

Many years ago, when our town church was still new, there came to this place many soldiers from foreign lands. They entered and occupied our town. The burned the town and destroyed the sacred images of saints and virgins in the church. These sacred things were thrown out in the church yard and on the streets.

Since then, the soldiers were always defeated in every place where they fought. It might have been due to what these soldiers had done in the town church. Because of their defeat, they ran away to the barrios and hills outside the town. They were then being chased by the people. A few of these soldiers happened to reach this barrio. They were caught and brought to the interior of the forest. In the forest, there was a stump of a cut big tree. The angry people put the neck of these soldiers on the stump tree and was then beheaded. The people saw the heads of the soldiers hanging on branches of the trees. The people said, “Ang sondalong pinungolan!” meaning beheaded soldiers. From the word “pinungolan,” the people derived the word Pinagtongulan, which became the present official name of this barrio. When Batangas province was divided into towns, the name Pinagtongulan was used. Part of it belongs to San Jose and the bigger part of the barrio is within the territory of Lipa City.

[p. 31]


In almost all activities of the people, there are still practices, customs, beliefs and traditions associated with numerous [apparent missing word(s)] their daily lives. Among these beliefs are:

1. When a young girl sings before a stove or fire, she will marry an old widower.

2. When a hen cackles at midnight, an unmarried woman is going to give birth to a bastard child.

3. When a cat wipes its face, a visitor is coming.

4. When a comet appears in the sky, war or famine is coming.

5. When one dreams that one of his teeth fell, somebody in the family will die.

6. When a married woman eats twin bananas, she will give birth to twins.

7. A person who plants pineapple should close his eyes so that the fruit will have fewer eyes.

8. In planting squash, the planter should keep his lower and upper teeth tightly closed together in order that the fruits will have firm and hard flesh.

9. When dogs howl in the melancholic tone at night, ill fate will befall someone in the neighborhood.

10. Many farmers refuse to give anything before sunset, when they are to sow palay in the rice field.

11. It is good to plant bananas after eating a heavy meal so the bunches will be big.

12. When there is [a] firefly in the house, it is a sign that there is [a] stray animal in the rice field.

13. During [a] wedding party, there is always “kalamay,” a kind of sweet, to give the new couple good temperament.

[p. 32]

14. It is not good to cut fingernails at night or on Fridays.

15. If the bride puts on her wedding dress before the wedding day, bad luck will befall on her.

16. It is not good to leave the house when someone is eating. Bad luck may come on the way.

17. No parents would allow two of their children to marry in the same year. To do so would mean that one of them would suffer ill luck in married life.

18. Before the family moves to their new house, a jar is set in the middle of the house and filled with water until it overflows. It is said that in doing so, the family will live in abundant life.

19. The old folks do not like any sweeping done when it is getting dark. To do so would mean that fortune and good luck will eventually leave the house.

20. For a newborn baby, it is better to use a sharp razor to cut the umbilical cord so that the child will have a sharp wit. His “inunan” should be buried with good written materials to make the baby intelligent in later life.

21. While in the church during [the] marriage ceremony, the bride of the groom tries to step on the foot of the other so that either will be devoted to each other.

22. It is not good to start a piece of work or activity on Tuesday or Friday as it is bound to fail.

23. It is good to plant fruit-bearing crops on the first day after the full moon, so that the plants will continually bear fruit. On this day, the sun and the moon are first seen both in the sky.

24. It is not good to eat fruit vegetables that grow in vines, for it is said that other members of the family will follow. [Apparently pertaining to when there has been a death in the family.]

[p. 33]

12. Popular Songs, Games and Amusements:

a. Songs – Among the most popular songs in the locality are the native songs called the “kundimans.” These songs portray the sentimental feelings of those yearning and pleading for something. This type of songs are often sung by young men and women or by the binatas and the dalagas during special gatherings like wedding day, birthday, and during haranas. It its melodic and tuneful harmony, the kundimans best picture the most sincere and faithful words of a young suitor.

Other types of songs are the modern ones that come from the screen and from the stage. These songs are like stories narrating certain types of activities in the house or in the field. Examples of such songs are the “Lavandera,” “Magtanim Hindi Biro,” and etc. Other songs tend to give sentimental value to certain types of woman’s articles as the “Tapis, Bakya, Suklay and the Sayas and Manggas.” The Paro-parong Bukid, Tapis Mo Inday, Bakya mo Nening, and etc., are the best examples of these modern songs.

Still, there are other types of songs which are called “local airs.” Examples are the corridos, the awits. These songs are sung during “Subli” and “Pandango” dances, accompanied by native instruments called “kalatong” and “kaltanitas.”

b. Games and Amusements:

Typical Filipino adults in this barrio go to the “topada” or to the card tables. Late in the afternoon, they stand by in street corners or sit by the barrio tienda and conversing with his neighbors. At times, the women enjoy little gossips with their neighbors as they feed the pigs and the chickens. When they are in the house doing nothing, they muse by the window looking at the wide fields, the scene of their never-ending work and struggle.

[p. 34]

[The] Most popular game among the young men of this barrio is the basketball game. Young men in this locality formed a basketball team and often played against the teams of other places. Another game is quail hunting during the season after harvest. They at times go in groups of five or four. Each hunter is equipped with a wide oblong net whose center part is fastened to a bamboo pole made light and handy. They are often accompanied by a good smelling dog.

Playing “pata” is another old typical game among the people of this place. This game is played by two or more players but not more than four. The players are equipped with a round wooden disc cast to a distance of around fifteen to twenty feet where a ten centavo piece is atop a little stone. Whoever hits this target is the winner.

Another form of amusement common to the young binatas is the “harana.” Young men with their guitar go to the house of a certain lady and there by the stairs tinkle their guitar singing their love songs. The serenaders keep singing till they are invited to come up. Serenading lasts for about twenty to thirty minutes after which the serenaders sing their goodbye or paalam song.

During All Saints Day, the people of this place, especially the young men and women or the binatasa and the dalagas, often go out at night and beg [for] alms. In such company, they are together happy. They also at times hold parties eating “suman” or “bebingka.” In the morning, they ask the local priest to say mass. They pay the priest out of the funds they had collected and it is called “pamisa.” Candles are also burned in the church candelero for the rest of the early morn.

During the barrio fiesta, the young men of this place always hold their annual fiesta ball. Games and other forms of amusements are exhibited, participated in by invited players and teams.

[p. 35]

13. Puzzles and Riddles:

Guessing puzzles and riddles is another form of amusement especially among children. A few of them are the following:

1. Dala ko siya, dala niya ako,
Saan man kami tumungo. (chinelas)
(I carry it, it carries me, wherever we go) – slippers

2. Pagtagal na tulay, pag-iksi ng buhay. – Kandila
(The longer it stands the shorter it grows.) – candle

3. Isang dalagang may korona,
Kahit saan ay may mata. – pinya
(A lady with a crown, has eyes all around.) – pineapple

4. Hindi hari, hindi pari,
Nakapasusuot ng sari-sari. – hanger
(Neither king nor priest, but is always at best.) – cloth hanger

5. Nang walang guinto’y nagpapalalo
Nang magkaguinto’y nagyukuyuko. – palay
(Proud when poor, humble when rich.) – palay

6. Isinabit ko sa mababa, sa langit ko tiningala. – papaya
(Below, I hung it, and looked above to get it.) – papaya

7. Bahay kubo, munting ulo. – pagong
(A nipa hut with a little head.) – turtle

8. Kapirasong patpat, nagahong sa bundok
Nagtaboy ng hayop. – suyod
(A small stick that climbs the mountain
And rives away the animals. – lice collector

9. Bahay ni Gabriel, punong-puno ng baril. – posporo
(Gabriel has a house filled with guns.) – match

10. Kung araw ay bongbong, kung gabi ay dahon. – banig
(It’s a bamboo by day, it’s a leaf by night.) – mat

[p. 36]

11. Mahaba kapag naka-up
Maikli pag nakatayo. – aso
(Short when standing, tall when sitting.) – dog

12. Bunga nga, ay may bunga pa. – kasoy
(A fruit within a fruit.) – kasoy

13. Isang bayabas, pito ang butas. – mukha
(A guava fruit, with its seven holes.) – human face

14. Takot sa isa, matapang sa dalawa. – tulay
(Afraid of one, but not of two.) – bridge

15. Dalawa ang kapitan, labingdalawa ang sundalohan. – relo
(Two commanders with twelve soldiers.) – time piece

16. Isang butil na palay, sikip sa buong bahay. – ilaw
(A grain of palay, more than enough in the house.) – light

17. Buhok ng pari, hindi mawahi. – tubig
(The hairs of the priest, that could not be parted.) – water

18. Tubig sa digan-digan, hindi patakan ng ulan. – niyog
(Water in a bowl, that rain can’t fill.) – coconut fruit.

19. Bahay ni Kiring-kiring, butas-butas ang dingding. – bithay
(The house of Kiring-kiring, with holes all around.) – winnower

20. Baboy ko sa pulo,balahibo’y pako. – nangka
(My pig in an island, whose hairs are nails.) – jackfruit

21. Ang ina ay nagapang pa, ang anak ay nakatayo na. – kalabasa
(The mother is still crawling, while the child is already sitting.) – squash

22. Dalawang sundang, nag-uunahan. – ha-lo
(Two swords that race one another.) – pestle

[p. 37]

14. Proverbs and Sayings:

1. Anak na di paluin, ina ang patatangisin.
(Spare the rod and spoil the child.)

2. Ang hipong tulog, nadadala ng agos.
(A sleeping shrimp is carried by the current.)

3. Baboy na ilan ang panginoon
Mamamatay sa di paglamon.
(A pig with two or more owners will surely die of hunger.)

4. Ang gawang palamara, sino man ay nakakuha.
(A thing neglected may [be] lost unheeded.

5. Naiiwan ang saya, di naiiwan ang dasa.
(A santol tree will not bear a mango fruit.) [The English version does not match the Tagalog one.]

6. Ang arao bago sumikat, nakikita ang banaag.
(Before a thing is made, a plan is laid.)

7. Di man makita ang apoy, sa aso ay natutunton.
(Where there is smoke, there is fire.)

8. Marunong man ang pantas, daig ng mamimintas.
(A fool may teach the wise.)

9. Ang di marunong magbata, walang hihintaying guinhawa.
(He who endures not, will gather not.)

10. Walang matalas na tabak kung laging nakasakbat.
(There is no sharp bolo, when always hidden.)

11. Ang di lumingon sa pinanggalingan
Di makararating sa paroroonan.
(He who does not look back at where he comes from
May not expect to reach where he is going.)

12. Ang walang hirap mag-ipon, walang hinayang magtapon.
(He who does not earn, has no control to spend.)

[p. 38]

13. Pag ang tubig ay matining, tusokin ay malalim.
(A still water is deep.)

14. Walang mailap na pugo sa matiyagang magsilo.
(There is no wild bird for a persevering hunter.)

15. Ang lakad na matulin kung matinik ay malalim.
(He who walks fast will be hurt deep by a thorn.)

16. Ang taong tulog, patakan man [ng] pera, ay di makapulot.
(A sleepy fellow will not pick up a centavo.)

17. Kung wala naayaw, ay walang pipilit,
Kung walang malayo, ay walang malapit.
(If there is no positive, there is no negative.)

18. Pag lumosong ang nag-aahon.
(He who goes down will rise up.)

19. Sabihin mo ang iyong kasama, at sasabihin ko kung sino ka.
(Tell me who your companions are and I will tell you who you are.)

20. Kung ano ang taas ng lipad ay siyang bilis ng bagsak.
(A very proud fellow may rapidly turn a pauper.)

21. Pag hindi ukol ay hindi bubukol.
(If fortune does not abide, it is hard to keep.)

22. Ang masama sa iyo ay huag gawin sa iba.
(Do [not] unto others what you do not like others [to] do unto you.)

23. Makapitong isipin bago mo sabihin.
(Think seven times before you say it.)

24. Pag may sinuksuk ay may titingalain.
(If you have something saved, you’ll probably be repaid.)

25. Ano mang haba ng procesyon ay simbahan din ang urong.
(Do how long the procession may be, it surely will last at the church.)

[p. 39]

26. Ang maniwala sa sabi-sabi,
Ay walang bait sa sarili.
(He who believes in others, has no self-disposition.)

27. Ang balita ay bihirang magpatap
Kung totoo man ay marami ang dagdag.
(Rumors seldom tell the truth, and if there is truth in it, plenty has been added.)

28. Ang dila ay hindi patalim,
Nguni’t kung sumugat ay mariin.
(The tongue is not a sharp knife, but it can make wounds hard to heal.)

29. Kaibigan habang may gata, kaaway na pag wala.
(A friend when you have, a foe when you have not.)

30. Ang sa babaeng hiyas, sa puri ay pag-iingat.
(The jewel of the woman is her guarded purity.)

31. Magbiro ka na sa lasing, huag laang sa bagong gising.
(Joke with a drunkard, but not with one who just came from sleep.)

32. Kung anong tugtog, ay siyang sayaw.
(When you are in Rome, be a Roman.)

33. Mabuti ang malinis na budhi, kay sa yamang salapi.
(An honest penny is better than a stolen peso.)

34. Sinuman at padaldal sa gawa ay huag asahan.
(He who is full of words is wanting in deeds.)

35. Madali ang maging tao, mahirap ang magpakatao.
It is easy to be born, but hard to be a man.)

36. Ang puri ay sa nagbibigay at hindi sa pinagbibigyan.
(Blessed is the giver than the receiver.)

37. Ibang pari, ibang ugali.
(Be in conformity with the policy of a new boss.)

[p. 40]

15. Special Method of Measuring Time:

In rural areas in this place, there are some native ways of measuring time without the benefit of the timepiece. Some of these ways are through the use of the cocking roosters. When the rooster cocks for the first time at night, it is about ten o’clock. For the second time it cocks, it is about two o’clock in the morning. For the third time, it is about four o’clock and when the chickens fly down from their nest, it is about sunrise already.

After drinking coffee in the morning, the people work on their farms. When the sun is about as high as a bamboo pole, “hampas tikin,” it is about nine o’clock in the morning. When the sun is directly overhead and the shadow is too short and close to the body, it is about midday and time to eat lunch.

When the “pakiskis,” a kind of bird, sings atop a tree, it is the sign for [the] planting season or sowing the field with palay. When the cogon grass has its flowers in bloom, it is the beginning of the summertime.

16. Other Folktales and Folklores:

There are still those who believe in sorcerers as the “aswang,” who assumes the form of a dog, cat, bird or other animals and eat human flesh. They say there is also the “manggagaway” who injures people by satanic and devilish powers. The “mangkukulam” who causes people to die or be sick; the “patianak” who sucks the entrails of the baby by their long proboscis; and the “tigbalang” who takes various forms to foil his victims; the “gayuma” whose love charm to the Tagalogs, have strong appeals to the young man. There are also the soothsayers who can foretell the future and interpret both bad and good omens. “Anting-anting” which are believed to have magic powers against certain types of injuries or against iron weapons. These amulets are being hunted and cared for.

[p. 41]

There are other folklores connected with some beliefs. A story goes that Sicalac and Sicabay, the parents of the human race, came from the hollow of a bamboo, which grew from a seed planted by Captan, the god of the sky, the seed having been given to himby Maguayan, the god of the sea.

The balete tree comes in for a large amount of superstitious significance. One of the stories concerning the tree relates how a little girl, who one day when she forgot to bow to this tree as she passed by, was caught by the “tigbalang,” the spirit of the balete tree. The little girl was kept shut up within the tree for days and days until the people, by means of prayers and other ceremonies, succeeded in dispelling the influence of the evil Ticbalang, who finally set the girl free.

Banana Tree

The flower of the banana tree was once believed by the Tagalogs to possess [a] magic stone, which gives great strength. This tone can be obtained only at midnight, when the flower of the banana plant is said to turn to the ground. The one seeking this tone, should look for a banana plant just in flower, and at midnight, he should stand with his handkerchief spread out to catch the white stone, which will drop like a pearl. The minute the stone drops, [a] ghost will appear and will try to take away the stone. The one seeking this stone should and must write the ghost, so he may keep the amulet.

17. Documents written by those born in this place:

There are none of these written things made by those born in this place. Up to this time, there are no known articles written by natives of this barrio, although there are now some professionals born in this place.

Notes and references:
Transcribed from “Historical and Cultural Life of the Barrio of Pinagtongulan” 1953, online at the National Library of the Philippines Digital Collections.
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