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  bukidnon
by Filipino Santos

   
  Bukidnon is a province on a rich tableland in Central Mindanao which
rises abruptly to a height of 900 ft above sea level. It is composed of seven
plateaus of varying heights separated by seven deep canyons and three
valleys. It encompasses a total area of 8,293.78 km2 or 955,455 hectares of
land. The climate of Bukidnon is cool and invigorating with an annual mean
temperature of 74? F or 23.85? C. The provincial capital is the little town of
Malaybalay which is 800 km by air from Manila.
There are only two tribes who can be considered natives of Bukidnon, the
Manobos who inhabit the mountains and the Bukidnons who live in the
lowlands. The Bukidnons speak the Binukid dialect while the two Manobo
tribes, the Eastern and the Western Manobos, speak two different dialects
namely, Eastern Minanobo and Western Minanobo. These two tribes do not
understand each other. The Bukidnon in the lowlands differ from one
another in accent and intonation,depending on the region where they live.
The people in theMalaybalay-Kalasungay-Dalwangan area pronounce their
letter d with a heavy accent. On the other hand, the Central Bukidnon
people speak with a softer accent. The letter d for the Malaybalay people
becomes r or l for the Central Bukidnon.
Example:
Central Bukidnon Malaybalay English
siran sidan they
rin din he, she
marakol madakol many
maraot madaot bad
hari hadi no
anlaw aldaw sun or day
The Bukidnon people believe in one god, Magbabaya (the Ruler of All)
who has minor gods and goddesses beneath him to do specific jobs and take
care of certain things. Thus, the Bukidnon farmers pray to Ibabasok who
watches over their crops and their growth in a simple ceremony at the
center of the rice field. But they worship the deity Dagingon in an
elaborated celebration complete with songs and dances which will last for
nine nights during planting and after harvest seasons. The spirit called
Bulalakaw watches the rivers and takes care of the fishermen's
catch while Tumpaa Nanapiyaw or Intumbangol watches the base of the
earth night and day lest it crumbles.
Persons of both sexes may become baylan, religious specialists who
divine the cause of illnesses, recover lost souls, and officiate at major
events where the spirits are summoned. One becomes baylan by personal
choice and subsequent apprenticeship to an established practitioner. Belief
in multiple "souls", gimokod, some of which can leave the body temporarily,
causing illness. At death, the body is wrapped in a mat and carried on a bier
to the place of burial, where it is interred in a bamboo-lined grave. The spirit
of the deceased is fed for a few days after burial, after which it goes to live
on Mount Balatocan. The mourning period for a widow may last for a year
or more.
Warfare, for prestige and slaves, was common until recent decades.
Although headhunting does not appear to have been practiced, there was a
former existence of human sacrifice in connection with funerary practices,
whereby an enemy captive was ceremonially speared to death by the
relatives of the deceased, to the accompaniment of animal sacrifice and the
drinking of rice beer. Warriors wore padded hemp-cloth coats, together with
colorful embroidered sashes. Weapons included spears, knives, and wooden
shields.
Marriage in archaic Bukidnon was almost always through parental
arrangement. This was very common up to the twenties. Now parental
arrangement is found only among the people in the hinterland. The marriage
ceremony is simple. The bride and the groom just exchange betel quids and
in some cases exchange molded rice, and thus they become husband and
wife. But what takes a long time is the settling of the bride price the process
of which is called taltag. The bride price is called gilay.
The Bukidnon people have their own musical instruments, the dayuray or
dayuday, the kutyapi or kudyapi, the pulala (the bamboo flute) and the small
gong called salambing.
They make geometric designs on their bags, mats and baskets. They call
these designs lugo. Among the many kinds of lugo are: the binabangon, the
kinabuka and the binituon. They embroider on clothing too, and this process
they call panulaw. The embroidered cloth is called pinanulawan.
The Bukidnons are a singing people. Some of the types of their oral
tradition are:
1. Olaging - epic poem
2. Sala - love song
3. Limbay - lyric poetry
4. Idangdang - ballad
5. Kaliga-on - ceremonial songs
6. Basahanan - proverbs and wise sayings
7. Antoka - riddles
8. Nanangon - folktales

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