Huwebes, Abril 12, 2012

Philippine Society and Education

Philippine Society before the coming of the Spaniards

Even before the coming of the Spaniards, the Filipinos already had their social system characterized by semi communal, semi slave, feudal in some parts like Mindanao and Sulu and primitive communal espoused by the Aetas in the mountain areas.

The barangay was their concept of community each headed by a datu or chieftain. It was the basic political and economic unit independent among others. The community’s social structure is characterized by petty nobility. With the datu as the head of the barangay; the freeman called the Maharlikas who rendered special service to the rulers or datu; the timawas who shared their crops to the petty nobility and the slaves and semi slaves who worked without any definite share of the harvest.  On the other hand, one becomes slaves or semi slaves through inheritance, failure to pay debts, commission of crimes or captivity during wars.
In Mindanao and Sulu, they represented a higher stage of political and economic development. The Islamic Sultanates of Sulu had a feudal form of social organization. The sultan reigned supreme over many datus in a more encompassing people and territory.

Throughout the islands, the class struggle within the barangay was already g extended into interbarangay wars. These inter-baranganic wars often resulted into confederations of more larger communities.
In the areas of food production, the primitive people hunt in the wilderness in the search for food and offering. In order to do so, they developed early instruments of hunting like spears and arrows. These early gadgets were creatively designs to match the purpose.

As time passes, early Filipinos soon able to discover the technique of farming. The land was communal. It is shared by everyone. In order to produce food for the community, they plant and till the land for subsistent good of the whole community. One unique proof was the tilling of lands by early ifugaos in Banawe.
There was interisland commerce ranging from Luzon to Mindanao and vice-versa. There were also extensive trade relations among neighboring countries. The barter system was employed. Gold and metal gongs were used as medium of exchange.

    Philippine Education during the pre-colonial times

The system of education in the Philippines during the pre-colonial times was highly related to and highly influenced the economic situation. The type of society before the Spanish colonization was primitive-communal and shifting to feudalism. Because of subsistent mode of production, education also spread plainly and simply. Alibata, the native alphabet was used as the means of instructions together with other mediums like pots and weaved mats.

During this era, the early educators were the Babaylan and Katalonan. They were looked upon by the society because they possessed high wisdom, spirituality and rationality in the system of governing the community affairs. Hence the type of education taught to people were based on early beliefs and tradition.

In the Muslim communities in Mindanao, education was proliferated through their religion—Islam.  Education was based on the instructions of Islam religion. Their early educators were the Imams or  Ulema (Muslim priests). The children were taught to read and write by using Koran as their textbooks.

Indeed, the early education in the primitive society was not institutionalized. There was no formal and separate institution for it. It was integrated in their early societal affairs.

  Philippine Society under the Spanish Colonialism

The kind of society that developed under three centuries of Spanish influence was colonial and feudal. It was a society basically ruled by feudal landlords, Spanish officials, Catholic religious orders/ friars and the local officials—puppets to the ruling class.

The economic system was based on the giving of land grants (encomiendas) to loyal official’s and religious order’s service to the colonizers.  These colonizers employed forced labor among its natives for the construction of edifices, churches and parochial schools. The once—communal lands of the natives were usurped by the Spanish colonizers.

Local officials were appointed. These include the gobernador-heneral which is based nationally in Manila. The provincial alcalde-mayor, the town leader known as the gobernadorcillo and in the locals—the cabeza de barangays. These positions in governance were highly based on wealth and property, hereditary, literacy and of course loyalty to the Spaniards.

In the archetypal notion of feudalism, the union of church and state inundated the entire colonial structure of the society. Friar control was total and encompassing. In the colonial center as well as in every province, the friars exercised vast political powers. They controlled such diverse affairs as taxation, primary schools and institutions, health, public works and charities. The building of catechetical schools was used to usurp the minds of the children against their own country. The friars propagated a dogmatic culture that was infatuated with novenas, prayerbooks, scapularies, rosaries, the passion play, the anti-Muslim moro-moro and arrogant feasts and processions.
They were so nasty in witch-hunting and suppressing native rebels whom they condemned as “heretics" and "subversives." Thus, the once “babaylans” became witches and devils of the time. Furthermore, the friars burned and destroyed the artifacts of pre-colonial culture and tagged them as handiworks of the devil and integrated only those things of the indigenous culture which they could use to facilitate colonial indoctrination.

  Philippine Education under the Spanish Regime

The type of education brought about by the Spaniards was based on the ideology of Catholicism.  The religious orders were the one who built school and seminaries in the Philippines. The priests were the educators at that time. Education became the powerful tool to propagate Catholicism. The teachings adhered to the teaching of religious Catholicism. After all, “the most effective means of subjugating a people is to capture their minds.”

Ownership to vast areas of the land gave priest high authority and dominion to control the educational system. Feudal mode of production was the economic basis of education.  Many feudal lords or landlords controlled many schools and institutions.  Education serving the interests of the Spaniards led to the conversion of many Filipinos.

Although there was already the systematic and institutionalized kind of education, there was still no equal opportunity in attaining education. Filipinos were oriented in the patriarchal and religious system of education.  People made to believe that education is one way to go higher in the social status of life.  But education only manifested social inequality and women subordination. Mostly, men were given more opportunities than women.  The mestizos and wealthy ones were the privileged to enter into prestigious schools. On the other hand, women were only taught in vocational schools for domestic purposes. Most women were denied on their right to education in the society where the patriarchal belief that women should only stay at home.

Lunes, Abril 9, 2012

MANDAUE: Small steps to Giant Dreams

MANDAUE: Small steps to Giant Dreams


MANDAUE: Small steps to Giant Dreams

Labeled as the “Furniture Capital of the Country”, Mandaue City stands with God-given magnificence and pride. Mandaue City is well known for its numerous and cascading business establishments, enduring culture, artistry and of course, unique tastes of delicacies that is worth home-bringing. With a travel of less than an hour from the Cebu City proper, time wont be a torrid torrent of boring episodes as one find itself venturing along one of the Philippines illuminated city.
So take a peek and enjoy the splendid drama of Mandaue City from small steps to gigantic dreams of progress.

Making Business and Food
Located at the heart of Cebu, with a land area of 34.87 sq. km., the smallest city in the Cebu province-- Mandaue is Cebu’s topnotch economic catalyst of business establishments and classified as a first class urbanized city.. Started as a busy port of Chinese and local traders centuries ago, Mandaue City is boosting now with incredible energy and hospitability to business enterprises. Mandaue accounted for 40% of Cebu’s export companies and approximately 75% of the Philippines total export furniture; thus, tagging the city as “the Furniture Capital Of the Philippines”.

Alongside with the rising business of the city is its world class fine dining restaurants catering to international tastes of Korean foods, Japanese, Italian cuisines and our very musc own Filipino cuisines. A sumptuous meal of seafood cozy and tasty fried chicken, the City wont really lost its way. Added to the flavor is Mandaue’s own delicacy. As Mandauehanons artistry and creativity showcased, food defines their way of living. From corn and rice grits and peanuts to unique savory tastes of bibingka, masareal, budbud and tagaktak or fried ground rice. These foods are so terrifying and bite seizing. They are one-of-a-kind and are only found in Mandaue. They are also excellently designed for take-outs and as “pasalubong ng bayan”.

Colorful Mandaue
Mandaue is indeed an arena of Filipino artistry and craftsmanship. As you stroll around the city’s busy streets and display centers, one can easily notice the creative displays of Mandauehanon’s amazing fashion accessories, traditionally made by native materials like shells and wood carvings, that upon wearing would really make you proudly Filipino.
Furthermore, Mandaue is enormously famous of its traditional fiesta every May and on its Mantawi Festival that showcases the best of what Mandauehanons had.
The traditional celebration is packed with lively performance of dancers that depict the living of Mandaehanons amidst time..
And to highlight even more the city’s progress, the performance is heavily based on Mandaue’s own delicacies like bibingka, budbud and tagaktak as means and props of their dancers, as well as the native broom and salt makingt interpretations . These eventually give highlight to the city’s economic system which became a foundation of development and prosperity for Mandauehanons and the like.

Explore More Mandaue
The city is a living memory of war years past. With its “Bantayan sa Hari”, located in Looc, it stood as a silent testimony to the courage of early inhabitants. The native Mandauehanons under the supervision of Spaniards, constructed a watchtower overlooking the place and Mactan Channel for the coming of Moro vintas, traders and invaders.
On the other point, more explorations could be made in Mandaue by visiting the national Shrine of St. Joseph with its life-sized last supper that culturally highlight Mandauehanons faith and religion. And lastly, Mandaue is a caught-up paradise as sunrise illuminates the two famous bridges that took Mandaue to a higher step of progress.

Indeed, there are a lot of exhilarating things to experience in Mandaue. Why wait? Visit this place with its exquisites that is renowned worldwide. And really with its newly created Cebu International Convention Center , it has become too a global attention and patronage.

My Mindanao

 In the past months, Mindanao has been the core talk-about of national news telling bitter stories of war and conflict. The current mass media exposes evidently polarized situation of the ‘war on Mindanao’ as a conflict between Muslims and Christians. But is it really a conflict between the two diverse religions or a product of exemplified particularities of individuals?

The contemporary Philippine History has not been very placid in telling the story of the Filipino Muslims. For many years, typecasted reactions and dogmatized impressions have been preserved. Muslims have been treated as pirates, war freaks, barbarians, Christian-killers, etc. Witnessed over is the fact that, War on Mindanao is definitely a Moro’s claim on sovereignty and independence.

            As history suggests, the arrival of the Spaniards and the introduction of the Christian religion sharply divided what was once a country united with different practices and beliefs. Here, exist the aggression between Christians and Muslim Filipinos, exemplified even more by the teachings of the Spaniards who identified Muslims as non-believers and enemies. This dogmatized belief, created the notion of Moro Wars pointing to Moro attacks on Christian territories and the like.

            With the advent of war, nothing seems beneficial. It did not just brought out a tormented society but also a torn dignity and misunderstanding towards each other. With the clashes of both left and right, peace becomes tough and treacherous. Countless pitfalls may be encountered before our country can finally achieve the dream of perpetual peace in Mindanao. All stakeholders, that is everyone of us must put in extra effort or hence travel the extra mile to contribute our own share for peace”. Christian and non-Christians must get rid of thy prejudices and biases against the Muslims. Each and everyone of us must hurdle thy differences and focus on mutual aspirations. And lastly, we must also be keen knower of history to better understand the Moro view of their history and culture.

Martes, Abril 3, 2012

Politics, Philippine Style

What do the Senate coup, the fertilizer and Euro generals scams, and the continuing extrajudicial killings, enforced disappearances, and filing of trumped up charges against activists have in common? These show the rottenness of politics in the Philippines.

Job Opening (Who might be interested??)

PeaceTech Inc. is a Philippine-based NGO whose mission is: “to promote Information Communications Technology for building understanding between groups of young people.” 

We are looking for highly organized, efficient and self-motivated individuals who want to start their career in social development. The nature of our organization is fast moving and dynamic so you will need to be flexible and able to effectively deal with changes in organization needs as they arise.

We are a start-up organization composed of small and results-driven team, so someone who is passionate and likes to work hard but have fun at the same time will fit right in!

Job title                        : Admin & Finance Assistant
Responsible to             : Admin & Finance Officer, Country Manager
Contract Period           : June 1, 2012 – January 15, 2013 with possibility of extension
Terms                          : Full time

General Responsibilities
  • Assists in managing the office operations for PeaceTech Inc.
  • Assists in overseeing and implementing administrative operations
  • Assists in coordinating events and provides logistics
  • Assists in maintaining the website

Specific Tasks and Responsibilities

1.    Financial Matters
  • Reviews and process cash advances of PTI staff
  • Prepares and deposits checks
  • Reviews bills and prepare payment
  • Review liquidations submitted by PTI staff and process reimbursement
  • Maintain files of all accounting documents (vouchers, invoices, etc)

2.  Administration
·         Assists in the purchase and maintains inventory of furniture, supplies and equipment.
  • Oversees office and equipment maintenance.

3.  Human Resources
  • Monitor staff leave and TOIL

4.  Events Coordinator
  • Assists in the following: 
o   Scheduling of Events
o   Venue Reservation and Price Negotiation
o   Event Marketing, invitations and follow up with schools, universities, NGO’s, government and the private sector regarding attendance
o   Logistics for program participants, guests, and staff including the following:
o   Food Catering
o   Transport
o    Accommodation 

5.  Website management
  • Assists the Communications Officer
Ø  Basic Website Management, including Website updating
Ø  Supervises on-line forums, when necessary


Job title                      : Field Officer (1 Metro Manila, and 1 Marawi City)
Reports to                  : Programs Manager and Education Head
Contract Period         : June 1, 2012 – January 15, 2013
Terms                         : Full time

PeaceTech Inc. is a Philippine-based NGO whose mission is to build understanding between groups of young people through technology. 

We need a responsible and committed individual who will plan, implement, monitor and evaluate PeaceTech’s Classroom Videoconference and Teacher Training Programs. The Field Officer will also manage our school-based Peace Club activities, which include community reporting by youth reporters. 

Specific Tasks and Responsibilities:

· Coordinates Classroom Videoconferences, Teacher Trainings and Teacher Feedback sessions in his/her city with support from our Program Manager;
·  Leads in organizing and facilitating teacher trainings, teacher feedbacks and Classroom Videoconferences in his or her city;
· Provides technical assistance if needed at all activities, including videoconferences, as well as technical assistance when needed in the office;
· Is responsible for school-based peace clubs in his/her city.  Responsibilities include the following:

1)    Coordinates Peace Club activities;
2)    Manages youth volunteers in his/her city for Peace Club mentoring and community reporting;
3)    Oversees community videos made by Peace Clubs;
4)    Organizes orientation programs/ day workshops in high schools before each CVC cycle begins;
· Cultivates relationships between PeaceTech and all partner organizations, including the Department of Education, subject to the authorization of the Programs Manager;
· Helps organize for and implement mass videoconferences;
· Monitors and evaluates using PeaceTech Inc.’s Monitoring & Evaluation System and  reports on a continual basis and before funder deadlines as required by the  Programs Manager;
· Reports all financial expenditures and concerns to the Administration Officer on a weekly basis;
· Makes weekly targets and reviews performance on a regular basis with the Programs Manager; and
·Supports the Communications Officer on activities related to the Classroom Videoconference Program.


1.    Punctual; organized; takes initiative; and committed to PeaceTech’s mission
2.    Team player; receptive of direction; and shows willingness to learn.
3.    Flexible with schedules and willing to make schedule changes when necessary.
4.    Results oriented with proven organizational skills and excellent attention to detail.
5.    Ability to work effectively under pressure, meets deadlines, and manages multiple tasks with minimum supervision.
6.    Enjoys mentoring and teaching young people.
7.    Excellent oral and written communication skills in English.
8.    Background in Education and other related courses.
9.    Background in Values or Peace Education and Project Management is a plus.
10.  Proven ability to facilitate training sessions for young adults.
11.  Ability to work in multi-cultural setting and to be sensitive to ethnic, gender and religious diversity.
12.  Computer Literate (Microsoft Word; Excel; and PowerPoint).
13.  Ability to speak local language for Marawi based applicants.
14.  Basic knowledge in trouble shooting for CVC-related equipment (Laptop, LCD projector, Skype) and software.

Interested applicants can send their application letter stating their relevant experience for this position, along with their resume and three character references before May 1, 2012.

Please send to: Ms. Dolly Domingo, Administrative and Finance officer via email at,,

Only shortlisted applicants will be notified.

Lunes, Abril 2, 2012

Lakwatserang Negra 8-)

For month(s) of travelling, adventures has never been this great! 
Lying in southeast Asia and surrounded by the Pacific Ocean, the Philippines boasts of unsullied beaches, spectacular sunsets, luxuriant pastoral lands, cool mountain weather, brilliant man-made resorts and dazzling islands. 
Exploring Philippines, I’ve seen the best of nature in our white-sand beaches and three-layered virgin forests, took a peek at Filipinos' history and culture mirrored by century-old churches and ancient forts. 

I’ve witnessed the vast expanse of nature's splendor under the spell of cool mountain breeze. A perfect setting for nature tripping, the country's mountain villages serve as a perfect hideaway from the lowlands' summer heat. Combined with local delicacies and native crafts, rich festivities, traditions and the welcoming hospitality of Filipino people—Yes! This is our home. I love the Philippines!