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Og-ogfo: Bayanihan

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Written by   227
1 year ago

  1. Isnan layad ken likhat

    Kakailian mamapke ay masabsab-at.

    Fumachang isnan ib-a,

    Nawnawas ay maistoryaan cha.

  2. Nan og-ogfun nan umili,

    Tinawid ay ukhali.

    Kagagawisan ay iyang-angnen

    tungkhar ikhulut ay makwani.

It was a short poem which came to my mind that summarizes the current situation which the world, our country, our very own municipality and our village is facing.

In our municipality, which composes of 16 barangays has their own unique language or dialects which we speak vernacularly. The poem above was not a dialect in our village but from my father's village which is another barangay in town.

A street dance during the Am-among Festival of our municipality depicted how the people of long ago came about to help in building one's house.

Likewise, this was also how people during a buhos helps. Taken during the 2nd part of buhos of our parents house.

Og-ogfo was the Bontoc term for bayanihan. (You can read the related article on the clickable link to which I put the definition of the word). We call it uv-uvvu or ug-ugvuk in our village. It was an innate ugali to every Igorot or Cordilleran. It means, it was practiced even on the olden times our forefathers had passed to us and being practiced by us joyously up until these days. People of different walks of life come together to lend a hand with whatever they can. It also helps tighten the bond the tribe shares.

At the peak of the pandemic during the ECQ, cash or in kind donations have been pouring to different frontline stations coming from various teams or private individuals. This alone boosts the morale of our frontliners who were combating the unseen enemy. And as an ordinary citizen, the only way to help is to abide by the rules and regulations.

Calamity had once again hit Luzon this month causing catastrophic situation in Cagayan, Isabela and other parts of the region. Yet the helping hands are all-hands to the needy. Packs and packs of donations can be seen on facebook posts from different groups and individuals from our locality and the feeling is just too overwhelming.

And recently, another tragic event had taken place in our place which the spirit of og-ogfo had once again kindled the hearts of everyone to help.

On November 22, 3 youngsters, all boys ages 10,11 and 13 were swimming on some part of Kadchog river when the strong current swept the 11 year-old. Responders immediately begun the search and rescue operation upon learning the incident. The day ended unsuccessful but it did not waver the hope of people that he could be found not long.

The second day, various groups from the government and volunteers from the differrent barangays of the municipality (which summed up to 13 teams of different numbers) were dessiminated respectively to different sites which covered a 7- kilometer of rugged terrain.

At the same time at the house of the boy's family, women prepare food for all responders. Food and other expenses, on the other hand was not all shouldered by the burdened family. It was also an assistance coming from different people to aid in the operation.

The generosity, may it be in cash or in kind was the face of incidents like this. That anonymous donors were open-handed. Equipments like the backhoes from contractors were also used for free to help divert the water.

Additionally, rituals were performed as people on the country sides have beliefs in relation to incidents like these. These include rituals to appease the living creatures in the river that they may release the boy from their possession.

Sadly, the second day still ended futile even with all the combined forces.

The day seems to end like the former ones since it's becoming late in the afternoon. Fortunately, at 1540hours of the third day of search and retrieval operation , the body was seen floating within the 7th or so kilometer of the searching area on one barangay the river traverse.

The poem, and the article itself shows the unity of the Igorot community and the Cordillerans as a whole.

The above mentioned were just one among the situations, mostly during difficult times when the "panag-isakit si ib-a" act is observed that almost everyone et maligwat to help without expecting anything in return.

The translation of my poem goes like this.

In goodness and bad times, we unite as one to help our brethen in need. It is a story,something to treasure. That the act of bayanihan acquired from our ancestors was the best practice each of us (Igorot) observe and practice wherever we may be.

Photos credit to rightful (fb) owners


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Written by   227
1 year ago
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