Mr. David Patrick Daryanani, a former faculty member of AdDU Political Science and History Department, emphasized the need for Mindanao mythology in culture and arts as it is said to be an outlook on the past leading up to the present.
In a forum on Wednesday, Daryanani stressed that these mythologies “carry life experiences from the past” and “have many truths applicable today.”
“We, as citizens, shouldn’t purely look at it as another lesson. It is more than a lesson; it’s an outlook on our pasts leading up to present,” he told Atenews.
The second-largest Philippine island’s mythology, he noted, is vast and diverse. He retold the various stories of creation from the lens of Ata Manobo, Bagobo, B’laan, and Mandaya ethnic groups.
One mythical story talks about the origin of Samal Island and how its surrounding islands were named.
“Samala and Mambago came from Sumatra, riding on a boat. Samala was a big woman. When they reached Davao Gulf, they left the boat and turned away from it (gitalikdan), and that is why the boat, which became an island, is called Talikod,” Dayanani narrated.
The myth further states that Samala’s hairpin fell and turned into Ligid Island. Samala became the island of Samal. Mambago then rested on her breast, and that is how one can see the mountain Mambago near the center of Samal.
The local historian then showed the map of Samal Island, which confirmed the shapes’ semblances, to the amazement of the crowd.
Other mythologies discussed were from the Subanon, Tagakaolo, and Dibabawon ethnic groups.
Also an International Studies American Major graduate, Daryanani said although these mythologies were discussed in college classes, there is still a lack of emphasis on other levels.
“We like to believe that it’s best to learn [Mindanao mythology] in our physical education classes, but there’s more to it. There are more practical ways to learn the history and our culture,” he said.
The Society of Ateneo Literature and English Mavens (SALEM) organized the said forum. Students and professors from AdDU, University of Southeastern Philippines (USeP) and Malayan Colleges Mindanao (MCM) were present.