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[BUKIDNON VIEWS] FIRST PERSON: Rizal and the Bukidnon Daraghuyan

person access_timeFriday, September 10, 2021 chat_bubble_outline0 comment

By Ma. Easterluna Canoy

MALAYBALAY CITY (BukidnonNews.Net/10 September 2021) Remembering Dr. Jose P. Rizal on his 160th birthday in June.

He was born June 19, 1861 and died on December 30, 1896 by firing squad upon orders of the Spanish authorities.

I commend Deputy Speaker and Rep. Loren Legarda for hosting this episode on Jose Rizal, in honor of his 160th birthday.

Hopefully this documentary entitled, “Finding Rizal in the Time of Barriers” as posted in the FB Page of VERDE Creatives, would remind every Filipino of his journey, as a scholar who went to Europe to study and used what he all learned back in his home country.

He practiced his profession with his simple, loving and patriotic heart. He is a hero, a title he did not ask, but his sacrifices and advocacy for freedom of the country from the Spanish regime is something we need to discern deeply.

During the Torre de Manila controversy--the 49-storey building that spoiled the view of where a sculpted image of him stood. And, true enough, many of his loyal followers led by the Knights of Rizal launched a signature campaign to stop its construction. That controversy says something of how commercial interests impact on society, its influence strong enough to alter historic and culturally significant monuments.

While we were in the Supreme Court for the hearing of petitioners contesting its construction, I found it hard to explain to the Babaylan of Bukidnon Tribe why, a person of great importance to them, the country's national hero and a symbol of Heritage (Pamana), was not given importance in that situation.


The Daraghuyan-Bukidnon tribe of Mt. Kitanglad accords great respect to Jose Rizal as more than a hero, he whose face is printed in coins, bills, books, calendars, matches and postcards.

No, the tribes did not learn about Jose Rizal from history books. The tribe knew of him because of his great spirit, whose heartfelt presence is known to the tribes as it reached Mt. Kitanglad and beyond our national borders.

In his honor and loving memory, the Daraghuyan-Bukidnon tribal community conducts a special ritual every Dec. 30th. This is one of still many untold stories of him and the tribe. In 2017, we were glad to find a connection with one of his descendants who actually came to Bukidnon to visit and meet the tribe.  

Ma. Easterluna Canoy is Executive Director of Kitanglad Integrated NGOs. FIRST PERSON is a section in the BukidnonNews.Net website dedicated to select statements, speeches, comments and other views on public matters. If you want to contribute to FIRST PERSON, email your piece, contact details and bio profile to editor.bukidnonnews@gmail.com.

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