Babaylan confab in California to explore myths, beliefs, folkways


Kidlat Tahimik/Eric de Guia

Lane Wilcken

SANTA ROSA, California—Speakers from the Philippines known for their advocacy of indigenous communities and their folkways will address the Second International Babaylan Conference on September 27 to September 29, at Westminster Woods in Occidental, California.

Hosted by the Center for Babylan Studies, the conference, whose theme is “Katutubong Binhi/Native Seeds: Myths and Stories that Feed Our Indigenous Souls,” has invited as keynote speakers renowned advocates for “strengthening and empowering indigenous communities through the maintenance and renewal of oral and literate traditions as well as the heritage arts and cultural practices.” Kidlat Tahimik, whose name means “silent lightning,” is considered the “Father of the Philippine Independent Cinema.”

Bai Liza Llesis Saway

Bai Liza Saway is “the mother to the mothers,” the leader of the Talaandig community, founder of Talaandig Mothers for Peace, and the wife of a tribal chief of the Talaandig.

“Datu Vic” Saway is both administrator of the Apu Agbibilin Community and Chairman of the Council of the Seven Tribes of Bukidnon. Datu Vic’s work with the Talaandig School of Living Tradition encourages cultural and ecological sustainability with the Talaandig and among other indigenous communities.

Mamerto Tindongan, an Ifugao mombaki now living in Ohio, employs the medium of woodworking to heal. His healing artwork brings forward what he sees are key elements of indigenous modalities: the duality of life with two opposing but complementary forces, balance, and interconnectedness.

Datu Migketay (Victorino) L. Saway

Mamerto Tindongan

Lane Wilcken, author of Filipino Tattoos: Ancient to Modern and soon-to-be-published The Forgotten Children of Maui, focuses his research on Filipino indigenous myths and cosmology.

The Center for Babaylan Studies is an organization that seeks to promote all indigenous and spiritual traditions from all parts of the Philippines. Its work is not restricted to one geographic location (i.e. the Visayas). As such we have members from Mindanao, the Visayas, Luzon (including the Cordillera), The United States, Canada and Europe.



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  • walaywalay

    USA should arrest and deport these protestors-let them come back to the RP and speak about the rights and ways of the indigenous Filipino NOT in USA

    • batangpaslit


      • walaywalay

        these ”foreigners” did not apply for nor pay the proper fee for a ”permit” to speak–how dare they think they have the right to speak in the USA where they are not citizens–DEPORT THEM declare them PERSONNA NON GRATA

      • Kristian Kabuay

        Funny, you don’t even know what they are about

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