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1
LGU Philippines / Re: Confirmed: Gloria Arroyo Will Run for Congresswoman
« on: November 30, 2009, 11:21:43 PM »
President Arroyo is acting accdg. to the highest law of human existence, self-preservation. This is beyond morality, Christian ethics, self-respect, honor.

It is up to the Filipino people to give their final judgment if this kind of conduct is acceptable within our ethical precepts.

VICENTE CALIBO DE JESUS
ginesdemafra@gmail.com

2
Bohol Directory / First recorded blood compact described by Gines de Mafra
« on: September 19, 2009, 08:50:41 AM »
Gines de Mafra was a crew member of Magellan's fleet who was the only one to revisit Mazaua, the isle where the fleet anchored from March 28-April 4, 1521. He wrote an eyewitness account of the voyage which he finished only sometime in 1545.

Here is how he described the sandugo (Antonio Pigafetta wrote Magellan called it casi casi, a Malaysian term he picked up at Malacca) performed on Holy Thursday, March 28, 1521 between Ferdinand Magellan and the king of Mazaua, raia Siaiu. This rite happened 44 years before the Sikatuna-Legazpi blood rite. Here is de Mafra's account: "On another day, which was the Friday of the cross [Good Friday], the chief of that island came to the ship and convinced Magellan and everybody else and made peace with them according to the custom of the land which is to draw blood from the chests of both men, to toss it into a glass so that the blood unites, to mix it with wine, then for both to drink a half." (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Gin%C3%A9s_de_Mafra)

The "Order of Sikatuna" , one of the highest decoration of the Philippine Republic, was based on a number of historical errors probably stemming from the award-winning painting of Juan Luna entitled "Pacto de Sangre." The Executive Order signed by Pres. Elpidio Quirino on 27 Feb. 1953 asseerts, "The Order...commemorates the first treaty (Pacto de Sangre) between the Philippines and a foreign country...” The first blood compact was not a treaty. It was a rite to seal a vow to become "blood brothers."

The first treaty was sealed by rajah Humabon of Cebu and Magellan on Tuesday, April 9, 1521. The Executive Order's wording is rather loose as it talks of "the first treaty (Pacto de Sangre) between the Philippines and a foreign country...” At the time of the Sikatuna-Legazpi sandugo there was yet no concept of a Philippine nation.

The Luna painting is also historically imprecise on another point. There was actually another Bohol chieftain, Zigala, who was omitted in Luna's masterpiece.

When the Tagbilaran City government decided to have a mural painted of the Sikatuna-Legazpi blood compact the Mayor asked for a historical research to back up the painting. When the finding was submitted to him, I'm told he ordered it kept from public knowledge. And the mural was done anyway.

There are many loose threads in our historical reconstruction of the past, e.g., the Limasawa "first mass." The Limasawa story was written by a Jesuit missionary, Fr. Francisco Combes, S.J., who had not read a single primary account. Here is what he wrote:

“The first time that the royal standards of the Faith were seen to fly in this island [of Mindanao] was when the Archipelago was first discovered by the Admiral Alonso de Magallanes. He followed a new and difficult route [across the Pacific] , entering by the Strait of Siargao, formed by that island and that of Leyte, and landing at the island of Limasaua which is at theentrance of that Strait. Amazed by the novelty and stangeness of the [Spanish] nation and the ships, the barbarians of that island welcomed them and gave them good refreshments.
   While at Limasaua, enjoying rest and good treatment, they heard of the River of Butuan, whose chieftain was more powerful. His reputation attracted our men thither to see for themselves or be disillusioned, their curiosity sharpened by the fact that the place was nearby. The barbariqan [chief] lived up to our men’s expectations, providing them with the food they needed….Magellan contented himself with having them do reverence to the cross which is erected upon a hillock as a sign to future generations of their alliance….The solemnity with which the cross was erected and the deep piety shown by the Spaniards, and by the natives following the example of the Spaniards, engendered great respect for the cross.
   Not finding in Butuan the facilities required by the ships, they returned to Limasaua to seek further advice in planning their future route. The Prince of Limasaua told them of the three most powerful nations among the Pintados [Visayans], namely those of Caraga, Samar, and Zebu. The nearness of Zebu, the facilities of its port, and the more developed social structure (being more monarchial) aroused everyone’s desire to go thither. Thus, guided by the chief of Limasaua, passing between Bool and Leyte and close to the Camotes Islands, they entered the harbor of Cebu by the Mandawe entrance on the 7th of April 1521, having departed from Limasaua on the first day of that month.”

You will note Combes' story does not mention any mass being held anywhere in the Philippines on March 31, 1521. Yet for over half a century the National Historical Institute has officially affirmed in at least three formal declarations that an Easter Sunday mass was celebrated at Limasawa.

For an explanation of how this grave error was made please go to Wikipdia at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_mass_in_the_Philippines and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:First_mass_in_the_Philippines.

VICENTE CALIBO DE JESUS
ginesdemafra@gmail.com

3
Dr. Ambeth Ocampo’s reason for painting Rizal’s house green is based on his definition of the supposed Spanish word “ricial” which he claims is the source for the name “Rizal.”

He defines “ricial” as the color of palay when it’s just about ready for harvest.

As pointed out by many the color of rice ready to be harvested is not green–of whatever shade–but golden yellow. So based on his own reasoning, Ocampo seems to be in error.

His definition of “ricial” is also doubtful. “Ricial” accdg. to the Velazquez Spanish-English dictionary (http://www.spanishdict.com/translate/ricial) means “Growing again: applied to the aftercrop of corn, cut green for the feed of cattle.” So “ricial” refers to the idea of growing again. And the crop it refers to is not palay but corn.

If we then should apply Ocampo’s mental operation, what must prevail is the idea of growing again. How do we translate it into the outside world? Maybe Ocampo can think up of a way so that Rizal’s house keeps on growing either sideways or upwards or maybe downwards.

Ideally, it should grow so that ultimately the house will cover the entire country and perhaps someday the entire world. And why not all of the universe.

Ocampo’s way of popularizing Rizal’s name–his own unique, personal view of it, which is outside valid Spanish definition–is the kind of errant thinking up with which the people of Calamba and other right thinking people will not put.

VICENTE CALIBO DE JESUS
ginesdemafra@gmail.com

4
Philippine Photo Gallery / Re: Limasawa Island, Southern Leyte
« on: August 28, 2009, 09:01:26 PM »

It will help us all around if we pause and read what Fr. Francisco Combes really wrote. Here is his 3-paragraphs on Limasawa:

“The first time that the royal standards of the Faith were seen to fly in this island [of Mindanao] was when the Archipelago was first discovered by the Admiral Alonso de Magallanes. He followed a new and difficult route [across the Pacific] , entering by the Strait of Siargao, formed by that island and that of Leyte, and landing at the island of Limasaua which is at theentrance of that Strait. Amazed by the novelty and stangeness of the [Spanish] nation and the ships, the barbarians of that island welcomed them and gave them good refreshments.
   â€œWhile at Limasaua, enjoying rest and good treatment, they heard of the River of Butuan, whose chieftain was more powerful. His reputation attracted our men thither to see for themselves or be disillusioned, their curiosity sharpened by the fact that the place was nearby. The barbariqan [chief] lived up to our men’s expectations, providing them with the food they needed….Magellan contented himself with having them do reverence to the cross which is erected upon a hillock as a sign to future generations of their alliance….The solemnity with which the cross was erected and the deep piety shown by the Spaniards, and by the natives following the example of the Spaniards, engendered great respect for the cross.
   â€œNot finding in Butuan the facilities required by the ships, they returned to Limasaua to seek further advice in planning their future route. The Prince of Limasaua told them of the three most powerful nations among the Pintados [Visayans], namely those of Caraga, Samar, and Zebu. The nearness of Zebu, the facilities of its port, and the more developed social structure (being more monarchial) aroused everyone’s desire to go thither. Thus, guided by the chief of Limasaua, passing between Bool and Leyte and close to the Camotes Islands, they entered the harbor of Cebu by the Mandawe entrance on the 7th of April 1521, having departed from Limasaua on the first day of that month.”  Translation of Spanish text of Combes by Fr. Miguel Anselmo Bernad, one of the foremost advocates of the Limasawa=Mazaua hypothesis.

Now, let me ask, is there any mass mentioned in Combes' story? Is his Limasawa the port of Magellan's fleet from March-April 1521?

The Limasawa story was written by someone who had not read a single primary account of Magellan's voyage. He read a faithful story of the Mazaua incident by Antonio de Herrera y Tordesillas. Combes dismissed this as fake. Instead he opted for the account by Giovanni Battista Ramusio which wrongly pointed to Butuan as the port instead of Mazaua.

To have an idea of what Mazaua was pls. go to www.xeniaeditrice.it and scroll down to the article "Mazaua." Or go to Wikipedia, click http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_mass_in_the_Philippines and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:First_mass_in_the_Philippines

Vicente Calibo de Jesus
ginesdemafra@gmail.com



5
Philippine Photo Gallery / Re: Limasawa Island, Southern Leyte
« on: March 14, 2009, 02:17:00 PM »
Limasawa, site of first mass?

The so-called "first mass" was held at an island named "Mazaua" (Italian/French spelling for a vernacular word "masawa" which is Butuanon for brilliant light). Five eyewitnesses wrote on the Mazaua incident, Antonio Pigafetta, Gines de Mafra (who revisted the island in 1543), Francisco Albo, The Genoese Pilot, and Martin de Ayamonte. The accounts of Pigafetta, Albo, and the Genoese Pilot are in Stanley's book. De Mafra's is at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:First_mass_in_the_Philippines#The_account_of_Gin.C3.A9s_de_Mafra. Ayamonte's is at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mart%C3%ADn_de_Ayamonte.

The "Limasaua" story was written by Fr. Francisco Combes, S.J., only in 1667, almost one and a half century after the Mazaua incident. Combes had not read Pigafetta, Albo, The Genoese Pilot, Gines de Mafra, and Ayamonte.

You can read the original Spanish text of this 3-paragraph story by Fr. Francisco Combes, S.J., at http://quod.lib.umich.edu/cgi/t/text/pageviewer-idx?c=philamer;cc=philamer;q1=Limasaua;rgn=full%20text;idno=ahz9273.0001.001;didno=ahz9273.0001.001;view=image;seq=134. The English translation of the 3 paragraphs by Fr. Miguel A. Bernad, S.J., may be read at http://books.google.com/books?id=NbG7kHtBma8C&pg=PA1&dq=First+mass+in+Limasawa&ei=6w27SZi7IoLKlQS8neDVAg#PPA4,M1.

After reading Bernad's translation, let me ask you the following:

1. Is there any reference to an Easter mass or whatever mass in the Limasaua story?

2. Is Limasaua the ialand where Magellan and his fleet anchored from March 28 to April 4, 1521?

If you want to know the factual story of the first mass, please go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_mass_in_the_Philippines.

VICENTE CALIBO DE JESUS
ginesdemafra@gmail.com

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