…. manoel ….
I am manoel, a native of maybunga, who had read some interesting data and facts about some of the prominent families of the old pasig. I was encouraged to make a genealogical research for personal filing and preservation of our name, as an appreciation of the supposedly unbiased and objective accounts of some writers/historians on family roots.
My personal thanks to them and I hope to learn more about my own patrilineal and matrilenial blood lines to our forefathers, who I sincerely believe, were among the earliest ancestors of the malayan race of the tagalog kingdom or “kahariang mabunga” in a forgotten “lalawigan” in the island of gold now called as Luzon.
I worked and retired as a manager in the machinery sales division of one of the leading engineering firms in the country. I was employed in the public schools for about seven years, and spent a year or two as special police investigator supposedly assigned with the mayor’s office of a city government.
My father, hermenigildo, was a descendant of tagalog maginoo natives agustin and martin of the pre-colonial past. He also belonged to the line of ancient noble brothers gregorio and maximo, and ancestors of siblings Mathias, Enrique, Magdalena and Juan from whom all the landholdings of their pinga ancestors were bestowed to the government.
Their parents were gabriel and maria jose who both lived somewhere in the years 1600 or 1700 in the tagalog lands of the ancient forgotten lalawigan of mabunga that was in existence with the other provinces such as kalilaya, kabikulan, kumintang and iloko even before the births of christ, buddha, mohammed and the rest .
The maternal blood of my father came from the santos clan, whose member originated the tagalog balarila. I have known these names since i was young from the stories of my mother dorotea of the juan and jacinto clans of bulacan from which a person named emilio of the katipunan era was better known.
From old folks and close relatives, I learned that our ancestors were the rulers of an ancient placed called lupaing mabunga in katagalugan of the “pulo ng ginto”. They were known as brother-warriors of the past.
Coincidence perhaps that these souls lived in the same or near the period of a failed chinese invasion when the ming dynasty sent its generals to establish an extension of its kingdom in our lands sometime in 1574 or earlier.
The period was also within the time frame of the kingdom of talawisi which was ruled by a “maguinoong babaye”, a tagalog princess named urdujah or “dibuka” according to a mohammedan ibn batuta . Several writers however had taken the pain of reducing the chronicled accounts as a myth naming her as a famed muslim or moroccan traveler.
This makes me wonder that anyone who belongs to the same mold of non-believers of batuta, and even marco polo, will come out to contradict the supposition that my ancestors were gallant tagalog warriors who fought and defended the forgotten mabunga that was actually a kingdom against the intruders and invaders in the like of chinaman limahong or japanese sioco who actually escaped to the kingdom of iloko in the northern part of our island as pirates or corsairs adding the mixtures of races in our island.
Even another rizal or bonifacio will not be enough to take the cudgel on this, or the reincarnation of a certain father odorico who came to our islands several decades before magellan, to serve as witness in defense of my thesis.
To overkill, the power of my spirit shall, also, summon dan brown to crack these powerful destroyers of faith and dreams, and make a book out of it, as as he did to the last supper, mona liza and da vince.
Then, I would backtrack my trace of paternal bloodline from the years 1700’s when one of my forefathers married a woman named maria jose. I can go farther back to the early years of 1500’s, or maybe even deeper to the 9th or 10th century. Prominence of these pinga descendants were initially inscribed in the streets of manila but were slowly and gradually erased in the memories of our so-called historians.
Only the ibaloi tribe of the mountains believed and swore in the name of pinga that dibuka (urdujah) ruled or reigned over them in the spirit of their anito.
I can also move back the hands of time to the early years of the christian calendar but I would need the scientologists to back me up on this, not the common pretenders, local and foreign, who have fed mankind with falsehood and myths.
Without doubt in my mind, I can say that dibuka or urduha was a princess who belonged to the highest class in a kingdom called “lupaing malaya” or freedom land, feared but respected even by the natives beyond the seas.
I cannot help but have faith in our folk stories for the same reason that men of history and geology have accepted, hook, line and sinker, the theory of land bridges in our archipelago using artifacts as evidences, inspite of the stubborn denials of trusted foreign scholars, such as those who flatly dismissed galileo’s helioccentric theory and assertion about the sun and the earth and the universe.
These are the same people who rendered all out support to the “discoverers” of our archipelago, named it lazarus, then “felipinas”, branded our natives as indios and moros, instead of malayans, and even mistook the inhabitants of another continent as indians, instead of aztecs, mayans and incas.
For them, our earth belonged only to the western world, and it is the center of their universe where they lived with glory and grandeur among the copernicans. They never thought that somewhere in our times, truth will be out to document the genuine existence of a lost heritage, contrary to what was popularly heralded to the world.
And who would ever expect that the clock of time could come up with the name Pangaea as the supercontinent billion of years ago?
To my simple mind, the picayune evidence of a laguna copper plate inscriptions from the river of lumban near the lake of laguna can somewhat be credible to the present time. That there were elephants during the time of maginoo urdujah, and that she was a gibberish speaking lass who led an army of amazons, shall not be dismissed anymore like a figment of imagination of gulliver just because she spoke a different tongue, which to my mind was a pure tagalog baybayin.
Nothing is impossible in a given history. The author of the book da vinci code has provided our new generation with more radical insights about history, at the same time giving us the courage to deviate from the established norms concerning our past.
There is no need for professors of history to collaborate with my assertions. All I ask for is another antoon postma to read the secret kawi or kabi scripts on the missing pages of copper plates, or another enterprising human to decipher the truth about the old tagalog malay tongue written by our ancient fathers on a clay pot or “gusi” made of bronze, or the mysterious scripts chiseled on paper plates made of gold, if and when found underneath the muds of the ilog wawa of the enchanted mabunga.
Others say that my name is an archaic tagalog word for “mandirigma” that some dictionary authors used to describe our ancient warrior ancestors, without a deep study of the meaning and origin of the word.
A more ancient meaning was known as “spirit of the riverdwellers”, while to the shamans it was a helping female spirit bringing to fore that fact that our own babaylan and katalunan would need the intercession of the good spirit or “diwa ng kabutihan, kagalingan at kawanggawa, o mga diwata” for their healing powers against the bad ones.
In a given time in the past, the name was meant to be “noble warrior” or “mandirigma”, forgotten literal meaning of which was “peace and order keeper”, not “trouble makers” nowadays to my deep regret.
Even in indo-china, particularly in vietnam, and even in america, africa, asia, australia and pacific islands, there were villages and clans bearing the very same word as their name, that can provide another venue of interpretation of its origin.
One record of our oral history also revealed that a group of pinga warriors were invited as mercenaries to support the french and other european invasion in those colonial times. It was said that the island base of pinga operation was in corsica during the time of bonaparte. The same thing happened in korea in not a distant past, and in iraq. Or probably in congo during the forgotten past, and even in the continental america and pacific.
I trust not to deviate much from my supposition that those concerned families became “natives” of far away lands, but with roots originating from the kingdom of mabunga in the island of gold, in the land of the free or “lupaing malaya”, which was mistaken in the erroneous past to be malaysia. It was a shame for this misnomer, indeed.
A departed soul, maestrang miren geronimo, told me in my grade school, stories about “donya magdalena, sampayang ginto, lupang payatas, lupang pare, ilog wawa, gusi ng mga ginto’t hiyas, lihim ng puntod, amang bundok, inang bundok, gobernadorcillos at maginoo sa mabunga” whose common reference was surprisingly rhymed and spelled exactly with my name.
If my deductions and additions were correct, there are other related families whose bloodline I cannot yet ascertain, but I was assured by my relatives and well meaning inhabitants of our place that “basta taglay at gamit ang iyong apelyido, tiyak kamag-anak ninyo na ang ugat ay galing sa mabunga. Iisa ang inyong pinanggalingan”.
Long departed old folks and originals of our place said it in another way- “basta taglay ang inyong pangalan, tiyak na kalahi ninyo na isa ang pinag-mulan”.
Recently, I learned that personalities in the entertainment industry and national politics and governments have the same noble roots in origin, like salazar, sanog, concepcion, santiago, manuel, santos, cruz, caballes, bernal, guevarra, san juan, marcelo, bernal, salonga, andolong, ginoo, guerrero, rason, penya, marcelo and many countless others, either by blood or marriage.
I also commit the right to tell my own family that my forefathers in the past belonged to the class of maginoo and I can also trace my origin from the gremio de naturales, gobernadorcillos and the principalias who became the earliest leaders were given due reverence in the past.
I also learned from a noted writer that a certain juan renamed his surname to marcelo, and bequeathed his own wealth and properties to his townmates, similar to what was was done by his sister magdalena to her personal wealth and inheritance from their maginoo ancestors who had direct correlation with the famed “lupaing payatas”.
These ancestral lands were originally owned by the tagalog nobility whose name I bear. I am also glad to know that glicerio geronimo, macario sakay, monica and ladislaw diwa belonged to the same clan of my forefathers.
I cannot be a history writer and I do not pretend to be one as I have no possession of records and documents used by so called historians. But I have dared write essays on my own recollection of stories of people and places I heard and learned from the past.
It is therefore my wish to see materials and references of any documents which can help me personally assess the past for the sake of our own future. I have also longed to read or even possess a copy of the last will and testament of dona magdalena to somewhat verify my knowledge about lupang payatas and lupang pare, but to no avail.
Time and money is a clear hindrance for me and my failing eyesight and reflexes have slowed me down due to high blood pressure and enlargement of the heart at this age.This can be the reason why you may find this letter crude and amateurish, and largely dependent, but not definitely not reliant, on written works of other researchers and writers.
I believe that no one can be prominent without eminence in his heart. Anyone notorious in fame and wealth cannot claim decency in his name if the stake is borne out of greed and ignorance. One can be poor and underprivileged, but must be exacting in the search for truth that is embedded with social consciousness.
In retrospect, I consider the virtues of a true maginoo, a genuine noble spirit so overwhelmed with benevolence, to be my only guiding light in this life.