Culture is the way of living of certain people. How they dress, how they eat, how they court and bear children, how they are buried, and many more refer to their culture. Edward B. Taylor defined culture as that complex whole which includes knowledge, belief, art, moral, laws, customs, and any capabilities and habits acquired by man as a member of society and Leslie A. White refers to culture as an organization of phenomena which includes arts, objects, ideas and sentiments. The ancient Filipinos were divided into social classes.

These were the nobles, freemen, and the dependents. Among the dependents were classified into aliping namamahay and the aliping sagigilid. Among the Bisayans, the dependents were of three kinds: the tumataban, who worked for one day for hismaster; and the ayuey, who worked three days a week for his master. During those times, women were theequal men. They could own and inherit property and sell it. They could engage in trade and succeed to thechieftainship of their community. The pre-Spanish Filipinos believed that the soul was immortal.

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They believed in life after death. They worshipped a Supreme Being called the Bathalang Maykapal. Our ancestors venerated their dead by carvingidols called diwata in Bisayan and anito in Tagalog. Ancient Filipinos were very respectful of their dead because they believe in life after death and theimmortality of the soul. Mourning for the dead chieftain was called the Laraw; for a dead man, Maglahe; and for a dead woman, Morotal There are more than a hundred languages and dialects that exist in the country today.

Of these, eight areconsidered major languages, namely: Sugbuhanon (Cebuano); Tagalog; Iloko; Pangasinan; Hiligaynon(Ilonggo); Kapangpangan; Magindanaw; and Samarnon (Waray-waray). They are sister-languages and belong to one family of languages called Austronesian or Malayo-Polynesian. The Philippinealphabet is called syllabify because every letter is pronounced as a syllable. The Tagalog script was called baybayin, sometimes erroneously called alibata. It consisted of three vowels and fourteen consonants, witha total of 17 letters.

The writing system was horizontal, from left to right. Asian cultural heritage Early people of the Philippines In 1962, a skullcap and a portion of a jaw-presumed to be a human origin-were found in the Tabon Caves of Palawan by archaeologist Robert Fox and Manuel Santiago, who both worked for the National Museum. Carbon dating placed their age at 21,000 to 22,000 years. This proves that man came earlier to the Philippines than to the Malay Peninsula; therefore, the first inhabitants of our islands could not have come from the region.

The “Tabon Man” is said to resemble Java Man and Peking Man. He gathered fruits, leaves and plants for his food. He hunted with weapons made of stone. Although further research is still being done on his life and culture, evidence shows that he was already capable of using his brain in order to survive and keep himself safe. The second group of migrants was composed of dark-skinned pygmies called “Aetas’ or “Negritoes”. Negrito woman | Aeta womanAbout 30,000 years ago, they crossed the land bridged from Malaya, Borneo, and Australia until they reached Palawan, Mindoro and Mindanao.

They were pygmies who went around practically naked and were good at hunting, fishing and food gathering. They used spears and small flint stones weapons. The Aetas were already in the Philippines when the land bridges disappeared due to the thinning of the ice glaciers and the subsequent increase in seawater level. This natural event “forced” them to remain in the country and become its first permanent inhabitants. Because of the disappearance of the land bridges, the third wave of migrants was necessarily skilled in seafaring. These were the Indonesians, who came to the islands in boats.

They were more advanced than the Aetas in that: they had tools made out of stone and steel, which enabled them to build sturdier houses: they engaged in farming and mining, and used materials made of brass; they wore clothing and other body ornaments. Last to migrate to the Philippines, according to Beyer, were Malays. They were believed to have come from Java, Sumatra, Borneo, and the Malay Peninsula more than 2,000 years ago. Like the Indonesians, they also traveled in boats. The Malays were brown-skinned and of medium height, with straight black hair and flat noses.

Their technology was said to be more advanced than that of their predecessors. They engaged in pottery, weaving, jewelry making and metal smelting, and introduced the irrigation system in rice planting. Influence of Indian, Chinese, Japanese and Arabic civilization Hinduism has been a major cultural, economic, political and religious influence in the archipelago that now comprise the Philippines. At present, however, it is limited to a small recent immigrant Indian community, though traditional religious beliefs in most parts of the country have strong Hindu and Buddhist influences.

Influences from the Indian subcontinent may be traced earlier to before the arrival of the Arabs and the Europeans during the 15th and 16th centuries respectively. The rulers of many of the islands were called Rajas, or Rajahs. Christianity with the Spaniards in 1521. Although Hinduism is now a minority religion in the country, some of its beliefs still pervade the national psyche; it is socially and culturally ingrained in Filipinos, most of whom are either part of the Christian majority (Roman Catholic and Protestant), or part of a significant Muslim minority.

An example is that the concept of karma is readily understood by locals and forms part of native ethics. Much of our language originated from the Sanskrit language. the linguistic influence left its most lasting marks on every Philippine language throughout the archipelago with the following Buddhist and Hindu concepts directly from the original Sanskrit. About 25% of the words in many Philippine languages are Sanskrit and Tamil terms. The Ramayana and the Mahabharata are the two great epics of India. Ramayana portrays the battle between good and evil.

Rama, with his wife Sita and his brother Lakshmana, represent the eventual victory of good over evil, represented by Ravana, the ten-headed demon king. Rama is helped by his devotee, Hanuman and the army of monkeys under the command of the monkey king Sugriv. Versions from the different ethnic groups of the Philippines exist. The Maranao version is the Maharadia Lawana (Maharaja Rava? a). Lam-Ang is the version of the Ilocanos. In addition, many verses from the Hud-Hud of the Ifugao are derived from the Ramayana and the Mahabharata.

From the Chinese, the early Filipinos learned to use porcelain ware, umbrellas, manufacture of gunpowder, and certain mining methods. The loose style in the early Filipino manner of dressin, the sleeved jackets and loose trouser of the Muslim Filipino women and the use of slippers indicate Chinese influence too. Also of Chinese origin was the wearing of yellow clothing by the nobles and of blue garments by the commoners in pre-Spanish Philippine society. The wearing of white dresses and the use of a white background in mourning and burial ceremonies is another Chinese influence. Many Chinese words are found in the Tagalog language.

Among these are sangko (elder brother), pansit (noodles), tinghoy (oil lamp), hibi (dried shrimp), petsay (Chinese cabbage), dikyam (dried fruit), ampaw (cereal), and susi (key). The surnames of a great many Filipino families are of Chinese origin, such as Cojuangco, Lim, Tan, Limjoco, Tongko, Juico and Ongsiako. Equally important was the adoption by the early Filipinos of certain Chinese customs. Among these ar the arrangement of marriages by the parents of the prospective bride and groom, the practice of employing a go-between in proposing a marriage, and the deep respect accorded by the children to their parents and other elders.

The Japanese made some important contributions to Philippine life too. They taught the early Filipinos certain industries such as the manufacture of arms and tools, the tanning of deerskin, and the artificial breeding of ducks and fish. The most important gift of the Arabs to the life of Muslim Filipinos was Islam, still a living religion in Mindanao and Sulu. The calendar, law, form of government, art, and literature of the Muslim Filipinos are of Arabic origin. The sarimanok design in Maranaw decorative art has an Arabic origin. Many stories in Maranaw and Tausug literature are derived from Arabian tales.

Finally, there are some Arabic words found in the Tagalog language, such as alam (know), sulat (letter), salamat (thanks), hukom (judges), and piklat (scar). Birth of National Consciousness Opening of the Philippines to world trade from 1834 to 1873 This stimulated the economic activities in the country which brought prosperity to some of the Filipinos but most of all to the Chinese and the Spaniards. It resulted to the rise of a new social class referred to as “Middle Class” or the “Ilustrados”Acquired material wealthImproved their social stature and influenceClamored for social and political equality with the colonial masters.

With the opening of the Philippines to world trade, European ideas freely penetrated the country in form of printed books, newspapers, and treatises made available to the natives as they participated in the process of exchange of goods and products. The new knowledge and current events they learned and acquired outside affected their ways of living and the manner of their thinking. Liberal Regime of Carlos Ma. Dela Torre It was during his term as governor general that freedom of speech was allowed among the Filipinos.

De la Torre was a well-loved leader because he was concern with the needs of the natives. He ordered the abolition of flogging as punishment for military disobedience. He implemented the Educational Decree of 1863 and the Moret Law which delimit the secularization of educational institutions and allowed the government to take control among different schools and academic institutions. Secularization Movement An interest group consisted of Filipino priests who demanded that they be allowed to handle parishes in accordance with the provisions of the Council of Trent.

It was once headed by Father Pedro Pelaez and was followed by Fr. Jose Burgos. The Cavite Mutiny An uprising of the arsenal and shipyard workers of Cavite as a response to the repeal of their privileges such as exemption from paying tributes and performance of forced labor. This took place on January 20, 1872 and was headed by Sergeant La Madrid. This small mutiny was magnified by Spanish to make it appear that it was a wide-scaled conspiracy and that even Filipino clergy were part of it.