Being a Manghihilot

Yesterday-January 21, 2023 was our 6th day of Hilot Training at International Institute of Rural Reconstruction as a Venue and we did a Question and Answer Session regarding some health issues and discuss the possible Hilot Treatment procedures.

In starting the session, I gave each individual a 4a piece of paper and cut it into 8 pcs. So each participants will write 8 specific questions containing possible health issues that they may encounter in their practice of Hilot. As we finish writing our questions on the paper we fold it and place it inside a box. And will pick one and read it aloud to discuss the possible Hilot Treatment Plan we are going to employ,

We only have limited time as we do this from 9:00 am to 10:00 am so that we can perform other things. These activity trains the student to handle clients with different health issues by activating their critical thinking ability to analyze the situations and determining appropriate Hilot Treatment procedures that could help their client to have cure.

The application of Hilot Treatment may vary as Traditional Filipino Illness may manifest into the Physical, Emotional, Mental, Social and even Spiritual aspect of the person. So the Hilot Treatment procedures are not only limited in giving Massage but may also require the applications of other Hilot Treatment Techniques such as Pagtatawas as Diagnostic, Pagpag/ Pauli Ritual, Pagbababad/ Banyos, Paghihilod, Pagbabalot, Pagtatapal, Pagsusuob,Paligo-Banlaw, Palina, Dagdagay, Pagsasala, Bentusa/ Tandok, Pagpupunas, Pahid, Haplos, Himas, Pindot, Hagod, Pisil, Piga and other Hilot Touch Manipulations technique such as kamot, kurot, yugyog, tulak, hila, dagan and kayod.

We also have talked about dissecting each Hilot Treatment methodologies and their origins. And as we look at each treatment methodologies employed in Hilot Treatment, we could say that all of it maybe an adoption of our ancestors from foreigners who come into our land out of the trade relations of the Philippines towards other countries that came to us such as the application of Bentusa which may come from the Greeks or Persia; Dagdagay as it employs reflexology; the Pagpapahid as it looks similar to Abyangha, and so on.

There was a point in time that I remember that Filipino were known before as imitators as whatever saw from the west that is trending, we mimic it and imitate. But this was not the case, as Human needs are the same specially in terms of maintain health and wellness. As I embrace harder the Art and Science of Hilot, what I learned is that the Healing Principles of Hilot does not comes from the Technique that we use, but through the Behavior that we observe in performing these modality.

Hilot is about the Quality of Care that we provide and not about the technique we employ; it is also through the emotions we share and not about being patriotic but it is about our connection to the land and it’s nature.

Being a Manhihilot in Diaspora does not mean that you have to grow all the plants that is endemic in the Philippines. That you as Manghihilot living in the United States or wherever country you are in the world needs to import all the Healing Herbs that you can find in the Philippines; but being a Manghihilot in Diaspora is about connecting with the plant medicine that grows in your own yard, in your neighborhood, in the country where you live right now.

It is a good idea that you being a person living in diaspora could support our local manghihilot by importing our products that will give us revenue. And that is only good for us, but it maybe harmful to our land as we tend to over harvest because of the international demands. And over harvesting is not Hilot, it is already about commerce and capitalism. Our Hilot is not about earning a lot of money, though we also need to earn, as we ourselves are in this world that is governed by money. We still have our bills that we need to pay, and this is what the energy exhange is for. You are paying us for the service you get from us to be a better person, and the money you give make us to be able to pay for the responsibilities we have on the technical services we obtain from electric company, water company, internet providers and so on.

For me, I dont have Children to send to schools. But we have charities to help in sending people to school. So this is the reason also that we exert effort in doing this work. As hilot is not only in making people feel better about their physical body but also in their lives.

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