Filipino Family Culture 2010

Concluding Essay

Posted in Uncategorized by insociofinals on April 21, 2010

Filipinos have a culture rich in traditions and beliefs and the Filipino Family of 2010 though modern and changing along with the current trends, still adheres to this culture. Although the Filipino Family of 2010 has adopted modern variations of cultural traditions, the main significance of these traditions still remains. For example, the “mano po” gesture which displays respect for elder relatives is slowly being replaced by the “beso” but nevertheless still conveys deep respect for elder relatives.

Better prospects abroad have driven many Filipinos to migrate to foreign countries leading to either of two situations:

1) families being separated by distance

2) Filipino families being formed in foreign countries resulting in the family, especially the children, adopting the foreign culture present in the country they are living in.

Either way, Filipino families still maintain their Filipino identity. How Filipino families overseas cope by adopting the culture present in the foreign country they are living in while still struggling to keep their identity as Filipinos is spoken of in the book The Philippine Jeepney by Penélope V. Flores with Araceli N. Resus. They still cook Filipino dishes which they share when they get together for family meals. They keep in touch with their families and relatives in the Philippines by sending balikbayan boxes, especially during Christmas time. Others make it a point to come home for Christmas in order to celebrate the holiday season with their families and relatives. When relatives do not come home for Christmas, Filipino families feel incomplete. This is why the song, “Araw Ng Pasko” speaks of wishing that their overseas relatives be home for Christmas. This song reflects the thoughts and emotions of many Filipino families during Christmas.  

Filipino families love having reunions and get-togethers. Although there are the usual conflicts, such as between in-laws, Filipinos still love having “handaans” where they invite all their relatives. This act of having get-togethers and setting aside differences shows the importance of family to Filipinos. For a Filipino, family is part of their identity, their being. This is why the story of orphans in television soaps is a regular favorite of writers; orphans are greatly pitied by Filipinos.

A Filipino’s love for his family can be witnessed greatly as there are many who work at an early age to support their family. This is also the reason why many Filipinos are OFW’s. Once abroad, they send money back home for their siblings’ education and for the healthcare of their parents. Sending siblings to school and paying for their education up to college is a common scenario in Filipino families. That is the extent of what a Filipino will do for his family.

Filipino mothers are exceptionally wonderful. As portrayed in the movie “Anak”, there are many Filipino mothers who become OFW’s and endure all the difficult conditions and sacrifice being away from their children just to be able to give them a better life back home.

Filipino families vary greatly when it comes to financial status; there are some who are rich enough to go travelling to other countries for vacation while others hardly have food to eat. But no matter what the difference in financial status, the structure of Filipino families remains the same. The movie “Magnifico” is of a middle-class Filipino family and shows the unique relationships each of the family members share with each other. This movie shows how grandparents live in the same house which is a typical setting in Filipino homes, and how they are taken care of, unlike in the west where they are sent to homes for the aged. “Magnifico” presents some of the problems that Filipino families typically face, and shows how Filipino families deal with them and stay together despite all the hardships. The main theme  of this movie is the deep family bond found in Filipino families.

Filipino families are also very protective of one another and this can be seen most at the time of courtship of one of the members as portrayed in the advertisement of 555 Corned Tuna.

Putting serious issues aside, as naturally happy people, Filipinos like to enjoy life and as families, they enjoy by doing simple activities together like singing karaoke, eating out in restaurants and playing board games.

Filipino families also make it a point to go to church together every Sunday. Filipinos have been religious since early civilization and that is an aspect of Filipino culture that has remained the same till today.  The religiousity of Filipinos is well-known, so much so that the Vatican praises the Filipino family for remaining religious despite troubled times as shown in the News Article by CBCP.

Through this data collection activity, we have come to realize the unique and admirable qualities of the Filipino family that truly sets it apart from the rest. It makes us proud to be Filipino with a Filipino family of our own. We hope that we have done the Filipino family justice in the items we have chosen to describe them. We sincerely hope that when the portrait of the Filipino family in 3010 is researched these core values of unity, loyalty and love for one another are still present.

Habit: Nailed Photos

Posted in Uncategorized by insociofinals on April 18, 2010

A Filipino home is never complete without photos of family and friends nailed to the walls. We surround rooms, and fill the walls, with photos of our parents, children, siblings, nieces and nephews and the list goes on. Aside from the purpose of decoration, we Filipinos hang these photos of family and relatives so that whether we are near or far from them, they still remain a part of our lives. We, Filipinos feel a big sense of loss, when we don’t have any family or relatives as for us, having family and relatives is a big part of our identity.

Courtesy: Mano Po / Beso

Posted in Uncategorized by insociofinals on April 18, 2010

The gesture of “Mano Po” has been in Filipino tradition for centuries and although it is not practiced often today, the gesture is still recognized as a way of giving respect to elders. This gesture has evolved to the “beso”, greeting each other by kissing on the cheeks, but still signifies the same meaning of “Mano Po”. Such gestures show how important it is to Filipinos to give respect to their elder family relatives. These gestures show how Filipinos acknowledge and give importance to the presence of the elder family members.

Object: A Filipino Home

Posted in Uncategorized by insociofinals on April 18, 2010

In a Filipino Home…

Everyone is family. A stranger can get invited to the house or for lunch on the right circumstances. Everyone who is elderly; blood related or not is called Tita or Tito. And, we greet everyone with a “beso” Its the little greetings like this that makes the environment so warm and home-y when family or friends get together.

Filipino families are quick to welcome non-blood related persons and treat them as though they were blood-related. One example is how filipino maids or “katulongs” are not treated as servants but as relatives.

Object: Balikbayan box

Posted in Uncategorized by insociofinals on April 18, 2010

A balikbayan box is a box made of cardboard sent by relatives abroad or from other distant places. Every Filipino family looks forward to opening it to see its contents. It may contain non-perishable goods, clothes, gadgets, bathroom and kitchen things, and stuff that are not found or hard to find here in our country. It serves as a link to our relatives abroad and greatly shows how Filipinos are very generous especially to their loved ones.

The balikbayan box is also the means of relatives to send gifts to relatives in the Philippines during Christmas time. This shows how even miles apart will not stop Filipino families from celebrating Christmas together.

Movie: Magnifico (2003)

Posted in Uncategorized by insociofinals on April 18, 2010

directed by: Maryo J. Delos Reyes

Movie Link // Trailer Link

Most Filipino families exude love, faith, and hope, especially during adverse times. Most families in the Philippines stick together through thick and thin, dealing with their problems together and doing everything just to make it through. This shows how each member will keep on supporting and keep on going out of genuine love, and I think that it is a very admirable trait. For the rest who just give up and leave their families when they can’t handle the hardships anymore, I believe that they should learn how to cope with the problems they are faced with alongside their family members. It is true that one should not lose hope when he is faced with trials, and that doing something about the problem is the way to go. This film speaks about how a boy, Pikoy, helps his family get away from the problems they were experiencing by showing them, and the people around them, that anything is possible in the eyes of a child, and that they should be as optimistic and hopeful.

Game: Mahjong

Posted in Uncategorized by insociofinals on April 18, 2010

This photo embodies what we filpinos enjoy together as a family, which is the simple life. We cherish small get togethers such as: Playing and drinking beer on an early cool evening, telling stories by our loved ones’ grave on All Saints Day, spending Christmas together (Christmas begins in October and ends in January because we love it so much), ballroom dancing, bowling, pusoy, billiards and especially karaoke. It just shows that we don’t need a lot of money to have a good time with one another.

Film: Bata, Bata, Paano Ka Ginawa? (1998; Chito Roño)

Posted in Uncategorized by insociofinals on April 18, 2010

“Lualhati Bautista’s award-winning novel was adapted to the big-screen with brilliant results: the casting (specially Mayor Vilma Santos as the strong-willed Leah Bustamante) is perfect; Bautista’s script is filled with comic and dramatic undertones. 8 year-old Serena Dalrymple provided most of the laughs as the innocent child who serves as Leah’s mirror of her personality. Everything in the film is a labor of love and art, and it deserves to be a classic.”

“Bata, bata…Paano ka ginawa?” shows a mother, Leah Bustamante (Vilma Santos) struggling to raise her two children. What makes it different from other films is the fact that two children have different fathers; the elder being the son of her estranged husband and the youngest being the daughter of her lover. Who knew that a film about a middle-class Pinay housewife will be better remembered than the more hyped Rizal film at #4? Lualhati Bautista adapted the script from her own novel about a modern Pinay and mother of two. This film is the essence of a filipino family. No matter what tries to break them down, they stay strong together, disregarding their quantity.

Movie: Anak (2000)

Posted in Uncategorized by insociofinals on April 18, 2010

directed by: Rory M. Quintos

Movie Link // Trailer Link

A number of Filipinos work overseas to support their families. This causes them to sacrifice their time, effort, and being with their relatives. Although this shows dedication and responsibility as a parent, it also may lead to complications and problems, especially with their children since they need special attention from their parents to mold them into good, moral beings in the society. Having numerous OFW’s also explains the fact that our country can’t fully support its people, and that workers here aren’t being paid properly. Since this is the reality, the Filipino family will do almost anything and everything just to keep their family healthy and surviving. This film shows how a mother deals with being away from her children and returning home just to find out that they have been experiencing so much adversity and crisis. Vilma, who portrays the mother, does everything to help their family get back on their feet.

Song: Araw Ng Pasko

Posted in Uncategorized by insociofinals on April 18, 2010

‘di ba’t kay ganda sa atin ng pasko
Naiiba ang pagdiriwang dito
Pasko sa ati’y hahanap-hanapin mo
Walang katulad dito ang pasko

Lagi mo na maiisip na sila’y nandito sana
At sa noche buena ay magkakasama

Ang pasko ay kay saya kung kayo’y kapiling na
Sana pagsapit ng pasko, kayo’y naririto
Kahit pa malayo ka, kahit nasaan ka pa
Maligayang bati para sa inyo sa araw ng pasko

Sa ibang bansa’y ‘di mo makikita
Ang ngiti sa labi ng bawat isa
Alam naming hindi n’yo nais malayo
Paskong pinoy pa rin sa ating puso

[repeat refrain]
[repeat chorus]

Dito’y mayro’ng caroling at may simbang gabi
At naglalakihan pa ang christmas tree, ang christmas tree

[repeat chorus except last 4 words]
[repeat chorus]

Christmas has been and always will be one of the most awaited and celebrated holidays of the Filipino family. The Filipino family truly is happiest when the whole family is complete to celebrate Christmas. It is during that time that the whole clan gets together and celebrates the birth of Jesus. Family members who are abroad make sure that they come home for Christmas just to be with their loved ones. It has been a tradition for the family to have Noche Buena, which is dinner on Christmas Eve, to start celebrating and to wait for the clock to strike twelve to signal the opening of gifts. Having grand decorations and attending the SImbang gabi, are also part of the yearly tradition.


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