Religion in the Philippines

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Date Submitted: 11/14/2011 02:09 PM

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RELIGION IN THE PHILIPPINES

Magnayon, Ferdinand R.

Religion in the Philippines are spiritual beliefs held by Philippine citizens. Religion holds a central place in the life of the majority of Filipinos, including Catholics, Muslims, Buddhists, Protestants and animists. It is central not as an abstract belief system, but rather as a host are experiences, rituals, ceremonies, and adjurations that provide continuity in life, cohesion in the community and moral purpose for existence. Religious associations are part of the system of kinship ties, patron-client bonds and other linkages outside the nuclear family.

Christianity and Islam have been superimposed on ancient traditions and acculturated. The unique religious blends that have resulted, when combined with the strong personal faith of Filipinos, have given rise to numerous and diverse revivalist movements. Generally characterized by antimodern bias, supernaturalism, and authoritarianism in the person of a charismatic messiah figure, these movements have attracted thousands of Filipinos, especially in areas like Mindanao, which have been subjected to extreme pressure of change over a short period of time. Many have been swept up in these movements, out of a renewed sense of fraternity and community. Like the highly visible examples of flagellation and reenacted crucifixion in the Philippines, these movements may seem to have little in common with organized Christianity or Islam. But in the intensely personalistic Philippine religious context, they have not been aberrations so much as extreme examples of how religion retains its central role in society.

Ancient indigenous beliefs

Animism, is the term used to describe the indigenous spiritual traditions practiced in the Philippines during pre-colonial times. Today, a handful of the indigenous tribes continue to practice it. The traditions are a collection of beliefs and cultural mores anchored more or less in the idea that the world is inhabited by spirits...

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