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๐–๐ก๐ข๐ฉ๐ฌ ๐Ÿ๐จ๐ซ ๐Ÿ๐ฅ๐จ๐ ๐ ๐ข๐ง๐  ๐š๐ฌ ๐ฌ๐ฒ๐ฆ๐›๐จ๐ฅ๐ฌ ๐จ๐Ÿ ๐ฌ๐ฎ๐Ÿ๐Ÿ๐ž๐ซ๐ข๐ง๐ ๐ฌ

๐—ž๐˜‚๐˜„๐—ฒ๐—ป๐˜๐—ผ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฃ๐—ฒ๐˜†๐˜‚๐—ฝ๐˜€ ๐—”๐˜๐—ฏ๐—ฝ. ๐—ฏ๐˜† ๐—”๐˜๐˜๐˜†. ๐——๐—ฒ๐—ป๐—ป๐—ถ๐˜€ ๐—š๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฐ๐—ต๐—ผ

A whip symbolizes sufferings – Christ in the hands of the Roman soldiers and the cruelties to Filipinos under Spanish colonial rule.

Filipino Catholics are known for having sincere, enormous and extreme expressions of piety considering that the country is the third-largest Catholic population in the world.

The fervent devotion and faith shown by devotees became a prime manifestation of the fusion of Catholic and secular beliefs and practices of Filipinos.

Lent is the commemoration of the suffering, crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is a 40-day-long observance that begins on Ash Wednesday, and ends with Easter Sunday.

As Catholics see this season as a time for personal conversion and atonement, many Filipinos perform traditions in the week leading to Easter in the hope they will be cleansed of sins and illnesses and their wishes might be granted.

Some penitents have enacted a much greater mortification on Good Friday โ€“ flagellation and crucifixion.

During my younger days, I used to wait for the procession of the โ€œpenitensyaโ€ coming from the Malibay area in Pasay City.

Flagellation (from Latin flagellare, to whip) rituals were built around processions, hymns, distinct gestures, uniforms, and discipline.

Flagellants – hooded, half-naked men – scourge themselves by first cutting their backs, chest, arms and legs with a blade or knife then whip their backs with bamboo-tipped burillos or with whips embedded with thorns and glass shards as the blood flows out of their wounds.

Some participants carry crosses through local churches, then lie on scorching concrete pavements, with arms spread as they are hit on the back with wooden paddles as an act of full surrender to the mercy of God.

For many flagellants, it is not enough that they confess their sins. Serious injuries must be inflicted upon themselves so that they will be convinced that their sins have been forgiven. They believe that by punishing the body, the sins would be absolved and the soul would be more potent.

Some do it as an act of sacrifice for the welfare of their families or to re-live the pain and sacrifice of Christ in the hands of the Roman soldiers

It was even featured in โ€œThe Da Vinci Codeโ€ wherein Silas, an Opus Dei albino monk, whips himself with a โ€œdisciplineโ€, or knotted cord, while wearing the cilice – a spiked chain worn on the upper thigh as a reminder of Christโ€™s suffering.

A disturbing practice is using a razor blade or a small wooden plank embedded with glass shards to prick the skin of the back and initiate bleeding before the flogging starts. In most cases, only one such implement is used on several penitents.

Various objects like whips for flogging (suplina) can be found on the cover of Jose Rizalโ€™s Noli Me Tangere considered as symbolism for cruelties under Spanish colonial rule.

โ€œNoli Me Tangereโ€ was published in 1887 and written in Spanish which is a sweeping and passionate unmasking of the brutality and corruption of Spanish rule in the Philippines (1565โ€“1898) that are seen as a disease of the society, thus the title, Latin for โ€œtouch me notโ€.

Flogging was mentioned in Chapter 50 that narrates the family history of Elias.

His great-grandfather worked as a bookkeeper for a Spanish businessman. When a fire broke out in the workhouse, he was accused of arson. Since he was poor and could not pay for able lawyers, he was condemned to be scourged in public and taken through the streets of Manila through the infamous punishment called โ€œcaballo y vacaโ€, which was described as โ€œa thousand times worse than death itselfโ€. His grandfather, abandoned by all except his young wife, was tied to a horse, followed by a cruel multitude, and flogged on every street corner, before other men, his brothers, and in the neighborhood. This left him crippled. In order to provide for the family his wife, still with child, was forced to enter into prostitution. The disgraced man hangs himself in front of his living son, who watches his fatherโ€™s body decay and tries to care for his ailing mother.

The whip as a symbol of cruelty was also mentioned in Chapter 39 as Doรฑa Consolaciรณn used the whip to force Sisa to dance which Rizal described as โ€œthat terrible whip known to thieves and soldiers, made in Ulango and perfected by the alferez with twisted wiresโ€. Dona Consolacion is a brutal, vulgar and older Filipina woman who strands herself between Spanish culture and Filipino culture. She is ashamed of her heritage and pretends to be unable to speak Tagalog, her own native language.

โ€œShe began to strike the madwomanโ€™s bare feet gently with the whip. Sisaโ€™s face drew up with pain and she was forced to protect herself with her hands. โ€˜Aha, now youโ€™re starting!โ€™ she exclaimed with savage joy, passing from lento to allegro vivace. The afflicted Sisa gave a cry of pain and quickly raised her foot. Youโ€™ve got to dance! The whip swung and whistled.โ€

(๐‘ƒ๐‘’๐‘ฆ๐‘ข๐‘๐‘  ๐‘–๐‘  ๐‘กโ„Ž๐‘’ ๐‘š๐‘œ๐‘›๐‘–๐‘˜๐‘’๐‘Ÿ ๐‘œ๐‘“ ๐‘กโ„Ž๐‘’ ๐‘ˆ๐‘›๐‘–๐‘ฃ๐‘’๐‘Ÿ๐‘ ๐‘–๐‘ก๐‘ฆ ๐‘œ๐‘“ ๐‘กโ„Ž๐‘’ ๐‘ƒโ„Ž๐‘–๐‘™๐‘–๐‘๐‘๐‘–๐‘›๐‘’๐‘ . ๐ด๐‘ก๐‘ก๐‘ฆ. ๐ท๐‘’๐‘›๐‘›๐‘–๐‘  ๐‘…. ๐บ๐‘œ๐‘Ÿ๐‘’๐‘โ„Ž๐‘œ โ„Ž๐‘’๐‘Ž๐‘‘๐‘  ๐‘กโ„Ž๐‘’ ๐‘†๐‘’๐‘Ž๐‘“๐‘Ž๐‘Ÿ๐‘’๐‘Ÿ๐‘ โ€™ ๐ท๐‘–๐‘ฃ๐‘–๐‘ ๐‘–๐‘œ๐‘› ๐‘œ๐‘“ ๐‘กโ„Ž๐‘’ ๐‘†๐‘Ž๐‘๐‘Ž๐‘™๐‘œ ๐‘‰๐‘’๐‘™๐‘’๐‘ง ๐ต๐‘ข๐‘›๐‘‘๐‘Ž๐‘›๐‘” ๐ต๐‘ข๐‘™๐‘–๐‘™๐‘Ž๐‘› ๐ฟ๐‘Ž๐‘ค ๐‘‚๐‘“๐‘“๐‘–๐‘๐‘’๐‘ . ๐น๐‘œ๐‘Ÿ ๐‘๐‘œ๐‘š๐‘š๐‘’๐‘›๐‘ก๐‘ , ๐‘’-๐‘š๐‘Ž๐‘–๐‘™ ๐‘–๐‘›๐‘“๐‘œ@๐‘ ๐‘Ž๐‘๐‘Ž๐‘™๐‘œ๐‘ฃ๐‘’๐‘™๐‘’๐‘ง.๐‘๐‘œ๐‘š, ๐‘œ๐‘Ÿ ๐‘๐‘Ž๐‘™๐‘™ 09175025808 or 09088665786.)

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