Joseph Casibual (PhD) is an Assistant Professor at Western Mindanao State University- Philippines, where he teaches language, literature, and research-related courses. His field of specialization includes linguistics and literature, with most of his research focusing on gender, folklore, cultural studies, and applied linguistics. He has presented at local and international research conferences and has several publications under his name. He just finished a PhD in Literary Studies with a dissertation focused on queer studies, counter-narratives and their phenomenology. E-mail: joseph.casibual@wmsu.edu.ph


(Re)Affirming Ecological Dependence: Evidence from the Alternative Healing Narratives of Sibugaynon Folk Healers

Abstract: This paper aims to shed light on the continuous persistence of traditional healing practices in the age of modernism. It examines narratives that re/affirm the ecological dependence of local people in the Philippines, in spite of medical modernity and the discouragement of using traditional practices. The paper focuses on the collected narratives of three renowned folk healers of the community who have been practicing for a long time. It is based on indigenous methodology, pakikipagkuwentuhan, as described by Orteza (1997), which banks on using narratives as texts in framing ecological dependence among Sibugaynon folk healers. Employing narrative and thematic analysis, the study shows that the folk healers make use of elements from nature like ginger, lana (potion from reduced coconut oil), and salt. These elements are rhetorically present in their titles, as mangluy-ahay (ginger), manghilotay (potion), and mangasinay (salt). The healers largely depended on these natural resources as the main ingredient in the formulation of a medicine that is believed to cure certain illnesses and diseases. Owing to its topography, Sibugay has made these resources accessible, thus reaffirming the ecological dependence of these healers on their respective local resources, as they provide affordable and traditional therapeutic options to the Sibugaynon people.
Keywords: narratives, folk healers, ecological dependence, narratology, Sibugaynon