Category Archives: Tausug

CRUCIBLE: Whispers of the Guns (2)

QUEZON CITY (MindaNews / 10 April) – Talking in whisper, Garand asked M79: “Who is your master?” The steps of Big Boots were getting nearer. Thump! Thump! Trump! Afraid that Big Boots might hear their conversation, M79 could only manage to do a smirk-like reaction while protruding its lips to his master who was sitting […]

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CRUCIBLE: Whispers of the Guns (2)

QUEZON CITY (MindaNews / 10 April) – Talking in whisper, Garand asked M79: “Who is your master?” The steps of Big Boots were getting nearer. Thump! Thump! Trump! Afraid that Big Boots might hear their conversation, M79 could only manage to do a smirk-like reaction while protruding its lips to his master who was sitting […]

The post CRUCIBLE: Whispers of the Guns (2) appeared first on MindaNews.

CRUCIBLE: Whisper of the Guns

QUEZON CITY (MindaNews / 7 April) – Guns laid bare. No words. No conversation. Nothing. It was the first-time guns failed to hear the noise, the bragging, the laughing of their fellows. Instead, they were on display while banded together, tightly tied in their barrels while completely muzzled by their mouths. They were showcased according […]

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CRUCIBLE: PRRD: “Ka Libog Mo” (3)

QUEZON CITY (MindaNews / 04 April) – The Freudian proclivity of PRRD (President Rodrigo Roa Duterte) is not difficult to decipher. In fact, it is his fading “energy” that Mayor Digong has sorely missed. At 73, he said, his “whistling” capacity has already waned – “hungaw na ang taghoy.” His Tausug audience were brought down […]

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QUEZON CITY (MindaNews / 29 March) — Where lies the kinks? Is PDu30 capable in addressing the problem in Sulu, the most maverick island in the South since colonial and post-colonial days? He seems to have the handle and the right psychology in dealing w/ the Tausug. Why do the Tausug and their leaders love […]

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Pakaradjaan sa ARMM

Tausug women perform the native Pangalay dance during the Sulu Cultural Night presentation on Thursday, 15 Dec. 12016, in Cotabato City. The presentation showcased the colorful and unique culture of the Tausug tribe during the celebration of the 27th Pakaradjaan sa ARMM.   Photo courtesy of  AMIR MAWALLIL    

PIPISAN: Pagpatampal sin Sarayaw-rayaw

QUEZON CITY (MindaNews/14 October) – Malugay-malugay na isab in hambuuk taymanghud niyu ini magsulat-sulat ha pagtawagun “cyber space” di ha website ini. Magkulang-maglabi mga pitu tahun na daing sin kataabbit kakuh sin MindaNews papasulatun di. Muna-muna, unu tah in pagtawagun “cyber space” ha Bahasa Sug? Ma’lum katuh in pagtawag ta ha “newspaper” ha bahasa ta […]

PIPISAN: Pagpatampal sin Sarayaw-rayaw

QUEZON CITY (MindaNews/14 October) – Malugay-malugay na isab in hambuuk taymanghud niyu ini magsulat-sulat ha pagtawagun “cyber space” di ha website ini. Magkulang-maglabi mga pitu tahun na daing sin kataabbit kakuh sin MindaNews papasulatun di. Muna-muna, unu tah in pagtawagun “cyber space” ha Bahasa Sug? Ma’lum katuh in pagtawag ta ha “newspaper” ha bahasa ta […]

Dulang Restaurant

DULANG RESTAURANT: For a tasty Halal Cuisine
1313 M. Adriatico St. cor Padre Faura, Ermita, Manila 

(see map and directions below)
9AM-9PM, Every day except Holidays
Halal foods dulang  manila
Look for this sign board.
(All photos are from, with permissions)

Landline: (02) 666-6549
Mobile: 0926-447-8492
Facebook page: Dulang Restaurant and Catering

Catering: Yes.
Delivery: Yes. Only to certain areas in Manila.
Meat Source: Delivered from a meat shop owned by a Muslim Business man who also does the Zahiba (slaughtering).
Halal Certificate: unmentioned (to be updated by author of this post)
Alcohol: No.


Dulang” refers to the set of foods served to guests during traditional celebrations in the islands of Basilan, Sulu, Tawi-Tawi and Zamboanga Peninsula. Dulang can also mean the golden or silver tray with intricate designs where those foods are served.

Dulang Restaurant started as a catering service in Zamboanga City and now became a Halal restaurant owned by a Muslim family. Their first and main establishment is in Zamboanga City and the Manila Branch in Ermita was officially established in 2013. They serve delicious Tausūg and Malaysian foods at an affordable price. They offer discounted “Budget Meals” which include a cup of rice, one meat viand (choose from chicken or beef) and a vegetable side dish with free soup. The Tiyula’ Itum (black soup), the trademark recipe of the Tausūgs,is their specialty. They also serve by-order Mi-Goreng and other noodles from Malaysia. Their Tausūg Kahawa (native coffee) is also a favourite by most costumers partnering it with hot and tasty Tausūg delicacies like wadjit, apam, tabid-tabid, durul, patulakan, or putli’ mandi.

The place has a welcoming ambiance with chatty servers. People who came from or at least have visited the ZamBaSulTa area would certainly feel at home as most costumers will be speaking in their local dialects.

Dulang is also a few blocks away from Robinsons Manila, Philippine General Hospital and various Travel Agencies in Ermita. A few walk to spend a relaxing afternoon after an exhausting day at work. The only downside with Dulangis their small area, no accessible comfort room and limited parking nearby.

[more photos]

Great for: Casual Meetings (small number), Family gathering, coffee breaks.
Not good for: Studying, the place is noisy with a lot of people coming in and out.
Air-conditioned: Yes.
Music: None.

Price List
Snacks etc

Price (Php)

Bang-Bang Súg (Tausug Pastries and snacks:Putli’ mandi, Wadjit, Pitis, etc.

Pastil (sayul batung)




Kahawa Sug(Native Coffee)


Siopao (Chicken)


Siopao (munggo)


Mi goreng

45.00 per serve

Mi goreng (short order, good for 4 persons)



Budget meals

= 1 cup rice, 1 veggie side dish, 1 meat viand except fish with free tiyula’ itumsoup

Tiyula’ itum for those who don’t know, is the specialty and pride of all Tausugs


(this is my daily menu)


30.00 per serve


40.00 per serve


60.00-100.00 (varies depends on what viand)



Nearest place to:
Robinsons Manila Ermita
Philippine General Hospital (PGH)
Philippine Airlines Center
Citystate Tower

Directions to Dulang:

Robinsons Manila–Padre Fuara Side
Dads Saisake Kamayan (Padre Faura) 
and 7-Eleven Padre Faura cor Adriatico)

1. Ride any Jeepney to Mabini, get down at Del Pilar St. (East West Bank), walk along Padre Fuara St. towards Robinsons Manila until you reach 7-Eleven (P.Faura cor Adriatico). Turn right, the next store after 7-eleven is Dulang Restaurant.

2. Ride Jeepney to Sta. Ana/Padre Faura and get down at Dads Saisake Kamayan. Cross towards the side where 7-Eleven (P.Faura cor Adri). Beside 7-Eleven along Adriatico St. is Dulang Restaurant. 

3. If you have been to the Musallah/Masjid in Mabini (beside Duck Inn). It is right in front of that Musallah.

4.  From Robinsons Manila/PGH: Exit at Padre Faura wing then walk along P.Faura towards left (Roxas Boulevard) about 2-3 blocks until you reach 7-Eleven (P.Faura cor Adri). Beside 7-Eleven along Adriatico St. is Dulang Restaurant. 
What other people say:


Have you tried this place? Tell us what you think. Please fill up this very short form. Click the Halal Manila logo and you will be redirected to an online form.   Shukran!


Dulang (Halal Restaurant): a place to be

Look for this signage 🙂 and you will find Dulang
Craving for Halal and healthy Tausug foods? Are you searching for the best Piyanggang Manuk and Tiyula’ itum in Manila? Are you missing the tasty Bang-Bang Súg like Putli’ Mandi, Juwalan, Pastil, Pitis, patulakan and Wadjit? Have you been longing for the unique taste of Kahawa Súg? Or you are just curious how Tausug Dishes taste like? Then Alhamdulillah, you are in for a great treat! A new halal restaurant here in Manila is finally here to take away all your worries! Haha!
I could consider Dulang: Halal Restaurant as one of those treasure chests that you can rarely find in this vast sea of un-halalness (-_-) here in Manila. For Muslims living here in Manila, looking for a Halal restaurant is indeed a big problem, leave alone the cost, distance from where you are from and of course the taste of the food they serve. And Alhamdulillah, since the Dulang Manila branch opened here last year, it was indeed a great blessing to all Muslims and even non-Muslims with curious tongues.  😀 Dulang serves great and tasty foods, all in a comfortable homey place and at a reasonable price! (PS I am not paid for this free advertisement, I just love this restaurant! Hahaha)
[Dulang, by the way, is a Tausug word for a tray of foods and delicacies served during special occasions as wedding, pagtammat, etc.]
Pastil, Putli’ mandi, Pitis, Patulakan and other Tausug pastries available at P10.00 only
Budget Meal + Kahawa Sug = Yumm! Yumm!
Chicken or Beef? you choose
The All-time favorite: Tiyula’ Itum
Kahawa Sug, another favorite 😉

 What do they serve? And how much?

 The prices of foods served in Dulang ranges from P10 to P100. Here’s a rough list of them:
Snacks etc
Price (Php)
Bang-Bang Súg (Tausug Pastries and snacks):
-Putli’ mandi, Wadjit, Pitis,etc.
Pastil (sayul batung)
Kahawa Sug(Native Coffee)
Siopao (Chicken)
Siopao (munggo)
Mi goreng
45.00 per serve
Mi goreng (short order, good for 4 persons)
Budget meals
= 1 cup rice, 1 veggie side dish, 1 meat viand except fish with free tiyula’ itum soup
Tiyula’ itum for those who don’t know, is the specialty and pride of all Tausugs
(this is my daily menu)
30.00 per serve
40.00 per serve
60.00-100.00 (varies depends on what viand)
Drinks, etc.
you can ask them there 😀 hehe

 What else do they have?

But their specialty is not just in preparing tasty foods, but also in making Dulang Maligays like these: (photo credits to Dulang Resto)


Where can we find Dulang in Manila?

 The complete address of Dulang here in Manila is:  
1313 M. Adriatico Street corner Padre Faura, Ermita, Manila.
Padre Faura
For those coming from outside Manila, you can ride Jeepneys going to Padre Faura and tell the driver to stop at Kashmir Restaurant or Ibarra’s Garden (just a block after Robinsons Manila, see my google map below). From there, you can see Dulangjust beside the 7-Eleven store in Adriatico street.
If riding Jeepneys to Mabini,get down at City State Tower. Walk towards Robinsons Manila (you can ask the street vendors) along Padre Faura. If you see the 7-eleven store, turn right and you will find Dulang Halal Restaurant 🙂
Pedro Gil
If you are riding a jeepney to Pedro Gil, get down at Robinsons Manila (Ermita), enter the mall -_- then exit at Padre Faura “exit” (haha sorry not really good in giving instructions). From there, you can walk towards west or to the left (just going where the boulevard is) until you reach the 7-eleven store in Adriatico street which is a block away from Robinsons. 
If you did not understand any of my instructions above, PM me in facebook or text me. hahaha. I would love to accompany you there in shaa Allah.
Here’s the Map which I hope could somehow help: (from googlemaps with some added labels)

Contact Dulang

Dulang also accepts catering and delivery of foods within the area (Ermita, Malate) and also in Zamboanga City (where the main branch is). Here’s their contact in case you need it:

Landline: 02-666-6549
Mobile: 0926-447-8492
You can also find them at Facebook here: Dulang Restaurant (this is their main FB Page including the first Dulang resto in Zamboanga City)
Or check their photo Albums for their best Menus and other services here

See you in Dulang 😀
Salam kasilasa!

Hinapusan Hagas (His last whisper)

Originally written: September 8, 2013


Hambuuk adlaw awn kami pagtawagun preceptorials ha PGH (Philippine General Hospital). Didtu kami ha Pediatrics Ward, manga bata’-bata násakit in dáhun namu’ magbissara iban chek-upun. Awn da isab kami preceptor atawa mastal duktur da isab maghindu’ kamu sin unu in hinangun.

Pagsuwd na mán pa ward, kasusahan na tuud in dumagpak pa mata mu. Kakitaan mu in taud sin bata’-bata’ násakit: yaun na in nanghuhubag in uw, kiyapapalian, sampay agun ampa pila bulan in ummul sa siyasangunan na oxygen iban IV fluid (dextrose laung sin Tausug). Kiyarihilan man kami pasyente, nagtagna’ na in mastal maghindu’ kámu’. Awn na kaybanan ha mga iban ku in dimá nagbissara iban ina’ sin bata’-bata’, in kaybanan isab dimá naa nagpanayam iban bata’-bata’ bat lumuwt kanila. Sa’ in aku dugaing in kiyajagahan ku.

Ha katan sin manga bata’-bata’ násakit ha ward yadtu, hambuuk kanila in kiya-idlapan ku. Hambuuk bata’-bata’ usug mag-ummulan hatiku manga hangpu’-tagduwa tahun. In kahalan niya gaid sin katilusan mu tuud sin landu’ na “toxic” in baran niya: námiyaning na in baran niya dayng ha bayhu’ sampay pa pád siki niya (jaundice), nanglulunuk na siya ha kukulangan, agun di’ na misan makahibal sin lima niya, di’ na makabulat sin mata niya marayaw. 

Siyasangunan na siya huws madtu mari, in huws-oxygen tumabang magpanapas kaniya yadtu na ha lawm guwng-guwngan niya. Gaid sin mang-luuyluuy tuud in pangatayan mu pagkita’ mu kaniya. Awn duwa tau nagjajaga kaniya, in hambuuk malaas usug nagsusungit kaniya mistang, in hambuuk isab babai magulang-gulang dayng kaniya yaun siyasapu-sapu in lima niya. Day’day’ pa, siminyal in bata’-bata’ pa babai, biya’ awn kabayaan niya hibayta’. Kiyahátihan da isab sin babai yaun hangkan simmuk siya ampa diyu’mul in taynga niya pa simud sin bata’-bata’. Himagas-hagas in abta’-bata’ pa babai. Adakala mabaya’ siya minum, atawa kan iyhi’ siya, yadtu natali’ ku. 

Kiyublit aku sin iban ku, mayta’ kunu’ aku wala na dimungug ha mastal. Nagsubli-subli na sila katan dimungug ha pagnaaps sin bata’-bata’yaun isab pasyente namu taga sakit ha asang (lungs) niya. Nangasubu na in mastal namu’ ha hál isab sin pasyente namu’, dimungug na aku marayaw arakala aku pa in matawag wayruun hikasambung ku.

Day’-day’ pa naghilu-hala’ na halawm ward.

Awn na diyungug namu’ babai imulak dayng ha manga kantil masuuk kámu’: “Kaya mo yan! Wag kang susuko! Kayanin mo!” laung niya agad iban tangis. Awn na dimagan nars pa kantil yadtu, in babai masi nagtatangis hiyawiran na sin usug iban niya. Himundung in mastal namu’, in manga iban ku bata’ iskul iban na sin ina’ sin pasyente namu’ limingi’ na sambil madtu ha piyagpuunan sin paghibuk yadtu, in nars nag-ulimang na sin katan ha masamut; kabistuhan mu sin nag-u-uwsuws siya ha katan hihinang niya. In babai isab yadtu masi-masi in pagtangis iban pag-ulak: “Kaya mo yan! Wag mo kami iwan!” Amp ku kiyakilahan sin siya ra isab tuwi’ in babai hiyagas-hagasan sin bata’-bata jiyagahan ku kaina. In bata’-bata’ yadut amuna in tiyatabang sin nars bihaun.

Hangkaray’ da in limabay dimatung na in duktur nag-uws-uws da isab in panaw, kiyta’ niya in kahalan sin bata’-bata’, ampa siya imulak:


Timindug in báhibu ku ha sumunu’ jimatu. Biya’ sapantun kiyugdan sin malaggu’ aramala, himindung in katan ha tilibut namu’, himibal isab biya’ unus in katan sin nars, duktur iban na mga intern miyadtu katan pa kantil yadtu timabang ha duktur. Awn na duktur babai mabata’ pa in simakat pa kantil ampa timagna sin chest compression (resuscitation). Isa! Duwa! Tuw! Iyaagaran ku itung in pagdupun niya ha daghal sin bata’-bata’ yadtu. In kaybanan nagdayaw sin kantil, awnna nag-ulimang sin kapanyap-panyapan, awn na dimagan nagda’ manga injections iban ubat (di’ ku kaingatan bang unu), awn imuulak “Ambo-Bag pls! We need ambo-bag!” Dagan madtu mari in mga nars, nagsubli-subli isab in mga duktur ha pag-resuscitate. Awn da isab yadtu himahawid ha babai masi-masi in pag-ulak iban pagtangis niya.

Isa! Duwa! Tuw! Upat! Lima! Masi-masi in pagdupun nila ha daghal sin bata’-bata’ yadtu, masi-masi isab in pag-itung ku bang nakapila na. Nakatuw na nagsubli-subli in manga duktur, masi-masi way nakasayu in bata’. 

Wala’ limugay awn na nagda’ tatampan biya’ kurtina madtu bat katabunan di’ kakitaan sin kaybanan pasyente lági’ manga bata’-bata’ in yadtu halawm. Hansipak da in kiyatabunan amun tampal pa manga pasyente iban pa babai timatangis yadtu, in kami wayruun tampan duwal manga duktur nag-uuws-uws maghibal madtu-mari. In kami manga bata’-iskul piyahigad naa bat kami di’ makasimbul. Kiyaidlapan ku pa in lima sin bata’ yadtu kimubbut himibal ha waktu tiyatabang siya sin manga duktur, awn na dugu’ mag-anud ha higad simud niya. 

Isa! Duwa! Tuw! Upat! Didtu na kami ha higad-hiagd timatagad, kiykita’ namu’ yadtu katan. Limugay pila minit masi-masi in pagtabang sin manga duktur kaniya. Ha hikapitu pagsulay nila, wayruun da masi… himundung na in manga duktur ampa nag-declare sin waktu kamatay kaniya, “Time of Death 9:51am”. Inut-inut nagbalik na sila pa tiyap-tiyap lugal nila kaina; in manga nars nagmumus na sin manga panyap; In babai timatangis kaina yadtu na haraig sin bata’ yadtu, masi hiyuhulid in lima niya, nagtatangis ha daghal sin bata’ dimihil hinapusan hagas-hagas kaniya.

Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi rájiun. Ini in First time nakasaksi’ aku pagtawagun “CODE” ha uspital, amun emergency subay mu tabangun in tau hauwt na sin kabuhi’ iban kamatay. Makahanggaw. Makabuga’. Dáhitun kaw sin bug’at sin hinang ini. Liyling ku in manga iban ku bata’-iskul, biya’ da isab sin aku, kabistuhan mu sin ampa sila nakakita’ bihayni pakaradjaan. Namintang kami katán. Bunnal in kami ini mabaya’ mahinang duktur ha supaya makatabang ha tau násakit, bang kagausan mapalugay pa in kabuhi’ sin pasyente hikaruhal kámu’. Sa’ in jimatu kaina nagbulat sin mata namu’ sin in yadtu wayruun gaus namu’. Way gaus namu’ ma’gang sin kahalan pagtawagun kamatay. Misan hisiyu duktur pa saplag na in ingat kapandayan niya, masi-masi tau ra siya: way kawasa, way gaus. Bunnal tuud sin tuput Tuhan da in tag-amulahi sin pakaradjaan ini. Tuput Tuhan da in makapauli’ sin sakit, tuput tuhan da in magbuhi’ iban magkawa’ sin niyawa sin tau. Iban in tiyap-tiyap manusiya gaid sin muwi’ da kaniya.

“Kullu nafsin zaikatul mawt” laung sin Allahu Ta’ala ha Qur’an. “In tiyap-tiyap ginhawa baran makananam da kamatay.”

Minuwi’ kami adlaw yadtu mabu’gat in pangatayan, sa kimusug in panggawgut sin subay tuud kami humati pa marayaw. Ha mammayan mahinang kami sabab hikatabang pa kaibanan in shaa Allah.

Wa billahil tawfik wal hidaya.

Salam Kasilasa,

Anak iluh


Mataud na isab in jimajatu biháun subay dihilan natu’ waktu hátihun. Ha hula’ masi-masi in habal sin pagsaggaw-tau atawa kan pagkidnap. Ha pila adlaw puas sin bulan Ramadhan nagsunud-sunud isab in pagbustak madtu-mari. Timampal da isab in habal sin pagtakaw siyn sin manga tau ha parinta Pilipinas (bunnal way kita lamud kanila, sa’ lapay ra kita sin kakahinang ini). Magsusung da isab in adlaw sin pagbilma’rup sin parinta pilipinas iban sin tumpukan MILF. Ha habal ba’gu yan nagpamahalayak na sin kalimayahan in Maas Nur Misuari iban MNLF ha hula’. Ha hula’ malayu’ isab biya’ sin Egypt dimatung na in waktu pag-atubang sin tau raayat iban sin sundalu sin parinta nila… Di’ aku makarihil pamikilan (opinion) ha tiyap-tiyap habal nasabbut, mataud pa aku masi di’ kahátihan. Sa ha katán sin nasabbut yadtu, hambuuk da in matampal káku’: napulak-kanat in raayat Muslimiyn biháun.
Bunnal awn manga habal marayaw magdatung, sa’ kamatauran labi makasusa. Ha biháun kiykita’ ku in raayat muslimiyn, luba na in manga kabataan, di’ na kayngatan bang hisiyu in agarun. Bang mu agarun in hambuuk mamuklasi kaw ha hambuuk. Gamman na hikaganap sin pagpulak-kanat sin ummat natu’. Bukun ka in patumtum kátu’ sin Tuhan Mahamulliya ha Ayat niya ha Qur’an:
“Wa’tasimuw bihablillahi Jamiaw wa la Tafarrakuw…”
“Gunggung kamu pa lubid (Qur’an) sin Tuhan Allah magsama-sama maghambuuk, iban ayaw kamu mapulak-kanat…” (Surah Al-Imran :103)

Mayta’ di’ kitaniyu makahibal bilang hambuuk ummat? Mayta’ di’ kitaniyu makalawag hambuuk tunggal nakura’? Mayta’ kitaniyu masi-masi napupulak-kanat? Ku’nu baha; dumatung in waktu mahambuuk na kitaniyu katán?

In manga pangasubu ini amsi-masi ha lawm pangatayan ku. Kalu awn baha’ kaniyu makarihil sawa, makajawab kanila?
Salam Kasilasa.
Anak iluh

Ulan Matigda’.

Nagbaha’ ha Taft

Iyabutan na isab kami sin ulan matigda’ diy ha hula’ Manila. Ulan matigda’ agaran sin hangin makusug. Di’ isab mabilang unus in kaybanan, sa sibu’ da in guwa’ niya: Maglakab-baha’ na isab ha kaybanan lugal; masuspend na isab in klas sin kaiskul-iskulan (magkalapay ra sambil kami ha medschool; ampa bukun langug bang masuspend in class pasal kami bata; iskul da in magmula). Di’ magkaubus in hangaka tahun sin wayruun lumabay ulan dakula’ pa hula’ ini. Gaid sin bunnal in bayta’ sin kamáasan sin awn tuud mulka’ ha hula’ ini.

Di’ kapaglangugan in hula’ ini bang dumatung in bagyu agaran pa ulan matigda’ iban paglakab-baha’ ha karán-dánan. Magtrapik na isab. In manga tau sa da lumubung pa baha’ yaun nag-aanud ha supaya maka-untas hadja sin dán. Di’ ra maunu bang malanu’ in tubig yaun nag-aanud, sa’ ná kayngatan tan a, yaun na katan in kalummi’-lummian naglamud-lamud. Sa’ unu isab in mahinang ta? Duwal bang kaw mabaya’ matuwg ha sawm sisilungan. Sa’ da kaw umuntas. (Manghugas mayan marayaw pagdatung pa báy.)
Katumtuman ku bang mag-ulan matigda’ ha Lupa’ Súg paglakaban da isab bihayni. Mag-anud in tubig dayng ha taasan (kagimbahan) sampay pa manga San Raymundo iban Martirez yadtu, di’ na ma karaganan mutul iban sikad-sikad. Sa’ para kaku’ magma pa in ha hula’, di’ lumugay malawa’ da (maray’ diy’ isab ha manga tulay yadtu. Allahu Alam bihaun, kalu narayaw na). Sa’ in tubig baha’ diy ha Manila ini bukun siya “brown” laung sin anggalis, magma biya’ abuhun pa itum madtu. Na di’ tan a kaw suysuyan mayta’.
Nakasulay na aku imuntas sin dán liyalakaban diy ha Manila ini. Wayna aku mahinang, sa’ da umuntas pasal magtitigda’ pa in ulan. Lumugay maglanguy na kami kaagi. Na imuntas na in bagay mu. Di’ tuud manjari in tawmpa’ kum bunnal sa. Sa’ ku diyakdakan nakatuw (haha). Na bihayni na in kahálan sin hula’ ini bang magdatung in bagyu (June pa September).
Limubung na in bata’-bata’ ini ha baha’

Bang mag-ulan matigda’ ha hula’ kalasahan, gamman bayaan aku mamaygu’ ulan. Katumtuman in waktu bata’-bata’ pa sin magdágan-dágan kami iban mga bagay ku, iban kappal-kappal namu’ hiyuhukutan (in kappal-kappal manjari tsinelas, galun-galun, bunut, luluunan miniral, atawa kan dahun malaggu’). Sa’ dayndiy ha Manila? Sulay kaw mamaygu’ ulan, dugayng in tubig niya. Mahaggut ubus bukun, gamman kaw isab kalummian.

Maglulugay aku riy ha hula’ ini, magduruhun in pagtumtum ku pa hula’ ku. Sa’ subay ku ra isab hipatumtum pa baran ku sin yari aku ha hula’ ini, nanuntut ilmu’, bukun pa baran ku sa’ pa hula’ ku kalasahan. Sari na madtu mabutas aku pa manga kalasahan ku ha lawm pila tahun. In shaa Allah dumatung da in waktu makabalik da aku kanila. Ha waktu yadtu bang dumatung na in shaa Allah awn na hikatabang ku. Sári na malumuk mabasa’ sin ulan matigda’. Sári na malubug mabasa’ in tawmpa iban pantalun sin baha’. Sári na mangatul sin lummi’ sin tubig baha’ (hehe). In mga ini lumabay ra. Dumatung da in waktu kabalikan ku in ulan matigda’ ha hula’ ku kalasahan.
Salam Kasilasa.

Memorandum:Carpenter Agreement 1915

The Government of the Philippine Islands Department of Mindanao and Sulu Office of the Governor Zamboanga, P. I. March 22, 1915 Memorandum:— The Governor of the Department of Mindanao and Sulu, Frank W. Carpenter duly authorized by His Excellency, the Governor-General, and the Sultan of Sulu, Hadji Mohammad Jamalul Kiram, together with the other officers […]



Ha lawm lima minit sumulat aku, In shaa Allah… sin unu-unu na in sumuwd pa lawm utuk ku, hisulat, hitayp mari… sari na madtu magkulang-maglabi.

Biháun “kahawa” in mabaya’ ku pagbissarahan. Unu baha’ in awn ha kahawa mayta matagi in manga Bangsa Sug kaniya ini. Bang kaw madtu pa tiyanggi nalibut kaw sin kahawahan. Luba na bang kaw madtu pa kagimbahan, misan wayruun tinda magdaragang dih da malawa’ in kahawa ha kakusinahan sin mga tau. Basta laung niya awn da Tausug duun, awn na hadja Kahawa Sug (Native coffee). 
Mapasu’-pasu’ pa… nag-aasu… huyup-huyupun ampa higupun madtu… aruuu rayang, way na mabisa dayng hadtu… Depende na kaymu bang kaw mabaya’ mapait-pait, atawa maimu’-imu’… atawa kan tublak-tublakan mu pa sin tinapay,.. na! Masarap sayan magkahawa bang mahaba’ in pag-isturihan niyu, sibu’ da kan tau maas atawa manga tambay ha higad dan… basta awn kahawa iban bang-bang sug atawa juwalan, OKs na, wayna paglawag dugaing ha butangan.
Misan bihayni in itum niya, makatagi. Misan bihayni in pasu’ niya, dih kaw sumuhun. Misan kaw hulas-hulas na, humigup da masi. Ampa gumanap hikaruwa, hikatuw basu sin kahawa.
Bang Bangsa Sug da, Kahawa na san in dugu’ nila. 🙂 
Masarap in Kahawa sug, wayruun makasibu’ kaniya.
Biya’ in lima minit natu’ timubtub na… misan mataud pa hika-kissa sad a kita mamaid na… na Ok na mga bagay, sung kitaniyu mangahawa…
Salam kasilasa
-Anak Iluh

In search of the Missing Sulu "Eye-Fall" tower (part 1)


Years back when I was still in High school and studying in one of the Madáris (Madrasah: Islamic Schools) in Jolo, Sulu, there was this peculiar masjid nearby. When our morning classes ends at 11 AM, me and my classmates would go to a nearby kadday (small Tausug restaurants), eat our lunch together then hastily come to this masjid called Masjid Shariful Hashim in Jambatan (Sea Port) to pray Zhuhur. The masjid itself is just a simple building that you see in most masjids in Jolo, no intricate designs outside, with metal roofs and wooden domes (and the usual moon-and-star). A set of wooden stairs lead to the second storey reserved for women who wanted to pray in the masjid. What I meant when I said this masjid is “peculiar” or “odd”, is this octagonal room inside the masjid. 
At first I thought that room was just a separate room designed by the architect of the masjid, or something like a storage room. But what really made me scratch my head is its location and design: that room was located right at the center of the masjid (giving lesser space for people to pray) and it had a totally different design that the rest of the building. It was as if it’s a different building covered by another building. (Yet amidst all of that curiosity, I was still a shy-guy before, so I never asked anybody about this. Afraid that people would just laugh at me and say “c’mon why do you have to bother about these things, Ahmad!”) 
The room had two doorways without doors (yes! No doors). The inner walls are plain, but with some irregular plastering in some places (it’s as if there were windows in this room before, but the people decided to cover it). The walls outside that room (which is still in the masjid) had this staggered brick-like edges that you cannot find in any corner of the masjid. And right at the center of that room is a single yellow, wooden, octagonal post that reaching and even passing through the ceiling. Even though this room was also painted with the same paints as the inner walls of the masjid, its design and its location made it all stand out. But most people did not really bother about it, and so at the end of the day, I decided not to trouble myself about it anymore… 
I never knew then, that there will be another set of questions that will lead me to this same room some years later…
Years later, I found this novel by Ms. Criselda Yabes entitled “Below the Crying Mountain”. The novel revolves around the story of my dear homeland (Jolo, Sulu) before and after the devastating war in 1974 that turned Jolo into ashes. That war was among the important turning points in Sulu’s history (and yes, I was not yet bone-and-flesh then) and so this novel was among those “windows” I have been looking for, to allow me to see how Sulu really looked like in 1970s before the war (I am supposed to write about this book in another blogpost). And Alhamdulillah, that novel by Ms. Yabes never failed my expectations (really, I should write about this!). 
Among those places mentioned in the novel, was the “Eye-Fall tower”: a pun for one of the lighthouses in Jolo wharf that had been malfunctioning for some years and thus the name (and “Eye-fall tower” wittily just sounds like “Eiffel tower”). I tried remembering if I have seen any “lighthouse” in that wharf when I was little, but I cannot remember anything that resembles the descriptions in the novel. Does it still exist after that devastating war?
And thus begun my search for the missing “Eye-Fall Tower” of Jolo…
==Watch out for the 2nd part of this post: “Sulu Hidden History: The remnants of the Sulu Parula”==

The use of the term “Eye-Fall Tower” was not coined by Anak Iluh (the author of this post) in this blog. It was first mentioned in the novel “Below the crying mountain” by Ms. Criselda Yabes and thus the author reserves the sole ownership of the term. (Don’t get me wrong guys, I know how it feels to get “robbed online” 🙂 

Bangsa Sūg Bunut Basa’

Hi Yazir Rajim
Timagna’ hakasangput sin akkal ha dunya, mahumu namu’ pagkadungugan in kabtangan “Bunut Basa'” ha higung hagas sin kalawlahasiyaan. Pangannal namu’ in pagiyanun Bunut Basa’ amun bunut nabasa’ sin tubig atawa dagat. Adapun in yadtu sipat hadja  pa manga sila kubulan atawa di’ pagukun. Sabab in bunut nabasa’ di’ dukutan sin kayu.

Ha dunya sin Bangsa Sūg ha kagimbahan iban ha parian apabila in anak usug sumangput na in pamikil magtuy sin maas lawagan hambuuk tau pantuk kapagguruhan sin anak. In bihaini nahinang na hambuuk adat labi awla in manga tau ha kagimbahan. Bukun in daut nila dumawhat sin ilmu’ ha supaya di’ mapatay, adapun ha supaya sila di’ mabinsana’ ha waktu maawn in paggirit pais atawa unu-unu na musiba in dumatung.

Bukun pulna’ tubu’ Sūg bang di’ makahati sin hal bihaini atawakan way nakabawgbug misan dakuman salawat laung sin manga sila.

Ha  masa namu’ naguki’ sin parakala’ bihaini. Landu’ kami nainu-inu bang unu hangkan di’ kaunun sin mahait in pais sin hambuuk tau kubulan. Malaingkan bang ta utuk-utukun in pais sin manusiya’ landu’ in guya’. Ayaw paka punglu’ na misan hat lahut in hipanglattuk magtuy ra mabiya’ taguk saying in pais.

Ha hakikat niya, mataud da isab ginisan pakayan sin kubulan. Bukun  in katan kubulan sibu’ in diyara nila taming sin ginhawa. Awn daing kanila magusal manik, papakan, pis siyulatan iban sin kaibanan. In pagpakay ha ini awn hipagkambut ha hawakan, hipagpis ha u iban pagsu’lugun.

Adapun awn da isab hangkajinis amun pagtagun nila “Luun Baran”. In luun baran bukun amun lungun-lungun atawakan panyap ha laum baran. In kamaksuran ha ini manunjuki pa ilmu’ pagsugsugun – ilmu’ sihir atawa bukun.

In ilmu’ sihir pagtagun sin sila, ilmu’ pagdunya. Ha kabiyaksahan in sasabbutan niya daing ha bahasa jinn naglamud iban bahasa sin manusiya’. In pakayan ini bang di’ da makadugtul pa tau maingat magpaig sihir, awn dayaw niya. Sagawa’ bang kasukangan utabun da sin mahait.

In bawgbug amun sarayaw-rayaw piyapakay sin manga hulubalang Bangsa Sūg ha jaman nakauna iban bihaun amuna in ilmu’ puti’ atawa ilmu’ kiyawa’ daing ha bitikan sin Ilmu’ Tawhid, Tasawwuf, iban Usuluddin. In kamawmuhan nagpapakay ha ini amun manga sila Arif Billah (Pantuk magTuhan) iban manga maas-maas amun di’ misan makatu’lid magbassa Qur’an.

Laung sin manga sila pantuk bang in pagma’rifat di’ na maglipay duun hakawayi salta’ siyusussi in ginhawa daing ha katan kaharam-haraman tantuha wayruun na makabinasa. Sabab in apasun sin malummi’ ha ginhawa’ amura in malummi’. Bang in kaawnan sin ginhawa sussi ayaw paka mahait misan in bukun mahait (biya’ na sin iku, jangki) di’ da tumubu’.

Sakali in jawab niya ha pangasubu sin kami nakauna, amura tuwi’ tubus pagYakin in di’ hikabinsana’ ha manusiya’ nagdara bawgbug. Misan pa in kaawnan sin hambuuk tau in piyagdayaw niya pis atawa papakan, ha tatkala’ in yakin niya in yaun sabab hadja sin di’ hikaunu kaniya awn waktu mahinang taming marayaw.

In kamawmuhan sin manik, papakan, atawa pis iyaabayan sin bangsa jinn atawa mahluk di’ pagkakitaan.  In pagtag sin abay bang ha bahasa Arab “khadam”. Bang in khadam sin hambuuk manik, papakan atawa pis bukun syaitan, marayaw yadtu hinangun taming baran. In makabuga’ hadja magusal sin bihaini apabila limi’das in i’tikad daing ha Tuhan.

Tungud pa pis siyusulatan ha kabiyaksahan in hipagsulat kawaun daing ha kitab Tajul Muluk iban sin kaibanan kitab sin kamaasan nakauna.  In karayaw sin  hambuuk Pis bukun amun sulat kiyadukut sagawa’ duun nakabutang hakapantuk sin nagsulat kaniya. In pis marayaw amun biyaktul sin manga sila Arif Billah. Karna’ ha hinapusan sin paghinang pis awn didtu mukarna’ hipamaggut amun misan pila tahun tumatas in dayaw.

Biya’ na sin hambuuk bata’-bata’ kiyasuy magdaragang juwalan. Ha waktu minuwi’ hukum in apu’ niya iyan siya; ‘isukan laung na apu’ ha laum sin atay mu in kabtangan ku ini’, in katan sin magtangkud ha dunya Tuhan in magpahibal kanila. Ubus man siya hiyagas-hagasan ampa kiyambut kaniya in hambuuk sulat di’ niya misan kaingatan bassahun in luun. Duun na jimatu in makainu-inu ha waktu in bata’ nagpagunting. Hiyapus in maggugunting naggiyl sin gunting niya di’ ukun in buhuk sin bata’. Ha hinapusan niya pagsanaw sin maggugunting kiyasanawan in kambut niya. Piyabassa mayan sin maggugunting yadtu ha maingat magbassa sulat, in nakadukut ha laum, “In aku magdaragang Juwalan”.

Tanug in Bangsa Sūg pa dunya sin bihaini kahalan. Adapun in katan Tuhan da in magpajatu iban sin magtataming hisiyu-siyu in kabayaan Niya. Bang bukun ha sabab sin manga sila bunut basa’ hapagbunuan nakauna tantu malugay na in tau ha Kapūan Sūg diyaug hapagbunuan.

Ha hambuuk masa magdaratung datung, tumaud da in Tubu’ Sūg magupiksa’ sin baran nila lahil iban batin. Karna’ in daraugan sin bangsa iban kalimayahan sin hula’ subay madawhat bukun hadja ha adlaw dunya subay sambil pa ahirat. Mura-murahan matibuuk in manga sila kubulan magpalindug sin bangsa, hula’ iban agama.

Kaba’-kaba’ puti’

Natalus siyulat sin November 21, 2012
Kaba’-kaba’ puti’
Scientific name: Pieris rapae
(Ha wikipedia ku na kiyawa bat wayruun agutan hehe)
Awn ini kissa sung ku hitarasul. Sa’ sung ku mayan hisulat hibaktul, kiyahunitan aku manglawag kabtangan mabuntul. Kanda sa’ ku na hadja ini hisulat. Hisuysuy da kumán ha sasaat. Sari na misan sawsángat, salugay awn da isab makadawhat. Ha Mammayan hikalamud panumtuman, pa katán sin bakas na liyabayan. (Bang sawpama way niyu pa kiyabistuhan, in katan ini tiyuud siyulayan piyagkugdan-kugdan. 🙂
Hambuuk adlaw in aku namanawan, ha Pedro Gil street pag-ngánan. Piyasaran in baran nanglunsulan, misan harap pakain pa in abutan (salugay kabatukan da isab in dán balikan). Ha taud sin tau adlaw yadtu, tudju nila mari iban madtu. Di’ kaw makatuput ha lalabayan, biyariin pa bang ha sasakatan. In hibuk sin Manila’ makabisu na, in katan sin tambutsu nag-asu na; in tiyap-tiyap manusiya awn pag-uws-uwsan niya, duwal batu in di’ mag-iyg ha biyutangan niya. 
Sakali ha taud sin kahilu-halaan yadtu, awn hambuuk kaba’-kaba’ kiyta’ ku. Naglulupad iban pikpik niya asibi’, in walna’ niya anduw’ puti’-puti’. Na in aku isab ini nainu-inu, aykaw “dayng hain siya?” in pangasubu. Pasal tantu hambuuk puti’ kaba’-kaba’, ha hula’ ini máhang kaw makakita’. Hangkan isab in aku imapas, pakain in luparun niya hiuntas. Kalu ha ruhul sin dán ku kakitaan, in sumping pugad niya piyaghuhulaan.
Kimabad-kabad siya, limupad-lupad. Timaas, miyaba’ ampa limiyad-liyad. Atas ku timangkis ha manga tau ampa imuntas. Kabugaan in siya malawa’, ha pangatud ku mabutas. Sa’ in taud isab sin tau adlaw yadtu. In katán sila harap mari, in aku harap madtu. Aykaw ha taud nila, maray’ isa-isa ku ra háti’, in nakakita’ ha kaba’-kaba’ yadtu, kaba’-kaba’ puti’. 
Aha! Tagha’ awn limabay sasakatan dakula’. Tarak malaggu’, nagdará batu iban lupa’. In dágan di’ kahawiran landu’ in biskay. Anduw’ in kaba’-kaba’ ku yadtu, way rapat nasapsay. In aku landu’ isab nasusa, nagday’-day’ pa higad dán, kalu abutan ku pa. Sari na in sumping yadtu di’ na kakitaan; misan pikpik niya ra kuman in kasaksian. Pag-abut ku madtu hapus napas na. Puas limingi’ pa tuu, ampa isab limingi’ pa lawa. Misan lambung ikug niya wayna. Anduw’ in bagay ku yadtu, maray’ na hit-and-run na.  
Mahi baha’ awn waktu in bihayni magjatu? Awn na kabaakan mu, kakitaan mu maamu; sakali bang apasun gammán lumayu’ pa; bang sung na abutan, ampa na isab malawa’ pa. Adlaw yadtu namintangan sa aku, ha tiyap-tiyap adlaw tumagad da aku. Kalu baha’ kunsuwm ku’nisa kakitaan ku ra, in kaba’-kaba’ puti’ iban paglupad-lupad niya.
Salam iban kasilasa!

Suysuy ha pag-iskul

Ha laum sin Classroom namu: BSLR-East

Waypa aku nakatagna’ magstory about sin kabuhi’ ku bihaun (buhi’ pa isab kita, hehe). Dih ku na maraih ini katagnaan bang daing hain nagtagna’ in class namuh, sa unu bang unu na in yari bihaun, sulayan ta hisuysuy. Kalu awn makawa’ ta misan maniyu’-tiyu’ pangadjian (naks).
Kahapun, Alhamdulillah ampa naubus in 2nd exam namu’ ha OS205 (Thorax), amuna in Cardiac Physiology. Unu ta’ ini?
In piyaghindu’ kamu’ indaginis-barapa ha pasalan sin jantung (heart) sin tau. Malingkat tuud, mataud aku kiyaingatan bahgu pangadji’an. Ha laum sin duwang ka pitu limabay, hinduan kami ha mga topic: Cardiovascular Physiology (bang biyariin magpump in jantung natu’) iban unu-unu na in kumugdan related ha Cardiovascular System atawa CVS. Daing ha topic Cardiac Cycle (unu na mayan in magjatu ha tiyap-tiyap “tibok ng puso”; pila in taud sin dugu’ mag-guwa), Hemodynamics (pagdagan sin dugu’ daing ha jantung pa baran, sambil magbalik); sambil pa Clinical aspects sin CVS biya’ sin Electrophysiology (ECG, amun daran pagkakitaan ha mga hospital; biyariin pagbassa kaniya) sambil mga X-Ray (Cardiac radiology) iban mga kasakit-sakitan sibu da ha hambuuk pasyente (Cardiac Diagnostics) sambil pa mga kawman (CVS Epidemiology). 
Hambuuk ha mga preceptorials namu’ 
Ha laum sin 2 weeks yadtu, tiyagnaan na kami sambil hinduan sin mga mastal namu’ bang biyariin in pagconduct Physical Examination (CVS History taking and PE); bang biyariin in pagkawa-Blood Presure (BP; bukun tuwih maluhay bang first time mu hehe). Hinduan da isab kami ha Procedures in Chest PE (Palpation, Percussion and Auscultation: amun pag-usal sin stethoscope ha daghal sin patient; feeling namu Doctor na kami katan hehe) iban dugaing-dugaing pa mga kapanyapan pag-usalun ha pag-check up sin CVS. Huun, enjoy tuud mag-iskul bang kaw mabaya’ tuud umingat. In masakit hadja ha pag-iskul ha Medicine, bang dumatung na in Exams…

Bihaini in taud sin hipag-exam namu’. every week.
Bang ku itungun katan, marai’ hika 13 atawa 14 exam na ini (grabe in taud, agun tiyap-tiyap hangkapitu awn kami exam =( pagubus mahunit pa katan. Bunnal, wayruun maluhay ha mga exams bang kaw nag-iskul na ha Medicine. Bukun nakapila na kami naka-experience amun mangasubu ha baran mu: “Kaya ku pa baha’ tuud ini?” (haha, way aku nagdrama mga taymanghud, asal normal na kunu’ in bihayni). Muna masusa bahasa pasal kiyahunitan na tuud; pag-ubus dai’-dai’ da yaun, Ok na isab. Hehe.
Daipara, magsukul aku mataud da isab mga taymanghud yari ha Manila amun masi-masi magpatumtum kaku’. Muna-muna na in mga taymanghud ku ha UP AMS (UP Association of Muslim Students), in mga bagay ku ha CIPYML.

Left side: UP AMS Med students  (future doctors inshaAllah), Ate Furqaan Lim, Ate Hanna Marohom, and me.
Right Side: Muslim Doctors from PGH (UPCM Alumni), Dr. Bainary Macaurog, Dr. Angie Dugasan, adn Dr. Al-Radjid Jamiri

Awn waktu pagkalupahan ku laung sin mataud pa sabab mayta’ subay masi-masi aku di’ pagkalawaan “hope”. Subay ku tumtumun hi Inah ku yadtu ha hula’ iban mga taymanghud ku, nagtutuyu’ ha mammayan maka-iskul kami marayaw. Subay ku tumtumun in katan sin liyabayan ku, sambil nakasud aku ha iskul ini Alhamdulillah. Subay ku tumtumun in mga bangsa ku ha hula’ naglalagi tabang, wayruun misan hipag-paubat ha baran nila. Subay ku tumtumun mayta’ aku yari. Wayruun na aku hikasabab mayta’ aku di’ mag-iskul, magtuyu’ marayaw. (Nah. Ha hal yan, maraih subay magbalik na aku magbassa sin notes ku haha; nakonsyensya na in bhoy.)

Kiyarihilan in bhoy chance magpatta iban steth. hehe feeling doctor, misan magkawa B, dih pa maingat.

Bunnal Mahunit magDoktor. Sa bang kaw taptap in pangindu’a pa Tuhan iban pangayu tabang kaniya, tantu paluhayun niya in katan, in shaa Allah! 🙂

Daindiy ku naa tubtuban in suysuy, kalu kaganapan da ha susungun inshaAllah.
(Bisita man kamu pa hambuuk site ku: Tausug 101)

Salam Kasilasa!
-Anak Iluh

Wayruun mahunit bang mu paglugtuan

Malugay na aku wayruun nakasulat diy ha blog ini. Ha laum sin pila bulan limabay daing ha kasuwd aku pa UP College of Medicine, agun nagsunud-sunud na in mga hinang madtu-mariy. Kahaba’ hangka pitu awn kami exams. Kansa misan biyariin in baya ku magpost, agun kahunitan na aku manglawag time misan da kuman mag-update sin blog ku laung kailu. Higanap mu pa in pag-iyanun “Adaptation Stage” ku ha hula’ ini landuh in layu’ pa hula’ ku kalasahan; bukun hat ha layu’ niya ha hal pag-untasun (distance), sa’ sambil na ha layu’ sin piyagbiddaan sin tilibutan ku atawa ka “environment”. Bunnal niya, kiyahunitan tuud aku.
Sa’ laung sin hambuuk taymanghud nagpatumtum kaku’:

“Wayruun tau piyag-anak maingat na asal manaw.” 

Ay ma’na, wayruun maluhay ha katan sin hinang kabayaan mu, miyumuhut-muhut mu abutan. Subay in katan ini labayan panandas iban hunit; iban subay tuud paglugtuan iban pagsabaran. 
Alhamdulillah, magsukul aku pa Tuhan Rabbul ‘Aalamiyn ha katan sin ni’mat iban sahaya diyhil niya kamu’. Magsukul aku Kaniya, pasal misan biyariin in taud sin panandas limabay kaku ha lugay ku diy ha Manila, masi-masi awn mga taymanghud yan ha raig ku: magpatumtum kakuh sin unu in kalagihan ku hinangun, sin unu hangkan mayta aku yari, sin subay dih tuud aku magparaug ha tiyap-tiyap “challenges” dumatung kakuh. In shaa Allah in katan ini subay labayan paglugtu-an iban pagsabar.
Magsukul aku pa Allah, diyhilan niya aku Ahli marayaw. Dihilan niya aku maumaas makasi iban matuyu’ mag-ipat kamu iban nagpabuntul kamu pa ran marayaw. Magsukul aku ha katan sin tau, kiyakilahan ku iban nagdihil kaku’ “inspiration” ha supaya masi-masi tumindug. Magsukul aku ha katan sin ilmu’ pangadji, ha pangaddatan iban pangatayan marayaw diyuhal Niya kamu, Alhamdulillah.
In shaa Allah, masi-masi aku maglugtu’ magtuyu’ karna’ Allah ha pag-iskul, ha mammayan awn mahati ku, awn maingat ku amun mausal ku ha susungun pa kawman ku; pa ahli ku; pa ummat ku.
Salam Kasilasa.

Bongao: Beauty and Beyond

Just about few days ago, I (tadaaa!) celebrated my nth birthday! It came to me just now, that prolly one of the reasons of why I so desire to brand myself as the Sulu Gypsy is that, toot years ago..(fasten your seat belt).. I was pushed out from my mother’s womb in a hut above the water with planks of wood for a floor and a series of poor sheets in between. Ouch. And that, way before I could react to peek-a-boos, I was departed from my beloved birthplace, Bongao. I was barely a year old then when I innocently took my first travel. And so I gone from a stilt hut crawler to an all grown up city girl! One of the islands in Sulu Archipelago, southwestern tip of now Republic of the Philippines.; too small to even pin it as your next destination on your travel map. Yet this pretty little body of land is the famed back door to neighboring Malaysia and Indonesia. One would feel more like a Malaysian than a Filipino when one sets foot down there, I swear. Aside from the basic commodities swarming around bearing Malaysia brands like sugar, cooking oils, coffee, noodles etc, the people, the various dialects, traditions and customs, cuisine and the get-ups are way more Malay-ish. I am in no way demeaning Bongao’s original locals, the Sama cultural group, who have continuously thrived and are a vital contributor to the island’s rich culture, the comings and goings of various influences notwithstanding. A melting pot as they say, of diverse societies living harmoniously having resulted to Bongao’s fast progressing economy. And to that, allow me take you on a virtual tour of my mystic birthplace, Bongao. GET IN: There are two options that I know of. One is by plane with flights to/from Zamboanga City and Bongao four times a week via Cebu Pacific Air and Airphil Express. Or by boat, usually of those from Aleson Shipping Lines (updates coming soon, bear with me). Anyone who sails to Bongao instead of taking a plane takes a peek or, in my case, tirelessly savors the view of Bud Bongao as the ship approaches the pier. The feeling is always the same; it had passed my sight for nth times already but everytime, everytime, impatience challenges my swimming skill (or the lack of it). See the irony? Born in Bongao but doesn’t know how to swim. For if only my dabbing would move me, I definitely would jump into the water and swim my way home instead.   This scenery in approaching the island would only mean that you have been naughtyfied to venture the islands nearby (which is what I’m ubeeeer dying to do, spelling PANAMPANGAN!). This is where smaller ships dock which cater to local passengers and traders alike coming in and out, to and from as far as Turtle Islands or Sabah, Malaysia? The famous mode of transportation in GETTING AROUND around Bongao is by tricycle with 10p per person within 5 kilometers radius. Don’t worry, most of the spotted accommodations are in the town proper or if not, they’re just within the parameter. Taking a trike from Sanga-sanga Airport though is a different story for you have to negotiate first with the driver before hopping in. Ignore those charges beyond P100. And now the MUST SEES! Oh I would best recommend to acclimatize your eyes to this sight. Position yourself anywhere parallel to this street and you would be surprised to see how locals spend a few seconds or so of sharing pleasantries to almost everyone they meet along the way. Bongao is too small, so everyone here is a star. Get yourself a bowl of pastil, junay and a hard boiled egg in one of those kadday and once you have forgotten your name already, you are then set to explore more. Can’t get jiggy enough? In Bongao there’s no need to rush. Almost all the places designed to pique your interest are merely walkable. You’ll just have to make sure that you have exemplary foot work as you’ll be practically dancing with pedestrians and vehicles alike. Used clothes, branded shoeseses, signature bags, oh my, almost everything and anything under the sun! It is as if I am transformed into a devotee of ukay-ukay that a visit to Bongao wouldn’t be complete if I wouldn’t plunge into those piles of stuff. If you’re not fond of it, or the smell of it, barter goods and cultural pieces can also be spotted here. And um, did I mention about the chance of bumping into a local selling cheap turtle eggs? Hush. Forget it. Anyways, one of the favorite past times of teenagers is to stroll the circuit of Bud Bongao. Stopping over at Sanga-Sanga bridge, get a dose of sunset, some dive, some swim, some drink while some collect sea urchin […]

Tausug Story-Telling (Kata-Kata)

Tausug story-telling, well-known as Kata-Kata, is one of the things I miss about hometown. I used to listen to this on the radio ever Saturday and Sunday nights. The famous story-teller that time was named as Apuh-Apuh (grandpa). I wonder if he still d…


Neldy Jolo

This is the letter of a Tausug Nursing student expressing her sentiment to the president of the Republic of the Philippines, P-Noy. She has a good write. She is a young talented girl that understands and experience the chaotic condition of the people around her, whom she belong – the Tausug. This Tausug young generation is aware of what is happening – the history, culture and the real identity that she is part. This was sent to the President this month.

This letter writing was their requirement. The instructor required his student to write a letter to the president according to the issues they wanted to bring. He started requiring student since the time of Marcos.  

Her instructor commented:

“…The entire content deserves to be fully respected. And I think I am not in a position to edit your ideas as presented…What is most important is the substance which I think should be answered by the Office. Hope the President will really consider those points in your letter. Anyway, let me know whatever would be the response.”

The letter runs this way:

August 23, 2011

Benigno Simeon Cojuangco Aquino III
President Republic of the Philippines

Malacañang Palace

Compound J. P. Laurel St., San Miguel

Manila City

 Dear Mr. President:

 Good morning your Excellency. My name is CUJ, 18 years of age, an ordinary student of Western Mindanao State University-Zamboanga City. I am writing to ask for your support and help for the TAUSUG people living in Sulu. I am a Tausug. And I cannot afford to see the situation of my land like this.

Let us be frank and practical to solve our respective problems. Filipino is for Filipino, Tausug is for Tausug.

Sulu people or Tausug have been put as one of the tribes of the Philippines, hence they are now called Filipino per legal document of the Republic of the Philippines. The word Filipino was coined during the invasion of the Spanish to group of Islands that were known as Luzon, Visayas, Mindanao and Sulu Archipelago.
The known “FILIPINO” was address to the Christianized people of Luzon and Visayas which were known as INDIOS – natives of the islands. Mindanao and Sulu Archipelago people were called MORO by Spanish before their religion – ISLAM. The real identity of the Sulu People is called Tausug, thus made them distinguished from FILIPINO and Tausug were never Christianized as Indios do. Tausug already exists before Spanish set foot to the Sulu Archipelago in 1578. They have their own government and system, the Sultanate of Sulu that was established in 1405 led by Ahlul Bait, Sultan Syariful Hashim Sayyid Abubakar.

 The inclusion was started after the “mock battle” between America and Spain then signed the Treaty of Peace in Paris, France in 20 December 1898, known today as Treaty Paris. Through this treaty that Sultanate of Sulu was included as part of the Philippine Islands. After around nine months, America and Sulu signed treaty called Bates Treaty in 20 August 1899.


Sultanate of Sulu started forcibly became part of the Republic of the Philippines when the United States of America gave independence to the Philippine Islands (that is Luzon and Visayas only) in 1946, without the consent of the citizens or people of Sulu, the TAUSUG.

 Present Endeavour


After four decades of movement for independence in Mindanao and Sulu brought about by MNLF for Bangsamoro Republik of which ended to “autonomy” and now MILF is on the table bargaining the “sub-state” for Bangsamoro Homeland that is previously also wanting independence.


Every human heart in Mindanao and Sulu is now put in vain and frustrations with the directional changed of these two big fronts from independence to something else – autonomy and sub-state. Since Tausug has separate history and government from Mindanao, they moved to reassert their independence last 17 November 2010 by bringing the issue of citizenship and sovereignty rights aside from religious right as Muslim.

That is because sovereignty is permanent and perpetual and citizenship or nationality movement is one of the peaceful or the alternative movement other that armed movement. It is according to the legal rights and basic human rights – as mention in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights – The Rights to Nationality. 

Tausug still owns the de jure government (sovereign government) and right now running their de facto government (government of the fact) even though Philippine de facto government is still in the playing in the Sulu Archipelago.

Tausug, the citizens of the Sultanate of Sulu have been struggling for years of their right of self-determination. They have then defended their island country of Southeast Asia from the Spaniards, Americans, Japanese and right now the Filipinos who have tried to colonize and subdue the Sultanate of Sulu – UNCONQUERED!

In this, I am asking the Philippine de facto government to withdraw from the territory of the de jure Sultanate of Sulu government thus FILIPINO IS NOT TAUSUG!

 With this I am glad to hear a positive response from you Mr. President. 



p.s: pls pull AFP out from Sulu. Plentiful of PNP-SAF were already visible in our place.


CUJ – Student Nurse.


Neldy Jolo
The question on Spratly Islands between China and the Philippines are right now the in the world’s circulation. The two governments are defending to each other of their own claims. But the real holder of the islands is silent?

Darwin T. Wee of Business World Online wrote recently, a team from Sulu archipelago was invited by Chinese government via Philippine government to design museum in the Royal Tomb of Sulu of Sultan, Sultan Paduka Batara, who died in Dezhou City, Shandong Province in 1417.

Sultan Paduka Batara is said to be Sultan Kamaluddin Ibni Sultan Syariful Hashim Sayyid Abubakar, the second Sultan of Sulu Sultanate Darul Islam.

Darwin Wee wrote, “The Chinese government has proclaimed the tomb under the state’s protection in January 1988 for its valuable and symbolic recognition of the friendship between…China.”

Mr. Loong said the Chinese government recognized that “there is a sultanate blood among Chinese people.” “There is one sultan who died in China that is to prove that during that time, China and the Sulu Sultanate are already in a diplomatic relationship in term of recognition of the sovereign authority of the Sulu Sultanate,” Darwin Wee wrote.

The only international renowned Tausug Visual Artist, Rameeta (Rameer Tawasil), who just had back from his exhibition trip to Sweden and other European countries would be the one to design the museum – “design that emphasize on the Sulu Culture” Rameeta said, quoted by Darwin Wee.

Rameeta’s state of craftsmanship is beyond the art itself, thus honouring him as Sulu National Artist is not enough – indeed he is the modern art hero of the Tausug as well as the Sulu Sultanate Darul Islam.  

Rameeta, a Tausug Singing-Painter rendered a song at a certain resto in Zamboanga City. He would be the one to go to China to design the Museum for Sulu Sultanate there..
This is again to carry back the glory of the Sulu Sultanate as the haven of pearls and as the island country back then, as had been known as such in the early century. American journalist John F. Bass wrote in the Harper’s Weekly, 18 November 1899:
”The Sulu Archipelago seems to have become the dumping ground for the Oriental world. Here you find renegade Arabs; native Indian soldiers, for whom India has become too hot; even the Sudan, bad as it is, occasionally has a man so bad, he has to drift to Sulu. Like a Western mining camp of old, Sulu is full of adventure.” Chinese may have been present here at that time.

15 January 2010, News Strait Times, Malaysia published the article of Prof. Datuk Dr. Shaharil Talib, of the University Malaya commenting about Tausug:

“It was the Tausugs who were the undisputed mariners of the Sulu Sea whose seat of power was on the island of Maimbung on the Sulu Archipelago, the Tausugs blocked…the south from access into the Sulu Sea and into the Eastern Sea following the Palawan Passage, the main artery leading to the China market”. 

This is true that Sulu and China diplomatic and trade ties back then when Darwin Wee quoting Habib Tupay Loong, the trip to China today is the “sign of recognition of the sovereign power of the Sultanate (of Sulu) in the past and want to preserve it…Chinese culture has been embedded in Tausug’s customs particularly in trade.

In reference to the ownership of Spratly Island, Christopher Johnson wrote that Chinese official was saying that according to the Tausug forefathers, the Tausug great-great-grandfathers had already given the Spratly Island as a gift to the Chinese emperor. But the Chinese government cannot any more claim it through words because it is not accepted by the international community.

If the Tausug government, the Sulu Sultanate Darul Islam can certify that truly Tausug great-grandfather had already given that island and will sign the certification the Chinese government is committed to help the Tausug.

Subanun Prof Emmanuel Mangubat in his series of articles at Zamboanga Peninsula Journal in 2008, Zambaonga City usually argued, “Sulu Sultanate was established in the 14th century when Republic of the Philippines did not yet exist. So who owns Spratly if not Sulu Sultanate?”

For the interest of peace and harmony, the circumstance like this must not be taken for granted. Chinese and Tausug government shall take the opportunity to talk further on the matter before anything else.

Somehow this would be for the good of the region – retrospect to the area of “Sulu Zone” as peaceful and harmonious international trading zone – beyond racial boundaries. Tausug even has the own name to the Chinese. They called the Chinese, Lannang and China called Turisina.

The Tausug is hoping that through the courtesy of Chinese to build a museum of Sulu Sultanate somehow would resort to the reestablishment of the diplomatic and trade ties between them.

Eventually China will formally recognize the Sultanate of Sulu Darul Islam’s independence reasserted and declared last 17 November 2010 at Jolo City, the state capital of Sulu Sultanate Darul Islam with Paduka Batara Mahasari Maulana Al-Sultan Bantilan Muhammad Muizzuddin II.

The date of the reassertion was synchronised with the Sulu Sultanate establishment on 17 November 1405. And enthroned Sayyid Abubakar as the first Sultan and called him Paduka Mahasari Maulana Al-Sultan Syarif Al-Hashim.