By Joel Avila Jr.
Who were the first people to live in the
Where did they come from?
What happen to them?
These questions on the past cannot
fully be answered even by the best scientist
who studied about our early ancestors.
The best explanations we have about
our distant past come from three (3) main
(1) The story of God’s creation in the Bible
(2) The story of evolution made by human
(3) Legends and fairytales made up by
A. The Biblical Story
All men and women originated from the first man
(Adam) and the first woman (Eve).
“From these the maritime peoples spread out into
their territory by their clans within their nations,
each with its own language.”
Fr. Francisco Colin – a Jesuit historian, wrote
that the first settler of our country was Tharsis
together with his brothers and their descendants.
Scientist do not believe in the story of creation
in the Holy Bible instead, they have invented the
theory of “evolution” or the story of how the first man
came from apelike creatures who walked the face of
the earth thousands of years ago.
B. The Theory of Evolution
It is a belief that man came from apelike
creatures who lived thousands of years
ago in caves and have very crude tools.
1. Waves of Migration
They believed that the early Filipinos
came from “waves of migration” – Negritos,
Indonesians, and Malays – who peopled
these island thousands years ago.
A. THE NEGRITOS
- THE FIRST PEOPLE CAME TO THE
- THEY WERE ALSO CALLED ATIS OR
- THEY CAME ACROSS LAND
BRIDGES FROM MAINLAND ASIA
ABOUT 25,000 YEARS AGO.
- THEY WERE VERY SMALL PEOPLE
AND LESS THAN FIVE FEET TALL.
- THEY HAVE BLACK SKIN, SHORT
KINKY HAIR, THICK LIPS AND
- THEY WANDERED IN THE FOREST
AND LIVED BY
HUNTING, FISHING, AND
GATHERING WILD PLANTS AND
- THEY USED BOW AND ARROW FOR
B. THE INDONESIANS
- THEY WERE THE FIRST
IMMIGRANTS TO COME BY THE SEA
TO THE PHILIPPINES.
- THEY CAME ABOUT 5,000 YEARS
AGO AND SAILED IN BOATS FROM
- THEY WERE DROVE INTO THE
MOUNTAINS AND LIVED IN THE
- INDONESIANS WERE MORE
ADVANCED THAN THE NEGRITOS.
- THEY LIVED IN PERMANENT HOMES
AND USED FIRE TO COOK THEIR
- THEY LIVED BY HUNTING, FISHING,
AND SMALL FARMING.
- THEY PAINTED THEIR BODIES WITH
- Today the Indonesian minority tribes are found
in some interior parts of our country. They are
Apayaos, Kalingas, Manobos, Tirurays, Gadda
ngs, Tagbanuas, Mandyas, Sabanuns, Ibanags,
2 Types of Indonesians:
(1) Tall, with light skin, large forehead, high
nose, and thin lips.
(2) Shorter and darker, large nose, thick lips.
C. THE MALAYS
- THEY CAME AFTER THE INDONESIANS
ABOUT 2,000 YEARS AGO.
- THEY ALSO ARRIVED IN BOATS FROM
- THEY WERE MEDIUM IN HEIGHT,
BROWN-SKINNED WITH DARK EYES,
FLAT NOSE AND STRAIGHT BLACK HAIR.
- THEY DROVE INDONESIANS TO THE
FOREST AND LIVED IN THE LOWLANDS.
- THEY ARE MORE CIVILIZED THAN THE
- THEY LIVED IN LARGER VILLAGES, HAD
GOVERNMENT, WRITING, MUSIC, ARTS,
- THEY LIVED BY AGRICULTURE,
FISHING, MINING, AND TRADING.
- IT TELLS HOW THE FIRST TEN
MALAY DATUS LEFT BORNEO AND
CAME TO PANAY.
- THEY BOUGHT THE LAND FROM
- THIS LEGEND IS NOW
CELEBRATED IN THE FAMOUS
“ATI-ATIHAN” FIESTA AND DANCE.
- THE FILIPINOS TODAY COME
FROM THE MALAY OR BROWN
THE ATI-ATIHAN FESTIVAL IN
AKLAN. THIS TRADITIONAL FIESTA
IN THE PHILIPPINES IS A MIXTURE
OF PAGON AND CUSTOM.
2. CORE POPULATION
A THEORY WHICH BELIEVES THAT THE EARLY
FILIPINOS CAME FROM THE SETTLERS WITHIN THE
ISLANDS, NOT FROM OUTSIDE, AND IN FACT OUR
ANCESTORS MIGRATED OUTSIDE TO THE OTHER
NEARBY ISLANDS TO SPREAD OUR OWN CULTURE
TO OTHER LANDS.
First man in the Philippines lived in caves at
Tabon, Palawan about 25,000 years ago.
They belonged to the Stone Age culture because
of using stone tools and weapons.
They were short with bushy eyebrows and a low
C. LEGENDS AND FAIRY TALES
AN IMAGINARY STORIES TOLD BY
OLD FOLKS TO LITTLE CHILDREN TO
KEEP THEM INTERESTED IN THEIR
2 FAMOUS LEGENDS ABOUT THE EARLY
(1) THE STORY OF MALAKAS AND
(2) THE STORY OF THE BROWN PEOPLE
3 Lessons from the past that we can learn:
(1) The early Filipinos had a culture of their
own. They built the magnificent rice terraces
in Northern Luzon. They charted the seas
and sailed thousands of miles to other islands
in the Pacific. They had a society of law and
order. They appreciated beautiful things like
jewelry and pottery. They buried the dead
with respect. Thus, the early Filipinos had
their own inventions and spread cultures to
other places. They did not just borrow or
receive the culture of other peoples.
(2) We must respect and protect our tribal
minorities in the Philippines because they are
part of our ancestry. There are about 100
tribal groups in the Philippines. Each has its
own customs, beliefs, arts, and crafts. They
are very much a part of our colorful past.
(3) We must take the Gospel and train
ourselves how to be Christian missionaries
among these minority tribes in our country is
good practice for our evangelist and
missionaries, because the other nonChristian nations in Asia, Africa and Latin
America also have many rival groups.
listening. Have a