Religious Priest And Revolutionary Leader Of The Philippines

Did you know that a religious leader of indigenous people in our country also became a revolutionary leader during the propagation of Christian Religion in our country during the 16th century?

Today, we only knew about Magellan’s fought with Lapu-lapu (the first Filipino hero) because he did not want to be converted to Christianity. Other than this, are the Filipino community leaders and followers who converted to Christians. But many of us do not know that some of our forefathers do not want to be converted to Christians. One example of this is the religious revolution made by a “Babaylan”.

The religious revolution only lasted for one year which happened in the province of Bohol. But this revolution left a mark in our country’s history. This religious revolution was headed by a “Babaylan who is only known by the name “Tambot”.

A “Babaylan” is a native priest of the indigenous Filipino during the invasion of the Spaniards in our country which begins in the 15th century.

A “Babaylan” is considered as the highest leader in a community because he has the power to subdue his people as well as his environment.  He also acts as their spiritual leader, a doctor, peacekeeper, law maker; in other words, their overall leader in the community. And before the propagation of Christianity in the country, each community groups of indegious people has their own “Babaylan”.

Tambot was a native of Tupas, Antequera.

It is said that Tambot was able to gather a huge followers when he won on a competitions of making miracles between him and a Spanish Priest who wanted to teach the Christian religion in the province. According to historians, in the said competition, Tambot able to cut two pieces of bamboo to show the spectators on how nature provided them its resource. The first bamboo has water on it while the second one contains rice grains. Apparently, Tambot uses this miracle to show to the native people to place their faith to Mother Nature and not on Christianity which is being propagated by the Spaniards.

 This “miracle” spread like fire in the whole province which resulted to a revolution to fight against the foreigners who are preaching Christianity in Bohol in 1621 until 1622. According to historical reports, it is said that the forces of the Spanish soldier had made two attempts to put an end to Tambot’s revolution. These forces apparently come from Cebu and Pampanga who charge Tambot’s troops in the mountains of Bohol. The Spaniards were using the modern weapons at that time which are the guns, while Tambot’s native groups only used the machete, spears, bow and arrow, as well as rocks.

In the end, Tambot’s force was no match for the Spanish army and they lost the battle.

It was not clear what becomes of Tambot after the enemy overpowers their troops and camp in the mountains. Humor says that Tambot was killed while escaping, while others say that he was already been killed even before the attack was made to the camp.

Author’s note: Another compiling story and history of my motherland and its citizens.


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