Because of the location and the natural beauty of our country, it was called as “Perlas ng Dagat Silangan” (Pearl of the Orient Seas) and “Hardin ng Pacific (Garden of the Pacific). And in 1544, our country was named Las Islas Felipinas, which is derived from the name of Prince Felipe II of Spain. When we were colonize by America, they rename our country and call it Philippines.
There are many legends and stories that details the origin of our country. One of the more famous legend tells us that the islands of the Philippines is part of a huge ball of rock that was thrown away by a giant. There is also legend that tells the story of the battle that occurred between the sea and the sky. And in our religious belief, the Philippines is created by God.
And there are geologists that scientifically studies that show the geographical origins on how the Philippines was formed. Many geologists believed that the islands of the Philippines slowly emerged from to the surface of the Pacific ocean due to an eruption of an underwater volcano.
The most accepted scientific theory today explains that the Philippines is once part of the Sunda Shelf. The Sunda Shelf is a huge part of the Continent of Asia (at least 1,800,000 square kilometers) that was projecting high in the surface of the ocean.
About 45,000 years ago, after the Ice Age, the melted ice had swell the ocean and engulfed the land bridges that connects the Philippines to the rest of Asia. This theory was based on the evidence that the are many plants and animals in the Philippines who are much alike the other Asian countries. Some evidence also shows some shallow waters which can be seen in the China Sea between Asia and the Philippines. These “land bridges” are believed to be located between Palawan and Borneo; Sulu at Mindanao; Celebes and Mindanao; and the islets of Batanes and Taiwan.
According to experts, if the sea level was reduced or lowered down by at least 100 meters, we can see that the greater part of the Philippines are now connected with the rest of Asia. The following islands will now be connected with each other such that: the province of Samar will be connected to the rest of Luzon; The province of Leyte will connect to Borneo, Palawan and Mindoro; The province of Bohol, Cebu, Negros, and Panay will now be connected with each other.
Another scientific theory of the origin of our country is called the “Tectonic Plate Theory”. According to this theory, a very huge earthquake and a strong volcano eruption under the China Sea happens some 225 million years ago. The lava and mud that erupted had slowly hardens and that becomes land in the surface of the ocean. Several strong earthquake also happens which pushes and scatters the land masses that was formed by the volcanic eruption. This now becomes the 7,107 islands that makes up the Philippines.
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