Ethnic Groups of the Philippines

Kalinga, Lubuagan

Kalinga, a landlocked province in the northernmost area of the Cordillera Region, is bounded by the provinces of Cagayan and Apayao in the north; Mount Province in the south; and Abra in the west.  The  larger elements of Cagayan and Isabela are found on its eastern part.  The Kalinga Lubuagan inhabit the Kalinga and Apayao provinces; their language widespread and used in almost all the municipalities of Kalinga, and has five dialects.  Kalinga originated from the Gaddang and Ibanag languages meaning, “headhunter”.  In the days gone by, headhunting was once regarded a noble “pursuit” and symbolized bravery.  Theirs was a warrior society that accorded tatoos as status symbols awarded to warriors which men respected and women admired.  Thus, warriors, mingol, enjoyed a higher status in Kalinga society.  The bodong, a peace-pact in Kalinga culture was an indigenous socio-political system that defined inter-tribal relationships.  It was developed to minimize traditional warfare and headhunting, as well as, served as an institutional 'renewal'; maintenance, and reinforcement of social ties.  Later, bodong was expanded into a multi-lateral peace-pact intended to strengthen unity in the Cordilleras.

Dance was an integral element of Kalinga Lubuagan culture.  In keeping with its warrior heritage, Takiling, represented a homecoming of successful kayaw or head-taking, done to avenge the death or evil done to a family member or relative.  Mingols were honored by their female relatives with gift of lawi feather, bongon (beads), and colorful ba-ag (g-strings).  Victory songs were sung by villagers and the mingols danced with closed fists while the unsuccessful mingols were demoted to playing the gangsas, gongs.  Ngilin was a marriage dance performed during rituals and celebrations, such as the budong; the choreography simulated the courting interactions between a rooster and hen.  The most popular was the Tadjok which was performed by the tribe to commemorate grand feats, rituals, and social gatherings.  The men showcased strength and virility, where as the the women conveyed grace and sensuality, as they mimicked high-flying birds.


Hiyas Philippine Folk Dance Company.
Kalinga Province at a Glance.