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Ritual Exhumation -Ifugao, Philippine...
Ifugao, Philippines
By Sherbien Dacalanio
19 Mar 2013

Bogwa is an ancient ritual in Ifugao, Philippines where natives in Kiangan, Asipulo, Banaue, Lagawe, Hingyon, and Hungduan exhume their death as a form of love and respect to their departed relatives. They feast, celebrate, and offer prayers to the dead for three days.

Although most Ifuagonos have converted to Christianity, they still practice this ritual taboo and incorporate Christian songs and prayers during “Bogwa”.

On the first day of "Bogwa", a Mumbaki (priest) will offer a prayer and a ritual asking the spirits to allow them to open the tomb of the dead.

After opening the tomb, a group of men are now ready to exhume the dead body and clean its 246 bones tediously . The men remove the garments and decaying flesh of the dead with their bare hands.

After cleaning the bones, they bury the decaying flesh near the tomb and sundry the cleaned bones. Next they wrap the skeleton's bones with white cloth and place native Ifugao garments over the white cloth.They will lay the wrapped bones in the favorite area of their beloved where they will pray and sing Christian songs for 3 days.

All people who wish to join the celebration are welcome. The family who is celebrating this unusual day are required to butcher pigs every day to feed all the visitors and on the last day they must also butcher a carabao.

A new coffin is made for the wrapped bones.

Before returning the dead to his tomb, a closing prayer and ritual is done and family members are asked to throw stones inside the tomb and make wishes to the spirits of their departed loved ones.

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Ritual Exhumation -Ifugao, Philippine...
Ifugao, Philippines
By Sherbien Dacalanio
19 Mar 2013

Bogwa is an ancient ritual in Ifugao where natives in Kiangan, Asipulo, Banaue, Lagawe, Hingyon and Hungduan exhume their death as form of love and respect to their departed family members and relatives. They feast, celebrate and offer prayers to the dead for three days…

Despite Christianity had penetrated the sacred mountains of Ifugao and most Ifugaonons are converted to this dominating religion in the Philippines, they still practice this taboo and bizarre ritual and incorporate Christian songs and prayers during the “Bogwa”.

Bogwa is an ancient ritual in Ifugao, Philippines where natives in Kiangan, Asipulo, Banaue, Lagawe, Hingyon, and Hungduan exhume their death as a form of love and respect to their departed relatives. They feast, celebrate, and offer prayers to the dead for three days.

Although most Ifuagonos have converted to Christianity, they still practice this ritual taboo and incorporate Christian songs and prayers during “Bogwa”.

On the first day of "Bogwa", a Mumbaki (priest) will offer a prayer and a ritual asking the spirits to allow them to open the tomb of the dead.

After opening the tomb, a group of men are now ready to exhume the dead body and clean its 246 bones tediously . The men remove the garments and decaying flesh of the dead with their bare hands.

After cleaning the bones, they bury the decaying flesh near the tomb and sundry the cleaned bones. Next they wrap the skeleton's bones with white cloth and place native Ifugao garments over the white cloth.They will lay the wrapped bones in the favorite area of their beloved where they will pray and sing Christian songs for 3 days.

All people who wish to join the celebration are welcome. The family who is celebrating this unusual day are required to butcher pigs every day to feed all the visitors and on the last day they must also butcher a carabao.

A new coffin is made for the wrapped bones.

Before returning the dead to his tomb, a closing prayer and ritual is done and family members are asked to throw stones inside the tomb and make wishes to the spirits of their departed loved ones.

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Bogwa: A ritual of Exhumation (19 of 21)
Ifugao, Philippines
By Sherbien Dacalanio
12 Mar 2013

On the last day of Bogwa, a carabao is butchered to feed all attendees.

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Bogwa: A ritual of Exhumation (20 of 21)
Ifugao, Philippines
By Sherbien Dacalanio
12 Mar 2013

On the last day of Bogwa, a carabao is butchered to feed all attendees.

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Bogwa: A ritual of Exhumation (18 of 21)
Ifugao, Philippines
By Sherbien Dacalanio
12 Mar 2013

On the last day of Bogwa, a carabao is butchered to feed all attendees.

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Bogwa: A ritual of Exhumation (14 of 21)
Ifugao, Philippines
By Sherbien Dacalanio
11 Mar 2013

Relatives of the exhumed arrives and pray and sing infront of it.

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Bogwa: A ritual of Exhumation (12 of 21)
Ifugao, Philippines
By Sherbien Dacalanio
11 Mar 2013

The cleaned and sun dried bones are wrapped in white cloth and Ifugao's native costume and place it on his favorite place which will serve as the altar during the Bogwa celebration.

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Bogwa: A ritual of Exhumation (16 of 21)
Ifugao, Philippines
By Sherbien Dacalanio
11 Mar 2013

Bogwa is celebrated for 3 days and everyday, the organizer of the festivity will butcher pig to feed the entire village.

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Bogwa: A ritual of Exhumation (17 of 21)
Ifugao, Philippines
By Sherbien Dacalanio
11 Mar 2013

Bogwa is celebrated for 3 days and everyday, the organizer of the festivity will butcher pig to feed the entire village.

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Bogwa: A ritual of exhumation (1 of 21)
Ifugao, Philippines
By Sherbien Dacalanio
11 Mar 2013

On the first day of Bogwa, people exhume the dead body of their dead beloved then tediously clean the bones.

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Bogwa: A ritual of exhumation (2 of 21)
Ifugao, Philippines
By Sherbien Dacalanio
10 Mar 2013

The bones of the exhume body are sun dried before wrapping it to a white cloth