Aktualizēts 17.02.2020 04:09
23 years old
Sending higher education institution: Daugavpils University,Latvia
Receiving higher education institution: Mindanao University, The Philippines
Field of study: Programme ‘’History’’, Masters.
Length of mobility period: 5 months(September-February), 2019./2020. Autumn semester.
My very observations about Philippines
I do not think that I had very much knowledge about the Philippines before coming here. All I could say before my arrival was that it is an island nation with a religious population that is greatly influenced by the United States of America at the moment. Even before my arrival, I had local friends whom I met while working in America.
In the Philippines, there is a big gap between the poor and the rich, and I don’t know if anything is being done to combat this. Money has great power in the Philippines and the rich are a privileged layer. According to surveys among my friends, this can go so far as the law does not have power over them. A huge number of beggars on the streets speak of poverty, especially among young children. What I see is richly decorated churches standing on dirty streets. And the difference between the rich district and the outskirts is a little scary. The Philippines also has a small Muslim minority. The state does a lot in order to create conditions for the life of representatives of both religions, but in spite of everything there is discrimination against Muslims, albeit a little. In fact, the level of religiosity of the Filipinos is a little shock to me. I attribute this to the experience of living under the yoke of the Spaniards for 350 years. The same picture can be seen in Latin America. But, apparently, here before the Spaniards there were many different beliefs, that is, locals are prone to religiosity in principle. The fact that people pray before meals, classes at the university, ceremonies or sports events was a slight shock for me at first. By the way, it can be noted that many prays are chanted.
One feels that traditionalism, with its own specifics, is alive in the Philippines. There is an unshakable age hierarchy, even in small 1-2-year-old differences between people. As I understand it, the relationship between men and women is quite strict. Never in recent month and a half have I seen Filipinos kissing. Even just seeing a couple holding hands is quite difficult. By the way, the dress code here is quite strict. Using university rules as an example, this can be clearly seen. Perhaps the nature is what makes Filipinos so free, fearless, creative, lively, and cheerful people. liste After all, the place in which we grow is undoubtedly a factor affecting our personalities. Living in an open, cozy, picturesque place full of greenery, our souls become the same. At least for most. This speaks in favor of the artistic nature of Filipinos, as well as the fact that Filipinos’ favorite pastime is karaoke, in which they all sing beautifully. The main thing for Filipinos is the family. Family values are paramount. For every holiday, everyone is sure to get together. However, this relationship has a downside, when parents demand money from children in adulthood. The next place after the Filipino family is basketball. I believe that this is one of the most basketball nations in the world. It is played here by everyone, young and old. By the way, the names of all the leading basketball teams are the names of local brands. Here you have the influence of the market and the lawlessness of the leaders. Filipinos are very hospitable people. Even people with a small income are ready to share the last with you, if you are their guest. All Filipinos are quite friendly, and did not see them physically conflict somehow. And in principle, as far as I can see, Filipinos are people who rarely lose heart because of problems and can easily find a reason for joy. Filipinos of my age pay a lot of attention to their appearance. It is very important for everyone to smell good and look nice, but at the same time it is often a concern for external attributes, not hygiene.
In general, I can say that Filipinos are young as an independent and united nation, this also implies a young culture, education, political literacy and etc. So far, the Filipinos’ contribution to the world heritage is not great, but only half a century has passed since the last expansion, which for history are instant. With the Filipinos ability to apply the experience of others and adopt some aspects of other cultures, we can hope for a breakthrough. Visiting Philippines and having chance to live and communicate there was a huge experience for me not as just a historian but also as a personality. I am sure that I developed my theoretical and communication language skills and researched the philosophy and methods of teaching history and philosophy which they use there. This unique and rich on impressions five months story is advisable for anyone. I am happy to be the one participating in it and glad that Erasmus+ KA107 exchange programme provides such an opportunity at Daugavpils University. Both DU and UM, were helpful regarding the study process and the documentation work.