Barang (Philippine mythology)

Barang (Philippine mythology)

:"For the Khmer term, see Barang (Khmer word)."Infobox Philippine mythology

title = Mambabarang
description = Warlock / witch
gender = Male / female
region = Philippines
equivalent = Shaman, Mangkukulam

Barang is a Cebuano term taken to mean all forms of malign magic or sorcery. [Citation | last1 =Mascuñana | first1 = Rolando V. | last2 =Mascuñana | first2 =Evelyn F. | title =The Folk Healers-Sorcerers of Siquijor | publisher =REX Book Store, Inc. | date = | year =2004 | isbn =971-23-3543-7 |pages = 72 ] In Tagalog, the word is used to refer to small insects and beetles, especially the fungus beetle. At least one source identifies the specific species of this beetle as "Alphitobius laevigatus". These beetles, the size of a common house fly, or other similar insects are said to be employed by Filipino shamans to perform sorcery or witchcraft in order to inflict pain or disease upon a victim. [cite web | last = | first = | title =Nabarang | url= | accessdate = 2008-07-05]

Usage and related terms

"Barang" is a noun used to describe malign sorcery or tiny fungus beetles. Other synonymous words used in the island of Siquijor in the Philippines include "haplit", "paktol" and "anyaw". The proper term for engaging in sorcery or witchcraft employing "barang" in Tagalog is Pambabarang, a verb.

Mambabarang (noun) is a practitioner of this specific type of sorcery or witchcraft. Binabarang (noun) is the target of the sorcery or witchcraft. Nabarang (adjective) means someone or something experiencing the effects of the curse or hex.

The Mambabarang

The Mambabarang is the Filipino version of a sorcerer; the witch is a Mamalarang. The the name is derived from the word "barang". Other synonymous terms include the Hiligaynon word "manog hiwit", which is also synonymous to "kulam". The verb barangin or "hiwitan" means "to place a hex"; a curse in Filipino is a "sumpa".

The "mambabarang" keeps his beetles in a bottle or a section of bamboo, carefully feeding them ginger root. When the practitioner decides to employ his dark art, he performs a prayer ritual wherein he whispers instructions and identifies the victim to the beetles. The insects are then set free and to seek out the victim and gain entry into the body via any bodily orifice: the nose, mouth, ears, anus or dermal breaks such as open wounds. The victim will then feel the effects of the invasion through manifestations depending on the area of entry; hemorrhoids if through the anus, ear ache if through the ears and other similar cases. The resulting illness is resistant to conventional medical treatment and only reveals its true nature when the victim succumbs and flying insects issue forth from bodily cavities.

Superstitious folks still attribute certain illnesses or diseases to "barang". This most often happens in the provinces, where an herbal doctor, albularyo or a faith healer, a "mananambal" or "sorhuana" (female) / "sorhuano" (male) treats such diseases. In some rural provincial areas, people completely rely on the "albularyo" and "mananambal" for treatment.

ee also

* Barang
* Hex
* Kulam
* Gabâ, or "gabaa", the Cebuano concept of negative karma
* Kollam

External links

* [ Image of "Alphitobius laevigatus"]


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