Important Concepts in Filipino Culture

Mahahalagang Konsepto sa Kulturang Pilipino

pamilya
family

pagtitiwala sa Panginoon
trust in God

pagiging magalang
being respectful, especially to older people

pagtitiis
perseverance, forbearance

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MALAMBING

root word: lambing

malambing
affectionate
(caring in words too,
but often touchy-feely)

malambing
sweet and warm in caressing,
shows fondness and tenderness

Malambing ang pusa.
The cat is affectionate.
(It sweetly rubs itself against you.)

Malalambing ang mga Pilipina.
Filipinas are affectionate.

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MATARAY

An adjective used to describe women who are contemptuous in speech.

root word: taray, meaning arrogance or snobbishness

Ang taray niya!
My, she’s so sassy!


The Tagalog word mataray is used to describe women who answer you back in a sharp, snappy way.

Filipino women are socially expected to be nice and modest. Any woman who answers back bluntly or brusquely is given the label mataray and is associated with pretentiousness and bitchiness.

A Filipina actress who has iconically managed to use her mataray image as an asset is Maricel Soriano.

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KILIG

The Tagalog word kilig was officially made part of the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) in March/April 2016, apparently due to the influence of the Taglish phrase kilig to the bones.

kilig
to tremble, shudder

kilig
giddiness

kinikilig
feeling giddy

kiligin
to be tickled pink

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Babae: Filipino Woman

babae

 
Filipina women seem to have acquired negative stereotypes in certain parts of the world. They are seen by many either as mail-order brides or domestic help. It would serve to be reminded that the Philippines has had two female presidents: Corazon Aquino and Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. Although most Filipinas look forward to having a family, they can also be found in all corners of Philippine society working as engineers and as teachers and in many other careers.

True, the poverty in the country has forced an inordinate number of young women to work as prostitutes and go overseas to be maids or wives of foreign men. But even these Filipinas deserve respect. Next time you meet a Filipina, don’t quickly assume she’s dying to be your sex slave, she just might have a PhD in economics! She might be a nurse at the local hospital or the owner of a small business! She could be a chemist.

The Tagalog word for ‘woman’ is babae and for ‘Filipina’ is Pilipina. Filipinos also use the slang Pinay, a word without negative connotation. It’s the female equivalent of Pinoy.
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SUMBAT

This word has multiple meanings in the dictionary. The most common is given below.

sumbat
blame, scold, criticize

sumbat
reproach, upbraiding

sinusumbat nila sa akin
they always reminding me of (that thing)

Lagi nilang sinusumbat sa akin ang ibinigay nilang tulong.
They’re always coarsely reminding me of the help they gave.

Huwag mo akong sumbatan.
Don’t scold me.


Cultural note: To engage in sumbat is to ungraciously, even rudely, remind someone of an unpleasant thing that the listener wouldn’t want to hear about. Click here for examples!

HATID

pagsama; pagdadala ng bagay sa bibigyan; pagsubaybay, pagsabay

hatid
escort, accompany

Ihatid mo si Nena sa bahay.
See Nena home.

In Filipino culture, escorting a woman home and making sure she gets through the door safely is very important.

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BOLERO

bolero
flatterer
(male)

bolera
flatterer
(female)

bolero
a man who flatters a woman

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