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Painting by: Elito V. Circa - - Filipino version.. click here

{short description of image} Minggan Series 1 (Size: 14"" X 18"" Oil on Canvas) {short description of image} Minggan Series 3 (Size: 14"" X 18"" Oil on Canvas) {short description of image} Minggan Series 4 (Size: 14"" X 18"" Oil on Canvas) {short description of image} Minggan Series 5 (Size: 14"" X 18"" Oil on Canvas) {short description of image} Paglisan sa dating bayan (Pantabangan Resettlement 1972) (Size: 24"" X 28"" Oil on Canvas) {short description of image} "AYA" o tinabunan (Life style Today) (Size: 14"" X 18"" Oil on Canvas)

THE LEGEND OF MINGGAN Retold by: Wilfredo Ordonez Pascual, Jr. The writer The relationship between the " legend of Minggan and Mariang Sinukuan" in Pantabangan Dam When Jose Reyes, an old teacher I interviewed in Pantabangan, was a little boy, his father told him the legend of a mountain goddess and a giant. Mariang Sinukuan, the mountain spirit goddess, lived alone in Mt. Arayat of Western Nueva Ecija. Her only friends were the wild animals in the forest. From the mountains, she could see the Rio Grande de Pampanga, the great river running its course along the vast plains of Central Luzon. She would often stroll along the riverbanks of Pantabangan and wonder about the fishes and other creatures that lived under water. She wanted to befriend them but the fishes swam in the current, winding down the plains until it turned North to Sierra Madre Mountain ranges , where Minggan, the giant, lived. The giant was in love with the goddess. From time to time, he would climb the mountains and offer her gigantic fruits and vegetables such as potatoes the size of boulders, which he transported in a huge wheel barrow. One day, Mariang Sinukuan told Minggan that he could only win her heart if he passed a test. "I want you to stop the river from flowing," she told him. "I want you to build a pond in the mountains so I can be with all the living things that lived under water." The task could only be done if Minggan could carry enormous boulders of rocks from the surrounding mountains and throw them to the great river. The goddess added a condition. The task should be completed before daybreak. Desperate to win the goddess` heart, the giant agreed and immediately went to the mountains of Pantabangan to begin the impossible task of stopping the river from flowing. Minggan lifted boulders of rocks from the earth`s crust and piled them in his wheel barrow. He rolled its heavy weight down the mountain and with all his might, threw and piled them in the raging river, one on top of another. From morning till night, he proceeded with this arduous task. The river roared against his labor of love and he never gave up. The wall of boulders grew higher and higher until all that he needed was one more trip and one more boulder and he knew he would be able to conquer the river. Mariang Sinukuan watched all these and saw the dark skies changing its color to purple, signaling the arrival of daybreak. She looked at the pond, which was already the size of an immense lake for ordinary mortals, and saw thousands of fish trapped, jumping against the wall, trying to escape. The mountain goddess realized that it was all a big mistake. All living things under the river would die if the river would stop from flowing. In the end, the river would die too. She saw Minggan return with the last boulder and just as he was about to pile it on top, she decided to use her powers to stop him. The goddess called on the rooster and ordered it to crow. Minggan turned when he heard the rooster. He saw Mariang Sinukuan and realized that he had failed the test. Unaware that she had used her powers to stop him, the giant threw away the last boulder and returned to the mountains, heartbroken. He was never seen again. Elito V. Circa had heard of this legend. His father and grandfather used to tell him that the giant`s footprints could still be found in Palayupay in Pantabangan. He heard from his folks how in some parts of the mountain, Minggan`s wheel barrow had left marks in the trunks of trees. The old man Jose believed this legend as a young boy. During typhoon season, his father would call on him after the rains had stopped. They would go outside and his father would point out to the mountains and he would see a fresh trail of destruction running down, fallen trees and flattened tall grasses. The trail ran in two unbroken paths. His father explained that those lines were the tracks of the giant`s wheel barrow. And so, like Jose Reyes and Elito`s father and grandfather, all the old folks of Pantabangan in the old times grew up waiting for the rains to stop. They would go out under the light drizzle and wait for daybreak, hoping to catch a glimpse of the giant and his wheel barrow. "After all these years," Mang Jose remembered his father saying, "the giant has not given up. He is still trying to conquer the river." The giant returned in 1972 and finally stopped the river from flowing. "Lito Said... Every culture has its own myths and legends, and here Magic Realms presents the myths and legends of the Minggan and Mariang Sinukuan as passed down through the oral and written traditions of the Filipino people."

San Jose City, Nueva Ecija, Philippines
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