A Christian Perspective: Source
The Muslims in the Philippines have 13 ethno-linguistic groups, majority are located in Mindanao – my homeland.
The Maranao tribe (which means people of the lake) is the most visible of them primarily because many are engaged in trading. The Maranaos are also famous for their art works, sophisticated weaving, wood and metal craft and their epic literature.
It has been my privelege to personally witness how rich this culture is having spent 5 years of my life in a predominantly Muslim region of the country – the Islamic City of Marawi. Yep, I spent my college years in my beloved alma mater – the Mindanao State University.
It is however sad to say that not many are given the chance to experience and appreciate this and it is more unfortunate that this is because of the biases and prejudices we have as a people. Ah, the never-ending Mindanao conflict…
Anyway, as a Christian, I too have my biases – we were brought up that way. And some of these biases have basis. However, many of them also are baseless.
What helped me to understand the culture of my Maranao friends (and the Muslim Filipinos in general) was the Aga Khan Museum named in honor of King Aga Khan. The museum is located inside MSU (350 meters from the entrance) and serves as a repository for Maranao and other Moro artifacts.