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Filipino Proverbs and Their Meaning

By Edited Nov 22, 2016 3 2

Aanhin pa ang damo
We can always hear proverbs since they surround us everyday. We can hear them at work, in school, at the church, or even when talking with a friend. A proverb is a popular and often repeated saying passed from one generation to another, are often metaphorical, which expresses a truth based on common sense or the practical experience of people.  It aims to provide guidance in our everyday life. Below are some proverbs popularly known in the Philippines and what they meant.
  1. God helps those who help themselves (Nasa Diyos ang awa, nasa tao ang gawa). This means that if we have the initiative to improve ourselves and our lives, then God is sure to help us.
  2. As long as there is life, there is still hope (Habang may buhay, may pag-asa). It means that as long as we live, we still have hope.
  3. What you sow, you shall reap (Kung ano ang itinanim, siyang aanihin). It means that whatever you do unto others will bounce back to you. If you do goodness, then goodness will also return to you.
  4. A desperate person will grab the sharp blade of a knife (Ang taong nagigipit, sa patalim kumakapit). It means that a person will do anything, even if it means facing danger, just to overcome hardships in life like poverty.
  5. Man proposes, God disposes. This means that whatever one is planning for his life, if God does not allow it, then nothing will happen. We can only plan, but it is God who will make it possible.
  6. Whoever cackles first is the one who laid the egg (Ang unang pumutak ang siyang nangitlog). This means that the first one to object is the one who is usually the guilty.
  7. A tree that bears fruits is often hurled at. (Ang punong maraming bunga ay laging binabato). Successful people are always the object of jealousy and envy.
  8. One who doesn’t look back from where he came from will never reach his destination (Ang hindi lumingon sa pinanggalingan ay di makararating sa paroroonan). This saying talks about another Filipino cultural value which is utang na loob or debt of gratitude. It means that a person should never forget where he came from or those who helped him in the beginning, because without them, he will never achieved or he will never be where he is today.
  9. Don’t count the chicks yet until the eggs are hatched (Huwag magbilang ng sisiw hangga’t di pa napipisa ang itlog). It simply means that one should not expect good results for things not likely to happen.
  10. A person who does not seek advice will make mistakes even though he’s wise (Ang taong di humihingi ng payo, nagkakamalit rin kahit na matalino). It means that before we make decisions we should ask first the opinion of other people especially those who have wide experience.
  11. A broom is sturdy because its strands are tightly bound (Matibay ang walis, palibhasa’y magkakabigkis). This simply means that there is strength in unity.    
  12. If you persevere, you will reap the fruits of your labor (Kung may tiyaga, may nilaga). If you work real hard, in time you will also succeed.
  13. If you stash away something, you’ll have something to take (Pag may isinuksok, may madudukot). This pertains to saving. If you save something in the past, then you’ll have something for the rainy days.
  14. While the blanket is short, learn how to bend or curl (Habang maikli ang kumot, matutong mamaluktot). This means that if you are experiencing difficulties in life, you should learn to adapt yourself so that you can survive. You should also be satisfied with what you have.
  15. Better a hut where a person lives, than a mansion where an owl resides (Mabuti pa ang kubo kung ang nakatira ay tao, kesa naman mansiyon na ang nakatira ay kuwago). It is not important how small your house is as long as you are a good person, unlike if you have a big house but your relationship with other people is not good. It also means that material wealth means nothing if you don’t know how to treat people well.
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Comments

Dec 3, 2014 5:37am
rainykua
We have a lot of interesting proverbs. I enjoyed reading this.:)
Dec 4, 2014 7:18pm
asereht1970
thank you for taking the time to read my article and for the nice comment.
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