Every year during Holy Week, faith healers and herbalists of Siquijor Island meet on Mount Bandilaan to prepare their special ‘medicine’. A black sticky substance that can only be prepared during the week before easter. In the weeks before holy week the harvest they herbs and burn them to ashes in order to prepare a year long supply of this magical material.
They call it ‘medicine’ but it is not a medicine like: pills or potion, you do not take it in, rub it on or whatever. it is more like incense. They use it to burn, the smoke and smell will clean the houses of evil and sickness.
In the video below I show you the ingredients and the procedure of the ‘cooking of the medicine’.
Mount Bandilaan is the home of many healers during the Easter Weekend. Bola bola healers, faith-healers, blind massage, shiatsu etc. all demonstrate their healing powers to the visiting public.
Camphor based massage oil, potions, herbs and bark are being sold by herbalists, to help you heal your sickness.
Magical bracelets, amulets, voodoo puppets and dream catchers are being sold for other purposes.
A lot of people believe Siquijor is the magical island where evil spirits live and voodoo is being practiced. But I have come to find an island and its inhabitants that live very close to nature. Many healing plants, herbs and trees are found here that can be used to heal bruises, cuts and infections. I even use some myself now. The island has it’s own relaxed rhythm, and the beautiful nature and crystal clear seas in combination with the available healing sites have a holistic effect on those visiting. Many people leave the island relaxed and refreshed even without visiting a healer.