If decolonization has taught us anything, it's this: part of our own healing is to
no longer be the willing receptacle
of these projections from the colonizer. What then becomes of us when we are emptied of colonial projections? I was reminded
by a very wise woman mentor from India
that my colonized self is only a sliver
in the totality of my Filipino self.
Yet, temporarily, it was necessary
for the process of decolonization to
take up time and space in the psyche
in order to purge these projections so that I can come home full circle to the largeness of my own indigenous self.
—Leny Mendoza Strobel
Leny Mendoza Strobel is Associate Professor of American Multicultural Studies at Sonoma State University. She is the author of Coming Full Circle: The Process of Decolonization Among Post-1965 Filipino Americans (Giraffe Books, 2001) and A Book of Her Own: Words and Images to Honor the Babaylan (Tiboli Press, 2005). She is the editor of Babaylan: Filipinos and the Call of the Indigenous (Ateneo de Davao Research and Publication Office, March 2010). This book has been years in the making and is the first of its kind to integrate research about primary babaylans in the Philippines; research about Kapwa psychology and the babaylan tradition; and narratives of decolonization and indigenization by Filipinos in the diaspora.
Inside the Elephant Trunk Hill in Guilin, China.
Photo by Rei Ki Mudjahid.