An agimat, intended to be worn with a necklace
Total population
Currently none;
10,000–15,000 (c.1900)
Dios Buhawi
Regions with significant populations
Philippines (Visayas)
Folk Catholicism
Bible, texts relating to Philippine mythology
Visayan languages, Spanish, Tagalog

The Pulahan (literally "those wearing red"; pl: Pulahanes; Spanish: Pulajan), also known as Dios-Dios, refers to the members of a religious revival of Philippine beliefs that developed in the Visayas prior to the Philippine Revolution. At its peak, it numbered around 10,000–15,000 adherents. The movement was severely crippled during the Philippine Revolution after the Philippine Constabulary took over patrols in Samar, when the U.S. military declared the island as "pacified".


Pulahanes practiced a syncretic religious revival centered mostly on Philippine mythology and Folk Catholicism. Individual beliefs include the use of anting-antings as well as the revival of the babaylan.[1] Indigenous fighting techniques such as eskrima were also utilized in the elite and ferocious combat style.[2] They practiced a form indigenous martial arts called Derobio Eskrima and they specialize using a heavy, crescent-shaped bolo knife in their battles. Religious rituals using bottles of holy oil, prayer books such as the Bible, consecrated anting-anting, as blessings before battles.

Americans have described Pulahanes as notorious fighters and are experts in hand-to-hand combat. War cries were also common among their fighters. They have also been described as "lacking in strategy" due to their high casualty figures in battles such as Massacre at Dolores. They have been the subject of many laws passed during the early American colonial period and have often been accused of "banditry".[3]


  1. "Severino: Cinco de Noviembre: Revolution or Hacienda?". Sun.Star Bacolod. 2006-11-04. Retrieved 2010-03-06.
  2. "Ola`a-Nalo Eskrima". Ola`a-Nalo Eskrima. 1992-07-29. Retrieved 2010-03-06.
  3. "A History of Philippine Baptist Pastors 1898-2002". Bwa-baptist-heritage.org. 1983-08-29. Retrieved 2010-03-06.

Further reading

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