HomeΦιλοσοφια: International Journal of Philosophyvol. 16 no. 2 (2015)

NAKEM KEN ULIMEK: A HERMENEUTICS OF SILENCE IN THE ILOKANO COSMIC SELF

Danilo S. Alterado

Discipline: Philosophy, Culture

 

Abstract:

The dominant paradigm for development and cultural progress is in crisis. Despite its rationalist, technocratic, and Western-centered thinking, it failed to bring a more humane, just, and sustainable world. If humanity has to build a more just and sustainable world, then it should give cognizance of the“Other”—the margins of the Western-globalized culture. The task is to search for balance in awakening new discourses and linguistic worldviews from nonutilitarian, nontechnological, and non-Western traditions. This paper endeavors to explore and expand the communicative potential of silence from non-Western cultural spaces, of Asian-indigenous worldviews as hermeneutical key to critical and cosmic consciousness. Specifically, it speaks of the Ilokano cosmic Nakem (cosmic self or cosmic sense of being). At the core of the Ilokano Nakem is a cosmic impulse that situates this indigenous culture’s resilience within the dissipating ecological integrity. Just like in other Asian classical texts, e.g., Taoism where it speaks of a heavenly Dao which is the origin and the law that sustains everything in the world, the Ilokano cosmic self lays a core of cultural belief—an ontology that is deeply founded on the tradition of silence. By seeking out a decisive break from dominant frameworks, this paper argues for the possibility of articulating alternative cultural and linguistic experiences as a political imperative towards a democratized world.