Jasper Shan Aquilino Ballatong cut his hair for the first time through ‘kolot’ on his 8th birthday.
‘Kolot’ is a prestige rite in Ifugao for young boys before cutting their hair for the first time.
Ruben Gumangan, a hudhud chanter shared that ‘Kolot’ is also a way of coming together with family, friends, and the community.
“This is like a reunion because both sides of the parents [Jimmy and Shahani Ballatong] are here to celebrate as well as the community,” he said.
Blacio Lindawan, a mumbaki from Camandag, Asipulo explained that any Ifugao young boy may undergo kolot as long as the family agrees and prepares the needed requirements to perform the prestige rite such as carabao, pigs and chickens to butcher, rice wine, Indigenous paraphernalia among others.
Kolot is performed in different stages with the beating of gongs, Ifugao chants, baki, for at least a night and a day.
Jasper’s mom Shahani Ballatong, disclosed that they didn’t plan for this ‘kolot’, they just liked to grow Jasper’s hair since he was a baby.
Ms. Ballatong shared that the ‘kolot’ was supposed to be on her son’s 7th birthday but due to the pandemic, they moved it this year with the easing of restrictions.
The family produced one carabao, four pigs, seven rooster chickens to be butchered for the said kolot.
Jasper expressed his excitement for his birthday and his kolot.
On the other hand, Jimmy Ballatong, plans to also conduct a ‘Ballihong’ for his daughter and Jasper’s elder sister Jacey Saizy on her 18th birthday. ‘Ballihong’ is an Ifugao prestige rite intended for girls.(JDP/FBR-PIA CAR, Ifugao)