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Homer J. Yabut’s study titled “Isang Paglilinaw sa mga Paniniwala atPagpapakahulugan sa Ispiritwalidad at Relihiyon ng mga Pilipino” aims to describeand clarify Filipino beliefs about spirituality and religiosity, especially thedistinction between the two in the Philippine context.

According to Yabut(2013), Western literature has found that spirituality refers to a concept, aprinciple or another person that is believed to be higher than a person. Itfocuses more on the individual’s personal beliefs and, to an extent, suggeststhat people may have different spiritual beliefs. Religiosity, on the other hand, refers to a system of beliefsdictated by an institution to its followers. Still, they maintain that eachplays a role with another, although in an undetermined manner.             In an attempt to understandsuch concept in a religious country, Yabut (2013) used a qualitative researchdesign in order to preserve the context of the study. He employed the pakikpag-palagayang loob and the pagtatanung-tanong instruments toextract answers from his key informants coming from Psychology, Anthropology,Philosophy, History and Theology backgrounds.

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He found that spirituality is believedto be both phenomenological and a connection between the Diyos and the self. Religion then is thought to be an expression ofspirituality; an avenue for people to practice their own rituals and spiritualbeliefs. In contrast to Western beliefs, spirituality and religiosity in thePhilippines is clearly interrelated.            This study is an example of a constructivist qualitativeresearch design.

But first, parameters of why it is a field research must beestablished. The actual pagtatanung-tanongand pakikipag-palagayang loob wasdone in a more natural setting and outside the laboratory premises. Additionally,the instruments used themselves also make the study a field research as primarydata was obtained through interviews and pakikipag-palagayangloob with the key informants. These same reasons also make this study aqualitative research. Context was given a high importance which is why it was essential that the research be done in a naturalsetting. The analysis of data relied on firsthand information gathered from thetestaments from the informants themselves. No manipulation and statisticalcalculations were used in the analysis. It was also explicitly stated that the pagsasakatutubo sa loob method was usedin order to understand the concepts from the Filipino point of view.

To dothis, purposive sampling was used in order to ensure that the informants theygathered know well enough about spirituality and religiosity.            Since the study aims to have a deeper understanding ofhow Filipinos view and define the difference between spirituality andreligiosity, it is only right that they use constructivism in approaching theproblem. There mere use of pagsasakatutubomula sa loob makes constructivism more pronounced as it builds its owndefinition and description of the two concepts based on multiple perceptionsfrom different people. Additionally, pakikipag-palagayangloob was employed first to make the informants feel more comfortable aroundthe researcher before employing pakikipagtanung-tanongin order to ensure authenticity of the responses given by the informants.

These statements were all accounted for and collated in line withconstructivism’s principle that there exist multiple truths. Categorical andthematic analyses were done to find commonality and all their statements beforecoming up with the conclusion that spirituality and religiosity exists interdependentlyin the country, a clear opposition to the beliefs of the West.


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