January 19, 2001
(January 19, 2001 to March 02, 2001)
Guling-guling in Paoay, Ilocos Norte
Gulíñg. guliñg-guliñg. Throwing mud at somebody. This term is now applied to the placing of ashes on the heads of the faithful on Ash Wednesday. (Iloko- English Dictionary, Andres Carro OSA)
Guling-Guling was introduced by the Spanish friars in the 16th century as a means for the religious sector to interact with its parishioners. It has always been celebrated on the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday because it was believed that this was the last day for the townsfolk to enjoy all forms of merrymaking before they observe the Lenten season.
Guling comes from the Ilocano word meaning to mark, smear or make a sign. In the olden days, the chieftain (now mayor) of the town would imprint the sign of the cross on a person’s forehead using wet white rice flour. The color white was significant in that it meant purity. Through this marking, a person was cleaned of all his past sins.