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term paper on family code
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  INTRODUCTION At least 370 million people worldwide are considered to be indigenous. Most of them live in remote areas of the world. Indigenous peoples are divided into at least 5000 peoples ranging from the forest peoples of the Amazon to the tribal peoples of India and from the Inuit of the Arctic to the Absrcines in Australia. Indigenous peoples do not necessarily claim to be the only people native to their countries, but in many cases indigenous peoples are indeed “absrcinal” or “native” to the l ands they live in, being descendants of those peoples that inhabited a territory prior to colonization or formation of the present state. Indigenous peoples have their own distinct languages, cultures, and social and political institutions that are very different from those of mainstream society. While indigenous peoples face the same experience of discrimination and marginalization as other ethnic minorities, there are very important differences in terms of their rights and identity. The islands of the Philippines are inhabited by a number of ethnic groups. Ethnic groups in the Philippines identify themselves based on one or several factors like ancestry, language, religion or a shared history. About 60 ethnic minority groups in the Philippines exist and still practice their traditional customs. Each group differs from each other according to how their ethnic roots were preserved. They are located in most areas of central and northern Luzon, Mindoro, Palawan, western Mindanao and Sulu Islands. Not being subdued to any colonial rule, they were able to preserve their ethnic practices freely. Most characteristic of these 'indigenous  groups' is that they live in a traditional way, comparable with how the ancestors lived centuries ago. Marriage solemnization is different from what we commonly practice. Marriages in these communities are often solemnized by their tribal leader or chieftain. ANCIENT FILIPINO WEDDING A typical ancient traditional Filipino wedding, during pre-colonial times, is held for three days and was officiated by a babaylan, a tribal priest or priestess. The house of the babaylan was the ceremonial center for the nuptial. On the first day, the couple was brought to the priest's home, where the babaylan blesses them, while their hands are joined over a container of uncooked rice. On the third day, the priest would prick their chests to draw a small amount of blood, which will be placed on a container to be mixed with water. After announcing their love for each other for three times, they were fed by the priest with cooked rice coming from a single container. Afterwards, they were to drink the water that was mixed with their blood. The priest proclaimed that they are officially wed after their necks and hands were bound by a cord or, sometimes, once their long hairs had been entwined together. In lieu of the babaylan, the datu or a wise elder may also officiate a pre-colonial Filipino wedding. After the ceremony, while at the just-married couple's residence, a series of gift-exchanging rituals was also done to counter the negative responses of the bride: if asked to enter her new home, if she refuses to go up the stairs of the dwelling, if she denies to participate in the marriage banquet, or even to go into her new bedroom, a room she would be sharing with her spouse.  Spanish colonialism brought changes to these marriage rituals because of the teachings and conversion efforts of Spanish missionaries, which occurred as early as the 18th century. As a result, the majority of current-day Filipino weddings became predominantly Christian or Catholic in character, which is also because of the mostly Catholic population, although indigenous traditions still exist today in other regions of the Philippines. INDIGENOUS WEDDING CEREMONIES Philippines is composed of many indigenous communities, each having their own unique and distinct way of uniting a man and a woman in matrimony. When there is a wedding ceremony about to be celebrated within the tribe, the atmosphere becomes colorful and festive. The bride would wear bright colored traditional wedding dress and adorns herself with many ornaments each representing a symbol . The groom wears the tribe’s traditional outfit for a groom. The ceremony would often be celebrated by the tribal leader. Killing of wild pigs, goats and other animals are often involved in these kinds of weddings. MARRIAGE ACCORDING TO THE FAMILY CODE Marriage is the formal recognition of union between a man and a woman. Legally speaking, marriage is a sanctioned contract between a man and a woman. The concept of marriage has existed in nearly all human cultures throughout history, though its participants, basis, and goals have varied a great deal. Still, in almost all modern societies it is seen as a person’s most important relationship and the foundation of family. Public policy is strongly in favor of marriage based on the belief that itpreserves the family unit.Therefore, it is not surprising that weddings, the celebration of marriage, are treated as  important, milestone events in countries around the world. In the Philippine Constitution, marriage is characterized as: Marriage, as an inviolable social institution is the foundation of the family and shall be  protected by the State (Sec.1 Art.XV). Under Art.1 of the Family Code, the purpose of marriage is the establishment of conjugal and family life. But before a couple avails the benefits of being married, there are of course requisites that they need to accomplish. The family code has laid down these specific requisites under articles 2 and 3. The essential requisites are legal capacity to contract marriage and consent. Under Art. 3 are the formal requisites of marriage and they are authority of the solemnizing officers, a valid marriage license and a marriage ceremony. The law explicitly provides that these requisites should be fulfilled before one can contract marriage that is considered as valid. Ethnic communities practice a different way of solemnizing their marriage. Marriage is performed in a form of ritual that is unique to every ethnic community found here in the Philippines. Being Filipinos themselves sojourning within the  jurisdiction of the Philippines, they too are covered by these laws. But are they really compelled to conform to what the law has laid down as the mandatory “standard” in solemnizing their marriage since they are covered by the Family Code too? Does the law recognize the validity of a marriage between two people coming from an ethnic community solemnized by their tribal leader or chieftain? Will it not be a burden for these members of ethnic cultural communities to undergo the process of acquiring proper documents given that they are living in remote areas and sometimes they lack the finances to be able to pay the whole process of availing such
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