Yes, there is a psychology specific for the Filipinos. It is called Sikolohiyang Pilipino.
For a long time, when people talk about psychology, they almost invariably means psychology of the Americans. With the nationalistic feelings stirred by the Martial Law in the late 1970s, some Filipinos thought of establishing a psychology of, for, and about Filipinos. This was how Sikolohiyang Pilipino was born.
Virgilio Enriquez was the founder of Filipino psychology. Together with some colleagues in the University of the Philippines–some were in Psychology but some were also in associated fields like Sociology–they pushed for the usage of Filipino language and concepts in teaching Psychology.
Filipinos love to celebrate festivals in honor of patron saints. ©IRRI Images
They identified two types of indigenization: indigenization from within and indigenization from without. Indigenization from within looks for the indigenous psychology from within the culture itself (and not merely a translation of concepts not ours in the first place) while indigenization from without asserts that there are universals.
According to Enriquez, the main strategy in discovering a Philippine psychology is to assess historical and socio-cultural realities, understand the local language, unravel Filipino characteristics, and explain them through the eyes of a native Filipino.
Enriquez already passed away, but even without him, Sikolohiyang Pilipino continues to develop and broaden the indigenous psychology for Filipinos. His colleagues continue their research work, in the pursuit of the dream started by Virgilio Enriquez, of attaining a true Filipino psychology.
For more information about the development of psychology in the Philippines, check out the article
Sikolohiyang Pilipino – The History of Philippine Psychology.
Aleah is a blogger, runner, traveler, diver, and soon to be cook. You can read her solo travels in her blog Solitary Wanderer, her tales of running in Running and Happiness, and her food posts and reviews in Adventuring Foodie.