Throughout the ongoing isolation, we surely see several weird things on Shopee or Lazada advertisements which we may never hear of. There were countless items on the set: peculiar clothing, “enchanted” stones, pricey leaves, and of course, this one particular item which reads “pilik mata ng kambing” (goat’s eyelash). You may not be aware of it, but the latter is actually a modernized piece of a historical object.
In both Shopee and Lazada online shops, you will see pilikmata ng kambing and bolitas for sale. These penile…
Last April 24, Prof. Nestor Castro, a cultural anthropologist, posted on Facebook about these things. He quoted Antonio de Morga’s note, a Spanish lawyer and historian in 1609: “They have acquired a bad habit from youth, the boys making an incision or hole in their private organ, close to its head, and attaching to it a sort of snake-head of metal or ivory, which is secured to the hole made in the organ, by means of a device of the same substance to keep it in place. With this contrivance on, the youth has intercourse with the woman, and he is only able to take it out much later after the act, both thereby indulging in a protracted frenzied delight, notwithstanding the spilling of considerable blood and suffering other injuries. ”
Castro said that these penile contraptions were used by many Filipino males allegedly for greater sexual pleasure. It was rampant to the precolonial Filipinos, specifically among the Pintados of Visayas.
This contrivance is called sagra, but only a few of them exist now, because after the natives became Christians, much care has been taken to stop these practices and vices, with a certain degree of success. –De Morga, 1609
Castro claimed that there were no surviving sketches of sagras, although how the indigenous people used them before gave a visual of these sex toys. De Morga described it this way: “The males, large and small, have their penis pierced from one side to the other near the head, with a gold or tin bolt as large as a goose quill. In both ends of the same bolt, some have what resembles a spur, with points upon the ends; others are like the head of a cart nail.”
As funny as it may seem to some, these items are actually pieces of our history before the colonizers even arrived. The best way to appreciate these is to share credible information to educate our fellow kababayans about an unusual but legitimate part of the Filipino culture.