The Spaniards must have known that their claim to superiority was rather shaky. So before their new position as conquistador could be questioned, (they could not possibly kill ALL the people) they resorted, like all bullies, to put down.
They called the natives names — “indio” (translate that to “uncivilized heathen”) and “Juan Tamad” — lazy, irresponsible, hippie. Juan Tamad, the story goes, being too lazy to climb, sat under the guava tree waiting for the fruit to fall.
The pre-colonial laid-back Filipinos may have given the Spaniards the idea that they were easygoing. Nature after all, was bountiful. Their subsistence did not demand much work.
But it was to the interest of the colonizer to have hard-working and docile subjects. They had to produce, without too many complaints, the surplus needed to support the colonial administration and the queen’s coffers. So laziness was castigated. Otherwise, it would be impossible to imagine how people who held the siesta sacred could call anybody else lazy.
The History of the Burgis
image: “Asta” • paper • 2010