Filipino Body Language and the Importance of Non-verbal Communication with your Filipina

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 As you may have gathered, if you have been following my blog for a while, I can speak Tagalog, and I have even created a series of blog posts that touch on the subject of Tagalog grammar. Because I am interested in making my marriage with my Filipina not only work but actually thrive, I have been taking the study of the Filipino language and culture very seriously since I entered this relationship back in 2000. Now I am at a point where my wife and I can quickly and easily switch from Italian and English to Tagalog. Yet, being able to communicate verbally is just a tiny part of the equation of effective communication. Many experts talk about the idea that around 93% of human communication occurs through non-verbal cues and only the remaining 7% is accomplished through words. When I look at this issue through this lens I realize that my efforts to master the Filipino culture and language count for very little if I don't work on improving my non-verbal communication. So in this post

Existentials and Negations in Tagalog

There are two words to negate something in Tagalog: hindi and wala


HINDI


The word hindi, meaning no or not, and the word wala, indicating non-existence or absence.


Hindi is the opposite of oo meaning yes, and it is also used to talk about what a person or something is not


Examples


Pilipino ka ba? (are you Filipino?)


Two possible answers: Hindi ako Pilipino=I am not Filipino; hindi=no


Hindi ako Amerikano=I am not American


Hindi siya maganda=she is not beautiful


Gusto mo bang pumunta sa Jollibee?=would you like to go to Jollibee?


Answer: hindi=no


WALA


Wala is the opposite of mayroon meaning there is (example mayroon maraming Pilipino sa Roma=there are many Filipinos in Rome) or to have (mayroon akong panahon ngayon=I have time today).


Here are few examples:


Wala maraming Pilipino sa mga maliit na bayan ng Italya=there are not that many Filipinos in small Italian towns


Wala akong pera=I haven't got any money


nasa kusina ba ang TV?=is the TV set in the kitchen?


Answers: wala=no; wala sa kusina ang TV=the TV set is not in the kitchen


MAY/MAYROON


To talk about the existence of something, Filipinos use may or mayroon (sometimes Filipinos use the more colloquial form meron).


Difference between may and mayroon


Mayroon, must be followed by an adverb of place or a personal pronoun


For example, if I am using the personal pronoun ako immediately after mayroon, I can't use may


I can say mayroon akong pera but I can't say may akong pera. If I want to use the may instead of mayroon I have to move the personal pronoun to the end of the sentence and say: may pera ako


Mayroon is a full word that can standalone, while may has to be followed by a noun, verb, adverb, adjective.


For example, if I ask the question:


May pera ba si Mario?


I can answer with mayroon siya 


If I wanted to use the may instead, I would have to say may pera si Mario

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