IYUKÔ (Iyukô /ee-yu-ko/) is a Filipino word that means “to bow one’s head.” The name comes from the idea of when the bamboo reaches its highest peak, it bows down to the roots of it’s existence. “Bowing” is one of the most sincere/humbling things in Japanese culture. A simple bow can mean a lot of things. From apology to gratitude to acknowledgement, and most importantly, respect, which the Japanese people proudly promote. Japanese culture has a reverence for nature. They see themselves as on an equal footing with nature, and they have deep respect for their environment that is suited to sustainability. There is an old saying that “the Filipinos are as pliant as bamboo.” We adapt and persevere. We have utmost respect for our cultural and Filipino heritage, but it wont hurt if we adapt a few things from the Japanese as it’s all for the right reasons like their integrity and respect for people, nature, and way of life is inspiring. So, if we have as much genuine patriotic and selfless love for our nation as they do, then imagine what we can be capable of. There’s so much to learn from our Japanese friends. So, bow your head, be flexible enough to humbly bow in respect, and be pliant like a bamboo.

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