Tale of the Banana Tree

Banana trees are among the tropical plants abundant in the Philippines. It is seen in provinces and cities. One of the thrilling tales about them has to do with the world of mysticism. Banana trees may be innocent looking but according to a Philippine tale about them they hide deep secrets of the spirit world.

Banana trees quickly spread around a mother tree. They often grow in clusters, and the tallest tree usually is the mother banana tree. Soon, droplet-shaped hearts blossom on the tips of specific branches around which garlands of young banana fruits sprout. To a Philippine tale, it approaches a time when mystical creatures will haunt the cluster for a chance to grab a most coveted charm stone.

A big, ripe banana heart with blossoming flowers and some midget fruits, according to this Philippine tale, is the apple of numinous creatures’ eyes, and the wonderful charm stone is said to wait a proper, precise time at which it mysteriously drops from the tip of the banana heart. At precisely 12 midnight, the stone charm drops. And when it does, it must be caught by a human mouth before it drops to the ground where it instantly melts. The mystical creatures cannot do anything except grab it from the human who caught it by the mouth. They cannot catch it themselves. So according to this Philippine tale, they will choke him to death.

Any daring human who would bravely stay up till 12 midnight and wait for the stone charm to drop from the banana heart is bound to either end up very powerful against human and spiritual foes, or dead. While waiting he is said to feel eerie sensations and hear the spooky moans of the spirit creatures. Then, when he finally catches the thing in his mouth, this Philippine tale says all the spirit monsters would grab at his neck to choke him into throwing it out. But if he perseveres until about a minute past midnight, the stone charms become his permanent possession.

However, possession of the stone charm brings with it certain curses. Though it may do its possessor some good, it still comes from the dark side and, as this Philippine tale goes, will cost the possessor his soul after he dies.

Banana trees have a secret to keep, and the Philippine tale on this says it is better kept undisturbed. It is wisest to be contently enjoying its sweet, plump fruit and thanking God for it.

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