Madam Rose hails from Tagum, Davao. Her specialty is love, career and business, and her medium is French tarot cards. She also does playing card reading and palmistry. Her clients has come from different walks of life who had either just passed by the Fortune Telling Corner at Plaza Miranda and Evangelista Street or went to touch the 400 year old image of the Christ enshrined at the Quiapo Basilica.
In the Philippines, despite of our nation’s all-pervasive Christian religion which frowns upon the practice of fortune-telling, the practice ironically continues to persist on the streets and corners surrounding of the Basilica of the Black Nazarene in Quiapo.
According to Angelique Manalad in her Manila Times essay, fortune telling is “an unscientific scam. But it can be therapy. Like religion, having possible answers to one dilemma give one relief and hope. But as its Filipino term hula means, these are nothing more than possibilities foreseen.”
Nevertheless, Quiapo fortune tellers or manghuhulas managed to remain in business. With their steady stream of clients, both skeptics and believers come to Quiapo to have their fortunes foretold, past lives read, recover lost objects, bring together estranged couples or control some dark forces in the horizon.
For a negligible sum of 100 pesos for a 30-minute session, the manghuhulas of Quiapo unflappably shuffle their tarot cards or ordinary playing cards, confidently review their astrological charts or false ouija boards, closely study the lines on palms and body’s physical characteristics. They also offer strangely shaped amulets or talisman to ward of evil spells or curses or prescribe herbs as remedy one’s illness.