The Rule of … Mystic Dwarves

Mystic Dwarves.jpg
Armand, Luis and Angel?

The Philippine judge who was dismissed for allegedly consulting “mystic dwarves” during healing sessions in his chambers has posted a defense on Dave Barry’s website. (Or, at least, someone posted a response and appended his name, but it seems so crazy that it has a real air of plausibility.)

In his response (scroll down to find the item signed “Judge Floro”), the good Judge (or a remarkably good impersonator of crazy people) notes that he didn’t actually cite the dwarves in any legal decision. Whew.

TRUTH: I never used the word “DWARVES” in any DECISION, and I never consulted any imaginary dwarf to pen my decisions; my detractors submitted these false evidence or lies to replace me with their political candidate; what I do believe in is: a) in the so-called (my) SPIRIT GUIDES or PROTECTORS: LUIS, is the KING OF ALL KINGS of ELEMENTALS/spirits worldwide (I opine due to his lights, violet and white); and b) he is GOD’s ANGEL (Genesis, Exodus, etc.) – what St. Paul teaches: Gifts of the Holy Spirit, Prophecy and Spiritual Healing. I am GIFTED; I never tried to develop my psychic powers, since these are God’s GIFTs to me – TO HEAL and TO PROPHESY.


8 Responses to “The Rule of … Mystic Dwarves”

  1. Having lived there for two years, why do I not find this story surprising? The ‘Pines probably has just as many quacks and loonies per capita as any other place in the world, but boy did I see some whoppers. This one is actually fairly sane compared to some I saw there.


  2. If you click the Judge Floro link at the end of the post on Barry’s site, you go to a blog that appears to be the real thing — Judge Floro’s blog.

    I don’t know — is this strangeness any worse than George Bush thinking God has chosen him for some special mission? At least Judge Floro doesn’t have nuclear weapons.

  3. Sorry to double comment, but thinking about it a bit more, to be fair, the “mystic dwarves” the story refers to are probably referring to “dwindies”, the Filipino equivalence of leprechauns. So, yeah the guy is loonie, but at least it’s a common superstition not that dissimilar from some of our own ancestral traditions.


  4. Nathalie I. VOGEL

    All this makes perfect sense. The same dwarves are said to have been counseling in the RF for a while as well. This explains the poor grammar and the lack of sense of some major decisions. NV

    thursday, September 21, 2006 – 1:51 pm

    Creature features of the Philippines

    Saturday, September 02, 2006

    Judge Floro Florentino is not too pleased with his three spiritual guides being referred to as dwarves or duende, as superstitious Filipinos call these elf-like beings. His brother, who first saw them, called them duende, a Spanish word of ambiguous definition.
    To Filipinos, they are something like tiny magical goblins who live in forested areas. There are, according to folklore, two types: black, denoting evil which can harm, and red, who are good and can heal. On the island of Mindoro, the Mangyan tribe claim to trade with the few remaining duende for forest products. They are said to be extremely shy because of the violence that has been done to them in the past.

    Then there are the nocturnal Agta, tall black men who also hang out in the forests, while the Batibat, found in Ilocos, look like fat women who live inside posts, and suffocate people by sitting on top of them.

    The bovine-like Mantahungal have fearsome teeth, the Pugot are self-beheading multi-formed creatures, and the Tikbalang are centaurs in reverse. These and many more magical creatures – some invisible, some half-human, half- animal – are all said to inhabit the Philippine countryside.

    Florentino and the three dwarves

    Saturday, September 02, 2006

    A Filipino judge who was dismissed from the bench because of his ongoing relationship with invisible mystics meets with Sam Chambers to explain his side of the story
    T he Philippine judiciary has oft been the butt of a joke but never before has one of its members caused so much mirth as Judge Floro Florentino and his three invisible dwarves.

    Judge Florentino and the dwarves – Luis, Armand and Angel – might sound like a good name for a band but they are in fact the main characters in a surreal tale from a nation famous for its superstitions.

    Last month, the trial judge lost his final appeal to keep his job, with the Supreme Court’s 72-page ruling stating that Florentino’s “dalliance” with Luis, Armand and Angel showed he had a “medically disabling condition of the mind” that rendered him “unfit to discharge the functions of his office” which in turn could “erode the public’s esteem of the judiciary” and make it an “object of ridicule.”

    Florentino and I arrange to meet at what seems the most apt of places to discuss such matters – the Hobbit Bar on Mabene St in the Manila district of Malate. Charitably offering employment for the vertically challenged, it has been a tourist attraction for more than 10 years.

    Florentino’s three sidekicks, or “spiritual guides” as he prefers them to be called, take many different forms. Luis is the “king of kings” or “God’s angel,” while Armand is a beautiful boy who, like Luis, has wings. Angel is their sister. Florentino has on
    ly seen Luis once – on a rock in the middle of the Philippine archipelago. Luis communicates and uses his powers via violet and white lights.

    Florentino peers over the bar and orders a bottle of Australian shiraz but shows no sign of recognition – it seems that Luis, Armand and Angel are not among the diminutive presences to serve us. Moments later a pudgy hand holding a 2003 vintage appears out of nowhere; two glasses follow, as if by levitation, from beneath the bar.

    Looking 10 years younger than his 53 years, Florentino comes across as remarkably lucid. For sure he rambles in a high-pitched tone, often going off on tangents, yet the psychosis the Supreme Court claims he has is not immediately apparent.

    Fame, or infamy, clearly is something this otherwise shy man seems to enjoy. He comes to the interview armed with 300 pages of clippings and court appeals. He says, with no small relish, that he and his three cohorts have appeared in more than 66 media titles and 1,000 blogs.

    One such blogger described Florentino as a Filipino X-Man for his efforts to rid the country’s judiciary of corruption. In 1995 a Supreme Court commission found that more than 50 percent of judges received bribes, something Florentino has been determined to wipe out. His area of jurisdiction in Manila was Malabon, a coveted location in which to work, he says, because within a month a judge could become a millionaire, the starting price for any judicial decision being 50,000 pesos (HK$7,640).

    “Court starts at 11am; at 11.05am (the judges) go for golf,” he quips. He shows even less mercy in his judgment of the Court of Appeals: “They say it is 85 percent corrupt,” he muses, “It is 100 percent corrupt.”

    Florentino initially trained to become a priest and was just a young teenager when he joined a seminary in 1965. He transferred to a Jesuit institution a few years later but then left to enter the legal profession. His life changed forever, he says, on June 2, 1983 – the day his father died. It was on that day that Luis, Armand and Angel made themselves known to Robert, Florentino’s mentally disabled youngest brother.

    “My brother, because of his innocence, can see them,” he says. Floro Florentino recounts how the dwarves had revealed his healing and psychic powers. At first, he says he was sceptical. An avid gambler – horse racing coupons are mixed in with his press clippings – the dwarves told him to get involved in cockfighting. He bought 13 cockerels, made 21,000 pesos and “suddenly believed them.”

    Since then he claims to have healed many people, explaining that his hands are golden and impart heat to the afflicted. “I am not a faith healer,” he says, “I am gifted.”

    Though at times in the conversation he bristles at the term psychic, Florentino rates himself as as the country’s number five seer. Number one? Ferdinand Marcos, apparently.

    Florentino says he predicted Joseph “Erap” Estrada’s presidential downfall and prayed that present incumbent Gloria Macapagal Arroyo would survive her endless political battles. Looking ahead, he reckons Arroyo’s power will end soon and the nation will suffer as a result.

    He’ll also have you believe he is a bilocator – someone who can be seen in two different places at the same time, which he acknowledges is also a trick for which the devil is known.

    Florentino says such powers do not come without sacrifices and that he has had to remain single or lose his gift of healing: “That’s in the Book of Revelations,” he adds.

    He glances over his shoulder at a child laughing nearby. “You know it’s painful for me not to have a kid. That’s why I am the Filipino martyr.”

    Florentino was appointed on November 5, 1998, as the country’s youngest judge. It was not the first time he’d tried to become one. Three years earlier the state had failed him for psychological reasons but he was allowed an independent, private mental assessment that cleared him.

    His reign as a judge was as bizarre as it was short. Sessions would start with readings from the Book of Revelations; on Fridays he would change from blue robes to black to recharge his powers, and in between hearings he’d provide healing sessions, even for other judges, as well as consulting his trio of “advisers.”

    Such unorthodoxy brought a swift end to his career and he was suspended in July 1999. So began his seven-year battle to be reinstated, with more than 100 motions tabled, finally ending with the Supreme Court decision. He was paid 1.1 million pesos in back pay, over half of which has already been used to pay debts.

    He lists the names of senior judges who have in the past come to him for healing and says these are the same people who turned on him for political reasons, using his paranormal “gifts” as the excuse to get rid of him.

    “This is a first in our judicial history – the Philippines Supreme Court has never dismissed or removed a judge because of their belief in the paranormal or religion. Other country’s constitutions provide for dismissal or removal of judges, jurists and magistrates because of graft, corruption or misconduct,” he insists.

    However, Florentino admits to having a darker mission, avenging those who corrupt the legal system. This has led him to be dubbed an angel of death, a description he does not dispute.

    At this point I am reminded of the fact that to be a dwarf in the Philippines, or duende as they are known, is not to possess the lovable qualities often attributed to them in fairytales. Rather they are regarded as figures full of malice and violent intent.

    Eight judges who Florentino has deemed corrupt have all been struck with serious illnesses, three of them dying. He has, he confesses, been psychically “inflicting illnesses” upon his tormentors, even going so far as to ensure one of them gave birth to a child with epilepsy.

    “Armand, Luis and Angel’s role is a never-ending fight against `black’ or evil; a spiritual battle – the angels versus Lucifer. Right now Satan is winning, God is losing. All our leaders have 666 on their heads from the president down, the Supreme Court, everywhere,” he says in his mild, yet animated, manner. “My mission is healing the wounds of the judiciary.”

    His more immediate goal is to appeal the Supreme Court decision as early as next week. He intends to file a disbarment case against Chief Justice Hilario Davide Jnr for delaying his case for so long. “I am asking for a job. I am asking for justice,” says the spiritual crusader.

    Is this just a tall tale of short people? Or is that Luis reaching up to take my credit card? Filipino judges, you have been warned.

    I am known as the psychic and healing judge worldwide