Hinilawod is the oldest and longest epic of the Hiligaynon Nation (Western Visayas). The term "Hinilawod" means “tales from the mouth of the Halawod River”. It originated from the culture of the inhabitants of Sulod in the mountains of central Panay. Hinilawod is not just a literary piece. It is also a source of information about the religion and rituals of the ancient culture in Sulod. Many things that pertain to the "sacred" and rituals of healing are very obvious in the text of the epic. This literary piece, which is chanted when performed, has 8340 verses. It recounts the story of the exploits of three Sulodnon demigod brothers, Labaw Donggon, Humadapnon and Dumalapdap of ancient Panay. It would take about three days to perform the epic in its original form. Thus, making it as one of the longest epics in the world. Hinilawod has four episodes: (1) Pangayaw, which tells the story of the first adventure of Labaw Dungon; (2) Tarangban- recounts the hero's adventure in the underworld; (3) Bihag, which is about the captivity of Labaw Dungon in the hands of Saragnayan, the lord of darkness. (4) Pagbawi- narrates the story how Labaw Dungon's brothers, Humadapnon and Dumaladap, rescued their brother from captivity in the underworld.
The first time it was performed on stage in its shorter and adapted version was during the inauguration of the Cultural Center of Western Visayas in the campus of West Visayas State University in Iloilo City, Philippines in March 1983 under the patronage of the Cultural Center of the Philippines and the former First Lady of the Philippines, Imelda Marcos. The cultural group, Panayana performed the epic before the representatives of the First Lady and the high officials of the Cultural Center of the Philippines. The epic, which is transmitted from one generation to another through tongue, is still very much a part of the culture of the Sulod Nation in the mountains of Jamindan, Capiz. In April 1999, Alejo Zata recorded the epic as it was chanted by the natives of Sulod.
A concise version of the story of Hinilawod can be found in the book, Philippine Mythology, authored by the Filipino anthropologist, Dr. F. Landa Jocano. This version recounts the epic as follows: