About Myanmar

Welcome


Myanmar is a hidden paradise in the world. We have natural scenic beauty making for landscapes that are incredibly picturesque. We have natural great lakes, vast river deltas, unspoiled beaches and Island archipelagos ……snow capped mountains and deep forests with the rarest of flora and fauna.

Myanmar people are friendly, kind and hospital on all of people as Myanmar people culture. They are kind-hearted people and for example, a good Myanmar Burmese will never swear at the elders whether they are right or wrong. Myanmar Religion is part of the everyday lives of the Myanmar (Burmese) people. Yes, Myanmar people are religious, but they are not overly religious. True Myanmar is sharing, caring, and loving as their Myanmar people culture. What more could you possibly ask for in a person? They are often complimented for their friendly and simple nature. Myanmar people are the most courteous people that one could ever come across. Of course, there are some areas where people in Myanmar/Burma are considered as less fortunate, but let’s not go into that, because this should be all about how they should be proud of being a Myanmar…….

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Myanmar or Burma


“Burma” is derived from the Burmese word “Bamar”, which in turn is the colloquial form of Myanmar (or Mranma in old Burmese), both of which historically referred to the majority Burmans (or the Bamar). Depending on the register used the pronunciation would be “Bama” (pronounced [b?mà]), or “Myamah” (pronounced [mj?mà]). The name “Burma” has been in use in English since the time of British colonial rule.

In 1989, the government officially changed the English translations of many colonial-era names, including the name of the country “Burma” to “Myanmar”.This prompted one scholar to coin the term “Myanmarification” to refer to the top-down programme of political and cultural reform in the context of which the renaming was done. The most of the name changes are closer to Burmese pronunciations. Various non-Burman ethnic groups choose not to recognise the name because the term Myanmar has historically been used as a label for the majority ethnic group, the Bamar, rather than for the country.

Various world entities have chosen to accept or reject the name change.  The United Nations, of which Burma (under the name Myanmar) is a member, endorsed the name change five days after its announcement by the junta. However, governments of many countries including Australia, Canada, France, the United Kingdom and the United States still refer to the country as “Burma”,  with varying levels of recognition of the validity of the name change itself.

Others, including the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and the governments of Germany, India, Japan, Russia, Brazil and the People’s Republic of China recognize “Myanmar” as the official name.

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Religion


Shwedagon Pagoda

Since the Myanmar ancient times, there has been full freedom of worship for followers of Burma religions in Myanmar. So many different religions can be practiced in Myanmar. Buddhism is practiced by almost 90 percent of Myanmar religion Burma’s population, with the Myanmar Theravada Buddhism School being the most prevalent. It has a firm hold in Myanmar’s culture along with an observance of animism, or the worship of ancestors (nat). In Myanmar culture, there are many Myanmar festivals and celebrations held that correlate with nat. Nat also has influence on the practice of Myanmar traditional medicine in Myanmar religion Burma.

There are other religions in Myanmar, but they are not as widespread as Buddhism and animism. Some of the beliefs found include Christianity (Baptists) in Myanmar hill areas and Muslims. Christianity is practiced by 5.5 percent of Burmese Myanmar, Islam by 3.8 percent Hinduism by 0.5 percent and Animism by 0.2 percent before respectively in Myanmar.

Myanmar is a predominantly Theravada Buddhist country. Buddhism reached Myanmar around the beginning of the Christian era, mingling with Hinduism (also imported from India) and indigenous animism in Myanmar. The Pyu and Mon kingdoms of the first millennium were Buddhist, but the early Burmese Myanmar peoples were animists. According to Myanmar religion Burma traditional history, Myanmar King Anawrahta of Bagan adopted Buddhism in 1056 and went to war with the Mon kingdom of Thaton in the south of Myanmar country in order to obtain the Buddhist Canon and learned Myanmar monks in Myanmar religion history. The religious Myanmar tradition created at this time, and which continues to the present day in Myanmar, is a syncretalist mix of what might be termed ‘pure’ Buddhism (of the Sri Lankan or Theravada school) with deep-rooted elements of the original animism or nat-worship and even strands of Hinduism and the Mahayana tradition of northern India.

Islam reached Myanmar at approximately the same time, but never gained a foothold outside the geographically isolated seaboard running from modern Bangladesh southwards to the delta of the Ayeyarwady (modern Rakhine, known previously to the British as Arakan, and an independent kingdom until the eighteenth century) Myanmar. The colonial period saw a huge influx of Muslim (and Hindu) Indians into Yangon and other Myanmar cities, and the majority of Yangon’s many mosques and temples owe their origins to these immigrants.

Christianity was brought to Myanmar by European missionaries in the 19th century. It made little if any headway among Myanmar Buddhists, but has been widely adopted by non-Buddhists such as the Karen and Kachin in Myanmar.

The Chinese contribution to Myanmar’s religious mix has been slight, but several traditional Myanmar Chinese temples were established in Yangon and other Myanmar large cities in the nineteenth century when large-scale Chinese migration was encouraged by the British. Since approximately 1990 this migration has resumed in huge numbers, but the modern Chinese immigrants seem to have little interest in Myanmar religion Burma.

Some more isolated indigenous peoples in the more inaccessible parts of Myanmar country still follow traditional animism.

The Roman Catholic Church, Myanmar Baptist Convention and the Assemblies of God of Myanmar are the largest Christian denominations in Myanmar.

There are no totally reliable demographic statistics form Myanmar, but the following is one estimate of the religious composition of Myanmar country:

  • Buddhists: 87%
  • Animists: 5%
  • Christians: 4.5%
  • Muslims: 4%
  • Hindus: 1.5%

Myanmar allows complete freedom of religious expression, and there appears to be no inter-religious tensions as such (although there are ethnic tensions, particularly between the dominant Burma and the descendants of Indian migrants, which can find religious expression). Nevertheless, the current Myanmar regime’s nationalistic policy of Burma san-gyin, which considers Buddhism a key element of Burmese-ness, does provide a systemic bias in favor of Buddhists in terms of preferment in the armed forces and other State structures in Myanmar.

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Climate


myanmar climate

Myanmar Climate is roughly divided into three seasons:

Summer Season: with highest temperature during March and April in Central Myanmar up to above 110 ° F (43.3 ° C) while in Northern Myanmar it is about 97 ° F (36.1 ° C) and on the Shan Plateau between 85 ° F (29.4 ° C) and 95 ° F (35 ° C).

Rainy Season: from mid-May to end of October, with annual rain fall of less than 10 inches in Central Myanmar while the coastal regions of Rakhine and Tanintharyi get about 200 inches.

Winter Season: which starts from November to end of February with temperature in hilly areas with an elevation of over 3000 feet drops below 32 ° F (0 ° C).

As a whole, the location and topography of the country generate a diversity of climate conditions. Seasonal changes in the monsoon wind directions crate summer, rainy and winter seasons. Extremes of temperature are rare.
The direction of winds and depression bring rains, and in some years severe storms occur causing damage in Rakhine region. In Rakhine and Tarintharyi regions, rain fall varies from year to year though it is always heavy and creates no hardships.
Monthly Average Temperature in Yangon

January 19 ° C
February 23 ° C
March 29 ° C
April 32 ° C
May 33 ° C
June 33 ° C
July 32 ° C
August 32 ° C
September 30 ° C
October 28 ° C
November 18 ° C
December 16 ° C

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Culture


myanmar cultureMyanmar culture has been closely intertwined with religion and royalty in Burma history. Temples, pagodas and palaces displayed the artistic skills of painters, wood carvers and sculptures. Myanmar Temples and pagodas were traditionally built of brick and many are still standing. The great palaces of Myanmar culture in Myanmar, however, were made of wood, and only one badly-deteriorating example of these beautiful carved structures remains today. Myanmar Art and architecture, which relied on royal support, faded when the last royal kingdom collapsed.

Although court Myanmar culture has been extinguished, popular street-level Myanmar culture is vibrant and thriving. Myanmar Drama is the mainstay of this culture, and just about any celebration is a good excuse for a Myanmar culture pwe (show). Myanmar performances may recount Buddhist legends, or be more light-hearted entertainments involving slapstick comedy, dance, ensemble singing or giant puppets. Burma cultural music is an integral part of a pwe; it originates from Siam and emphasizes rhythm and melody. Myanmar culture instruments are predominantly percussive and include drums, boat-shaped harps, gongs and bamboo flutes.

Over 85% of the Burma population is Theravada Buddhist, although it is not the official state religion and since the Myanmar Ne Win government takeover, it has actually officially occupied a less central role in Burma life. In the Rakhine region, towards Bangladesh, there are many Muslims. Christian missionaries have had some success among hill tribes but many remain staunch animists in Rakhine region.

Burmese is the predominant language and has its own alphabet and script. Though you’re hardly going to have time to master the alphabet, it may be worth learning the numerals, if only so you can read the bus numbers. English is spoken by a few Burmans, particularly by the older generation.

It’s easier to buy authentic Burman dishes from food stalls rather than restaurants. Chinese and Indian eateries predominate, and hotel restaurants tend to remove much of the chilli and shrimp paste from their Burman dishes. Rice is the core of any Burman meal. To this is added a number of curry options and a spicy raw vegetable salad, and almost everything is flavoured with ngapi a dried and fermented shrimp paste. Chinese tea is generally preferable to the over-strong, over-sweet and over-milky Burman tea. Sugar-cane juice is a very popular streetside drink, and stronger tipples include orange brandy, lychee wine and the alarming-sounding white liquor and jungle liquor.

Although a diverse range of indigenous cultures exist in Myanmar, the majority culture is primarily Buddhist and Bamar. Bamar culture has been influenced by the cultures of neighbouring countries. This is manifested in its language, cuisine, music, dance and theatre. The arts, particularly literature, have historically been influenced by the Burmese form of Theravada Buddhism. Considered the national epic of Myanmar, the Yama Zatdaw, an adaptation of Ramayana, has been influenced greatly by Thai, Mon, and Indian versions of the play. Buddhism is practised along with nat worship which involves elaborate rituals to propitiate one from a pantheon of 37 nats.

In a traditional Burmese village, the monastery is the centre of cultural life. Monks are venerated and supported by the lay people. A novitiation ceremony called shinbyu is the most important coming of age events for a boy when he enters the monastery for a short period of time.Every boys of Buddhist family need to be a novice (beginner for Buddhism) before the age of twenty and to be a monk after the age of twenty. It is compulsory for every boys of Buddhism. The duration can be at least one week. Girls have ear-piercing ceremonies at the same time. Burmese culture is most evident in villages where local festivals are held throughout the year, the most important being the pagoda festival.Many villages have a guardian nat, and superstition and taboos are commonplace in Burmese life.

British colonial rule also introduced Western elements of culture to Myanmar. Myanmar’s educational system is modelled after that of the United Kingdom. Colonial architectural influences are most evident in major cities such as Yangon. Many ethnic minorities, particularly the Karen in the southeast, and the Kachin and Chin who populate the north and northwest, practice Christianity.

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Myanmar People Culture


Almost every Myanmar (Burmese) practices Myanmar people culture and traditions till date. Myanmar people are friendly, kind and hospital on all of people as Myanmar people culture. They are kind-hearted people and for example, a good Myanmar Burmese will never swear at the elders whether they are right or wrong. Myanmar Religion is part of the everyday lives of the Myanmar/Burmese people. Yes, Myanmar people are religious, but they are not overly religious. True Myanmar is sharing, caring, and loving as their Myanmar people culture. What more could you possibly ask for in a person? They are often complimented for their friendly and simple nature. Myanmar people are the most courteous people that one could ever come across. Of course, there are some areas where people in Myanmar/Burma are considered as less fortunate, but let’s not go into that, because this should be all about how they should be proud of being a Myanmar.

One of the more exacting aspects to travel in Myanmar is opportunity to experience a corner of Asia that in many ways has changed little since British colonial time. Due to its isolation self imposed and otherwise Myanmar has yet to be completely overwhelmed by outside fashion influences. Many Burmese Myanmar people still sport some vestiges of their Myanmar people culture traditional dress: nowhere else in Southeast Asia will you see so many sarongs, turbans and other exotic apparel. Of course, these differences in dress are just a hint of the distinctions between Myanmar’s diverse ethnic populations. Less obvious to the casual eyes are differences in cultures, customs, languages and religions and Myanmar people culture.

Officially Myanmar is divided up into eight “national races” the Barmar, Shan, Mon, Kayin, Kayah, Chin, Kachin and Rakhaing but the Burmese Myanmar government further subdivides these eight groups into 67 subgroups. Ethnologists have suggested that there are actually over 100 distinct groups living in Myanmar. While it would take a hefty tome to give a detailed account of all Myanmar’s ethnicities, we’ve made a list of the groups the average visitor to Myanmar is most likely to encounter or read about.

Keep in mind that intermarriage between some ethnicities is quite common in Myanmar. Individual Burmese Myanmar people are usually quite knowledgeable about their own ethnic background and you’ll often encounter Burmese with parents from two different ethnicities. Besides the peoples that are indigenous to Myanmar, you’ll also encounter the descendents of peoples who migrated to Myanmar in the not so distant past mostly these are people of Indian, Chinese and Nepalese descent who relocated to Myanmar during the British colonial period. Myanmar is also quite diverse religiously. In Myanmar towns and cities it’s not uncommon to see places of worship for Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims and Christians all within sight of one another. As in other Southeast Asian countries with ethnically diverse populations, feelings of pride and prejudice have and continue to cause friction between Myanmar’s ethnicities. The Burmese outspoken nature can be a boon to traveler who is interested in current ethnic Myanmar people culture relation. Ask a Myanmar Burmese (or a Shan or a Kayin) their opinion about their countrymen of different ethnic or religious back grounds to get an idea of what kinds of challenges governments in Myanmar both past and present-have faced in their efforts to keep the peace and preserve the borders.

For Myanmar culture, Myanmar people traditionally used the right hand for eating in Myanmar. The left hand for personal hygiene, it is preferable to use the right hand when you give something to somebody. At the same time, to use only one hand seems half-hearted, so to show warmth, Myanmar people sometimes use both hands to shake hands. To show more respect when giving something to someone, it is customary to touch the right forearm with your left hand. Beckoning to a Myanmar with one finger curled up is seen as disrespectful. If you have to beckon, do so with your palm down. You do not need appointments to go and visit Myanmar friends home, and don’t be surprised if they call on you without notice. Myanmar people typically turn up for enjoyable occasions half an hour early and boring ones, half an hour late. Guests who don’t show up at all are usually the ones who couldn’t say “no”. Don’t be surprised to see your Myanmar guests eat dinner as if in a rush and leave right after dessert. When visiting a Myanmar home or office, you are usually served with something to eat or drink as this is Myanmar people culture. It is better to eat and drink a little, even if you don’t want it. For Myanmar people, absolute refusals are bad manners.

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