"MYANMAR @ BURMA - THE GOLDEN LAND" Eithwe's Profile
Myanmar is a union of all the different Myanmar Nationalities living together in his land. Myanmar also known as Burma is situated between longitudes of about 90 to 100 – East, we are six and a half hours ahead of GMT.
Geographically, Myanmar is situated in the western part of South East Asia. To the east, we have China, Laos and Thailand, and to the west we meet the borders of India and Bangladesh.
Myanmar has an area of 261228 square miles or about 68000 square kilometers. It is the largest mainland country in Southeast Asia.
Myanmar is divided into seven states and seven divisions. The divisional areas which are the plains and the delta region of the country are populated mostly by the Bamars and the state which is the mountainous border areas are lived by various national races.
As regards religion, we have the freedom of worship in Myanmar Nainggan. About 85% of the population are the Buddhist, 4.9% the Christians, 4% the Islam and the Hindus. We even have a synagogue for the Jews in Yangon.
The people of Myanmar are deeply respectful of their religious and cultural traditions. They are welcoming to tourists and offer them warm hospitality. But there are some issues that need to be addressed so that you may better understand the Myanmar culture. This way you trip to Myanmar will be more rewarding.
Visitors should keep the following things in mind during their stay in Myanmar. They should remove shoes and socks before entering any religious building or compound especially pagodas. Some monasteries allow footwear in the compound but not inside the main building. This starts at the lowest step. It is also polite to remove shoes before entering a home but socks may be worn. It is strictly followed in temples. So, do remember it.
When handing over money or a gift to someone, use your right hand or both the hands. The exception is when you are paying the bill in a teashop or restaurant. There, it is a more casual transaction and does not need formality. Woman should not ride on bus-roofs as it is offensive to the men or elderly sitting underneath. Women should also not touch a monk’s robes or body. In most pagodas, women are not allowed to go to higher levels.
When you wear a Myanmar dress, which is sold ready-to-wear, please make sure that you wear it with respect. Avoid exposure of knees and button all the hooks, as they are meant to be. Going without undergarments is definitely a big no-no in Myanmar. Make sure you are not wearing shorts or skimpy tops when visiting pagodas. Even when you are in the streets, skimpy clothing is treated un-ethical and considered insulting to the general public. This will attract eye-balls too!
Myanmar people proved to be outrageously friendly and kind. The smiles of Myanmar people last long in the visitor’s memory and become the major attraction and attachment to its people, may be the smiles through which you come to know better each other. The people in Myanmar look upon you with friendly eyes, and when the eyes meet, warm smiles spread over all of your faces. Their shy, yet, kind personalities mix together to create an environment of curiosity and, as a result, they are open to conversation and cultural exchange. Your smiles will return to you in quadruple in every village, town, and city you visited.
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