Culture & Heritage
Culture is a part of human life. It comprises our values, beliefs, customs, languages and traditions those are descended comprises from generation to generation.
UNESCO defines culture as the set of distinctive spiritual, material, intellectual and emotional features of society or a social group, that encompasses, not only art and literature, but lifestyles, ways of living together, value systems, traditions and beliefs.(UNESCO, 2001).
Cultural heritage can be comprised as tangible culture (such as ancient buildings, monuments, landscapes, books, works of art, and artifacts), intangible culture (such as folklore, traditions, language, and knowledge), and natural heritage (including culturally significant landscapes, and biodiversity).
Upgrading the living standard of human being is also a way of upgrading the cultural standards. Flourishing the religious doctrine under the guidance of customs, attitudes, behaviors and compassion flourishing the establishing the modernized and civilized societies; understanding and appreciating culture and arts that were flourished over time, and cultivating and preserving these good traditions are the essence of culture.
As Myanmar is a union inhabited by more than 100 ethnic groups, it has abundant diverse cultural heritage. According to the one of the social objectives “Uplifting the national prestige and integrity and preservation and safeguarding of cultural heritage and national character” laid down by the State and the Ministry of Religious Affairs and Culture has set a mission to "protect and develop Myanmar's traditional cultural heritage and make citizen to love and cherish the Myanmar culture", and efforts are being made to preserve Myanmar's traditional cultural heritage in line with the international standards.
There are also many cultural heritage sites in Myanmar. Among them, the following sites have been inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List for preservation and promotion of cultural heritage in line with the international standard;
(a)Three Pyu Ancient Cities (Halin, Beikthano, Sriksetra) : At the 38th Session of the World Heritage Committee held in Doha(2014 June 15 to June 25, Qatar), listed the three Pyu ancient cities onto the World Heritage List on 22 June 2014.
(b)Bagan : At the 43rd Session of the World Heritage Committee held in in Baku of Azerbaijan in 2019, listed the Bagan onto the World Heritage List on 6 July 2019.
After that, the nomination Dossier (Completed)of Mrauk-U cultural heritage site was submitted to World Heritage Center for the inscription onto the World Heritage List on 30 December 2021.
There are many world records cultural heritages in Myanmar. Among them, the following have been inscribed on the UNESCO Memory of the World (MoW) for preservation and promotion of cultural heritage in line with the international standard;
(a) Kuthodaw Inscription (Maha Lawkamarazein or Kuthodaw Inscription Shrines): At the 11th Session of the Memory of the World Committee held in Gwangju, Republic of Korea on 18 June 2013, the Committee recommended the Kuthodaw Inscription (a collection of 729 stone slabs) for inclusion in the Memory of the World Register.
(b) Myazedi Quadrilingual Stone : At the 12th Session of the meeting of the Memory of the World Committee held in Abu Dhabi of the United Arab Emirates on 4 October 2015, the Committee recommended the Myazedi Quadrilingual Stone Inscription (Rajakumar inscription in four languages such as Pyu, Mon, Myanmar and Pali, on each of the four sides, inscribed during the reign of King Kyansittha in 1113 A.D) for inclusion in the Memory of the World Register.
(c) The Golden Letter of King Alaungphaya : At the 12th Session of the meeting of the Memory of the World Committee held in Abu Dhabi of the United Arab Emirates on 4 October 2015, the Committee recommended the Golden Letter which was sent by King Alaungpaya of Myanmar to the King George II of Great Britain to promote the friendship on 7 May 1756 for inclusion in the Memory of the World Register.
(d) The King Bayinnaung Bell Inscriptions : At the 13rd Session of the meeting of the Memory of the World Committee held in Paris the capital of French on 24 October 2017, the Committee recommended the King Bayinnaung Bell Inscriptions, written in 3 languages for inclusion in the Memory of the World Register.
At the 8th Session of the meeting of the Memory of the World Committee for Asia and Pacific region held in Gwangju, Republic of Korea on 30 May 2018, the Committee recommended the Anandasanda Inscription for inclusion in the Memory of the Asia-Pacific Region.
When if the traditional culture had disappeared, the nationality will be faded away. Hence forth, it is important to keep traditional culture to be alive and efforts are being made to protect, preserve and promote our Myanmar traditional cultural heritage in line with the international standard. Myanmar cultural heritage is a unique and full of national characteristics. As it is a priceless and treasures of the country handed down by our ancestors, it is our duty and necessary to preserve, safeguard and protect our cultural heritage from the national level to international level.