Religious Beliefs and Food Practices in Myanmar
Not only because of its beautiful landscapes and thousands of ancient pagodas, Myanmar also draws travelers with its unique cultural customs and traditions. During your Burma tours, do not miss a culinary break to better understand the food practices of the people in the land of golden temples.
Different religions in Myanmar are in harmony
Myanmar has many religions and beliefs. Buddhism is practiced by almost 90% of the population. Then, it is Christianity (5.6%), Islam (3.8%) and Hinduism (0.5%). Other religions such as Judaism, Polytheism, and the Animism account for about 0.8% of the population.
All citizens of Myanmar have religious freedom, and all people live together in peace. Indeed, if you make a trip to Myanmar, you will be surprised by the worship places of different religions share the position in the big cities. It is proof of respect for other cultures as well as other religious beliefs.
Culinary practices under spiritual influence
Burmese cuisine is a tasty blend of culinary culture from other neighboring countries such as China, India and Thailand. However, travelers can see that Burmese people still retain their own identity in the typical dishes of the country, which makes the unique charm in the land of golden temples.
A typical Burmese meal includes several dishes such as curry, soup, steamed rice and fermented sauce or dried fish, as well as vegetables.
As the majority of the population is Buddhist, dishes are often vegetarian. If you are a meat consumer, you are advised to go to Vietnamese restaurants or other types of Asian restaurants.
Many Burmese people do not eat beef because the animal is considered to be a working companion in their religious beliefs.
Especially in Bagan and Mount Popa, they do not eat too much pork either. Indeed, the latter is frowned upon by Nats. Like other countries around the world, Muslims in Myanmar regard pigs as a dirty and vulgar animal, and it is not good for spirits.
Besides, eating dog meat is taboo and a horror in Myanmar.
If you have intention to make a Myanmar travel or other Indochina countries, it is important to understand its culture and customs. Thus, knowing the religious beliefs in Burma as well as the culinary practices of local people can help you avoid disturbing and embarrassing situations.