By Mg Win Myat (YUFL)
Every country has its own culture and national identity that distinguishes it from other societies. Culture is usually defined as the language, beliefs, values, and norms that combine to make up the way of life in any society. Culture also identifies who a person is or where he comes from. Thus, it is important to uphold it in high esteem. As we are citizens of Myanmar, we need a national plan to preserve our heritage and rich culture. This is because it can propel us to attain our national development goals.
Today, we find it quite unfortunate for the intrusion of the western culture into our country. This has come as a result of modernization, urbanization and technology. One thing we must notice is that, we cannot copy blindly by behaving or living like the westerners while our cherished and rich culture is being abandoned. And we should realize the mistake as the ways we enjoy by abandoning our culture and tasting what is alien to us. We, especially youths, do not value our own, and become to impress on the western culture.
In Yangon, for example, there are lots of parties which are based on Western styles like EDM (Electronic Dance Music). Youths are eager to enjoy at such kinds of parties, and they even assume that the ones who haven’t been these parties as out of date persons. It’s also sad to see in improper wearing style. Most of these parties are crowded with youths while there are a few at Cultural Concert. As a matter of fact, Myanma Traditional Puppet Shows will not be able to draw their attention to enjoy.
It is an indisputable fact that no society can exist without a culture, and a must to know that culture is the way of life in society. Therefore, in every society, no matter of its size or population must exist with certain cultural values and norms.
Because of the importance of culture, a society without culture may look like a ship without compass. The role of culture in our society today has been gradually decreased because of the lack of interest in history and the neglect of our cultural heritage. We still need to maintain our cultural values, and should respect the ways of life that were left by our forefathers.
Almost all communities celebrate festivals because they can also form a core aspect of every culture. The celebration of festivals attracts people from far and near, and provides as a focal point of unity. During such occasions, each tribe celebrates a festival to portray the culture of their people and can teach the youths to preserve their cultural heritage. In Myanmar, there were many festivals since long ago. Some are still maintained to celebrate in respective periods. However, some are almost hidden for many reasons. This is also our responsibility to celebrate traditional festivals not to be hidden.
In addition, traditional music and dance are also the features of Myanmar Culture. Indigenous musical instruments, such as harps, xylophones, flutes, horns were used in ceremonies of wedding, welcoming and expressions of sorrow and sympathy like funeral. Nowadays, such kinds of musical instruments may sound boring for the youths. What’s more, lack of interest in tradition and cultural heritage became a common danger for the entire nation. So, it can’t be denied that all Myanmar citizens must preserve our tradition and culture in order to last long forever and be able to stand proudly with own culture among the other countries.