Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

12/23/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

In Myanmar, Buddhism is infused with nationalism.

Followers of news events in Asia are well aware that Myanmar (formerly Burma) is a hotbed of religious strife between Buddhists and Muslims. However, it is less well-known that Christians are also subject to religious persecution in the strife-ridden country.

A Buddhist mob in Myanmar caught attacking a Christian enclave.

A Buddhist mob in Myanmar caught attacking a Christian enclave.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

12/23/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Asia Pacific

Keywords: Myanmar, Buddhism, oppression, Christianity, Islam, threat, violence


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - A story in UCANews tells about Naing Ki, a citizen of Myanmar who is being increasingly marginalized because of his conversion to Baptist Christianity. The persecution of Christians in the primarily Buddhist state is common and Christian minorities in some places, particularly in rural villages, is intense.

Naing Ki told UCAN that brick were thrown at his house, how he is denied the right to trade with local merchants and must drive for three hours once every few weeks to obtain food and supplies for his family. Next year, he won't even be counted in the national census, which means he won't even be considered an actual citizen.

All because he is a Christian.

These developments are a bit baffling to those familiar with the basic tenets of Buddhism which stress non-violence and acceptance, but in Myanmar the religion is tempered with nationalism and in the face of aggressive outside threats, such as Islam, the native Buddhists have become hostile.

It's hard to blame them. The Muslims have arrived, bringing with them terrorism and violence as their preferred tactic for forcing conversions in the border regions where they have become dominant. With the mainstream of the nation still Buddhist, but fearing attack, it's natural for them to retaliate against outside influences.

It's also a convenient distraction from the dysfunctions of government as the state feebly struggles on the path to democracy.

Christians are hardly militant, but they tend to segregate rather than assimilate. The Baptists have made inroads into the rural state of Chin, where Naing Ki lives and the Buddhists there feel very threatened by their presence. The end result is a segregated society where Christians form enclaves and Buddhists form theirs, and any dispute between the two different persons immediately becomes the spark for religious conflict.

In Naing Ki's case, he is the only Christian in a small rural village of Buddhists.

It doesn't help that outside aid is banned and the government gives tacit approval to the persecution of religious minorities. According to UCAN, Christian children are often enrolled in free public education and forced to participate in daily Buddhist rituals.

As Myanmar prepares to take its census and plans to discount those who aren't Buddhist, millions of people could lose their citizenship and become stateless people, all because they are of a different religious persuasion.

Cut off from outside aid and domestic support, these people will be forced to turn to one another, which could give rise to intense, militant movements and outside intervention. If Myanmar is looking to transition into a fully-fledged, peaceful democracy, it is making the wrong move.



---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for March 2015
Universal:
Scientists: That those involved in scientific research may serve the well-being of the whole human person.
Evangelization: Contribution of women: That the unique contribution of women to the life of the Church may be recognized always.


Rosaries, Crosses, Prayer Cards and more... by Catholic Shopping .com


Comments


More Asia Pacific

Exposing secrets: American journalist posed as teacher in North Korea gains insight into an intesnse lifestyle Watch

Image of

By Hannah Raissa Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Students from the Pyongyang University of Science and Technology had no reaction when Suki Kim, an American writer and journalist posing as their Christian missionary teacher, flashed images of the United Nations, Taj Mahal and the Great Pyramids of Giza, as she told ... continue reading


Rare conjoined twins born in Indonesia with attached chest, abdomen - and heart Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Conjoined twin girls in Indonesia have been born with a very rare genetic condition. Both girls share a chest, abdomen - and a heart. Photos have been circulated showing the babies in a hospital bed in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit of Soetomo Hospital in ... continue reading


Isolation, depression hounds tuberculosis patients as virulently as the disease Watch

Image of Doctors at St. Stephen's Hospital, which gets funding from the charity United Way Worldwide, say the mental health home care program is effective and should be in the national TB program.

By Nita Bhalla, Thomson Reuters Foundation

When Indian street-food seller Kumar Pal first began treatment for multi-drug resistant tuberculosis two years ago, he quickly spiraled into depression and gave up hope of living. NEW DELHI (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Weighing just 77 pounds, shunned by his ... continue reading


TAKEN VERY SERIOUSLY: 600 high school students expelled for cheating in Eastern India Watch

Image of The people tried to reach the windows of the classrooms where the students were taking their exams.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

In its attempts to become a world leader and an economic powerhouse, the nation of India is taking those who take academic shortcuts, by cheating in school, extremely harshly. More than six hundred students were expelled in eastern India. Pictures of friends ... continue reading


Lawyer for doctor who helped track down Osama bin Laden ASSASSINATED Watch

Image of Senior police officer Shakir Khan said unidentified assailants shot and killed Samiullah Khan Afridi (pictured) this morning in the northwestern city of Peshawar before fleeing the scene.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

An important link in the take down of al-Qaeda leader, Osama bin Laden has been ruthlessly gunned down in retaliation. Attorney Samiullah Khan Afridi, murdered by suspected Taliban gunmen was the legal representative for Dr. Shakil Afridi. The doctor provided ... continue reading


VIDEO BLOCKED: Islamic State video shows Indonesian children training with weapons Watch

Image of Yet another horrible Islamic State video, this one intended to recruit followers in Indonesia depicts Indonesian children, all younger than 15 years of age, training with weapons.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Yet another horrible Islamic State video, this one intended to recruit followers in Indonesia, depicts Indonesian children, all younger than 15 years of age, training with weapons. Produced by Alazzam Media, which claims to be the Malay language media division ... continue reading


Pakistani Prime Minister denounced for failing to protect Christians, religious minorities Watch

Image of Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is accused of failing to act on a Supreme Court order, issued last year, to provide security at all places of worship.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Pakistan's Prime Minister must take partial blame for the deadly attacks on Christian churchgoers in Lahore this past weekend. Archbishop Joseph Coutts of Kararchi, leader of the country's Catholics, says that Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif failed to act ... continue reading


Did researchers find 'yeti' hair samples? Or is it something completely different? Watch

Image of

By Hannah Raissa Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

According to new research from the journal ZooKeys, the so-called "yeti" hair samples as determined by a prior research, were only from brown bears. In the study's abstract, the researchers stated that they have no reason to conclude the samples came from any other ... continue reading


PAKISTAN'S WORST CHRISTIAN MASSACRE YET: 15 people killed, dozens injured in Lahore church bombings Watch

Image of Area hospitals filled with casualties and scenes of mourning.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Pakistan's worst attack on its Christian religious minority occurred this past weekend when two churches in Lahore were targeted by suicide bombers. Fifteen people were killed in all, and at least 70 other people suffered injuries. According to Pakistan Taliban ... continue reading


SHAME OF A NATION: Elderly nun gang-raped by six men in West Bengal Watch

Image of The attack comes at a time of growing awareness about sexual violence against women. There has been increased media reporting of rapes and assaults.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Authorities in eastern India are continuing their search for six men wanted in connection with the gang rape of a 74-year-old nun in West Bengal. Witnesses say the men ransacked the convent school in Ranaghat this past weekend. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) ... continue reading


All Asia Pacific News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Isaiah 50:4-9
4 Lord Yahweh has given me a disciple's tongue, for ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 69:8-10, 21-22, 31, 33-34
8 I am estranged from my brothers, alienated from my ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 26:14-25
14 Then one of the Twelve, the man called Judas ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for April 1st, 2015 Image

St. Hugh of Grenoble
April 1: Benedictine bishop of Grenoble, France, patron of St. Bruno. He ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter