Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

12/23/2013 (8 months 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 (8 months 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'


2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for August 2014
Refugees:
That refugees, forced by violence to abandon their homes, may find a generous welcome and the protection of their rights.
Oceania: That Christians in Oceania may joyfully announce the faith to all the people of that region.



Comments


More Asia Pacific

What they are doing in the Philippines will make you sick! Watch

Image of More than 1/3 of all Filipinos live below the poverty line.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The passage of Typhoon Haiyan through the Philippines has caused devastation and humanitarian disaster on a scale not previously seen, forcing hundreds into doing horrible things to survive their new found poverty. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Probably the ... continue reading


CRISIS HEATS UP: Russia sends troops over border into Ukraine Watch

Image of The latest development has further hindered any attempt to resolve the five-month-old conflict diplomatically.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Armored Russian troops have been sent across the border into eastern Ukraine, in the boldest move yet by Russian President Vladimir Putin. The recent move is seen by analysts as Russia's attempt to preserve the pro-Russian revolt in eastern Ukraine. The latest ... continue reading


AMAZING PHOTOS: Chinese man survives metal bar going through head - and lives! Watch

Image of Luck was with a 50-year-old Chinese man - an inch thick metal spear went straight though his head. The object narrowly missed his brain and left eye socket, and he's expected to recover fully.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Luck was with a 50-year-old Chinese man - an inch thick metal spear went straight though his head. The object narrowly missed his brain and left eye socket, and he's expected to recover fully. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Identified only as Mr. Ho, the ... continue reading


People of Hong Kong prepare to rebel against Beijing if their demands are not met - will it end in massacre, or democracy? Watch

Image of Pro-democracy demonstrators in Hong Kong, demanding the right to elect the leader of the semi-autonomous region.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

China's Standing Committee of the National People's Congress is set to hold a week-long session starting August 25, to discuss how Hong Kong will be able to pick its leader. If this does not go well however, tens of thousands of Hong Kong residents have pledged an ... continue reading


CASTE SYSTEM AT WORST: India's 'night soil gatherers' collect human excrement Watch

Image of An overwhelming majority of manual scavengers are women, according to the U.N. They are still inextricably linked to cleaning human excrement.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Due to a brutal caste system, as well as being a nation tolerant of open defecation and dry, non-flush latrines, women born into a certain community are condemned to live out their lives scooping up human excrement out of toilets. Called "night soil gatherers, ... continue reading


Time to learn Chinese: Forget Microsoft, your next OS could be Chinese! Watch

Image of China is creating its own operating system after blacklisting Windows 8 from government computers over fears that the American operating system could provide avenues for intelligence agencies.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

China's state-controlled Xinhua News Agency announced that China is developing their own operating system for desktop computers and mobile devices, citing U.S. surveillance as one of the key factors. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - China intends the new ... continue reading


WRONG ANALOGY? Cardinal outrages child sexual abuse victims - and truck drivers! Watch

Image of Speaking at the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, Cardinal Pell said it would not be appropriate for legal culpability to be

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Australian survivors of clergy abuse are highly incensed by comments made by Cardinal George Pell. Speaking form the Vatican via video-link, Cardinal Pell gave an analogy which absolved the Catholic Church from culpability in past molestation cases. The ... continue reading


DIFFERENT FASHION SHOOT: Five Indian acid attack victims pose for photos Watch

Image of First published on Facebook page run by Stop Acid Attacks, an organization raising awareness about the plight of acid attack victims, the photos have since been featured extensively across the world.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Five female Indian acid attack victims gathered for a different sort of fashion shoot recently, in order to raise public awareness. The effect has been positive. "After the acid attack I never took photos," Rupa, one of the models said. "When the photos got ... continue reading


Man bites dog? Try man BITES SNAKE - and lives to tell the tale Watch

Image of Kraits are one of the four poisonous snakes which account for the most attacks in India where 50,000 people are killed by venomous bites annually.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

They say when a man bites dog, its news. A man in India did that adage one better by biting a venomous blue krait snake, and managed to live to tell the tale. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - A man in central India killed the snake by biting it after he saw ... continue reading


Pope Francis Gives Important Interview On His Return From the Apostolic Visit to Korea Watch

Image of This Prophetic Pope named Francis is known for shaking things up when he does his interviews with the Press upon returning from his beautiful and significant apostolic visits. Well, he just did it again.

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

Pope Francis is a refreshingly frank, charismatic and prophetic successor of the Apostle Peter. He stands in the trajectory of Paul VI, John Paul I, John Paul II, and Benedict. He is a true gift to the Catholic Church, the entire Christian community, and the ... 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, First Corinthians 2:1-5
1 Now when I came to you, brothers, I did not come ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 119:97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102
97 How I love your Law! I ponder it all day ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 4:16-30
16 He came to Nazara, where he had been brought up, ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for September 1st, 2014 Image

St. Giles, Abbot
September 1: St. Giles, Abbot (Patron of Physically Disabled) Feast day - ... 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