Thursday, June 18, 2009


Hello, If you are reading this I suspect that you are a person who can enjoy even bits and pieces of history.

That seems to be what I am doing here; presenting bits and pieces of world history.

I detect a tiny urge within me to take this blog a bit more seriously. Before I act on that urge, I hope I can develop a bit more focus. At my age, I may not live long enough for that to happen. Then again, I might.

One of the areas I which I find myself maintaining some interest is Southeast Asia, SEA. Myanmar is an important part of that region.

Myanmar isn't a large country, but it is, I think, bigger than Spain. If you had an atlas, you might find Myanmar between Bhutan and Laos. Its longest boarder is with China. It has long had important connections with Sri Lanka and India as well as with China. It had less pleasant ones with the English.

Myanmar was called Burma for a time.
If you are old enough, you may remember:
"The Burma Road" or
"Burma Shave."

Human presence in what is now Myanmar goes back over 30,000 years. However, our knowledge of history there starts getting misty as late as AD 1100.

I will like need to amend or correct some of the following, but it will serve as a starting point. About 1120 AD there lived the great king Alaungsithu. How great he was might be measured in part by the fact that he became on of the 37 Great Nats. Nats may make an interesting part of another story.

At this time the people were already well acquainted with the teachings of Buddha and had found them very good. They already had well developed ways of celebrating and of beautifully presenting the percepts, the law, and the sacred discourses of those teaching. Village groups were well practices in their parts of such presentations. These same villagers also knew the merits of the spirits and other beings. The Nats, of course, were deserving of such merit.

I may have misheard the monks, but I understood that the time of this particular great King, much like the time before him and the time after him, was not entirely peaceful. It was a time when objects, images, and relics were, moved, hidden, lost, found, looted, and liberated. It was a time much like the times before, after, and during WWI, WWII, The Iraq War.

It may have been around AD 1359 that wooden images were giving off rays that helped in the relocation of four Golden Buddha images near Inle lake.

I may be a bit confused about the story the monks tell of this time centering on about 1359 AD. The important part of the story begins about 1120 AD and continues to about 1815 AD. A lot of history can accrue in over half a century! I'll try to fill in some of it as we go along. You may find it necessary to search "tags" to keep up. For the monks, the important part of the story is the teaching of Buddha, the piety of the people, and the return of sacred images and relics to their rightful places. The history kept by the monks extends well beyond what they considered most important. With a little luck we may make opportunity to explore those interesting times and maybe even find out how those things of then are effecting us now.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Check out older posts. Comment on a post by clicking on its title

About Me

My photo
I discover, get understanding, enjoy myself, and take care of business.

My Blog List

Blog Archive