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Laos Culture & Language

13/04/2019 728 Views
The majority of the Lao people are Buddhists. The Laos-Lum (Valley Laos) people follow the Hinayana(Theravada) form of Buddhism. The religions of the Laos-Theung (Laos of the mountain tops) range from traditional Confucianism to animism and Christianity.

Laos Culture

Religion: 
The majority of the Lao people are Buddhists. The Laos-Lum (Valley Laos) people follow the Hinayana(Theravada) form of Buddhism. The religions of the Laos-Theung (Laos of the mountain tops) range from traditional Confucianism to animism and Christianity.
Social conventions: 
Religious beliefs should be respected. Lao people should not be touched on the head and women should not touch monks. Handshaking is not that usual; Lao people greet each other with their palms together and a slight bowing of the head. Take care when discussing politics and related subjects in conversation so as not to cause offence.
Laos is a Buddhist country and guests should dress accordingly. Shorts or revealing clothes are never acceptable. For women, sarongs work well in the heat as do long-sleeved light cotton shirts. Shoes must be removed when entering a religious building or somebody's home. It is a legal requirement to carry an ID document or a passport, and fines for not having one for presentation on demand can be high. The Lao government prohibits sexual relationships, including sexual contact between foreign citizens and Lao nationals, except when the two parties have been married in accordance with Lao family law. Penalties for failing to register a relationship range from fines to imprisonment.

Language in Laos

The official language is Lao; however, many tribal languages are also spoken. French, Vietnamese and some English are spoken.
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Lao religious images and art is also distinctive and sets Laos apart from its neighbors.
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Laos Religion
Buddhism first appeared in Laos during the eighth century A.D., as shown by both the Buddha image and the stone inscription found at Ban Talat near Vientiane, now exhibited at Hor Pra Keo Museum. After the foundation of the unified Kingdom of Lane Xang, King Fa Ngum (14th Century) declared Buddhism as the state religion and urged the people to abandon Animism or other beliefs such as the Cult of Spirits. His policy meant to develop the Lao culture based on a common faith: Theravada Buddhism.
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