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Posted by on Jun 8, 2013 in Asian | 0 comments

Know About the Famous Culture of Cambodia

Know About the Famous Culture of Cambodia

The culture of Cambodia has already established a rich and varied history dating back to many centuries, and has been heavily affected by India and China

Cambodia borders Thailand, Laos, and Vietnam in the southeastern a part of Asia. Before 1970 Cambodia was fairly full of natural and agricultural resources. Cambodia, unlike most Southeast Parts of asia, enjoyed a stable export business and shipped rice, rubber, coal, and cotton worldwide. Lots of people lived in small villages near waterways, most working in agriculture.

A Brief History

The golden chronilogical age of Cambodia was between the 9th and 14th century, throughout the Angkor period, during which it was a strong and prosperous empire that flourished and dominated the majority of inland south east Asia. However, Angkor would eventually collapse after much in-fighting between royalty and constant warring using its increasingly powerful neighbors, notably Siam and Dai Viet. Many temples out of this period however, like Bayon and Angkor Wat still remain today, scattered throughout Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam remember of the grandeur of Khmer arts and culture. Cambodia’s unparalleled achievements in art, architectures, music, and dance during this time period have had a great influence on many neighboring kingdoms, namely Thailand and Laos. The affect of Angkorian culture can nonetheless be seen today in those countries, because they share many close characteristics with current-day Cambodia.

Culture of Cambodia

Culture of Cambodia

Art & Architecture

To make sure order and harmony in the universe, Angkor’s architects and sculptors created stone temples that symbolized the cosmic world and decorated all of them with wall carvings and sculptures of Hindu gods and also the Buddha. Religious guidelines dictated that the basic temple layout incorporate a central shrine, a courtyard, an enclosing wall, along with a moat. More than 60 of these temple complexes survive in the Angkor region. Additionally, several stone bridges and reservoirs built in the Angkor period continue to be in use. Many Cambodian public buildings, like the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, are decorated in the Khmer architectural style and employ motifs such as the Garuda, a mythical bird in the Hindu religion.

Following the devastation of culture in the Khmer Rouge era, the standard arts and handicrafts of Cambodia are reviving. Notable of these traditional arts are textiles, silver work, basketry, woodcarving, stone sculpture, and painting. Artisans use cotton to weave the krama, an oblong scarf made in colorful checks and stripes, and also the Sampot, a skirt for women. Beautiful silk Sampots with elaborate, multicolored patterns, often entwined with silver or gold thread, are woven while using ikat technique, in which each individual thread is tied. Cambodia’s long tradition of metal work nearly disappeared, however the French revived it in the early Twentieth century. Silversmiths produced popular components of the period, such as animal-shaped boxes, intricately decorated, which were used to hold the ingredients of the preparation known as betel, which is chewed like a stimulant and tonic.

Music, Dance and Theatre

Classical Pinpeat of Cambodia, The Cambodian Pinpeat ensemble is traditionally heard on feast days in the pagodas. It’s also a court ensemble accustomed to accompany classical dance for ritual occasions or theatrical events. The Pinpeat is usually made up of percussion instruments: the Roneat Ek (high bamboo xylophone), Roneat Thung (low bamboo xylophone), Kong Vong Touch and Kong Vong Thom (big and small sets of tuned gongs), Sampho (two-sided drum), Skor Thom (two large drums), and Sralai (quadruple-reed instrument).

Music, Dance of Cambodia

Music, Dance of Cambodia

Classical Dance of Cambodia The epic poem of Rama (Ramayana) is considered to have been revealed to some Hindu holy man named Valmiki by Brahma, the god of creation. This religious literary work, dating from about ad 4, is famous in various versions throughout India and Southeast Asia. In Cambodia, the storyline has been set to music and dance and done by the Royal Ballet because the 18th century. Although the epic can also be known in the villages, where it’s translated orally or dramatized in the popular shadow puppet theater, the ballet was traditionally a courtly art performed in the palace or princely festivals. The music of the ballet is conducted by the Pinpeat orchestra, which is comprised of traditional xylophones, metallophones, horizontal gongs, drums, and cymbals.

Religion

Cambodia is predominantly Buddhist with 90% of people being Theravada Buddhist, 1% Christian and the majority from the remaining population follow Islam, atheism, or animism.
Buddhism has been in existence in Cambodia since at least your fifth century CE. Theravada Buddhism has been the Cambodian state religion because the 13th century CE (excepting the Khmer Rouge period), and it is currently estimated to be the faith of 90% of people.
Islam is the religion of a most of the Cham (also called Khmer Islam) and Malay minorities in Cambodia. Based on Po Dharma, there were 150,000 to 200,000 Muslims in Cambodia as late as 1975. Persecution underneath the Khmer Rouge eroded their numbers, however, by the late 1980s they probably hadn’t regained their former strength. All the Cham Muslims are Sunnis of the Shafi’i school. Po Dharma divides the Muslim Cham in Cambodia right into a traditionalist branch and an orthodox branch.

Festivals

Several festivals are held annually that are of interest to both international and domestic tourists. The main festivals are as follows:

  • Bonn Chaul Chhnam (April) may be the traditional New Year’s festival when Khmers neat and decorate their houses, make offerings and play traditional games.
  • Bonn Chroat Preah Nongkoal (May) may be the Royal Ploughing Ceremony which inaugurates the early spring and involves symbolic ploughing and sowing of seed.
  • Bonn Dak Ben and Bonn Pchoum Ben (September) may be the festival held for commemoration from the spirits of the dead; 15 days later offerings are created in the temples.
  • Bonn Kathen (October) is a 29-day religious festival when individuals march in procession to the temples in which the monks change from their old to new robes.
  • His Majesty the King’s Birthday (30 October – 1 November) is well known in regal fashion and also the Royal Palace is sometimes available to the public.
  • Independence Day (9 November) celebrates the date when Cambodia achieved independence from France in 1953.
  • Bonn Om Took (November) may be the water festival which ushers in the fishing season and marks the reversing of the present in the Tonle Sap River. This extremely popular festival attracts many people to look at the longboat races on the Tonle Sap in Phnom Penh, fireworks along with a lighted flotilla of boats.

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