Asia – The largest, most populous and the oldest civilisation
Asia is the world’s largest and the most populous continent. There are 51 countries (2019, United Nations) divided into six regions. These are Central Asia, East Asia, North Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia and West Asia. As the largest and most populous continent, it is also rich in resources and home to some of the world’s oldest civilisation. The resources of these Asian countries such as tea and spices were sought after by the Western countries that led to a number of conflicts such as the Opium Wars. These conflicts had, to some extent shaped the modern world.
You can get an idea of the these conflicts if you visit the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich, London. A whole section of the museum is dedicated to the maritime history depicting the rise and fall of the East India Company. You can read a blog I wrote previously on my visit to the National Maritime Museum and get a glimpse of the original opium pipe. Better still, visit the Museum. Directions to get there are in my blog.
Asia – A region of Ethnic Plurality and Diverse Cultures
Being the largest, most populous part of the world and home to several of the world’s oldest civilisation, it gives rise to the ethnic plurality of the region. The diversity is evidenced by its cultures, religions and languages being practised. The diverse Asian culture is represented in customs and traditions, a system of beliefs, values, symbols and presentations which are practised and passed on from generation to generation since prehistory. You can find these traditions embedded in art, architecture, music, literature, philosophy, lifestyle, politics and religion. The religious systems in particular had produced myths and codices on ethics and morality. One example of such myths and codices can be found in Five Etiquette to Observe at a Shinto Shrine in Japan which I wrote previously from my experiences of living in Japan.
Exploring Asia More & Japan
Living in Japan afforded me with many opportunities to observe, learn and adhere to many of its traditions. Adhering to traditions was not a difficult task for me as I am familiar with the Asian traditions, religions and philosophy due to my Malaysian heritage. I guess it is this familiarity with culture, the fact that I can speak and understand a couple of the Asian languages, having toured the surrounding regions such as Thailand, Singapore previously which has me geared towards discovering Europe more than the Asian countries. I hope to return to explore Asia soon in the coming months.
For now, come along with me and explore Japan.