Behind the facade of a modern city,
these ethnic races are still evident. The areas for the different races,
which were designated to them by Sir Stamford Raffles, still remain
although the bulk of Singaporeans do think of themselves as
Singaporeans, regardless of race or culture. Each still bears its own
The old streets of Chinatown can still be seen;
the Muslim characteristics are still conspicuous in Arab Street; and
Little India along Serangoon Road still has its distinct ambience.
Furthermore, there are marks of the British colonial influence in the
Neo-Classical buildings all around the city.
Each racial group
has its own distinctive religion and there are colorful festivals of
special significance all year round. Although the festivals are special
to certain races, it is nonetheless enjoyed by all.
food is also readily and widely available. There are lots of cuisines
to offer. We have, Chinese, Indian, Malay, Indonesian and Western,
Italian, Peranakan, Spanish, French, Thai and even Fusion. It is very
common to savour other culture's food and some of the food can be very
intriguing. Indian food are relatively spicier, whereas Chinese food is
less spicier and the Chinese enjoy seafood. Malay cooking uses coconut
milk as their main ingredient, that makes their food very tasty.
You can refer to our Eating in Singapore section for a list of recommended food outlets in Singapore.Religion in Singapore
Singaporeans celebrate the major festivals associated with their
respective religions. The variety of religions is a direct reflection of
the diversity of races living there. The Chinese are predominantly
followers of Buddhism, Taoism, Shenism, Christians, Catholics and some
considered as 'free-thinkers' (Those who do not belong to any religion).
Malays have the Muslims and Indians are Hindus. There is a sizeable
number of Muslims and Sikhs in the Indian population.
tolerance is essential in Singapore. In fact, religions often cross
racial boundaries and some even merge in unusual ways in this modern
country. Younger Singaporeans tend to combine a little of the mysteries
of the older generation with the realistic world that they know of
Religion is still an integral part of the cosmopolitan
Singapore. Many of its most interesting buildings are religious, be it
old temples, modern churches, or exotic mosques. An understanding of
these buildings do play a part in contributing to the appreciation of
their art.Chinese Temples
Taoism, Confucianism, Buddhism, and ancestral worship are combined into a versatile mix in Chinese temples.
of the Tao (The Way) adhere to the teachings of the ancient Chinese
legend, Lao Tzu. They are concerned with the balance of the Yin and
Yang, which are opposite forces of heaven and earth, male and female.
Feng Shui, literally translated as wind and water, also originated from
Yin and Yang. Ancestral worship is common and the spirits of the dead,
like the gods themselves, are appeased with offerings.
Buddhists are of the Mahayana school although there are some from the
Theravada school. In Singapore, the Buddhist faith is linked with Taoism
and the practical doctrine of Confucianism.Islam
The Malays in Singapore are Muslims. A few of the Indians are also Muslims, but even more uncommon are the Chinese Muslims.
has a fundamental influence in the lives of those who follow the
Prophet of Allah, Muhammad. The religion involves praying five times a
day, eating only "halal" food, fasting during Ramadan, and going to
Mecca on the Haj (pilgrimage). Halal food means food that has been
specially prepared as according to the religion's dietary requirements.Hinduism
the Indian immigrants migrate to Singapore, they brought with them
Hinduism. The early temples are still the central points of rituals and
festivals, which are held throughout the year.Christianity
will be able to find Christian churches of all denominations in
Singapore. They were actually established with the arrival of various
missionaries after the coming of Sir Stamford Raffles. Together with
Buddhism, Islam, and Hinduism, Christianity is considered one of the
four main religions today. There is quite a large number of Christians
on the island.Others
Minority faiths are not forgotten.
There are at least two synagogues for the Jews and Sikhs. The
Zoroastrians and Jains are also represented in Singapore.Advertisement
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