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Bo penh nyang is sometimes used in its literal meaning, "No problem" but it also has other meanings like "never mind" or "are you all right?
Due to their culture they usually are shy and are more conservative, but they place a high value on family and friendships.But it is also used in more day-to-day situations to mean "average," "the norm" or "proceeding as usual." For example, if a man is fired from his job he may not be sad; he may be thammada meaning he accepts his fate and does not harbour resentment. The list below from a Vientiane Times article, December 9-15, 1994, shows how many expressions include the word chai or "heart." A culture with so many shades of meaning based on the heart is a deeply sensitive culture.One should always bear this in mind before making a strong comment or taking direct action.These are most often ordered by the authorities and therefore obeyed by staff.In many ways, the Lao people are not as collectivist or conformist as most of their East Asian neighbours.
It is impossible to understand Lao culture without having at least a basic understanding of the Hinayana Buddhist tradition which came to the country from Cambodia over 450 years ago. I am responsible for myself and you are for yourself. Much of this perspective comes from the Buddhist belief in re-incarnation.