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“A visit to the past”

Musmeah Yeshua Synagogue
Certificate of Excellence
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Owner description: Dating from 1896, this is the only Jewish temple remaining in the city.
Reviewed November 17, 2012

Even though Yangoon only has 8 Jewish families, the synogoue is kept in excellent condition by Mr. Samuels. It was a privilege to visit it.

1  Thank Phyllis1940
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"jewish community"
in 45 reviews
"jews left"
in 9 reviews
in 22 reviews
"muslim quarter"
in 7 reviews
"care taker"
in 4 reviews
"unexpected place"
in 3 reviews
"piece of history"
in 6 reviews
"small street"
in 3 reviews
"rich history"
in 6 reviews
"busy street"
in 4 reviews
"downtown yangon"
in 11 reviews
"impressive building"
in 3 reviews
"colonial era"
in 4 reviews
"worth a visit"
in 14 reviews
"sule pagoda"
in 4 reviews
in 30 reviews
in 25 reviews

254 - 258 of 314 reviews

Reviewed November 5, 2012

Not only did I find the synagogue, but there was someone there to unlock the gate and allow me to look around. The local community is small, about 25 people, and the synagogue is in the middle of a narrow street with lots of shops.

Thank bluevoter
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 17, 2012

Burma, Burma: after so many years of isolation, the sleeping giant of Asia is waking up. The streets of Yangon are bustling and the traffic is mad, with so many new vehicles on the road.New hotels and new construction coming up everywhere.In the midst of all this chaos, the Shwe agon dreams on, eternity captured.
We had not been to Burma in 12 years:years in which the world moved on, and Burma stayed put in its dark niche, largely forgotten except for human rights violations, gas pipelines, and occasional C4 docs on Aung Sang Suu Kyii. Then in the past 2 years, everything changed, and its a new game:Burma has a new president making daring choices, and freedom is everywhere, with the Lady now about to step into centre stage. The Golden land, Suwannabhumi, is on the move.
We had heard about the last synagogue in SEAsia, and wanted to see it:this idea of a Jewish corner in deeply Buddhist Burma, hidden away in a busy market street in old Yangon, is deeply intriguing.We found it after two or three passes:the street are narrow and full of pastiches of old Rangoon, when Burmah Oil, steamships, and the Irrawaddy Flotilla company. Thin, sun-baked south Asian men in longyis still wheel carts full of bales, the muzzein calls from a distant mosque, and cars and pedestrians vie for space in streets jst about wide enough for a car to pass.Looming over the streets are old shophouses, warehouses(godowns as they were called in the early 20th century), and grey-blue skies. It was a dazzling ensemble of sound and colour.

When we found the Musmeah Yeshiva synagogue, it was very apt: right in the middle of the Muslim quarter, the people of the book were in tandem.The facade was of a clean old house with the start of David blazed on top of the entance portal:there was an old man in a faded longyi and a vest, sleeping in a chair in the front.After some rattling of gates, we got his attention, and he opened the gates to a glorious interior.
High vaulted ceilings holding several ancient chandeliers lit up the two torahs that remained:it was empty of people, but full of what once was:a thriving Jewish community, of families lie the Sophears, the Sassoons, the Cohens, a mix of Sephardic and AShkenazi backgrounds:most were from Baghdad, reaching this boomtown on the Irrawaddy in the 19th century. There even was a Jewish mayor-David Sophaer, of Rangoon in the 1930s.
It was an extraordinary moment, seeing this temple in the dreaming golden land of Burma.What memories this synagogue must hold:that it still her, and well looked after, is a testament to the last few Jewish families left in Yangon.
The temple interior was redolent with the past, and perhaps of the future to come as well. The Golden land shared its dreams with so many communities in the past, and it is coming together again.Go visit the synagogue in Yangon if you want to taste what old Rangoon was like.

9  Thank Prasanna W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 4, 2012

What a pleasant surprise to have Moses open the synagogue for us. Our guide called a day before and we were happily greated by Moses. We all need to pray for him as he had something servere going on with his voice so he could barely talk. The temple reminded me of the one in Newport Rhode Island. The torahs were encased in silver cases and the temple was welcoming and interesting. To think how communities change over time, the only Jewish people work at the embassies or are the daughters of Moses. HIs son studies in the USA. Thank you Moses and may God take good care of you and we wish you the best of health.

2  Thank aventuress
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed September 4, 2012

This is like a walk back in history. It is a beautiful example of an Orthodox Jewish synagogue from a century ago. The small Jewish population still uses the synagogue, along with some of the expat community. But simply for a glimpse of history, this is fascinating. Located in the Indian Muslim quarter close to the center of the city.

3  Thank Rupertpb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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