by Lydia M. Reid
As we approach our second year with our Silver People Heritage site we are conscious of our need to make it easier to use and for it to be more inclusive of the information and stories we wish to share with you, our respected readers. On that note we want to announce the addition of three new sections that promise to be closer to what we want this web site to be including features our readers have been asking for.
We are diligently working on the concept of Panama’s National Living Cultural Treasures, a concept we have borrowed from Japan’s Living National Treasures which:
“…is a term for those designated as keepers of important facets of our intangible cultural properties. Under the 1950 Law for Protection of Cultural Properties, intangible cultural properties are defined as dramatic, musical, artistic, and other intangible cultural artifacts of high value in terms of Japanese history or art (Article 2, Section 1, Part 2).
Those intangible cultural properties of especial importance can be designated as “Important Intangible Cultural Properties” by the Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (Article 71, Section 1). In other words, intangible cultural properties are certain artistic skills. Those individuals or groups who have attained high levels of mastery in those certain skills can be designated as preservers of them by the Japanese government for the purpose of ensuring their continuation.”
We have extended the interpretation of the term in a slightly modified form in that many of our “preservers” or “keepers” of the cultural heritage of The Silver People of Panama, like many of the rest of their contemporaries and descendants, have left Panama and are living overseas. By the grace of God some have returned to Panama to live out their Golden years in the land of their birth, a land that once rejected them and their cultural contributions. Others have continued to live out their lives in the U.S., the U.K. and in the island homes from which their ancestors came.
Out of our collection of Panama’s Living Cultural Treasures, we hope to work to introduce a concept that will lead to a national program to officially recognize these priceless individuals. They are those who have given so much of themselves both in Panama and in other regions of the world and who continue to be living, breathing repositories of our history, culture and moral fortitude, in today’s troubled world which for us is something worthy of preserving and nurturing long after they too are “gone but not forgotten.”
Another section we will be highlighting is, of course, our profiles section, Golden Profiles of Exceptional Silver People, who have passed on but who have left a rich and mighty inheritance for us all.
Our third section will be dedicated to Book Reviews in the hopes of digesting the dazzling collection of new and older books that are related in some way to the topic of the Silver People and its Diaspora.
As with all our contributions, we invite our readers to send in their ideas, comments, opinions and suggestions. We value them greatly.