French is spoken by a number of older people who learned the language under French
rule, but most people don't speak French today. Now English is being taught
as a common second language, but again most people don't speak this language
either. However, in some business sectors and the tourist industry English, French,
and other popular international languages like German can be heard.
Just over two thirds of Laos's population is Buddhist, to which most of the
ethnic Laos adhere. Of the remaining third, there is not consistency
or large group as most of these people don't strongly identify with any particular
religion or belief system.
Buddhism is a religion or philosophy that encourages people to strive for enlightenment.
Adherents believe that each being is reborn until enlightenment is reached, at which
time they escape the cycle of birth and death. To accomplish this, every being must
speak, act, and live in a positive manner; this is magnified with the force of karma,
which dictates an individual's later life and/or their rebirth.