Ethnicity, Religion and Politics

It’s not surprising I guess that ethnic history often gets mixed up with present day politics and religion. A great post about this and how Malays look upon their own history is at a blog called the__earthinc in an article about the ancient Malay kingdom of Srivijaya. Here the present day historical concentration on the Malaccan Empire and almost total ignoring of the earlier, large and longer lasting Srivijaya Empire is explained as the former being Moslem and the latter being Buddhist and Hindu.

The writer puts it this way. “I truly believe that Srivijaya was that brilliant light that stayed bright from nearly a millennium. Malacca was a just spark, though brilliant as it may be.”

Srivijaya was known to exist in the 7th. Century because of Chinese writing at the time. Although centered in Sumatra it covered peninsula Malaysia and probably parts of what is now southern Thailand.

There’s a great map of the Srivijaya Empire in the 10th. Century at Wikipedia here.

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