Cultural Arts Review: Buddhism vs. Islam

Posted on April 7, 2013 by

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Imagehttp://www.csmonitor.com/World/Backchannels/2013/0405/How-Myanmar-s-Buddhist-Muslim-conflict-has-reached-into-Indonesia There has been a lot of fighting between the Buddhist peoples and the Muslim peoples recently in the area of Indonesia and of Myanmar. In this online news article that I read (see below for link) the fight ended up happening with an argument between a Muslim preacher and a Buddhist fisherman. The article also talks about how these fights have been going on for a long time in Indonesia even though this is normally a place of refuge for all of these different kind of people because they is not normally any discrimination when it comes to religion.

At the very beginning of this article is a picture. This picture is of a prison cell with at least twelve people in it, and it has a guard standing right next to the cell gate. I think this is interesting because as you read throughout the article you read how Indonesia is supposed to be a safe place and that nobody should feel discriminated. But because of all of these fights that have been happening recently between Buddhists and Muslims, they are being forced to be the bad guys in this situation. They even make it look like the guard is sad about what he is doing to the prisoners.

After the picture in the article, it starts to tell about how the land of Indonesia has been a crucial part in helping refugees from around the area all the way to Iraq to be safe from what is going on in their homeland. But because of all of these fights they have to make it harder for refugees to come. With the combination of a severely over-crowded immigration detention center because of the tightening of immigration rules in Indonesia and the threat of not being allowed to live there after all, there is no wonder why a fight broke out between Buddhists and Muslims with all the tension that there is between them because of a lot of past recent conflicts. But the weird thing about a bunch of these conflicts is that even though Buddhists have a “certain peaceful light about them”, as the article says, they seem to be starting a lot of these conflicts and not the Muslims. In this brawl the Buddhist fisherman and his friends were greatly outnumbered by the one-hundred Muslims in the Muslim-majority Indonesia. There was not much said to why the fight broke out, but it ended with eight of the eleven Buddhists dead and the remaining three being severely wounded, making it look like the Muslims are the bad guys. But because they were part of this outbreak the Muslims are not going to have an easy start to their new lives in Indonesia, right along with the remaining Buddhists because of additional outside charges added.

It is very interesting to see that from what we have learned about Buddhism and how it is a peaceful religion that they would get caught up in a fight with another religion like this. I do not know a lot of the background information on these conflicts yet, but I believe that there has to be something very important at stake for these Buddhists if they are willing to go away from their peaceful ways in order to preserve what they think is right.

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Posted in: Buddhism, Islam