The Living Force
is not taken as setting up this standard in the context of this discussion. Like I clarified further in subsequent posts, there are a number of potential factors other than forced conversions but still causally traceable to the effects of military campaigns that play a role in the spread of the Islamic faith in the Indian subcontinent.Niall] Now said:I can share my experience in South East Asia, where most of the Muslims are converted to the faith as a result of Islamic imperial campaigns in the distant past.
As far as Indonesia is concerned, looking at a wikipedia article , it seems that before Islam, there were Buddhists, Hindus and animists in the archipelago. The Indonesian archipelago is somewhat removed from the centers of Hinduism and Buddhism. These religions were perhaps introduced in the islands through earlier trade and/or military campaigns as well as missionary activity (in the context of Buddhism). These faiths were not "born of the land" so to speak, so may not have had very deep roots. The article states that it was around the 13th century that the Islamic religion started spreading more. Traders of Islamic faith settled in Indonesia and married into wealthy families. Eventually, royalty started embracing Islam and it took off more widely. The Sultanate was established in India in the latter part of the 12th century. If the archipelago inhabitants were primarily Buddhist and Hindu before and started to convert more to Islam since the 13th century, then it may be possible to draw a connection between the events in the Indian subcontinent and the spread of Islam in Indonesia. If the birthplace of the previous dominant religions was militarily defeated by people who ostensibly belong to the Islamic faith, then it seems natural that the influence of these religions from the geographically distant lands of the subcontinent would reduce and the new faith (Islam) would increase.
I suspect it's more a case of those Turkic-Mongol tribes invading India... because they wanted to invade India - not because they were 'Muslims'.
Yes, they invaded to plunder resources and exercise power. And it may just be a historical coincidence that they were able to do what they may have wanted for a long time ( the stories of the fabulous wealth in Indian temples and the fertile alluvial plains with plenty of food were spread through trade long before) after becoming Muslims.While Islam did not ask them to slaughter and plunder (just like Christianity did not ask the conquistadores to decimate the native South American civilizations), the cohesion of their tribes possibly improved after the spread and adoption of Islam making them more able to successfully mount such expeditions.
I mentioned about the low level tribal component in religion earlier. Tribe "a" worships God A. Tribe "b" worships God B. Tribe "a" and tribe "b" fight. Tribe "b" wins. Whether the outcome has anything to do with belief in God B or not, God A generally loses some influence and God B generally gains in influence. Peterson talks about religion in a Darwinian context. Deities have traditionally been believed to extend a protective influence over the tribe. So from the Darwinian perspective that Peterson endorses, one can say for tribe "a", belief in God A was not enough to protect their interests and continue their status quo. So psychologically speaking, it is expected that faith in God A is shaken to some degree after a defeat. More comprehensive the defeat, greater the destruction (especially of places of worship which are the abodes of the deities), higher the body count, more the faith is shaken. Tribe "b" does not have to force their vanquished foes to adopt God B. Those in tribe "a" who felt hard done by earlier in the previous status quo as well as those who are more materially minded and seek opportunities to further their material lot would be tempted to check out God B for better payoffs in the hope of improving their condition under the new status quo. Now if there is a tribe "c" who had a mix of God A and God B believers in their midst observing the outcome of tribe "a" vs tribe "b" battle, it is natural for them (especially those in the upper echelons) to favor God B after the dust has settled.
People tend to mimic "successful" people. In ancient and medieval times, religious identity of people was hierarchically more important than other identities. So spread of a religion in those times can be expected to more or less track the military/economic/social/political success of their adherents. OSIT