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Old 02-03-2014, 10:35 PM
 
Location: East coast
613 posts, read 892,082 times
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Because of their religion, Islam, these places are tied to the Middle East and also through Arab traders in the past, Arabic influences on their past scripts, loanwords etc.

However, there is still so much that makes Asian Muslims (those outside and further east than the Middle East at least) different from Middle Eastern culture. Do Middle Eastern influences extend outside of religion to many of these places? Or in terms of most aspects of culture, be they food, non-religious clothing, regular ways of life, non-religious festivals etc. they retain their original culture's influences far more.
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Old 02-03-2014, 10:45 PM
 
Location: Jakarta, Indonesia
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Of course middle-eastern culture exist with Islam, but not as much in Indonesia and Islam itself have been partially influenced with local believes and practices rather than being totally on its dominating force. I think Pakistan and Bangladesh is fully fledged with Islamic culture more, as in comparison to Indonesia. In Indonesia actually irt varies, like for example the Acehness favors Middle-East more and have islamic culture, but not as much in provinces like Java or Lombok
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Old 02-03-2014, 11:05 PM
 
Location: Melbourne, Australia
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Well Muslim or not, India shares some similarities with the Middle East. The Turkic tribes like Timur Lent/Tamberlaine who founded the Timurid dynasty moved into India in the 14th century, followed by the Mughals, also from Central Asia, and they spread Islam, near Eastern architecture (e.g. Taj Mahal, of Persian/Iraqi/Arabic style), food (unleavened breads, pilaf). Islam furthered influenced the area, I think that's why there are so many Indians in Dubai and they feel an affinity.

There is less influence once you get past India. Bangladesh seems to retain more 'Indian' type culture, e.g. the women wear colourful saris instead of the dour black cloaks in Pakistan. Muslim India is sort of a transition zone. Indonesia is most different, but even here Arabic culture - from linguistic terms, food and a bit of ancestry is evident.
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Old 02-03-2014, 11:12 PM
 
Location: East coast
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I wonder if India didn't have the centuries of Muslim rule, would it be seen as forming a bloc with the eastern and south-eastern Asian countries to the east of it more than today?

If there wasn't more of the Persian-style buildings like the Taj Mahal, would India look more like Indonesia and Cambodia in architecture, and have more rice-based food rather than wheat-based foods etc., perhaps? It would be interesting to speculate.

Going by geography too, the Indian subcontinent does share climate features and ecology with tropical Asia further east, for example, elephants, monsoonal rainfall for its forests etc., more than the Middle East, but of course, culture and conquest doesn't always follow natural borders. Before the arrival of the Abrahamic religions, Hinduism and Buddhism would have dominated this region and those eastern religions have different qualities (cyclic view of time, belief in rebirth) than the later western ones.
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Old 02-03-2014, 11:20 PM
 
Location: Melbourne, Australia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markovian process View Post
I wonder if India didn't have the centuries of Muslim rule, would it be seen as forming a bloc with the eastern and south-eastern Asian countries to the east of it more than today?

If there wasn't more of the Persian-style buildings like the Taj Mahal, would India look more like Indonesia and Cambodia in architecture, and have more rice-based food rather than wheat-based foods etc., perhaps? It would be interesting to speculate.

Going by geography too, the Indian subcontinent does share climate features and ecology with tropical Asia further east, for example, elephants, monsoonal rainfall for its forests etc., more than the Middle East, but of course, culture and conquest doesn't always follow natural borders.
Well India is just it's own thing, it really is a sub-continent, although it has influenced South-East and to a lesser extent East (mostly in religion) Asia. It has also influenced the Near East, like Ashoka's dynasty extended far as Afghanistan and introduced Buddhism there. Buddhists going along the Silk Road also established monasteries there.

Well in many ways I would say India IS more like SEA and E Asia. Spiritually, aside from Muslims, certainly so. Buddhism is not an offshoot of Hinduism, but share a similar 'eastern' worldview as contrasted to the 'western' worldview informed by Abrahamic religion. Cyclical vs linear time is one of the major differences between thought in the East and West. Rice is still the most common crop in most of India, especially the south, and the architecture of southern India has more in common with the Indic architecture of SEA. Not sure if you've heard of the Cholas and the Cholan dynasty, and the Tamils as well, who influenced a lot of the architecture and cuisine of parts of Indo-China, the Burmese, Khmer and the Javanese kingdom.
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Old 02-03-2014, 11:22 PM
 
Location: Jakarta, Indonesia
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Maybe not as much to Indonesia, architecture of Bali (or to be precise pre-islamic architecture) didn't really looked like Indian temples... but maybe im just too ignorant to see it through, the Mahabodi temple in India seems like very interesting ancient Indian style of temple building, to an extent Prambanan temple in Indonesia do have obvious Indian influence.
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Old 02-04-2014, 11:38 PM
 
201 posts, read 264,849 times
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There are also differences from an ethnic standpoint. Middle-Eastern Muslims are generally of semitic Arab stock while Pakistanis/Bangladeshis are of Dravidian/etc. stock. (Likewise, Indonesians and Malaysians are Austronesian).

This is interesting to think about because Iran and Turkey are considered part of the Middle East but their peoples (Persian and Turkic, respectively) are not of Arab stock. Not sure if there is a correlation but you will also notice that those two countries seem to be more liberal with regards to Islam unlike their semitic neighbors.
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Old 02-05-2014, 03:57 AM
 
Location: Melbourne, Australia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kanjelman7 View Post
There are also differences from an ethnic standpoint. Middle-Eastern Muslims are generally of semitic Arab stock while Pakistanis/Bangladeshis are of Dravidian/etc. stock. (Likewise, Indonesians and Malaysians are Austronesian).

This is interesting to think about because Iran and Turkey are considered part of the Middle East but their peoples (Persian and Turkic, respectively) are not of Arab stock. Not sure if there is a correlation but you will also notice that those two countries seem to be more liberal with regards to Islam unlike their semitic neighbors.
Pakistanis and North Indians are mostly Indo-European, although Dravidians once extended as far as Pakistan. Pakistan is stricter than Bangladesh but of course not to the extent of Saudi Arabia or Iran. Persians are related to a lot of Pakistanis and Pashtuns from Afghanistan.
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Old 02-05-2014, 04:24 AM
 
Location: West Jakarta + Tangerang
376 posts, read 742,424 times
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I think India is a country in South Asia roomates are closer with SEA asian and E.Asian.. Compared to countries in the south and west asian . although physically they resemble the pakistanis.
Indonesia feel an affinity to the Middle East ? I think NOT .. because we assume they are different people and other people ... but religion is the same " islam "..
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Old 02-05-2014, 03:58 PM
 
Location: Melbourne, Australia
9,781 posts, read 16,231,639 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stevania01 View Post
I think India is a country in South Asia roomates are closer with SEA asian and E.Asian.. Compared to countries in the south and west asian . although physically they resemble the pakistanis.
Indonesia feel an affinity to the Middle East ? I think NOT .. because we assume they are different people and other people ... but religion is the same " islam "..
I would say there is still some influence, especially via Islam, but yeah on the whole of course pretty different cultures.
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