100%muslim. The phrase is almost inescapable. You hear it everywhere and almost everyday. But is it true? The constitution says Maldives is a islamic country. But the constitution and laws are not 100% in accordance with the Koran.
Repeatedly we hear that Maldivians embraced Islam. Peacefully.
What about the historical records? The Isdhoo Loamaafaanu? We have brought some of it in a previous post - "The earliest surviving Maldivian government record, etched onto copper in 1194 records that Buddhist monks from the island of Isdhoo in Laamu atoll were taken in triumph to Malé and beheaded by 'the great king Gadanaadeethiya the Prosperous, the uplifter of the noble Lunar Dynasty... defender of the entire hundred thousand islands.' Pursuing a policy of Islamisation, the king 'refrained from killing those infidels who entered the faith of the noble Prophet Muhammad, got them to utter shahaadhath and freed them having performed circumcision on them.'
They were killing anyone who refused to enter Islam? Peaceful indeed!!
To their credit, some people are speaking out.
Inscribed on copper plates buried at some of these destroyed Buddist temples are accounts of how Arab missionaries beheaded 200 priests in just one day in Male', simply for refusing to renounce their religion. True to the non-violent nature of the Buddist religion, they did not organize an opposition. They did not fight back. They just calmly submitted to be beheaded like goats to the slaughter on Muslim holy days. And more importantly, they were Maldivians. The best and the brightest of them!
Is everybody in Maldives a Muslim? No. I personally know many athiests, Buddhists and Christians. I know one person who is a Hindhu and another who claims to be a pagan. But the change is coming. I have seen in some writings where the Maldives is now described as a predominantly Muslim country.
100% Muslim? No. Peaceful conversion? No.
It can be repeated a million times. The ignorant and the misinformed may believe it. But it is not true. It is a lie.