We use cookies to enhance your experience on our website. By continuing to use our website, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. You can change your cookie settings at any time. Find out more Brunei - Oxford Islamic Studies Online
Select Translation What is This? Selections include: The Koran Interpreted, a translation by A.J. Arberry, first published 1955; The Qur'an, translated by M.A.S. Abdel Haleem, published 2004; or side-by-side comparison view
Chapter: verse lookup What is This? Select one or both translations, then enter a chapter and verse number in the boxes, and click "Go."
:
  • Previous Result
  • Results
  • Highlight On / Off
  • Look It Up What is This? Highlight any word or phrase, then click the button to begin a new search.
  • Next Result

Brunei

Source:
The Islamic World: Past and Present What is This? Accessible coverage of Islam from the seventh century to the twenty-first century

    Related Content

    Brunei

    Brunei is a tiny, oil-rich sultanate located in Southeast Asia on the northwest coast of the island of Borneo. The country is bound on the north by the South China Sea and on all other sides by the Malaysian state of Sarawak, which also divides the country into two parts.

    Brunei probably adopted Islam during the 1400s, or possibly as early as the 1300s. During this time, the first leader of Brunei to rule as a sultan was installed by the sultan of the Malaysian state of Johore. Islam provided a unifying base for religion and politics. Brunei supported itself by trading jungle produce and attained the status of empire during the 1500s. By the 1800s, however, because of internal disagreements, European colonial expansion, and piracy, Brunei was near disintegration. In 1888 Brunei became a British protectorate, a move that may have saved the country. Britain supported the government while Brunei's sultan maintained responsibility for the country's customs, traditions, and religious affairs. They enjoyed a friendly relationship for nearly a century.

    Substantial oil deposits were discovered in Brunei in 1929 . Production was expanded to offshore oil and gas fields in the early 1960s. During the course of the twentieth century, Brunei became wealthier and more self-sufficient. Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddin addressed the concerns of Brunei's poor with the creation of a social welfare system. To promote Islam, he built one of Asia's largest mosques and subsidized the hajj for many Muslims.

    In 1959 a new constitution returned much of the governing power to the sultan. Britain still maintained a presence and even tried to install a democratic government. Meanwhile, tensions mounted between the common people and the ruling elite. The socialist Brunei People's Party (BPP) formed and staged an unsuccessful rebellion in 1962 . The ruling elite reversed its stand on adopting democracy. Although invited to join the newly created Malaysian Federation during this period, Brunei declined, and instead became self-governing in 1971 . Full independence from Great Britain came on January 1, 1984.

    Today two–thirds of Brunei's population of 350,000 are Muslim. Many Chinese immigrants, who make up about 15 percent of the population, and people from small indigenous tribal groups have converted to Islam. Other religions include Buddhism and Christianity. Brunei is still ruled by a sultan, who encourages Islamic codes of behavior. The same family has ruled Brunei for over six centuries. The country's main exports continue to be oil, natural gas, and petroleum products.

    Brunei's leaders are concerned that increasing integration into the world economy may undermine the country's internal social order. Today there is a rift between those who want an Islamic state and those who are more open to Western values. The role of Islam in Brunei government will continue to be examined and contested. See also Great Britain; Sultan.

    • Previous Result
    • Results
    • Highlight On / Off
    • Look It Up What is This? Highlight any word or phrase, then click the button to begin a new search.
    • Next Result
    Oxford University Press

    © 2020. All Rights Reserved. Cookie Policy | Privacy Policy | Legal Notice