Monday, November 28, 2005

Akad Nikah in Johor

Drove down to Johor Bharu last weekend to attend our dear friends’ Zaza and Hardy’s ‘Akad Nikah’ ceremony. We wouldn’t have missed it for anything and as we keep saying, we are so fortunate that Hardy met Zaza. If you are reading this, you both know what I mean.

We left our house in Kelana Jaya at around 6:30pm, Friday evening. This time, we didn’t bring Rahil along and left her with my in-laws.

It was bumper to bumper from the minute we turned into the Federal highway till just after Port Dickson (took us about 3 hours). After PD, I drove quite fast and might have exceeded the speed limit at a few places. Hope I don’t get any summons.

Anyway, we finally reached Johor Bahru safe but tired at around 12am. Hardy had already booked us a room at Hotel Seri Malaysia, Larkin. The facilities are nothing to shout about but at RM100 per night, I guess we can’t complain much. Had some snacks with the groom who looked a bit haggard but was quite cool.

In the morning all of us gathered at the hotel lobby. It was an honor for us to be part of the groom’s party. We left together in a convoy and set off for Zaza’s house from the hotel around 10:40 am in the morning.

For those not familiar with Malay marriages and customs, the Akad Nikah is a verbal contract between the bride’s father and the groom (in this case Hardy) and presided by a Kadi. The most important part is when the bride’s father or representative (in this case the Kadi) says: I marry thee to (name of bride) with the mas kahwin of Ringitt Malaysia*.

The groom has to reply “Aku terima nikahnya (name of bride) dengan mas kahwinnya Ringitt Malaysia * tunai” which when translated to English means: “I accept this marriage with (name of bride) with a mas kahwin of Ringitt Malaysia - - * cash”.

*Mas Kawin: A nominal fee that seals the signing of the marriage contract. It varies from state to state in Malaysia.

The groom has to say all of this in one breath. If not satisfied, the witness can ask him to repeat it again. Hardy did it in one go. I know of some guys who were so nervous and had to repeat it a couple of times before the witnesses were finally satisfied.

Of course there are other formalities and “adat” or customs, which are quite unique to Malay weddings. I will not go into it and will leave it for the newly married couple to write about it in their respective blogs.

The Sultanah of Johor was there too and she looked quite elegant. First time I ever attended a wedding in Malaysia with royalty in attendance.

I talked to Hardy just before they left for Holland yesterday and asked him how married life feels like. His reply: “I feel wonderful.”

Congratulations and best wishes for the newly married couple.

3 comments:

BabyPink said...

we have almost exactly the same marriage customs. i'm talking, of course, of the meranao way. the akad nikah, we call "kawing" and the parties (bride's father and groom) both repeat the things they have to say thrice.:)

congrats to your friends.:)

Adam said...

Babypink: Its interesting that marriage customs are different even though we are all Muslims. Kawing sounds a lot like Kahwin - the Malay word for marriage.

Jen said...

Sounds complicated! I don't think that I would wanna get married there just because the marriage vows alone would trigger a severe coronary.
Best wishes for the bride and groom!

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