The Brief History of Islam in Malaysia

Malay Muslims in Malaysia has practiced the teaching of Islam since the beginning of fifteen century. A Chinese Muslim, Ma Huan, (who had joined the expedition of Admiral Cheng Ho to Malacca) in the beginning of fifteen century mentioned that he was very interested in the Islamic environment which existed in Malacca at that time. In his book, Ying-yai Sheng-Ian, which was published in 1451 stated that
Megat Iskandar Shah, the successor of Parameswara, had converted to Islam in the old age. He also explained how Megat Iskandar Shah was influenced by the situation of Malacca when the Muslim traders from Arab, Indian and Pasai came to the state. This led Malacca to be the centre of the Muslim trade.(1) The translation made by one of European historians, W.P.Groeneveldt, on Ma Huan’s report would document the extent of Islamic influence in Malacca as follows:

“The king (of Malacca) and the people are all Mohammedans and they carefully observe the tenets of this religion”

Dr. Saodah Abd Rahman
Department of Usuluddin and Comparative Religion (IRKH)
International Islamic University Malaysia,

About the Author:
Dr. Saodah Abd Rahman is a Lecturer at the Department of Usuluddin and Comparative Religion (IRKH) International Islamic University Malaysia,.

For academic interests, the author is able to be contacted via e-mail at:

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  • Marriage and Family Values
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How to cite this article?

Dr. Saodah Abd Rahman. (2010). Marriage and Family Values in Malay Muslim Society from Islamic Perspective. Janang Bil:11 Bandar Seri Begawan: Akademi Pengajian Brunei