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Few Pointers on Marriage

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  • Few Pointers on Marriage

    Pointers on Choosing Marriage Partners
    By Rabi'ah Hakeem

    In light of the experience of the past years, it is time to take stock
    and try to halt the ever-mounting tide of divorces among Muslims. It
    is not unusual today to find Muslim women (and even an occasional
    Muslim man) who, by the time they are 30 or 35, have been married
    three or four times, their children suffering again and again through
    the trauma of fatherless and broken homes. Accordingly, we may list a
    few essential points to be considered by both brothers and sisters in
    the process of choosing a partner in life (although the masculine
    pronoun has been used throughout for the sake of simplicity, the
    following is generally equally applicable to both men and women).

    1. Du'a. Unceasingly ask help and guidance from Allah, Most High, in
    the matter of finding and choosing a mate. As often as you feel it
    necessary, pray Salaah al-Istikhara, Islam's special prayer for
    guidance, in order to reach a suitable decision.

    2. Consult your heart. Listen to what your inner voice, the 'radar'
    which Allah has given you to guide you, tells you about the
    prospective partner. It is likely to be more correct than your mind,
    which often plays tricks and can rationalise almost any- thing. For
    many people, first impressions are often the most accurate.

    3. Enquire. Find out the reason why this man wants to marry you. Is he
    interested in you as an individual or will just any person do? Why is
    he not doing the logical thing, that is, to marry someone from his
    culture? If there is evidence that the primary reason for this
    marriage, despite claims to the contrary, is for convenience
    (greencard, money, property, etc.), forget it. This spells trouble.

    4. Get to know your prospective partner, within the limits of what is
    permissible in Islam, before deciding on marriage. Just ' seeing'
    someone once or twice in the company of others, who may be anxious for
    this marriage to take place, is simply not enough under today's
    conditions, where two per- sons of totally dis-similar backgrounds are
    meeting each other without the safeguards of families. Without
    violating Islam's prohibition about being alone, try to understand his
    nature, what makes him tick, his temperament, what he might be like to
    live with.

    5. Talk to several people who know your prospective partner, not just
    one, or have someone whom you can trust do this for you. Ask about him
    from various people, not just from his friends because they may
    conceal facts to do him a favour. And ask not only about his
    background, career, Islamicity, etc., but about such crucial matters
    as whether he gets angry easily; what he does when he is 'mad';
    whether he is patient, polite, considerate; how he gets along with
    people; how he relates to the opposite sex; what sort of relationship
    he has with his mother and father; whether he is fond of children;
    what his personal habits are, etc. And find out about his plans for
    the future from people who know him. Do they coincide with what he has
    told you? Go into as much detail as possible. Check out his plans for
    the future - where you will live and what your lifestyle will be, his
    attitudes toward money and possessions and the like. If you can't get
    answers to such crucial questions from people who know him, ask him
    yourself and try to make sure he is not just saying what he knows you
    want to hear. Too many people will make all kinds of promises before
    marriages in order to secure the partner they want but afterwards
    forget that they ever made them, (this naturally applies equally to
    women as to men).

    6. Find out about his family, his relations with his parents, brothers
    and sisters. What will his obligations be to them in the future? How
    will this affect where and under what conditions you will live? What
    are the character and temperament of each of his parents? Will they
    live with you or you with them? And are they pleased with his
    prospective marriage to you or not? Although it may not be the case in
    most Western marriages, among Muslims such issues are often crucial to
    the success or failure of a marriage, and answers to these questions
    need to be satisfactory to ensure a peaceful married life.

    7. Understand each other's expectations. Try to get a sense of your
    prospective partner's under- standing of the marriage relationship,
    how he will behave in various situations, and what he wants of you as
    his spouse. These are issues which should be discussed clearly and
    unambiguously as the negotiations progress, not left to become sources
    of disharmony after the marriage because they were never brought up
    beforehand. If you are too shy to ask certain questions, have a person
    you trust do it for you. At an advanced stage of the negotiations,
    such a discussion should include such matters as birth control, when
    children are to be expected, how they are to be raised, how he feels
    about helping with housework and with the children's upbringing,
    whether or not you may go to school or work, relations with his family
    and yours, and other vital issues.

    8. See him interacting with others in various situations. The more
    varied conditions under which you are able to observe your prospective
    partner, the more clues you will have as to his mode of dealing with
    people and circumstances.

    9. Find out what his understanding of Islam is and whether it is
    compatible with your own. This is a very important matter. Is he
    expecting you to do many things which you have not done up to this
    point? If he emphasises " Haraams", especially if you are a new
    Muslimah, and seems unable to tolerate your viewpoint, chances are
    your marriage will be in trouble unless you are flexible enough to
    accommodate yourself to his point of view and possibly a very
    restrictive lifestyle. Let him spell out to you clearly how he intends
    to practise Islam and how he wants you to practise it as his wife so
    there will be no misunderstandings later.

    10. Don't be in a hurry. So many marriages have broken because the
    partners are in such haste that they don't take time to make such
    vital checks as the ones outlined above and rush into things. Shocking
    as it may seem, marriages between Muslims which are contracted and
    then broken within a week or a month or a year have become common
    place occurrences among us. Don't add yourself to the list of
    marriage casualties because you couldn't take time or were too
    desperate for marriage to find out about or get to know the person
    with whom you plan to spend the rest of your life.

    11. Ask yourself, Do I want this man/woman to be the father/mother of
    my children? If it doesn't feel just right to you, think it over
    again. Remember, marriage is not just for today or tomorrow but for
    life, and for the primary purpose of building a family. If the person
    in question doesn't seem like the sort who would make a good parent,
    you are likely to find yourself struggling to raise your children
    without any help from him or her - or even with negative input - in
    the future.

    12. Never allow yourself to be pressured or talked into a marriage.
    Your heart must feel good about it, not someone else's. Again,
    allegations of "Islamicity" - he is pious, has a beard, frequents the
    Masjid, knows about Islam; she wears Hijab, does not talk to men- are
    not necessarily guarantees of a good partner for you or of a good
    marriage, but are only a part of a total picture. If an individual
    practises the Sunnah only in relation to worship or externals, chances
    are he /she has not really understood and is not really living Islam.
    Possessing the affection and Rahmah (mercy) which Islam enjoins
    between marriage partners is vital for a successful relationship, and
    these are the important traits to be looked for in a prospective

    13. Never consent to engaging in a marriage for a fixed period or in
    exchange for a sum of money. (Mut'a marriage). Such marriages are
    expressly forbidden in Islam and entering into them is a sinful act,
    as marriage must be entered into with a clear intention of it being
    permanent, for life, not for a limited and fixed duration.

    If these guidelines are followed, Insha' Allah the chances of making a
    mistake which may mar the remainder of your life may be minimised.

    Choosing a marriage partner is a most serious matter, perhaps the most
    serious decision you will ever make in your life since your partner
    can cause you either to be successful or to fail miserably, in the
    tests of this life and, consequently, in the Here- after. This
    decision needs to be made with utmost care and caution, repeatedly
    seeking guidance from your Lord.

    If everything checks out favourable, well and good, best wishes for
    happiness together here and in the Hereafter. If not, better drop the
    matter and wait. Allah your Lord knows all about you, His servant, and
    has planned your destiny and your partner for you. Be sure that He
    will bring you together when the time is right. As the Qur'an enjoins,
    you must be patient until He opens a way for you, and for your part
    you should actively explore various marriage leads and possibilities.

    Two words addressed to brothers arc In order here. If you are marrying
    or have married a recent convert to Islam, you must be very patient
    and supportive with her. Remember, Islam is new to her, and chances
    are that she will not be able to take on the whole of the Shari'ah at
    once - nor does Islam require this, if you look at the history of
    early Islam. In your wife 's efforts to conform herself to her new
    faith and culture, she needs time and a great deal of support, love,
    help and understanding from you, free of interference from outsiders.
    It is best to let her make changes at her own speed when her inner
    being is ready for them rather than demanding that she do this or
    that, even if it means that some time will elapse before she is ready
    to follow certain Islamic injunctions. If the changes come from within
    herself, they are likely to be sincere and permanent; otherwise, if
    she makes changes because of pressure from you or from others, she may
    always be unhappy with the situation and may look for ways out of it.
    You can help her by being consistent in your own behaviour. So many
    Muslims apply those parts of the Qur'an or Sunnah which suit them and
    abandon the rest, with resulting confusion in the minds of their wives
    and children. Thus, while firmly keeping the reins in your hands, you
    should look at your own faults, not hers, and be proud and happy with
    the efforts she is making. Make allowances, be considerate, and show
    your appreciation of the difficult task she is carrying out by every
    possible means. This will cause her to love and respect you, your
    culture, and Islam to grow infinitely faster than a harsh, dominating,
    forceful approach ever could.

    Finally, a word of warning. Certain situations have occurred in which
    women, posing as Muslims (or perhaps actually having made Shahaadah),
    have deceived and made fools of numbers of Muslim men. Such women may
    be extremely cunning and devious, operating as poor, lonely
    individuals in need of help and/or husbands. The brothers who fall
    into this net may be shown false photos, given false information or
    promises, cheated in all sorts of ways, and finally robbed of anything
    the conniving lady can manage to take from them. As was said, it is
    wise to check out any prospective partner with local Muslims who know

    Keep your eyes open and take your time. Since marriage is for life,
    for eternity, hurrying into it for any reason whatsoever is the act of
    a foolish or careless person who has only himself or herself to blame
    if things go wrong.
    You are not aware of the consequences that would result (if you were granted what you desire) because what you seek might be to your detriment. (O soul) be conscious that your Master is more aware about your well-being than you are.

    ~Ibn Al-Jawzee

  • #2
    May we all benefit from the knowledge you have shared and you be rewarded greatly
    .لا نريد زعيما يخاف البيت الإبيض
    نريد زعيما يخاف الواحد الأحد
    دولة الإسلامية باقية


    • #3
      alhamdulillah sister, and excellent, excellent post!

      Sis Ammarah
      Please Re-update your Signature


      • #4
        Great Post! :up:
        Thanks for the tips... :D
        Please Re-update your Signature


        • #5
          You are not aware of the consequences that would result (if you were granted what you desire) because what you seek might be to your detriment. (O soul) be conscious that your Master is more aware about your well-being than you are.

          ~Ibn Al-Jawzee



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