Why Is Marriage Important In Islam?

These days, it’s not only finances that discourage people from getting married, but also the daunting logistics of life; the desire to have one’s own home; a stable job; a luxurious automobile; and (In some cases), obtaining a higher degree through a Darwinian educational system. If we surmise that, people involved in romantic relationships are actually climbing a “love mountain”. And that at the zenith of this “mountain” is where marriage is to be found, then this writer would regard the daunting logistics of life as possible “landmines” scattered across the love mountain that could threaten lovers as they scale it to the top where they will find marriage. Despite all these then why is marriage still important in Islam?

At any stage of one’s life, lovers will always find the love mountain over-crowded with other “climbers”. They climb for different reasons. Therefore, it will be very difficult to know how many of these will actually make it to the top where they will find marriage. To be sure, there are those climbing this mountain just for fun – their intention is not matrimonial – therefore they are not interested in scaling to the top. They are content in hanging around the edges of the mountain and having sex – as long as they can. But the nights of enjoyment and pleasure will not continue forever.

The Humanity Of The Woman Is Stated Eloquently In The Muslim Holy Book- The Qur’an

When two people are engaged in a romantic relationship, it’s as if they are scaling the “love mountain” at the top of which they are supposed to find marriage. Islam, knowing that, some of these lovers may have a knack in carrying out surreptitious searches for gullible men or women wanting to scale this mountain, has placed some checks and balances to protect everyone. The Prophet of Islam, Muhammad (peace be upon him), stated more than fourteen hundred years ago that:

“We have not seen anything better for (two) lovers other than marriage.”

In other words, the epitome of every romantic relationship is tying the knot. We can therefore, conveniently say that, marriage is what one finds at the very top of every love mountain. There are those who said ” Yes” to love too soon and “No” to sex too late. Least did they realize that their partners wanted them only as usable and expendable commodities. In sub-Saharan Africa and parts of South Asia where poverty is rife, young girls are often driven into prostitution in order to fend for themselves and for their families. They are sometimes saddled with the burden of unwanted pregnancies, HIV/AIDS, and children engendered out of wedlock,

In the midst of the darkness that engulfed the world, the divine revelation echoed in the wilderness of the Arabian Desert with a fresh, noble and universal message to humanity. God says in the Holy Qur’an:

” O mankind be dutiful to your Lord,

Who created you from a single person (Adam),

And from him (Adam), He created his wife [ Hawwa’ (Eve) ].

And from them both, He created many men and women,

And fear Allah through whom you demand (your mutual rights),

And (do not cut the relations of ) the wombs (kinship),

Surely God is Ever All-Watcher over you.” (Qur’an, 4:1)

“From him (Adam)” here refers to the kind – from the same kind, or of like nature, God created his mate. A scholar who pondered about this verse states: It is believed that there is no text, old or new, that deals with the humanity of the woman from all aspects with such amazing brevity, eloquence, depth and originality as this divine decree.”

Islam Stresses The Natural And Noble Conception Of Marriage

In stressing this natural and noble conception, the Qur’an states further:

” It is He who created

You from a single soul,

And made his mate of

like nature, in order

That he might dwell

With her (in love)…” (Qur’an, 7:189).

Thus, he might dwell in her in true love, not fake love which could be deleterious to the individual and society. In today’s world, we may be smarter, more competitive, mobile, technologically savvy and adept at forming relationships, but we might not be all that smart at keeping our marriages intact, How are we smart in making sure that every romantic relationship ends in a marriage? At the foot of the “love mountain” is marriage proposal and at its summit is marriage itself. The Prophet of Islam says:

“We have not seen anything better for (two) lovers other than marriage.”

Between the marriage proposal and the marriage itself is the Mahr, a marriage gift, that is presented to the wife-to-be by her lover, and is included in the nuptial contract.

Islamic Tradition Encouraged And Instructed Marriage

A group of three men came to the houses of the wives of the Prophet (p.b.u.h.) asking how the Prophet (p.b.u.h.) worshiped Allah, and when they were informed about that, they considered their worship insufficient and said, “Where are we from the Prophet (p.b.u.h.) as his past and future sins have been forgiven.” Then one of them said, “I will perform prayer throughout the night forever.” The other said, ‘I will fast throughout the year.” The third said, “I will keep away from women and will not marry forever.” The Prophet (p.b.u.h.) came to them and said, “Are you the same people who said so-and-so? By Allah, I fear Allah and I am conscious of Him better than you; yet I fast and break my fast, I perform Prayer and sleep, and I (also) marry women. So he who does not follow my Sunnah (tradition) is not from me.

Sunnah here refers to tradition or my way of life. It was also narrated that ‘Aa’ishah (one of the Prophet’s wife) said: The Messenger of Allah (p.b.u.h.)said: “Marriage is part of my Sunnah, and whoever does not follow my Sunnah has nothing to do with me.” This writer does not know of anyone among the Sahaabah (companions of the Prophet) who refrained from marriage because of seeking or spreading knowledge. The scholars among the Sahaabah; who narrated traditions of the Prophet (The Hadiths); and from whom knowledge and understanding of the religion was learned; and had students who learned from them; were all married. I do not know of anyone among them who refrained from marriage or who told any of his students to do so in order to be free to learn and study, or for any other purpose.

Procreation Is A Way For Nature To Preserve Species

Procreation is an extremely important way for nature to preserve species. All living things today including humans would be non-existent had it not been due to procreation. But why is marriage particularly important for procreation? One might ask: Don’t the animals procreate easily without getting married? Yes, they do. But are we animals too? We have been bestowed so many favors by God that make us different from animals. One of the gifts is the gift of the intellect, that makes us to not behave like animals. As civilized beings, we are bound by the existence of certain rules and order.

Some animals kill their young but we as humans don’t. Some animals like dogs do mate in the open unabashed – we don’t and why should we? As humans, our lives need to be governed by certain dos and don’ts. Procreation is no exception to this. Yes, we need to procreate but we need to do it in a certain prescribed way that is within the institution of marriage. And yes, marriage indeed is a blessing from God and apart from procreation there are so many other social benefits of marrying and starting a family.

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