Arranged Marriage vs Love Marriage, Islam’s Outlook

Marriage, wedding
The malaysian wedding couple in traditional dress © | Dreamstime.com

Couples share a sacred bond that permits both the man and woman to relish the wonders of their life together. This bond can be bestowed upon the couple either by their own choice or by their parents’ decision.

In today’s day and age, most of us consider arranged marriage to be a violation of our human rights, since it takes away our agency and allows our parents to make serious decisions on our behalf. . Younger generations now believe that only marriages based upon love can succeed. Yet we must not forget that arranged marriage also has a long and rich tradition.

So, why were these arranged marriages immensely successful?

In Islam, we Muslims are recommended to follow the sunnah of the Holy Prophet (SAW) in order to live a prosperous life. Arranged marriage is encouraged in Islam, as far as it is embraced by both the bride and the groom. Moreover, the Holy Prophet (SAW) advised his Ummah to find a religious partner who can bring you closer to Allah (SWT).

Regarding choosing a woman, the Holy Prophet (SAW) said, “A woman (or man) may be married for four things: for her wealth, for her noble descent, for her beauty or for her religion. Choose the one who is religious, lest your hands be rubbed with dust!” (Bukhari and Muslim)

It must also be ensured that both the man and the woman are under no pressure to enter the marriage by their parents, relatives, or even society. Their consent should be taken privately. Forced marriages are the main reason why the new generation despises arranged marriages.

Besides arranged marriages, what does Islam teaches us regarding love marriages?

“…Marry women of your choice, two or three or four; but if ye fear that ye shall not be able to deal justly with them, then only one…” (Al-Quran 4:3)

Islam gives us the right to choose our partner, but the current tradition of engaging in a relationship prior to matrimony is looked down upon. An easy fix to this, as proposed by Islam, is to actually get to know your desired person before tying the knot.

It is permissible in our religion to meet with our person of interest, all the while abiding by proper rules. Firstly, the only purpose of the meeting should be to look for a potential spouse, with both the man and woman should accompanied by a relative to prevent shaytan’s evil eye. Furthermore, the conversation should be curt and business-like, only discussing the important things.

The Holy Prophet (SAW) said, “Not one of you should meet a woman alone unless she is accompanied by a relative within the prohibited degrees” (Bukhari and Muslim)

If two people of opposite sexes are in a relationship, they should get married as soon as possible to avoid any further haram interaction.

Therefore, it can be concluded that Islam encourages arranged marriages, where neither partner is coerced into the union. Regarding love marriage, it is not encouraged but the best measure that can be taken is to get married soon under the laws and guidance of Islam.