Qualities to look for in a bride
The importance of marriage is hard to underestimate. It forms the backbone of a man’s life, his future, his hopes. Therefore it is of immense importance that the bride is to be chosen correctly. The seeming ease of the procedure must not mislead you. It does not boil down to making sure that your chosen one is a ‘nice person’. The danger here is to be ‘blinded’ by feeling and to disregard the voice of reason.
It is important to understand that the ‘formality’ of the process must not daunt you in the smallest measure. It is the reliance on feelings and passions that ought to. Such reliance is a concession to the devil.
You have got a life to lead, so instead of ensuring that you lead it in happiness, the devil arranges it so that it shall be led in agony and suffering of the marital mismatch. This is the ultimate cause of the many divorces in modern society, fatherless or motherless children, random sexual experiences which dust out one’s soul and turn it into a barren desert. This is the price one pays for rejecting to be ‘formal’ in choosing one’s bride or bridegroom.
Of course, the happiest match is when the bride is someone you feel deeply involved with in terms of your feelings and at the same time matching the criteria prescribed by Islam.
This situation, if not fully present, could be achieved by suggesting that one more principle may be introduced, that of the steadiness of one’s resolve to reform the qualities which are not present in full at the moment of decision-making. The resolve to reform to better piety, the resolve to seek medical assistance in ensuring child-bearing, the resolve to change the behaviour and assume the proper Muslim ways.
These things are indeed the ones that serve as the litmus paper in the process of choosing your fiancée.
The first thing to check is how serious the bride-to-be is in her attitude to Islam. This cannot be taken lightly. The religious component is the most serious one. “Indeed the woman is married for her religion, her wealth, and her beauty, so take the one with religion, and may your hands be dusty.” (Sahih at-Tirmidhi, 1086) It does not at all mean that the bride must have the outward religious appearance. She does not necessarily need to wear the hijab but she must be deeply pious in her heart. That is what you must find out at the time of courting your future wife. If that fails, the rest makes no sense. Only the pious heart will be your anchor in any rough seas of your life. Do not let it be overlooked.
Next on the list of importance is character. Look for a girl with moral behaviour, again, be not fooled by outward appearances, a girl of high morals will demonstrate them in a variety of life situations, you should take time to see it properly.
Look at her family, her mother and siblings. Is the family fertile? Fertility should form the last pillar of a Muslim family, one lauded and praised by Allah and one to be sought in any married life.
These three shall be the proper foundation of a Muslim marriage: inner piety, moral heart and the ability to have many children. These are the ones that will not let you down. It’s the lack of them that will.