Love Marriage and Islam
Assalam o alaikum,
‘Love marriage is permissible in Islam.’
‘Islam gives me right to marry with the person whom I like.’
This is the sentence we often hear whenever we try to help a young girl or boy from immoral or prohibited way of marriage. And this is perhaps the reason of our Muslim youth for indulging in various ‘Haram’ acts or selecting prohibited ways of marriage. In this article I will try to make right of all such related views regarding marriage or love marriage.
Yeah Islam permits love marriage but, what type of love it must be? And how should you express this love? are the questions worth considering. Before we understand this issue thoroughly, let us have a look in the loves and likings and love marriage that are argued to be permissible in Islam and are, misfortunately, in vogue these days. Following are some instances of these likings or love.
Mostly it happens that your child comes to you and says that so and so is my class fellow and we like each other since few months and so we want to marry each other.
Often you experience to hear someone saying ‘I was interested in my colleague and we had a very good friendship with each other. As you know Islam allows love marriage, so we got married’.
This is not done. The worst case is that when parents ask their children to marry someone, the usual reply is:
“let us spend some time with each other, let us have some dinners or outings so that we may come to decision whether we are the perfect match of each other’s or not because this is our Sharai right to like each other before we get married.”
Now come to the first question as to what type of love does Islam permits?
There are some rules to be strictly followed by a Muslim. Firstly looking a ‘Non Mehram’ is Haram in Islam except from the first unintended sight.
Jareer ibn ‘Abdullah [may Allah be pleased with him] said: “I asked the Messenger of Allah [P.B.U.H] about an accidental glance at a woman. He commanded me to turn my gaze away.” [Al-Tirmidhi]
The Messenger of Allah [P.B.U.H] said: “O Ali [his cousin], do not follow a glance with another, for you will be forgiven for the first, but not for the second.”
Then mix gathering is strictly prohibited in Islam.
Islam orders both men and women to lower their gaze while they are in public places.
Islam does not permit journey, even a pilgrimage journey, with non permissible (non mehram) then how can we validate this free outing of a young girl and boy for the purpose of this so called liking before marriage?
Islam liked women to be veiled, to be in her home; and not to go out of her home but in case of necessity.
Islam lays down some criteria for this liking. I will not go in depth for these criteria because this is not the issue we are discussing. Some basic aspects to be kept in mind include religiousness, good nature, compatibility, decent family, and physical and mental health.
Now a question arises in the mind: ‘if Islam prohibits all the means by which one can select and like one’s spouse then how can one select a spouse having above stated qualities?’
Answer is very simple. Islam allows love marriage, it does not promote it. Love marriage is permissible; love is not an essential element to the marriage. And the above stated qualities can be easily judged by any of your family member, not essentially by yourself.
Now come to the second question: how should one express the love if one feels for someone? Even if you loved someone within the limits fixed by Islam, you are not free to have free meetings with that person before marriage. The only and best solution to it is to marry that person. Simply he or she should talk to their household to proceed for it. If a boy wants to see his spouse before he gets married to her The Shariah permits the intended spouses to see each other for the purpose of selection and also permits asking and giving opinions if asked (without it being considered as gheebat under certain conditions.)
Abu Hurairah narrates that the Messenger of Allah (May Allah bless him and grant him peace) said “when one with whose religion and character you are satisfied asks your daughter in marriage then accede to his request. If you do not do so then there will be temptation in the earth and extensive corruption”. (Tirmidhi)
Acting within the limits of Islam if a man feels some attraction towards a woman whom it is permissible for him to marry her, and vice versa, there is no answer to the problem except marriage. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “We do not think that there is anything better for those who love one another than marriage.” (Narrated by Ibn Maajah, 1847; classed as saheeh by al-Busayri and by Shaykh al-Albaani in al-Silsilah al-Saheehah, 624)
Islam is a complete code of life and being on the right path we can’t come across with any social problem. If I say that all the social evils in today’s society are only due to our ignorance and neglecting of Islamic teachings, then no one can challenge my this statement. Let us have a look in the above stated instances. What happens if we allow our youth to like and select their perfect matches their own.
Here they go for outings, for dinners and have frequent chatting with each other. At the time of decision how horrible situation it may be if let’s suppose girl says that she is willing to get married but boy says that she couldn’t appealed him or vice versa. Or in second instance it happens that both are not willing to get married, now think for a while is this the honor that Islam gives to women and to marriage? No, not at all. Allah has possessed a lot of respect to both women and the contract of marriage and having this way we are disgracing both.
Now think as a husband. Will he like to hear that her wife had frequent chats and free contacts with some boys before she got married to him? Ali Akber Mazaheri writes:
“The notion that a man and a woman must 'know' each other before they decide to marry, so that they may then be able to live happily together is an illusion. Had there been any element of truth and validity in this, the divorce and separation rates in societies which practice it would not have shown a steady rise. Similarly, the marriages which take place without such pre-marital contacts would not have been known to last happily.”
The truth is somewhat inconsistent. The analytics show that the separation rate is high in the societies having such practice.
Islam has not left us to follow our whims and fancies. We have been taught the best method of selecting a suitable spouse. The most important criterion is piety or religiousness.
The above discussion by no means intends to prove that the will of bride and groom is not essential for the contract of marriage. Arranged marriages are allowed and promoted in Islam as long as they are accepted by both the bride and the groom. Reaching upon specific age for marriage if you are not attracted to someone then the arrange marriage is the best for you.