Most Muslims believe marriage is a fundamental building block of life. Marriage is an agreement between a man and woman to live respectively as husband and wife. The marriage in islam is known as a nikah.
For most Muslims the motivation behind marriage is to:
- keep faithful to one another for the rest of their lives
- Have youngsters and bring them up in the Muslim faith
Marriage in islam is referenced many times in the Qur’an, which Muslims believe is the word of God, as revealed to the Prophet Muhammad, in this way,
“And among His signs is this, that He created for you mates from among yourselves, that you may dwell in peace and tranquility with them, and He has put love and mercy between your (hearts)”.Qur’an 30:21
Selecting a Spouse in Islam:
Our beloved Prophet, Hazrat Mohammad (P.B.U.H) spent the simplest life and he is the perfect example that comes in the minds of world Muslims when we think of simplicity.
Being his Ummah (Followers) we must replicate his practices and teachings. When it comes to marriage in islam, his Sunnah is to make the marriage an easy and affordable affair, but unfortunately today a lot of customs and rituals have crept in the process of marriage, most of which have absolutely no concept in Islam.
Many of these processes are no more than a boast and a show. Simple Nikaah saves us from many other problems, for example, an open ground for the spread of indecency, music/dance, and the mix gathering of the sexes; thus playing straight into the hands of the Shaytaan.
So much wealth is squandered in such marriages which becomes a burden on the poor class of the society. When the lower class of the society is unable to bear the expenses of marriage, then this ultimately leads to the marriage delay of poor girls.
Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi was sallam) said,
“A women is normally looked for as a spouse for her wealth, beauty, honorability, or religiousness (adherence to Islam), however pick a religious woman and you will succeed.” (Sahih Muslim)
And he also added,
“A woman is married for four things, i.e., her wealth, her family status, her beauty and her religion. You ought to wed the religious woman (else) you will be a loser.”(Bukhari) And he said, “The entire world is a provision, and the best object of advantage of the world is the pious woman.“(Muslim)
The same holds true when looking for a husband, as the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said,
“When someone with whose religion and character you are satisfied asks to marry your daughter, comply with his request. If you do not do so, there will be corruption and great evil on earth“(Tirmidhi)
Obviously, the two wedding souls need to agree to wed each other and they cannot be compelled to wed one another.
The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said,
“A woman whom has been recently married has more right concerning herself than her guardian, and a virgin’s consent must have gotten some information about herself…“(Bukhari and Muslim)
Rules of Al-Khutbah (Request to marry a woman and the acceptance of the proposal)
The man has permission to see her face before accepting to marry as the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said, “Go and look at her (the woman you are considering marrying) because this will help your time together to be strengthened.” (Ahmad)
After a man and woman have agreed to marry, they have to remember that the man is still not her mahram (men prohibited to her, including her father, brothers, sons, maternal and paternal uncles, and nephews).
This means they can not still deal with one another as partners in any way (such as shaking hands, gazing at one another, being alone together, going out together, etc.), or go out with one another as we see people in the west doing.
Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi was sallam) said, “Whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day, let him not have a private audience with a woman without her mahram.”(Ahmad).
The Marriage Ceremony (Nikaah) includes below formalities/rituals:
Consent: ‘Aishah(R) asked Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi was sallam) if women must be asked for their permission of marriage. Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi was sallam) replied, “Yes” she said, ‘The virgin is asked for her permission but she gets shy. Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi was sallam) said, “Her silence is her permission.” (Bukhari and Muslim)
The Wallee: (Woman’s Guardian) Legal guardian representing the bride: Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi was sallam) said, “There is no nikah except with a wallee.” ( Ahmad , Abu Dawood, Tirmidhi)
Two Witnesses: Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi was sallam) said, “There is no marriage in islam except with a wallee and trustworthy witnesses.” (Sahih- Bayhaqee) Also, “There is no marriage except with a wallee and two witnesses.” (Sahih Al-Jaami’
The Mahr (Dowry): Allah says (what means): “And give to the women their dowry with a good heart, but if they out of their own good pleasure remit any part of it to you, take it and enjoy it without fear of any harm.” (Al-Nisa4:4) The mahr can be of any amount, Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi was sallam) said, “Look for one even if it was an iron ring.” (Bukhari and Muslim)
The woman is not obliged to give the man anything at the time of the wedding, as is done in some cultures.
Acts to be avoided in Muslim wedding
A true muslims will be careful to not act as the disbelievers do regarding their mixing of men and women, wearing tuxedos and white wedding gowns, exchanging rings, kissing in public, etc. Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi was sallam) said, “Whoever resembles a people is one of them.” (Abu Dawood)
Islam recognizes that marriage isn’t just simply a method of expanding humans’ race. It is a means for guaranteeing the survival of the individuals who are as of now here.
By giving us a caring life partner, Allah gives us a steady source of support and comfort. Should that source of help and support run dry? Allah has no intentions of making an unhappy couple to stay together.
Thus he comprehends that a marriage without love is detrimental to the health of everyone included, thus he allows divorce in circumstances where it will really better the lives of the couple looking for separation.
This makes Islam arguably the most reformist religion with regards to marriage and divorce. It is important to remember, in any case, that the Quran and Muhammad agree there is no greater satisfaction than being married.
No measure of wealth or good fortune can surpass a single night spent in the arms of a loving spouse.