Coping strategies in marital union in Islam
And among His signs is this, that He created for you mates from among yourselves, that you may dwell in tranquility with them, and He has put love and mercy between your hearts. Undoubtedly in these are signs for those who reflect.”(Quran 30: 21)Quran 30:21)
“Yes. Marriage is a lottery,” “No,It is not. It is not meant to be!.” No matter your perspective, the institution of marriage is as old as the human civilisation. It is because Prophet Adam and Hawa (upon them be peace) were tied together in ‘wedlock’ in the celestial that we derive validity to sing the praise of the Almighty each time the female and male genders find union on terrestrial earth.
Profane as it appears, marriage has continued to be an important issue of concern to humanity. Everyday the wedding bells continue to ring; every passing week, we hear of couples breaking the marital vows. Thus, when ‘learned’ men and women choose to engage the topic of marriage, it is to remind all and sundry that when there is no peace at the home front, the city centre would become insuperable and riddled with indignities.
Brethren, marriage, also called matrimony or wedlock, is a socially or ritually recognized union or legal contract between two willing and matured individuals. It is established on rights and obligations between the latter, between them and their children, and between them and their in-laws. It is considered universal culture. For example, among the Arabs during the days of Jahiliya, there were 10 different types of marriages. No matter the option, which catches your fancy, it is usually Arab women during that era before the advent of Islam, particularly those in the lower class, who suffered most from failed marriages. To women of the era, marriage was not about lottery. Rather, it was usually an interaction between the powerful and the powerless.
But it was not only among the Arabs that marriage could feature the bad, the good and the ugly. In China, excessive love between husband and wife was seen as a threat to the solidarity of the extended family. Parents could force a son to divorce his wife if her behavior or work habits did not please them. They could also demand that he look for a concubine if his wife is unable to birth a son. If a son’s romantic attachment to his wife rivaled that for his parents, the latter could the wife send her back to her parents. In the Chinese language the term love did not traditionally apply to feelings between husband and wife. It was used to describe an illicit, socially disapproved relationship.