The Value of Early Marriage in Islam , Online Earning Korner

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The Value of Early Marriage in Islam


Because of Islams great love for marriage, it has strongly emphasized that people get married as soon as possible. This is more so for women, and the Prophet (s) and Imams (as) have strongly emphasized that it is the responsibility of a father to ensure that his daughters become married as soon as possible. This is in order so that the woman may not fall into fornication as a result of not being able to marry, and that this very important part of her life become dealt with as soon as possible. We see this reflected in the following ahadeeth:

  1. It is a blessing for a man that his daughter does not menstruate in his home.1
  2. The Prophet (s) said in a khutbah: "Jibrail came to me from the Subtle and Aware one [Allah (swt)], and said: "Indeed, virgin girls are like fruit on a tree. When you take the fruit from a tree, then you do not have to fear that the sun will spoil it or that the wind will scatter it away. Similar is the case when a women is taken in the way that they are taken [meaning marriage]. There is no remedy for this problem except that they take a husband, and if they do not, then one will have to fear that they will become corrupted."

Beyond this, Islam also believes that women have a stronger sexual urge then men, and that this urge should be satisfied at an early age. There are many narrations, from both Sunni and Shia sources, that state that women have nine times as much sexual desire as men:

  1. Imam Ali (as) said: "Allah the Mighty and Glorified has created desire in ten parts; nine of these parts are in women, and one part is in men. Had not Allah (swt) given more power to her modesty than over these parts of desire, then every man would find himself with nine women attached to him."
  2. Imam as-Sadiq (as) said: "Indeed, Allah the Mighty and Glorious has given women the patience of ten men. If a woman is fighting with you, then it is because she has been given the desire of ten men."
  3. Imam as-Sadiq (as) said: "Women have been blessed with ninety nine percent of desire, however Allah has placed modesty over them."

As such, when a girl is young, this force will be even stronger in her, and so it is more important that she not fall into sin. If a father is to be considered the guardian of his daughter, then it is one of his duties to make sure that she does not fall into sin by using his age and experience to help find for her a proper husband at an early age. It is even said of slave-masters that they should either marry their slave girls or find husband for them, and that if they fornicate, the sin will be on himself.

However, Muslims have tended to forget this teaching of the Prophets (s) and Imams (as). The growth of a middle-class throughout the Muslim world has led families to become more concerned with their daughters education and work then with their spiritual life, and fear that if they marry their daughters at an early age, the girls will not be able to complete their education. Even if this were true, it would still be inexcusable to make it difficult for young girls to get married, for then one will be putting pressure on them to fornicate. The fact is that it is not true that girls will somehow fail in life if they marry at an early age. A woman can balance the demands of her marital life and her educational/professional life, and should be allowed and encouraged to do so.

It is important, as well, that as girls enter adolescence, that Islam is not being used as a barrier upon them enjoying their life and fulfilling themselves sexually. When Muslim families put pressure on their daughters not to marry and seek to isolate them from this blessing of marriage, it is only natural that many young women will turn against practices like hijab and other aspects of Islam. Lack of satisfaction in the area of sex will lead to depression and frustration, which can manifest itself in a variety of ways. Parents should not only allow their daughters freedom in this regard, but should actively encourage them. The fact is that young men and women will usually get together anyways, and a young woman may very well connect with a young man whose morals and character are less than satisfactory. By families openly involving themselves in this aspect of their daughters life from an early age, they can not only help their daughters to quickly find what they need in terms of their love life, but also help to guide their daughters to a marriage that will be beneficial for her, both emotionally, physically, and spiritually. When the parents refuse to help, however, then they are leaving their daughter to her own devices in finding a path to dealing with her sexuality. She may restrain herself until her family allows her to marry, or she may not. But at that stage, the family will not play any role in that decision one way or the other.

It is also the obligation of the family to make it easy for a husband to marry his daughter, and not place the kind of absurd demands upon a prospective husband that are made now. Filled by love of dunya, many families will only marry their daughter to a rich man with a PhD or several degrees in engineering or what have you. This, even more than the restrictions they place on their own daughters, creates a terrible barrier on a young woman getting married, as it makes it impossible for her to find somebody similar in age. Enormous dowries are another source of fitna in this regard, and this practice has been condemned in the ahadeeth:

  1. The Prophet (s) said: "The best of women...are those who ask for low dories."
  2. Imam as-Sadiq (as) states: "The blessed of women are those who ask for small living expenses, and the evil of them are those who are demanding in terms of living expenses."

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