February 11, 2013

Three types of marriage – a pilgrim’s recollection

There are three types of marriage being practiced in the world today. None of them conforms to the Baha’i principles of marriage. The first is the so-called “romantic” marriage of the west. This is the least successful type of marriage. The second is the marriage of convenience practiced in Europe – in which the marriage is intended to benefit the social or financial position of the partners and there is usually a mistress in the background. The third is the arranged marriage of the east – of which there are several kinds. In the Baha’i marriage the two people must choose each other, and the four parents must given their consent to the marriage. The two people study each other’s character before deciding to marry – to make sure that there are no character traits in the other person which would in time become intolerable and become the cause of separation. (Reported words of Shoghi Effendi to a Baha’i pilgrim: Isobel Sabri of Kampala Uganda, April 1957)