Marriage is important in Islam, it keeps you far away from everything that is haraam. There are two kinds of marriages forced marriages or arranged marriages. Most of us think that Asians are forced in marriages that they don`t want to be in. Even if that happens it is not a part of our religion it is rather the culture we live in that these traditions arise from. Most of these marriages end in tragedies.
There is no recipe for what a perfect marriage is. Every marriage is different from the other. But there are somethings one can do to make sure that the people who are getting into this bond are willingly to make the sacrifice it needs. It is important that their opinion is asked about the matter. Forced marriage are not arranged marriages. A forced marriage is when one or both of the pair are forced to marry someone they don`t want to marry. Their parents or maybe some relatives are forcing them in saying “yes” to the decision. Arranged marriages is when the pairs decision is asked for and they are given a chance to say “no” and stop the marriage, if they for any reason doesn`t want to marry. They also get a chance to know each other before marriage to know if they are compatible. The family finds the spouse and they arrange the whole marriage after the children’s consent.
It is very important that the parents put time and effort in asking their child if they want to marry this person or not before they proceed with the marriage. It is sure that if one or both of the pair are forced into a marriage, it would easily fail, and could end up in a divorce. Some years before even if the pairs decision wasn`t asked for the marriage didn`t end in divorce. The reason behind this is that the pair even if they where living in a hell, didn`t want it to end in divorce. Maybe because the bond between the relatives would have dissolved with the divorce. This happens especially in cousin-marriages.
Forced marriages are un-Islamic. The Prophet has made it obligatory to ask for the decision of the people getting married. Imam Bukhari has reported from Al-Khansa bint Khidaam:
” My father married me to his nephew, and I did not like this match, so I complained to the Messenger of Allah. He (pbuh) said to me: “Accept what your father has arranged”. I said: “I do not wish to accept what my father has arranged”. He (pbuh) said: “Then this marriage is invalid and marry whomever you wish”. I said: “I have accepted what my father has arranged, but I wanted women to know that fathers have no right in their daughter`s matters (i.e. they have no right to force a marriage on them”.
It is very important for parents to understand that when they recieve the blessing of a girl as their child the door opens to jannah in one case. If they treat her well she could open the door to jannah, if they don`t she could be the reason why they are thrown into hell. Abu Hurayra (ra) reported that the Messenger of Allah (pbuh) said:
“Whomever has three daughters, and shelter them, bearing their joys and sorrows with patience, Allah will admit him/her to Paradise by virtue of his/her compassion towards them. A man asked: “What if one has only two, O Messenger of Allah?”. He(pbuh) said: “Even if they are only two”. Another man asked: “What if one has only one, O Messenger of Allah?”. He (pbuh) said: “Even if one has only one”.
The Prophet (pbuh) has said the same about sisters as well as daughters. A hadith in Bukhari told by Abu Saeed al-Khudri, said that the Messenger of Allah said:
“There is no one who has three daughters or three sisters, and he treats them well, but Allah will admit him to Paradise”.
Sometimes other non-muslims get confused in what Islam really is, because they look at other people who are practising it. Those muslims are often not the most great muslim of our time. Some of them are following some cultural rules of living that are totally un-islamic. Since they are muslim and they themselves think those rules are a part of Islam, other non-muslims also think that. So people get a distorted look at what Islam really is. It is better for non-muslims to not look at other muslims but rather go to the source of Islam, which is the holy book of Quran and hadith books with the Sunnah of our Prophet. Then they will learn what Islam really is.
If every parent or wali want their children to be happily married they have to ask for the consent of their children before they marry them. Be it a guy or a woman, both`s consent should be taken. I can`t understand those parents whom marry their children within their families just because they will get some personal benefit from it. They should rather look at what is best for their son or daughter and what will make them happy and their marriage last a lifetime and for eternity in jannah. I hope this cultural rule will vanish within years because of the new generations that are growing up are aware of this issue and don`t pressurize their children the same way as their parents has done, because they know better, in sha Allah.