One of the motivations of those who convert to Islam may be marrying someone who is a Muslim. In Islam, marriage is a sacred and dear institution to Allah, and it plays a very crucial role in the formation of an ideal society. It is in fact, considered one of the greatest Divine blessings for responding to the natural instincts of human beings. However, according to the Islamic teachings, faith is the first quality to be considered in choosing a spouse.
A faithful and harmonious partner plays a crucial role in having a prosperous life. It is on this basis that the Quran, the Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP) and his Ahl al-Bayt (AS) have laid great emphasis on religion and well mannerism as necessary criteria for marriage.
Meanwhile, an important question that comes to mind is that, “can we convert to Islam for the sake of marriage or not?”
Marriage is a natural necessity for every human being and several good outcomes such as procreation, sexual satisfaction, peace of mind, etc. are considered as the purposes of marriage. However, these could not be the ultimate goal of marriage in Islam as the non-Muslims can also achieve these, perhaps in better ways.
Humankind is not created solely to eat, drink, sleep, seek pleasure or act lustfully. Thus, the aim of marriage for a religious person should be a means of gaining proximity to Allah and avoiding sins. In this regards, a good and faithful partner assumes a vital role as he/she invites his/her partner to goodness, in the same way as a corrupt person would tempt his/her partner towards corruption. Islam has enjoined its adherents to consider religion and good manners as necessary criteria for the selection of their future partners on different occasions.
The Prophet (PBUH&HP) said: “If I were to bestow all the good of both worlds upon a Muslim, I would endow him with a humble heart; a tongue which continuously utters the praises of Allah; a body patient enough to withstand all calamities; and I would give him a pious spouse, who when he sees her becomes happy and protects his property as well as her own honour in his absence”.
In the Quran, it is said:
“Do not marry idolatresses until they embrace faith. A faithful slave girl is better than an idolatress, though she should impress you. And do not marry [your daughters] to idolaters until they embrace faith…” (2: 221)
From the above verse, it is clear that faith and religion is an uncompromised condition for marriage in Islam. It has explicitly prohibited marriage with the infidels except that they embrace Islam, as the statement “until they embrace faith” indicates. Thus, neither is the man allowed to marry an idolatress nor a Muslim woman is allowed to marry an idolater. However, there is a separate ruling [i] to the marriage with the people of the Book (i.e., Jews and Christians).
Meanwhile, following the Islamic jurisprudence, it is considered permissible for someone to convert to Islam for marriage, as there is not any religion hindrance on that, as far as it is based on the sincerity of intention and a strong determination to act by the Islamic teachings. Although such a conversion might not be the best idea, it might be a perfect chance to think more about converting to the real and true religion.
In Islam, faith and religion are crucial requirements to be considered in the choice of a future spouse. This is because the ultimate goal of a marriage is the everlasting salvation in this world and the Hereafter. And this cannot be achieved by marrying an idolatress or idolater. However, based on the verdicts of the Islamic jurists, it is acceptable to convert to Islam for the sake of marriage, so far as it is based on the sincerity of intention and a resolution to work in line with the teachings of the religion.
[i] Books on the Islamic jurisprudence or the official sites of the religious authorities should be consulted for details of the ruling.
- Hur Amuli; Wasa’il as-Shiah, Vol. 14, P. 3.
Imam Sajjad (AS) enumerates the rights of parents in Islam, specifically the mother in ‘Treatise On Rights (Risalat al-Huquq)’, based on her efforts, such as how she withstood the difficulties during the pregnancy, the care and protection she provided after giving birth to the baby, the selfless sacrifices she made so that her child could grow up in the most comfortable condition and with the best education.
Then, Imam (AS) invites to show gratitude to the mother, but he adds in the end that one cannot reciprocate what she had done unless God helps him to succeed .
Prophet Muhammad (PBUH&HP) admits that one can never (repeats this two times) pay back the rights of the mother; even if he attempts as many times as the number of the raindrops and the desert sands of the world to pay her back for only one of the days that she had carried him in her womb during the pregnancy, he will not succeed .
The rights of the mother among parents in Islam are even known to be superior to those of the father  since it is said that: “If you are performing a recommended (mustahab) prayer (which is a kind of talking with God and being in His presence requires certain reverence) and your father calls you, do not break your prayer but if your mother calls, break the prayer”.
In this regard, it is narrated that a man, who claimed that had committed every possible sin, asked Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) if he could still repent or not. Prophet (PBUH&HP) questioned if either of his parents was alive. He answered, his father was. Then, Prophet (PBUH&HP) advised him to go and treat him well. A while after the man left, Prophet (PBUH&HP) said: “if his mother was alive [he would certainly have the opportunity to repent]” .
These, along with other Quranic verses and narrations (Hadiths) highlight the importance of parents in Islam and especially mothers’ rights; something that can never be returned unless with divine providence.
One of the rights of the father is to recognize him as the root that has given existence to his children. Whenever one is proud of him/herself for a blessing, he/she should remember that he/she has inherited it from his/her father. Hence, one should praise God and thank him for what He has granted him .
Imam Reza (AS) said: “offer your property, honor, and life to your father since you have received them from him. Do good to him and ask for the blessing and forgiveness for him after his death” . It is good to know that the amount of the father’s right in his child’s property is as much as it is sufficient for daily meals, without any dissipation, and only in case of need .
Gaining God’s satisfaction: “whoever his parents are satisfied with, I am satisfied with him/her” .
Long-lasting life: “Whoever honors his parents, will live a long life” .
Receiving good deeds from their own children: “honor your parents, so your children will honor you” .
Easy death: “Whoever honors the parents, God will ease his death” .
Being rewarded the highest levels in Heaven: “one, who gives Infaq to his parents, tolerates them, is beneficent to them and does not upset nor harm them, will be placed in the best levels of Heaven” .
According to Islamic teachings, not only mistreating parents in Islam is insolence to them, but also includes ignoring their rights, disobeying them in what is permissible and disrespecting them . It is known from Islamic teachings that:
Even if one’s parents have done something unfair to him, he is not allowed to look at them with a sharp, angry gaze. Otherwise, even a single prayer (Salat) of him will not be accepted .
Insolence to parents is one of the major sins and is Haram .
Prophet (PBUH) has warned about the consequences of Insolence to the parents by saying that the sweet smell of heaven will be sensed from a thousand years of distance but does not reach those who have been insolent to their parents .
It is essential to know that one may gain the satisfaction of the parents when they are alive, but will be readily insolent to them after their death by ignoring their rights like not paying their debts, not praying for them, etc.; and the other way around .
[i] (2 :83), (17:23), (4:36), (6:151), (31:13-14).
[ii] Doing prayer (Salat) and fasting (Swam) in place of parents, especially after their death, is highly advised in Islamic teachings. This is due to the importance of having respect for parents and these two Islamic practices. This also helps to maintain the emotional links between children and parents, even after their death.
[iii] Praying for parents and asking mercy on them is a duty on children that is emphasized in the Quran and Islamic narrations. If parents have committed some sins or have sometimes been disobedient, praying for them might be beneficial to them.
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“Allah made for you mates from your own selves and appointed for you children and grandchildren from your mates, and We provided you with all the good things. What, do they believe in falsehood while they deny the blessing of Allah?” (16:72)
If you are married, you might have experienced how a successful marriage plays an important part in our lives. Marriage in Islam is the cornerstone of the family and the only relationship that effectively prepares us for the community; so, if it is thought upon carefully and wisely, it will result in the well-being of the society as well as each individual.
Unlike some religious denominations that encourage celibacy as a means of salvation and great virtue, there is no monasticism in Islam . Prophet Muhammad (PBUH&HP) says in this regard: “Marriage is my way (Sunnah), Whoever turns away from it is not ‘among my followers’” .
With regard to marriage in Islam, he has also stated: “There is no better structure founded in Islam other than marriage” .
According to a narration from Prophet Muhammad (PBUH&HP), marriage in Islam is considered as half of a Muslim’s religion:
“One who marries has already fulfilled half of his religion, therefore he should fear Allah for the other half” .
What do you think the reason is? What are the important benefits to which marriage is linked?
Looking into it from different aspects, one might find various reasons for getting married, like money, popularity, religion, beauty, etc. But the religion of Islam focuses on the more spiritual aspect of this holy covenant, i.e., peace, security, and affection:
“And of His signs (God’s signs) is that He created for you mates from your own selves that you may take comfort in them, and He ordained affection and mercy between you. There are indeed signs in that for a people who reflect” (30:21).
The other aspects that make marriage in Islam a necessity in humans’ life are as follows:
As mentioned in the verse of Quran above, marriage in Islam, in the most suitable way, is the source of emotional comfort to us. Quran also says:
“It is He (God) who created you from a single soul, and made from it its mate, that he might find comfort with her” (7:189).
When you get married, the first thing you promise your spouse is to care for her/him, to meet his/her emotional needs. That is what makes you fall in love with your life companion and lets the two of you experience love, affection, mutual understanding, peace of mind, and happiness.
Regarding this matter, Imam Sadiq (AS) has said:
“Whenever a man’s love for his wife increases, his faith increases in quality” .
Humans naturally possess a sexual instinct which is a significant and strong desire. Everyone feels the urge to have a partner for fulfilling their sexual needs in a safe and serene environment, which will help them grow and reach high levels of perfection and satisfaction.
Abstaining from marriage often results in physical and mental disorders. Doctors from Georgia State University in a study published in 2001 found that those who choose to be celibate are frequently afflicted with feelings of anger, frustration, self-doubt and even depression .
The religion of Islam not only recognizes the sexual needs of human but also strongly recommends marriage as the only legal way of fulfilling this desire.
Human beings are social creatures, who like all other beings, have urges which lead to starting a family of their own and reproduction. In this regard, Quran says:
“The originator of the heavens and the earth, He made for you mates from your own selves, and mates of the cattle, by which means He multiplies you…” (42:11).
Based on this verse, Children are the results of marriage in Islam that make the procreation of humankind continue. They also play an important role in stabilizing the family foundations. Islam gives a great deal of emphasis to both marriage and bringing up faithful and virtuous children since they are considered as building blocks of a healthy society.
Apart from that, marriage shields the whole society as well as every single individual from lots of evil deeds. It has been narrated from Prophet Muhammad that, when a person gets married at a young age, Satan will become angry since she/he has guarded two-third of his/her religion against him . Married people are less involved in socially destructive acts like any extramarital affairs.
From the Islamic perspective, marriage is not merely a means of legalizing sexual relations. In fact, it unites the existence of the man and woman as a couple, brings them together and makes them complementary to each other.
The peaceful and secure environment that the husband and wife live in is the best place to practice self-control, selflessness, and self-purification. Pious couples always invite one another to goodness. They are also a source of encouragement in preventing each other from committing sins and performing the obligatory acts of worship, which eventually makes them have a respectable and honest life forever.
It has been narrated that once the Prophet (PBUH&HP) went to Imam Ali (AS)’s and Lady Fatimah (AS)’s house after their wedding. He asked Imam Ali (AS) how he found his spouse. Imam replied: “I found Zahra (AS) as the best help in worshipping the Almighty Allah.” The Prophet (PBUH&HP) then asked Fatimah al-Zahra (AS) the same question, and she replied: “He is the best husband” .
We learn from this narration that one of the main purposes of marriage is actually what Imam Ali (AS) has mentioned, i.e., serving Allah. When a man and a woman get married, the two become one. The bond between them mirrors the unconditional love between The Creator and us, and this is the ultimate experience a true believer always seeks to have.
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