“The cure for love is marriage and the cure for marriage is love.”
The above in a way suggests that love can be a (social) disease, or lead to disease, whereby as every disease has its cure, marriage is the cure for love disease. Or in the sense that it can lead to disease, then marriage is the tool to avoid one from catching the disease.
Though the above beautiful phrase may not be of Islamic origin, it is in line with one of the well-known hadiths by Prophet SAW that says, “O young people! Whoever among you can marry, should marry, because it helps lower his gaze and guard his modesty, and whoever is not able to marry, should fast, as fasting diminishes his sexual power.” (Sahih Bukhari)
The latter part of the phrase suggests that in marriage, shortcomings may exist, but love is the cure to deal with them and love maintains the pure marriage institution.
I began my article as such to kill two birds with one stone. As simple as it is, we already cover how through marriage, love is appropriately channeled, and how marriage will be safe and long-lasting with the presence of love.
Let me continue by quoting another fantastic verse of Al-Quran that eloquently describes the relationship between a man or a woman with their spouses.
In Surah Al-Baqarah, (2:187), Allah explains this relationship when He says, “…They are your garments and you are their garments...”
The eloquence of Allah’s words is so unparalleled that it creates wonders and reverence deep from the bottom of our heart. According to one Islamic scholar, the above verse perfectly pictures the following:
Clothing (garments) to one another
1. That the husband to his wife and the wife to her husband is like clothing to one another in the sense that they are the closest non-self entity to each other, meaning immediately above our skin is the clothes that we wear, and that is how we should be to our spouse, very close and even the closest.
2. Secondly, as clothes warm us, a spouse should be one whom can warm his partner’s heart. He or she is one that provides happiness and calmness and also provides shoulder to cry on, in time of distress and in time of need.
3. Clothes that we wear beautify us and make us look better. So the same way, a husband and wife when together, they beautify each other, they carry the good names and pride of their loved ones and because of this, they are always better to be together, like two hearts that romantically become one.
I am touched when those points were brought up and sprung into my mind. Partly because it demonstrates how wonderful a life would be through marriage, and more importantly because I then again realize how incredibly accurate and genius Allah is when He describes something. Surely, there are many more lessons we can learn from this verse alone, and may through that, our faith in Him grows tremendously stronger insya Allah.
However, let me briefly point out here that while we look up upon marriage institution especially in close relation to the Eastern cultures we live with here in Malaysia, many of those coming from the Western world see quite the opposite.
Marriage to a certain extent is regarded as a burden and worse, a discouraged phenomenon in their culture. This can be attributed to their overly free social behavior that allows unlimited free mixing (or even sex) among unmarried people.
As one English-originated phrase clearly puts it; Marriage is a three-ring circus. First, engagement ring, then marriage ring, and after marriage, it is suffeRING!
Not to forget, marriage is somehow also seen as a wrong decision someone made in his or her life as if men and women can never get well together through marriage, but through ‘free and retractable’ social contract instead! Another one sounds like this, “When a man marries a women, they become one. The trouble starts when they try to decide which one!”
Fortunately, Islam has aptly provided guidelines on the role of both husband and wife, which by right teach women to become a good wife and mother, and men to become a good husband and father. It is through these teachings and examples set by beloved Prophet SAW that we won’t have to face the problem of becoming which one. A woman is granted by Allah to have a soft caring and loving heart as a mother and a man is given some capability to become a leader and take responsibility in taking care of the women and his family.
Allah explicitly explains this in Surah An-Nisa’, (4:34), whereby He mentioned in the Quran that men should maintain women.
Let me end this article by inviting all of us to reflect on this analogy. Marriage is like a ship, in which the husband is the captain and the wife is the chief commander of the ship. The world around them is the ocean of love. Sometimes this ocean is cool and calm, but sometimes it can become hostile and unfavorable as well. So both husband and wife should handle their ship absolutely well, attain a mutual understanding and tolerance, so that they can save the ship, which is their marriage despite the unpredictable conditions that the ocean (real life) may present.
Lastly, we have to bear in mind, that it is better to spend more time on efforts to become a good husband or wife, rather than only outwardly looking for the right spouse without inwardly correct ourselves first. As Mahatma Gandhi once uttered, you are the change you want to see in this world. And so please trust in Allah’s divine promise, that a good and pious man is for a good and pious woman, and it works the same way the other way around.
“Women impure are for men impure, and men impure for women impure and women of purity are for men of purity, and men of purity are for women of purity….”
Surah An-Nur, (24:26)
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