The Institution of Marriage

Marriage has always been regarded as the most sacred and harmonious of all relationships between a man and a woman. As the age old saying goes, marriage is a necessary evil, one can’t help thinking that both man and his spouse are complementary to each other and without one the other’s worth regardless. The significance of the institution of marriage lies in the fact that it results in the cause and effect of procreation besides providing a moral and ethical social bonding. Marriage brings about the union of two persons as well as two families.

In one of her greatest classics, Jane Austin has remarked, ‘It is truth universally acknowledged that a man in possession of a good fortune must be in need of a wife. ’But marriages are made in heaven and professed on earth. It is an indispensable part of human existence. Since ages marriage has been considered a social obligation for the culmination of an eternal happiness. Apart of the need of conjugal felicity, matrimony requires mutual faith, love and commitment towards each other.

Milton in one of his greatest epics, ‘Paradise lost’ has beautifully narrated the ‘fall of a man’, how the forbidden fruit resulted in the man’s doom thereby bringing lots of sufferings and chaos. Had Adam not compelled by eve’s urge for the forbidden fruit, took the guts to pluck it, might not have resulted in his allurement towards eve, neither he had been aroused of sexual urge thereby bringing of human existence. But this is only a myth and every mythology has its own tale. Even in Indian Mythology, we have the description of ‘Manu and Shraddha’ who are said to be the only surviving man and woman during the earth’s dead-end. These mythical characters simply give a vent to the existence of life on earth and hence one can’t help thinking of the value of spouses in various scenarios.

It is believed that in a civilized society the institution of marriage is established to give stability and resilience to a strong social bond besides providing fulfillment to man’s instinctive desires. Without marriage as an obligation, things would have gone the other way and ma’s instinctive desires would have lead him astray .perhaps every society formulated certain mandatory implications to give validity to this institution of marriage which is still followed since the dawn of civilization in any progressive society.

For ages, marriage faculty has been carried out in different ways. In ancient times in Indian society, polygamy was the order of the day and more the wealthier a man was and from higher social strata, the more eligible he was for polygamy. So there was no restriction for polygamy. However things did change and subsequently the norm for having many wives changed. In any civilized society it was incombendent to have one and only one wife and if howsoever one wished for bigamy, it was considered profane. As a result the sanctity of marriage as based upon it’s culmination for the lifelong. In fact , the Indian theology suggests the importance of ‘Saat Pheras’ as the seven rounds along the holy fire for seven births of a husband and his wife. Marriage is regardless of any particular society and requires the same essential ingredients of love, understanding and faith in the general term.

My sole aim for this very piece of article is to acquaint myself regarding the Institution of marriage, for I do feel that the often called ‘Ideal relationship’ is losing its implication. Many a times I feel that even some Indians often lured by western trends are violating the typical Indian norms which is the demand of the hour. The very fashion of live-in relationship is nowhere reasonable until the two are tied to a knot before a civilized society. But still people are enjoying such lives without giving the slightest vent to the strong social values. In such cases if things worsen it may result in the split between the two. Moreover, breakage in such a live-in relationship can lead to emotional and psychological trauma for such people are emotionally dependent upon each other. As a result split causes misery.

In marriages imposed parental choices too causes agony and disappointment for the two may be from completely different level of understanding. So I opine that whether marriage is based upon personal or parental choice, both the person should be given his own space for they are two different individuals with their independent thinking and desires.

To a woman marriage gives both social and financial security, to a man a life-long companion and a helping hand and both complement each other. It is true that there could be no perfect person but perfect marriage can be achieved only through proper understanding and commitment towards each other.

Alpana Singh
14th March 2009
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