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How to Choose a Spouse in Islam?

The approach to choosing a spouse is much different in the angelic spirit of Islam, when compared to those religions or schools of thought which have become void of the spirit of revelations. Islam does not allow a believing Muslim man to choose any woman as his wife. Neither does it allow a believing Muslim woman to choose any man as her husband. This is so because there are certain things to be considered in marriage, such as their well-being and prosperity in this world and the Hereafter; immunity from corruption and Satanic plans. As viewed in Islam, marriage is not just based on lust, carnal desires, and material gains. The goal of Islam from marriage is to maintain people's beliefs; to build a divine home; to raise good children; and to seek God's pleasure.

It is in this framework that all that is involved; the marriage itself; maintaining a spouse; loving a legitimate spouse; having sex as much as either side requires; respecting each others' rights; bearing children; raising them; carrying out the necessary duties such as working to provide for the housing, food and clothing of the wife and the children are all considered to be worship of God and each step taken in this regard will have a great heavenly reward. It is in this context that one can understand why Islam insists on finding a well-matched spouse. We are forced to humbly accept Islam's divine conditions for marriage, since a marriage without regard for these conditions will end up in a life full of sedition. The house will be filled with torture and suffering; pain and agony; sadness and sorrow. Such a life might end up in separation and divorce with its ever-lasting bad feelings. It may even end up in insanity or suicide if one party is not strong enough.

Avoid associating or marrying a woman who has not attained intellectual development through studying; and has not helped herself reach perfection by attaining piety, faith and morality. Such women are raised in a family void of monotheism, morality, piety, worship and belief in God's unity. They bring nothing for their husbands but sedition, corruption and destruction. An important tradition from Imam Baqir (Pbuh) has been quoted as: "The Prophet (Pbuh) passed by some women. He suddenly stopped and addressed them, and said: I have not seen any group of people lacking wisdom and religion like you, and stealing the wisdom of the wise. I have seen that your torture is greater than that of all the dwellers of Hell. I strongly recommend that you try to get closer to God, by perfecting your faith and acquiring knowledge, and good deeds." [Marriage in Islam, p.45 as cited in Vasa'il al-Shiaa . Abvab Muqadamat Nikah]

Imam Sadiq (Pbuh) said: "The strongest enemy of a believing man is his bad wife." [Bihar al-Anwar, v.100, p.240]

In another tradition it has been stated: "There are six things which are essential causes of committing sins and rebelling against God: love of this world; love of power; excessive sleeping; love for women; love for eating and being lazy." [Vasa'il al-Shiaa. Abvab Muqadamat Nikah, Chapter 4; Bihar al-Anwar, v.100, p.225, Vafa Press]

Thus it is best that you confine yourself to abide by the conditions stated by Islam in choosing a spouse. I shall express all these conditions based on traditions. Try not to choose a spouse based on her beauty, love or wealth. The Prophet (Pbuh) said: "Do not choose a wife for her wealth or beauty. Her wealth will cause her rebellion, and her beauty will cause her corruption. You must consider her faith and religiousness for marriage." [Mustadrak al-Vasa'il, On Marriage, Ch.13]

The Prophet (Pbuh) has been quoted as saying: "If there is bad omen in anything, that is a woman."[Bihar al-Anwar, v.100, p.227]

In fact if a woman is deprived of knowledge, faith, morality, good-temper, dignity and nobility, then she is bad and will ruin her husband's life.

The Prophet (Pbuh) also said: "A bad woman is the worst thing."[Ibid]

Adopted from the book: "The Islamic Family Structure" by: "Husayn Ansarian"

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