Rafed English

The Law of Matrimony In Creation, In Civilisations and In Religions

God 8 has said in his masterful book: 'And of everything we have created pairs so that you might take notice'. 9 The law of pairs is so deeply intrinsic to created objects that one does not find any atom or galaxy or anything smaller or larger than these that is not subject to this law. If one looks to creation in all its vastness and what it holds, from stars and planets, air and water, trees and rocks, to animals and humans, one cannot but concede as to the integrated perfection of this system in so far as each one complements and perfects the other. Each proceeds according a precise and balanced system which is only violated and traversed by humankind who were given by God the responsibility of administering themselves after having been sent messengers and having had the limits of behaviour laid out and the laws made clear. Mankind then took up this responsibility but did not carry it out, as it should be - excepting God's faithful servants - at times falling into oppressiveness, at other times into ignorance. In the Qur'an Allah states: 'We did indeed offer trusteeship to the heavens and the earth and the mountains but they refused to take it being afraid thereof. But man undertook it, though he is unjust and ignorant'. 10

If one leafs through the pages of human history, over and above the instructions of religion, one realises that the family system, procreation, the avoidance of inbreeding, the avoidance of marital infidelity, instability and abuse are matters of human nature and psyche ('The fitra (intrinsic nature) of Allah upon which He has created the people.' 11). Even amongst primitives and pagans and those who did not observe any law, from time to time their inherent nature would shudder and would manifest itself in some form of law or in the form of customs and traditions. It is no delusion that we turn to custom and tradition to prove this, nor indeed to divine law which corresponds to inherent human nature, for all that the divine law rules necessary so does the intellect, and vice versa. The concordance and mutual agreement of humanity over a certain matter, despite their diverse nations, civilisations and religions, points to the deep-rootedness of that matter in the human psyche. In this section, we will review in brief the findings of naturalists and anthropologists as well as the religious view in this field.

8 The word God is used here for translation purposes more or less interchangeably with the Arabic word Allah (The God, The Deity, The Unseen). However the Islamic conception of God as elucidated in the Qur'an differs from other conceptions in its strict adherence to the belief in monotheism - the oneness of God who has no partner in creation and no sire. He is The One, The Eternal, He does not beget, nor was He begotten and there is nothing like unto Him. (Translator's note)

9 The Holy Qur'an: The Winnowing Winds (51): 49.

10 The Holy Qur'an: The Coalitions (33): 72.

11 The Holy Qur'an: The Romans (30): 30.

Adapted from the book; "The Family" by: "Imam Muhammad Shirazi"

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