Youth Voices

Marriage by Choice?

By Fahaad Humayun

Photo credits: Internet

Photo credits: Internet

Gentlemen and Ladies (may Allah forgive me for addressing the female community), the topic of my article is very sensitive. However, the nature of this is very important and valid in our community. This question has been tip toeing across my mind for a long  time so I finally thought I should ask YOU for the answer, so here it is:

A popular belief also narrated by my Islamic Studies teacher today is that females are not allowed to talk to males in Islam. That does not include: their husbands, sons, brothers, fathers, husband’s fathers, nephews, children and male servants who don’t have sexual desires. There is, however, another belief that marriage by choice is allowed in Islam – which my teacher also agreed to.

What bothered me is that how exactly are we supposed to select or like our future partner? My Islamic studies teacher answered that you can walk in front of potential bride or groom and thus see his/her face. This makes me wonder is facial beauty the only criteria to select our partner? How do we know his/her habits? How can any girl realize that her future partner is not suitable for her or whether he is  a flirty playboy or an orthodox rigid man, if he even respects women or not and so on and so forth? Are we even allowed to know all this before marriage or not?

I am not concluding anything. I am just asking that how can one know about the other person without talking or even without being friends? Should we just go with faith while getting married to a random person? And since talking and “friendships” with the other sex is not considered completely halal, should we just take a glance at the the man/woman’s face and decide? Or is there another perspective to it?