2.18.2009

Arranged Marriage

I think I know why arranged marriage would have worked during ancient historical times like with old testament stories in a way that couldn't work now, or would be very hard to have work now.

The cultural differences at the time would have been minimal between neighboring tribes such that a man and a woman from these tribes could live together without ever having known each other because they would have the same cultural assumptions about roles, power, sex, money, children etc.
Whereas today, we have long courtship rituals that go way beyond what they used to in order to find out if ones cultural assumptions match up enough with the other's in a way that will minimize conflict and maximize happiness.

Of course, this is different again from Christian marriage which assumes that holiness is the desired outcome, not happiness, in which case the cultural differences may be a tool with which to sharpen one another towards God.

but the point is that marriage is different now than it was in biblical times, not because people have changed, but because we live in a society where a multitude of cultures coexist in ways that young people can't really fathom.

It's tough.

2 comments:

elizabeth said...

yeah. we live in a really mixed up world.

good thing God is not mixed up.

prayers for you tonight! :)

Bev. Cooke said...

ah, but that doesn't mean that marriage has changed! It means that how we get married has changed and the roles may have changed. But marriage itself is still two people trying to live together and maximize the comfort, health and well being of each, preferably without killing each other while doing so. In Orthodox terms that means we each die to self for the other - the same thing monastics do, just in a different context. It's Bev. by the way.