OK. So, you have finally found your lover.
He loves you so much as you love him.
He tells you that you are one in a million and you believe that you are indeed the only one in this earth.
You smile and say ‘thank you darling’. His intensity has swept your feet off. He is well qualified, he has a good job and he takes you out every weekend. It looks like all you Eid’s have come at once as you say, ‘this is what I wanted in my life’.
Sadly, you have forgotten that you are a Muslim and your suitor is a non-Muslim. The days pass by and the time has come for you to make the wedding arrangements. He promises to marry you but as long as you leave Islam and join his religion. He has spent a lot for you and you love him so much. Your parents are devoted Muslims, yes, and indeed your father is a Sheikh.
What should you do? Should you marry him?
This is the question that some of our Muslim sisters ask but many have however not been informed of the correct answer, from the Islamic viewpoint.
Because of this, we have seen the number of our Muslim sisters marrying non-Muslims increasing.
But who is to blame? Parents, guardians, Muslim leaders, or the boys and girls themselves?
Islam is more than a religion, it is a way of life..
Allah the Almighty has prohibited Muslim women from marrying non-Muslims.
He did not do this for the sake of command, but had good reasons, as He knew that such a marriage would bring untold sufferings and destroy a person’s chance of happiness and success, both in this life and the hereafter.
As most people should be aware, in Islam, marriage is not only about sexual relations but rather it is a religious obligation, and it has its own principles. And there will be other related things in which Islam has its own defined system.
Therefore, if a Muslim would marry outside Islam, there will be conflict of interest since Muslims have their own religious culture that has its own doctrines and injunctions, making it impossible for the practising of Islam outside the Islamic sanctioned marriage.
However, in our society, we still ignore this command from Allah and we continuously hear stories of our Muslim sisters marrying non-Muslims.
When you ask them, this is what some of them have to say:
“…the world is not the same as it was 20 years ago. Things have changed. Nowadays girls go for educated men. We Muslims are just developing now. I can tell you that only a few Muslim guys are well educated. You will find that most of them are sheikhs. I am saying this according [to my] experience. I am a girl of 19yrs old. I had been with girls of different kinds and I had heard the conversation,” this is what one Muslim sister, Aisha Katita said on Malawi Muslims Official Website Facebook page.’’
However, some Muslim girls claim that a woman has no resident religion – she can only follow the religion of the husband –which means to them there is no difference whether one marries a Muslim or non-Muslim – as long as they love the guy – then it will be OK to marry the man and follow his religion, not knowing that that is an erroneous thinking.
Sadly, the main cause for this ignorance and confusion is that today’s girls do not want to listen or seek guidance from their parents or religious leaders. They think that since they are graduates, then they are above all.
Response from Muslim Leaders
Last year, in search for solution, the Muslim Women’s Organisation (MWO) expressed concern over the increase of number of Muslim women marrying non-Muslims inMalawibut they bemoaned Muslim brothers for being responsible for this un-Islamic practice.
“We are worried with what our sisters are doing but we cannot blame them because we know our brothers are responsible for this trend. They don’t propose to them and rather they prefer to go for Christians. We have many beautiful and very kind Muslim women in our community who are still swimming in the ocean of singleness but they do not want to go for them,” said MWO chairlady, sister Fatima Ndaila.
However, Sheikh Muhammad Uthman, the renowned Islamic marriage counselor at the Islamic Information Bureau says that the bigger problem is in the hands of women themselves as they do not want to follow what Islam and prophet Muhammad (saw) teaches them.
“The problem lies in the hands of Muslim women themselves. Islam permitted a woman to express her interest if they meet a man of her desire. They can do this through different ways, whether by informing her parents or anybody she thinks can help to unite them. But you will see that only people of the book (Christians) who are following this law although they don’t know is a law. I am saying this according to my experience,” he said.
The bottom line
However, to us we feel that blaming each other will not solve anything but rather it will just make the matter worse.
It is not too late, we can do more in ensuring that our sisters are convinced and told how bad it is to marry outside religion.
The religion is clear about this, It is Haram and forbidden for a Muslim woman to marry a non-Muslim man, and it is our duty to spread this message.