500+ Words Essay on Marriage
“Happiness is only real when shared.”- Jon Krakauer
Marriage, also known as wedlock and matrimony, is a relationship between two people that creates certain rights and obligations between them. The persons involved in a marriage with each other are known as spouses. When people marry, they create a special bond between themselves, between their in-laws and between their future children.
People marry for several reasons, including social obligations, personal desires, financial security, religious purposes, emotional stability, etc. In many traditions and cultures, the practices of child marriage, polygamy and forced marriage still exist, whereas many have outlawed them and declared them as illegal.
Since the start of the late twentieth century, there have been significant changes that can be witnessed in terms of marriages. For example, people now marry at later ages, fewer marriages are happening around the world than before, and more people like to stay in a live-in relationship before committing to each other for a lifetime.
Historically, in many cultures, women had no rights after marriage. They could not own property. All the husband’s estate after his death belonged to their children. Women also had no legal rights. But in the late nineteenth century, in many countries, women rights began to get a lot of attention.
Women got the right to be represented legally, divorce laws were also liberalised, women could also inherit, and own property, and their consent became a must before any sexual activity. The cruel practices of dowry and physical abuse towards women were also eradicated.
Characteristics of Marriage
It is found in almost all societies and is a universal concept. It is a permanent and lasting bond between two individuals and caters to fulfilling a person’s physical, emotional and psychological needs. It is an enduring connection built upon mutual trust and liking.
Marriage helps in establishment of future families. Religious and civil ceremonies provide marriage with validation. Religious ceremonies include marrying in a temple, a church, a gurudwara, etc. Civil ceremonies include marrying in a court of law. Marriage has its own symbols like wedding rings, garlands, jewellery, special clothing, etc.
Types of Marriages
A monogamy marriage is one where a person has only one partner at a time and is committed to only that person throughout their lifetime. A polygamy is a form of marriage in which a husband holds more than one wife.
There is a bond that exists between the husband and each of his wives, but no such bond exists between the wives, among themselves. Similarly, a marriage in which a woman has more than one husband is known as polyandry. Group marriage is one where there are multiple wives and husbands.
Child marriage is the marriage of girls or boys before they attain the age of 18. In previous times, marriages were fixed by families of the future bride and grooms. At times, they were declared as soon as a girl was born. The practice of marrying small girls to older men was also prevalent due to the notion attached to a girl’s virginity.
The causes of child marriage included poverty, societal pressures, regional customs, the perceived inability of women to work for money, the fear of remaining unmarried, etc. Child marriage has now been restricted and outlawed in almost all countries around the world. However, it still takes place in some parts of Africa and South Asia.
Same-sex marriage is also known as gay marriage. It is the matrimonial alliance between two people of the same sex or gender. It started getting legalised in countries in the 21st century. Currently, 28 countries, including Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, Spain, etc. have legalised same-sex marriage.
Endogamy is the marriage of persons in their own caste, village, gotra, tribe, etc. Exogamy is the complete opposite of endogamy. It is the marriage of persons outside their own caste, community, race, etc.
How marriages in different religions take place
The Hindu marriages are generally grand and extravagant. In the north, they take place at night. A booked wedding hall, a tent or a temple are the ideal places for a Hindu wedding. There are numerous functions and rituals that take place before, during and after the marriage, including sagaai, sagan, Mehendi, Jai mala, phere, etc. Hindu brides always wear red on their wedding because the red colour symbolises the rising sun and is a mark of prosperity and fertility.
Muslim weddings are known more commonly as Nikah. Mehendi ceremony of the bride takes place a day before her wedding, and the main marriage event is held mostly at the bride’s house. The Maulvi is the person who reads out texts from the holy Quran at the wedding in the presence of close friends and relatives. There is no fixed colour of the bride’s dress, but Muslim brides love to adorn sharara’s in ivory colour.
A Christian wedding takes place in a church and is very decent and simple, yet incredibly charming. The father of the bride walks with her towards her groom at the altar. Both the partner’s exchanges wedding rings and vows with each other during the ceremony. After its completion, they are declared as husband and wife, and the wedding cake is cut along with a grand reception.
Laws governing Marriage in India
In India, we have laws governing marriage. There are laws related to the validity of a marriage, succession, child adoption, extramarital affairs, inheritance, dissolution of marriage, etc. The legal age for marriage in India is 18 years for girls and 21 years for boys.
Married couples are eligible to adopt a child if they have a monthly income of at least rupees 3000, and both should be of sound mind. Adoption of a child can be done only after the consent of both the spouses.
In case of adopting a son, the age of the father should be at least 21 years more than the son’s present age, and in the case of a daughter, the mother’s age should be minimum 21 years more than the daughter’s.
The law does not promote the practice of having extramarital affairs. It acts as a ground for filing a divorce and also leads to mental trauma and stress.
Divorce can be filed by any spouse when the other is found cheating, becomes of unsound mind, inflicts physical or mental abuse and gets addicted towards drugs and alcohol.