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Featured Why I do not think the marriage of A’isha and Muhammad was not wrong

Discussion in 'Religious Debates' started by Epic Beard Man, Jun 2, 2018.

  1. Epic Beard Man

    Epic Beard Man Bearded Philosopher

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    *CONTROVERSY ALERT*

    Without going into full discussion on the aspect of Hadith or any other narrative that could be counterproductive, I’d like to look at this from a sociological position. I think when critics of Muhammad’s marriage to A’isha is presented, I think a lot of it has to do with the projection of what we as a society perceive as acceptable and unacceptable.

    I think contributing to this are the centuries of paintings and pictures of saints and prophets of the Biblical times presented as grown men and women when in fact historically some of them were younger. For example Mary the mother of Jesus was said to be 14 years old and Joseph, her husband was much older.

    But when it comes to renaissance art, Mary is often depicted as a grown mature woman. But I would contest that Mary was probably no mature than your average junior high school girl. We forget that the average life expectancy in those times were less. If I’m not mistaken to live in your 30’s you are or were considered an elder and in your 20’s you may be considered old.

    For me, the critique of the prophet Muhammad marrying a 9 year-old girl has more to do with the combination of a dislike for Islam along with the ignorance of human civilization in those times. I am sure in Solomon’s harem, there were plenty of young girls he laid with, but I believe a lot of times our own personal biases influence our way of thinking about the scriptural prophets.
     
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  2. Debater Slayer

    Debater Slayer Born-again Glompist
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    While it seems to me that it is largely moot to criticize A'isha's marriage to Muhammad given the historical context and that multiple historical accounts indicate she lived a healthy, happy life--and showed none of the typical symptoms one would expect from a victim of child sexual abuse--I also think there is quite a lot of merit to criticizing the inconsistency of being morally absolutist and then switching to moral relativism to leverage one's religious apologetics for a religious figure, such as Muhammad.

    There could also be rather problematic ramifications for modern laws and traditions based on Islamic texts if lawmakers and considerable numbers of people viewed marriage to nine-year-olds as absolutely morally acceptable and considered it something their moral role model did. I'm sure the child bride issues in places like Yemen and some other parts of the Middle East didn't originate in a cultural and religious vacuum.
     
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  3. Altfish

    Altfish Well-Known Member

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    But you are basing a way of life, a religion on a book full of such ancient traditions.

    This is 2018 - things have moved on, so must religions.
     
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  4. Mock Turtle

    Mock Turtle Compassion, understanding, and tolerance.
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    I am sure many of us will be accepting of the fact that things were different long ago in many ways, and the rights of children or the politics of marrying girls off to further the interests of their parents was very different then, but when what Muhammad did is sometimes cited as being appropriate for now - as some Muslims seem to think - then I think we do have a legitimate right to question this.
     
    #4 Mock Turtle, Jun 2, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2018
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  5. ADigitalArtist

    ADigitalArtist Well-Known Member
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    Did you mean for the double negative in the title?

    Edit: I'm not asking to be pedantic, but because I think you probably didn't and I can change it if you want.
     
    #5 ADigitalArtist, Jun 2, 2018
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  6. Hubert Farnsworth

    Hubert Farnsworth Well-Known Member

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    Don't you have anything better to do than try to defend the deplorable actions of an ancient pedophile?
     
  7. Mock Turtle

    Mock Turtle Compassion, understanding, and tolerance.
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    Things were different then, so even if it would suit me no end to do so, I can't be that dishonest. We simply don't know what occurred then. And marrying young was a regular occurrence - quite probably.

    Edit: The marriage of Margaret Beaufort, then aged 12, in 1455, is often cited for evidence of such young marriages, and where she became pregnant, giving birth to the future Henry Tudor. From Wikipedia: The birth was particularly difficult; at one point, both the Countess and her child were close to death, due to her young age and small size. After this difficult birth she would never give birth again. Her husband, aged 25, died before the child was born so perhaps this was an example of karma. Another young girl married at age 12 apparently (in 1308), Isabella of France, who married Edward II, was perhaps luckier, as according to historical records she gave birth to a child when she was at least 15 years of age, and since she gave birth to several more children, one can only assume she was sexually and physically mature enough for sexual relations and her first birth, unlike Margaret. Being married to a possible homosexual might have helped here.
     
    #7 Mock Turtle, Jun 2, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2018
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  8. Hubert Farnsworth

    Hubert Farnsworth Well-Known Member

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    "Things were different then." Yeah, they were different, and they were wrong. Should we just brush off all the things in the past that were terribly immoral as just being "different?" Gimme a break.
     
  9. Mock Turtle

    Mock Turtle Compassion, understanding, and tolerance.
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    Well it would be all too easy to condemn all from the past, given the barbarity often exhibited towards others all too often - like to experience being hung, drawn and quartered, and the rest? One has to put the morality of the time into (some kind of) perspective.
     
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  10. Hubert Farnsworth

    Hubert Farnsworth Well-Known Member

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    I condemn almost all of the morality from the ancient past. Why shouldn't I?
     
  11. Mock Turtle

    Mock Turtle Compassion, understanding, and tolerance.
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    I would too, but then we are rather more enlightened than all then - so I tend to give them some allowance for being the ignorant idiots that they often were then.
     
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  12. Father Heathen

    Father Heathen Veteran Member

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    If you think that social acceptance and cultural normalcy alone are the criteria for something being morally permissible, then keep in mind that slavery too was once socially acceptable and a cultural norm. Just food for thought.
     
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  13. paarsurrey

    paarsurrey Veteran Member

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    All Muslims must obey the law of the land in which they live in secular matters.
    Regards
     
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  14. paarsurrey

    paarsurrey Veteran Member

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    There is no commandment in Quran to marry young girls, marriage is to take place between adults i.e when they attain marriageable age, and not before.
    Regards
     
    #14 paarsurrey, Jun 2, 2018
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  15. YmirGF

    YmirGF Bodhisattva

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    It should be clarified that what you are saying is, by far, the norm in the Muslim world. The vast majority DO NOT take children for their wives and most parents would not allow theirs children to take part. That said, there is a small percentage of Muslims who do think that it is OK because Muhammad did it. The thing to keep in mind is that marriage has only recently become an act between adults in the western world. It wasn't so long ago that older men would routinely marry younger women in our society, let alone in a society 1400+ years ago.
     
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  16. paarsurrey

    paarsurrey Veteran Member

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    Thanks for one's comments.
    Marriage is to take place between adults or when they attain marriageable age* that could be different in different regions/times of the world as per the law of the land, and if there is no specific law in this respect then as per the prevailing customs and traditions in vogue in the society .
    Regards

    ____________

    *Several places, including the state of Massachusetts in the United States, allow girls as young as 12 to get married in "exceptional circumstances" with the consent of a judge.
    Chart shows the lowest age you can legally get married around the world
    You can still get married at 12 in some parts of the US
    OOOOOOOOOO
    a-Classic Encyclopedia states that: Puberty in hot climate areas is much earlier & faster than that in cold ones. So girls puberty age could reach 8 or 9 years in hot climate areas.

    As stated by “Classic Encyclopedia”: [Encyclopedia Britannica, 1911 edition]

    “In northern countries males enter upon sexual maturity between the age of fourteen and sixteen, sometimes not much before the eighteenth year, females between twelve and fourteen. In tropical climates puberty is much earlier.”

    http://www.1911encyclopedia.org/Puberty
     
    #16 paarsurrey, Jun 2, 2018
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  17. Father Heathen

    Father Heathen Veteran Member

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    Even if the cultural acceptance argument was valid, Mohammad was supposed to have been close to god, and god's will and righteousness would obviously supersede human cultural norms. Would god really approve of something that heinously victimizes and causes severe, lasting trauma to innocent children? Not unless he was a repulsive demon.
     
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  18. Augustus

    Augustus the Unreasonable

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    Ironically, in contrast to today's norms, it's quite possible that Islamic theologians/historians made her younger than she actually was to ensure her purity, given other aspects of Islamic history and sectarian politics.

    Many details of the Sira took a long time to become canonised, as this quote clearly identifies.

    According to various Muslim sources Muhammad "was born in the Year of the Elephant, or fifty days after the attack of the troops of the Elephant, or thirty years after the Year of the Elephant, or forty years after the Year of the Elephant Many traditions are recorded in Ibn N~ al-Din's Jami' al-iithiu, fols. 179b-180b:the Prophet was born in the Year of the Elephant, he received the Revelation forty years after the Elephant (The fight at - K.) 'Ukaz took place fifteen years after the Elephant and the Ka'ba was built twenty-five years after the Elephant; the Prophet was born thirty days after the Elephant, or fifty days, or fifty-five days, or two months and six days, or ten years; some say twenty years, some say twenty-three years, some say thirty years, some say that God sent the Prophet with his mission fifteen years after the Ka'ba was built, and thus there were seventy years between the Elephant and the mission (mab'aJh) of the Prophet; some say that he was born fifteen years before the Elephant, some say forty days or fifty days, some say thirty years before the Elephant, and finally, some say that there were ten years between the expedition of the Elephant and the mission"
     
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  19. Phantasman

    Phantasman Well-Known Member

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    My own thoughts of marriage differ from what orthodox Christianity has defined it.

    The two become one flesh, as Jesus said. The spiritual doesn't become one, the flesh does. Jesus also said the flesh profits nothing. The idea was to contain the desires of the flesh. Paul said it would be better NOT to marry unless the desire of lust was overpowering one.

    That said, it would matter not to me if the containment was between any aged persons, or any sexual divisions (male and female). Is containment of lust successful if two men became one flesh?

    It's a question to ponder when you realize that flesh has no bearing on love of spirit.
     
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  20. Jumi

    Jumi Well-Known Member

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    I've seen some Muslims quote an age of ~17 on RF and elsewhere.
     
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