You explain that dating is needed since arranged marriages are not feasible.However, by saying this you imply that these are the only two routes to getting married.Now if just being in seclusion is prohibited, what can be said about physical contact and the whole institution of dating?In support of dating, some argue that it is needed in order to find a spouse.Talking to someone over the phone, through email or the internet, or in the company of a mahram, gives you a chance to find out more about them, without crossing the boundaries set by Allah in His infinite wisdom. Yasmin says, “If there is a woman you are considering for marriage, you should approach her mahram.The Prophet Muhammad (sws) said, (Ahmad) This is the way designed by our Creator, who made everything in the universe, who knows what is hidden and what is open, who knows the future and the past, who knows us, better than we could ever know about ourselves. From there, many avenues exist to get to know her better, without having to be in seclusion or engaging in physical contact.” Of course this is true, but how do you get to that point of choosing someone that you might be interested in for marriage?You do not come close to fire, and then wonder why you got burned.
There is also the option of completely arranged marriages.
Young people can read one another’s profiles, exchange a few anonymous messages through the matrimonial service’s messaging system, then if they find each other interesting they can take it offline and contact each other’s families. And every major Islamic conference should include such an event. I’ve read about an Imam in New York who does that quite successfully.
We seem to have these two extremes – either an arranged marriage between cousins, which is generally unhealthy and seems to end in misery more often than not, or a free-for-all where young people must fend and seek for themselves, and often fall into sin.
by Yasmin Mogahed Reprinted from Suhaib As-salamu `alaykum brother, Thank you for the honest question you asked regarding dating. First, you have pointed out that you live in a society where dating is the norm.
While I understand and sympathize with that struggle, it is important to make clear that just because something is the norm in one’s society, does not justify participating in it.
In fact, the Prophet (sws) has told us that those who follow the right path will always be ‘different’ or ‘strange’ to the mainstream.