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Logic Dictates… - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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Once again, issuing fatwas (religious rulings) regarding marriage and “new” opinions have resurfaced.

Recently, new fatwas have emerged that reveal and permit two kinds of “emergency” marriages, the Mesfaar marriage (the travel marriage) and marriage with intention to divorce. Undoubtedly, this uproar comes after other controversies over the “Zawaj Urfi” [Customary marriage which is unregistered], “Zawaj-Friend” [boyfriend-girlfriend relationship], “summer marriage” and “Misyar marriage” [whereby husband is not financially responsible for wife]. Perhaps the astonishing thing is the level of enthusiasm shown by sheikhs who issue these rulings and their surprising defense of their justifications for their opinion and their presenting of various proofs thinking that in this way, they would be helping and providing solutions to people who want to get married. Although the intentions may be good, these forms of marriage (made to facilitate consummation) are also an invite to multiple divorces.

The divorce rate in the Arab world has reached an alarming level and is now a major cause for concern; undoubtedly, the negative effects will also increase and will begin to appear one by one. Inasmuch as there is enthusiasm for these religious rulings, the suspicious silence surrounding issues of divorce, custody and domestic violence is incomprehensible. Nor is it understood how the silence of jurisprudence continues to overlook the large amount of wrongdoing committed against women and children in matters of divorce, custody, and physical abuse towards women and even children in an inhuman manner that contradicts the principles of all heavenly religions and human laws.

These issues are no longer hidden; the opposite is rather more accurate as the mass media is not embarrassed to report on these issues in depth as a result of the continuance of such behavior that cannot be shoved aside.

The issue of personal matters (even if efficiency in handling them varies from country to country) remains bleak as a number of shameful acts continue to be ignored by the religious jurisprudence dialogue that focuses on less important matters and which will cause this situation to persist and worsen.

What happens to women and children in many instances in the Arab world is outright tyranny and not confronting it is equivalent to taking part in the crime. Reason and wisdom cannot accept that permission is given to fulfill sexual desires at the expense of eliminating scandals.

Hussein Shobokshi

Hussein Shobokshi

Hussein Shobokshi is a businessman and prominent columnist. Mr. Shobokshi hosts the weekly current affairs program Al-Takreer on Al-Arabiya, and in 1995 he was chosen as one of the "Global Leaders for Tomorrow" by the World Economic Forum. He received his BA in Political Science and Management from the University of Tulsa.

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