Understanding the Concept of Marriage & Its Functions

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Understanding the Concept of Marriage

What is marriage? It is a process through which a couple makes their relationship official, permanent, and public. Marriage is ideally the union of two people that is supposed to last “till death do them apart,” yet sadly in recent times, the unions are being cut short through divorces. Over a period of time, people change, their personalities change, their likes and dislikes change, their age advances, the love for each other goes through ups and downs, and so on and so forth. It is impossible to expect the same things from each other that were expected when the marriage started. The changes bring with them turmoil, adjustment issues, and many times a sense of disappointment which, in turn, shakes the foundation of faith between the couple. There are absolutely no marriages in this world that are free of problems and issues. A good marriage sustains not because it is problem-free but how the couple as a single unit manage and handle the problems that keep cropping up.

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Understanding the concept of marriage and its functions

Marriage is, perhaps, one of the oldest rituals of mankind celebrated across the world and exists in all cultures and religions. It is a socially recognized institution that was, for a long time, a necessity in nearly all societies for procreating and for satisfying sexual urges. Formerly, a couple stayed together in a marriage despite huge differences between them fearing ridicule from members of their community and fear of being treated as outcastes in their societies. More often than not, these marriages were compelled to last driven by societal and family pressures rather than love and affection between the couple.Of course, these age-old customs and rigidities have undergone tremendous changes and today, we seem to be seeing the other end of the spectrum. Divorces are on the rise and are based on the flimsiest of reasons and marriages are broken at the drop of a hat.

So, what is the real meaning of marriage?I believe in no absolutes and hence would like to define marriage as an effort to be sincerely put in by the couple getting into wedlock to accept a new status in life and society with a new set of responsibilities and privileges. This new status ideally should be based on love. Yet such Utopian ideas are difficult to come true forever. However, in the initial days of marriage, more often than not, love does play an undisputable role. There are many functions that a marriage performs in society. Allow me to list a few of them for you (though some of them seem archaic in today’s modern world):

  • Procreation of children
  • Provide legal parents to children
  • Regulation of sex
  • Gives social and economic security to women
  • Establishes joint fund
  • Fulfillment of basic needs of life
  • Perpetuation of lineage.

Wedding ceremonies mark the beginning of a marriage. Varying widely based on culture, religion, and the community involved, wedding ceremonies range from a simple function solemnized by an authorized official to grand occasions that last for many days and costing a large fortune. If marriages are meant to keep people together why are so many of them failing today and ending up in acrimonious separations and divorces not to mention the pressures of the children.

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