Nikkah…..

….Misyar.  Literal translation I believe is “traveller’s marriage”.  I like to translate it as a “no strings attached” marriage.  To me, it’s just a slightly bent version of the Shia Mutaa (temporary) marriage.

About a year ago, I was asked if I would ever consider entering into one.  Having never heard of it, Google, once again was my friend.  A Misyar marriage can be defined as an official marriage contract between a man and a woman, with the condition that the spouses give up one, two or several of their rights by their own free will.  My initial reaction was to take offence, a natural one I think.  It sounded leery, creepy and just wrong.

Fast forward a year and I actually don’t think it’s as bad as it sounds.  Hold on, hold on….hear me out.  Rather than take it from the guy’s perspective, take it from the woman’s.  Essentially, you end up with a boyfriend type thing without a lot of the pains that go with a marriage.

Pros; booty calls (he’s yours, not necessarily you his!), emotional support, knight in shining armour support and a bit of the all important love thrown in……if you pick wisely. Forfeit; accommodation and being taken care of in the traditional sense (does that even exist anymore for the vast majority of woman expected to live in this 50/50 culture).

So……………is it really all that bad?

16 thoughts on “Nikkah…..

  1. An interesting perspective… I’d never heard of that before… I guess if you’ve been bitten once, it is a possibility that seems to hold less heartache… But what if one of you develops feelings, stronger than you thought?

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  2. In practice, from what I’ve read, a misyar marriage seems to have another important factor: the man has in his heart a date at which he issues divorce. Always puzzled me how ‘the most hated of actions permitted by God’ could be undertaken so lightly by so many men who profess to be religious but there you go. Not that I’m an advocate of people staying in harmful/unfulfilling marriages, but with misyar it seems to often be abused for men’s pleasure. For example a woman from Yemen was telling me it was not uncommon for wealthier Saudis to cross the border in search of a wife from the poorer villages. They would be ‘married’, she would get the mahr (which would support her family), and after a certain amount of time he would divorce her and return home. I’ve heard the same from Moroccan and Malaysian women too, but have no direct experience.

    Just be aware that in Islamic law men are have a huge advantage anyway when it comes to divorce and custody according to most orthodox scholars. For you to waive any more of your rights might not be a great idea! But I guess it could work if you were not that attached to the man in the first place. But it defeats the purpose of marriage being a long last union, of the couple being ‘garments’ for each other etc etc. On the other hand, everyone’s different and if a woman is financially independent, it could work if those pesky ‘feelings’ don’t get involved!

    This is one you can talk yourself into and out of as the mood takes you I guess! 😀

    Were you asked the question in the context of a proposal?

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    • Hey jojo. Last year I was asked the question in the context of ‘hey we just met all of ten seconds ago….do you believe in nikkah misyar?”. Hence my offence at it. Nowadays I think it doesn’t sound so bad if the woman is a bit more in control. Depends on who initiates it and the conditions it involves! But if a woman drives it then she can dictate how much she is willing to sacrifice. I haven’t come across the whole divorce part of it but if I’m honest, in Islam, men always hold the cards when it comes to divorce as much as everybody might like to convince us otherwise.

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  3. Salam,

    Insha’Allah you are doing well, my understanding of your post signifies to me that this is more of a business contract than a marriage…. if that is what your looking for and that is what you want why not. As long as your happy and the other person is happy that is the only thing that matters. I recommend on not settling for anything. Insha’Allah the man that is meant to sweep you off your feet and you his will come when Allah (SWT) says it will be. Don’t rush into something you might not in the end be happy with. I hope I have not insulted or hurt you in any way. I am just giving my humbled opinion. I ask forgiveness from Allah (SWT) and you the author.

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    • Salaam x I love the comments so ofcourse you haven’t insulted x

      Btw when I write things, it’s normally because I’m just having a musing moment……not that I’m actually about to jump into something like this lol xx

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  4. Hi, am a male and I usually agree with your perspective on the subjects you write about, I however on this occasion disagree on this matter! interesting read nevertheless. Keep writing

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  5. You should facilitate a support group for individuals from a muslim background who either have or are currently in the process of divorce, I think you would be great in inspiring hope, assisting others in perhaps changing their perspective/outlook on life and challenging the stigma and so forth..
    I work as a mental health practitoner/therapist for depression and anxiety, I think you could reach out to individuals who otherwise would not access services.. anyhow just a thought!

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    • Thanks for your message A and suggestions. Support groups as such have never particularly interested me albeit I do like having the blog as a platform for all to connect. In the past, I’ve removed myself from people who’ve gone through a split becauee I find it difficult to deal with the negativity that follows afterwards. You more than me will know how much of a stigma is attached in getting help but such services like your own are vital. I’m not a believer in going straight to pills when there’s a problem but rather to connect to the root issue which counselling etc helps get to.

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  6. I don’t know if I’d do it personally because my community talks a lot of smack..but the pro of it would be for you to have a relationship with no strings..so your heart hardens a little and next time you get serious with a guy you don’t give him everything so whole heartedly..

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