March 8, 2006
A postgraduate friend recently told me online, “I’m getting married in April and you’re invited”. My question was, “How long have you been going out?!”
“I met her once in September and now we’re getting hitched!”
No, it’s not a story of love at first sight.
It’s a modern version of match-making, reminiscent of the traditional Indian/Chinese custom. In the old days, parents would use a middle person to hook up a suitable partner, based on a number of factors, including social status, income and education levels.
These days technology has evaded even this ancient tradition, with mushrooming websites that go beyond your typical dating service. As a candidate, you should give clear and specific details of yourself. Level of education, languages spoken, family name (which is important in many circles), profession. Couple this with a digitally enhanced photograph and voila, you’re putting yourself out in the open market.
How is this different from any dating service? Parents get involved too! They sift through potential partners by your side and eventually select the woman of your dreams. (read: “appropriate social status”)
I believe in Match-Making to a certain extent.
- If you have a good relationship with your parents, and they know you better than anyone else, they are warrant to make a good judgement.
- In a normal relationship, romance and discovery happens first. You get married knowing everything about the person. In a match-made marriage, you tie the knot first and only then the lifelong journey of discovery begins.
- A match-made marriage is usually coupled with the assumption: This is it. No two-ways about it. We make it work, do or die. There is no option to walk out.
One could argue this is a sterile way of ‘doing’ relationships. But many people were match-made in the Bible, for example. Few relationships were borne out of romance. And they worked. (In fact, physical attraction/lust led to the downfall of Samson, Amnon & David, to name a few.)
Give me a Biblical marriage anyday.
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