Marriage is still an expected topic to cover in youthful conversations about how awesome the future is going to be. What will you wear, who will be there, and if that special person’s last name fits with yours (or hyphenate and call it a day). Lofty, translucent thoughts.
Today the question isn’t whether you’ll be married in traditional white or be walked down the aisle by next of kin. Today we wonder if it should happen at all.
The prime benefit is bound in law. Being able to make critical decisions on the part of your beloved. Tax breaks. However, the fundamental benefit is spiritual growth. The determination to use skills and techniques to create ongoing socio-emotional development. This cannot be done alone. We learn through our experiences with others and the best people to practice with is your life long lover.
You do not have to get married. You can substitute the grievances of marriage and divorce for other equally grand and financially humiliating decisions. But, since we are speaking of marriage, let’s be honest about the best part of this relationship: karma.
We attract the same people until we break the pattern. Until we see the pattern for ourselves, we will be unable to change it. Our friends and family can help us with this growth, but sometimes those relationships carry baggage and ulterior motives. Nurture this sense of intuition within yourself in order to rely less on other people’s “sense” of things.
The above quote by Daisaku Ikeda discusses the importance of women in a value-creating society.
Nichiren Daishonin Buddhism says that all people can alter their karma and seek an enlightened self. Most importantly, the Daishonin wrote that one woman with a spark can start a great fire. The reason women are held in high regard in this practice is because they are the core of the household (especially if her core is filled with love and Myoho). But our homes look very different today, moving away from hetero-normative nuclear set-ups to “this is how we livin!”
So, is marriage going the way of the dinosaurs. Absolutely not! Weddings might. Rehearsals, receptions and the like may turn into other worthy and wonderful celebrations. Committing yourself, fully to another person, is an act of patience, humility and love. That rite of passage will be kept alive to remind us of the few special moments that make us human and cause us to seek something beyond ourselves.
Couples may not wed or keep joint bank accounts, but they do love one another and sometimes add to that love by building a family together… And not together. The pomp and circumstance of the wedding and marriage license may go by the way side, still it will not replace making babies and needing to raise them in a committed way.