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These forces drive Muslim women to either select suitable marriage partners from outside the faith or face unremitting spinsterhood.” There are two potential solutions to this crisis: The first is to allow Muslim women to marry out as well, something that Ahmed advocates in the name of gender equality.She says women should be able to make their own decisions in this regard, that they should be guided by the principles of ijtihad, which allows Muslims to interpret religious texts according to their own judgments.She believes that the theological justification for allowing men to marry non-Muslim women has been rendered moot by the sociological realities of life in America. He’s responsible for the children to get educated within the faith . “The reality is, the woman is the one who is teaching the children, and you know, influencing that family and the faith that they follow.” In addition to the fact that the children of such marriages are not being raised in the Muslim faith, there are other difficulties that have been generated by the double religious standards for men and women.“The way it is presented is that the Muslim man is the one who is supposed to keep the faith in that family . The number of men marrying out has actually created a severe gender imbalance, leaving many Muslim women without partners.Interestingly, the lack of communication between Muslim men and women before marriage noted by many Muslim leaders is actually part of a larger problem that Ezzeldine believes is resulting in more interfaith matches.Ezzeldine suggests that the Muslim community’s standards for interacting with members of the opposite sex are actually having a deleterious effect on marriage in the community.
If women here are so “equal” that the child of an interfaith marriage is more than twice as likely to adopt his mother’s faith as his father’s, then why should religious authorities trust that a Muslim man married to a Christian woman will end up with Muslim children? (WOMENSENEWS)– Munira Ezzeldine, a marriage counselor in Irvine, Calif., who is one of the instructors of a premarital course, tells me that Islam in America is at a “kind of crossroads now.” She explains, “We don’t have something called dating in the Western context, you know with pre-marital sex and all the stuff that comes with it.” But young Muslims are also not interested in having arranged marriages as their parents and grandparents did.“They actually want to get to know the person for a certain amount of time, but also within the boundaries.” If a young Muslim is aiming for this kind of compromise, there are other resources too.Ezzeldine, who wrote a short book called “Before the Wedding: Questions for Muslims to Ask Before Getting Married,” tries to offer her coreligionists a way of getting to know each other without violating the standards of the faith.Ezzeldine wants Muslims to have “the conversations to get to know somebody for marriage in a way” that is more than superficial.